dichroic: (oar asterisk)

Books read: lots – I’ve never had much desire to keep track, though I’m occasionally curious to know how many I’ve read in a year. I’d guess somewhere between 100-250, but can’t say more exactly.

Knitting projects: 15 completed – 5(!) sweaters, two shawls, two hats (both gifts), 3 pair socks, a few other things. One sweater and one pair of socks in work, plus a cowl with a few rows in the yarn of each project.

Rowing: 1,328,398 meters for the year. (Not bad.) Of those, only 87,518 meters were on actual water (Not good.) and the rest on the rowing machine. 231586m were during the Holiday Challenge.

Add in work, the French Polynesia trip for our 25th anniversary, work, the trip for my GFIL’s 100th birthday, work, and a fair bit of cooking, plus a few other weekend trips (Yakima for my birthday, the knitting retreat at our lake house, Cannon Beach in September), a work trip to AZ where I got to meet up with old friends, another to TX to speak at a conference, and more work, and you pretty much have my year there.

Mirrored from Dichroic Reflections.

dichroic: (oar asterisk)

I haven’t talked much about this year’s Holiday Challenge, but it’s proceeding apace – I’m up to 182km and expect to finish midweek. That was fostered by the 25km piece I just finished (“just” as in haven’t even showered yet – I’m heating up lunch first). (Actually yesterday – I wrote this piece and forgot to hit Publish, because erging is not good for braining. This morning I’ve now done another 15km.)

I did it at marathon pace, which is to say not fast, and I’m a slow rower to start with – it took me 2:28:37 to finish, giving me a split (time to row 500m) of 2:58.2. That equates to a pace of about 6 minutes per kilometer or around 9.5 minutes per mile. These long pieces can really eat up a weekend day 🙁

I’ve also concluded that The Martian is a terrible audiobook for erging. Somehow, you don’t want a book about endurance when you’re actually doing an endurance piece; you want something with a lot more quick action. As audiobooks usually run from 8-20 hours long, even with an action book you don’t really have to worry much about it not lasting the length of multiple pieces. Also, at one point I looked at my phone and noticed he’d already survived the accident, figured out how to make soil and water, planted the potatoes, and Earth had figured out that he was alive – and yet the book had 9 hours left. Unless the book is farther from the movie than I expect, I think it might get a little tedious – and even for an engineer, it’s a bit technical for a workout book.

Mirrored from Dichroic Reflections.

dichroic: (oar asterisk)

I. No racing last weekend after all. The weather was absolutely gorgeous, but was windy enough to result in very rough water. Our visiting friend Rebecca and I were scheduled to race early on Saturday morning (heats A and B of women’s Masters singles). She was already at the start, and I was just about to cross the course to row to the start, when I told the Crossing Marshall to radio in that I wanted to scratch – as soon as I turned perpendicular to the course I realized it was too rough to be safe. He told me they were going to bring everyone in, so he wouldn’t scratch me yet. Apparently four people had fallen in so far. (They had plenty of safety boats to fish them out.) So everyone out on the course had to row back in through the rough water, a definite challenge. They kept postponing the race, and eventually decided to cancel the novice events that had already gone by entirely, and move the womens’ singles to Sunday morning, letting some of the bigger (wider) boats race. All in all we ended up walking back and forth to the park where the race was about four times, between the morning race meeting and then trying to figure out what was going on.

Rebecca and I comforted ourselves with a long kayak paddle in the afternoon, so at least she got to see all of the lake.

Unfortunately, moving our race put us right ahead of the men’s singles, so Rebecca couldn’t row Ted’s boat as planned (she’s much closer to his size than mine). She tried out my racing shell and established that it was at least possible to row it, but Sunday morning was again rough enough that she decided to take my open-water boat, which is much more stable and self-baling. It’s perfectly happy handling those conditions, as long as you don’t expect to go very fast. This time she got only to the park before being told the race was postponed again – they eventually ended up canceling the rest of the races all together. Rebecca did a row down the course just for fun, probably giving a heart attacks to any of the race officials who didn’t know she was in a boat that could handle rough water.

Care and (especially) feeding of a vegetarian athlete was something that worried me a bit beforehand, but we ended up just having pizza on Friday night (carbo-loading!) and a big varied salad with assorted grilled stuff that everyone chose their own to skewer, so that worked out OK, I think. We should have gotten more lunch food, but I was expecting the wonderful and diverse bakery sandwiches this regatta has provided in the past, and they didn’t have them this year.

So it was a great weekend, aside from the small issue of the actual race that was the reason we were there – beautiful weather, a chance to catch up with an old friend, and time at the house. Oh, well.

And also, after all these years it is really nice to have someone other than Ted understand why I don’t go into races expecting to win, and that no, it’s not just that I don’t train enough. (There are three components to being ready for a race: having your head in the game, boat feel/technique, and fitness. I definitely failed on the first one and haven’t gotten nearly enough water time this year, but I actually do feel like I was physically ready for this race – my training plan was very good and I followed it fairly faithfully, aside from breaks for a couple of business trips. I still would likely have come in at the back of the pack, though.

II. Passover is going to be a lot easier to keep this year. I decided last year that I was an honorary Sephard, but I didn’t really fully embrace the possibilities. Sure, I ate some popcorn and maybe a little rice, but that was about it. But I’ve realized that for instance the dinner we had last night (Grilled Chicken Marsala over rice) and the one I plan for Sunday (enchiladas, with corn tortillas) are both Pesadic under the new rules.Not that I really needed a rabbi to tell me what to do, but it’s nice not to feel I’m somehow cheating.

I made gnocchi the other night (having bought shelf-stable ones from the supermarket) and was wondering if they might be Pesadic also but alas, gnocchi contain potatoes, eggs …and flour. Apparently it might be possible to make my own, though, if I figure out what sweet rice flour is and where to buy it. (I doubt I will bother. Once Passover is done, though, the supermarket ones were very good and we’ll definitely be having them again.) Meanwhile, I’m just trying to figure out how to reconcile first Seder on Friday night with some other plans I had – trivia night at a local winery, that we were planning to go to anyway, to pick up our wine club shipment. And okay, a trivia game isn’t really the kind of thing you move around anything as important as a Seder for, but when it’s just a meal for the two of us somehow the importance is diminished a bit.

Mirrored from Dichroic Reflections.

dichroic: (oar asterisk)

I am so not ready to race this weekend. It’s been a few years since my last one – looks like that was this same regatta in 2013. I’ve been doing good training on the erg, but we have way too little time on the water; not only has the weather not really cooperated, but it seems like there have been more wake issues than normal. A larger nearby lake has been drained while they’ve been working on the dams, so it’s possible some of the boats that would normally be over there have been coming to our lake instead. We went down to the house last weekend – we were there the week before and will be next week, but we needed the water time and also needed to clean a bit, since our friend R is coming. We did get out for a bit on Saturday, but there was a collegiate regatta going on which kind of limited where we could row. Then Sunday the weather was perfect, but there was a big boat casting up wakes so huge and constant we wouldn’t really have been able to row at all, so we gave up and came home.

So why am I racing? I hate almost everything about it – the anxiety beforehand, the difficulty of getting my gut settled in time to launch my boat at the time I need to (thanks, IBS!), pushing my body to the point of pain and (sometimes) dry heaves, and still often coming in last despite training and effort, because I do really have just the wrong sort of body for this sport.

I’ve thought of three reasons: one, because I do like the feeling of having done it, and of being part of the regatta; two, because it’s much easier to stick with a training program if I have a concrete goal to train for; and three, because what I hate even more is being at a regatta with everyone else around me pushing themselves to their utmost, and yet not being a part of it because I wimped out.

The other thing I’ve found I have to do is to not focus on others in the race. For many people it can matter to keep track of the others so for example you can put on a burst of speed if someone is about to pass. For me, it’s better to focus on my own race; win or lose I need to row a race I’m proud of. If I’m hitting the 750-meter mark as I hear finish horns going off (which has happened), I need to keep the pressure on and not slump in defeat. If I watch the video of this race, I need to seem myself racing the whole way through, not giving up. (This probably sounds defeatist but it’s just pragmatic. I have won races, but usually smaller ones; I’ve competed in this particular regatta twice before and know that they tend to have a lot of fast women in my age group and above.) Either way, by this time Saturday I’ll probably be all done it, and trying to figure out what I should do next for a training plan.

Mirrored from Dichroic Reflections.

dichroic: (oar asterisk)

Sorted into what they used to call “heads” in old sermons (gratuitous L.M. Montgomery reference there) so I don’t just meander confusingly.

I. Rowing and such
My shoulder has been bothering me this week, to the point where I didn’t erg Wednesday or yesterday. Nothing really wrong, I don’t think, just a strain that hurts enough that it seemed smart to rest it. This is not good, partly because of that race coming up next month, and partly because my blood pressure seems to be up lately and the only thing I know to fix that is to lose a few pounds (literally a few, just 5 or so seems to help). At least it wasn’t raining yesterday afternoon, so since I couldn’t row I got in a couple miles’ walk.

II. Yarn Crawl
Tomorrow is the Rose City Yarn Crawl! Or rather, it runs from yesterday through Sunday, but tomorrow is the day I’m going on it. I really, really don’t need more yarn – what I need is time to knit the yarn I have – but I enjoyed it last year, and the LYS is once again fielding a limo to visit several of the participating stores. It’s a bit expensive to ride along ($80) but I’m considering it as a birthday treat.

III. Birthday
Next weekend for my actual birthday (well, the day after) we’re going to spend a three-day wine weekend in Dundee, a town a little south of here where you can’t throw a stone without hitting a grapevine. I’ve been wanting to go for a while, so asked to make it this year’s birthday trip. There will be much wine tasted and probably some great food as well.

IV. Parallax and poetry
There is a really cool parallax effect I see when rowing on our lake, and I’ve been trying to get it into a poem, but it’s resisting with all claws out like a cat being put into a carrier. (Actually, our current cats are more cooperative.) I tend to row fairly close to the shore, especially in cold weather, because it feels safer. There’s a park on the far side of the lake, with some fairly tall trees near the water’s edge. When I’m close to them, the trees are all I see; as I paddle further away from shore, of course the trees sink into the distance – but magically a mountain rises up behind them. Close in it’s hidden by the trees and some low hills, but from further out you can see that the mountain is way higher than the trees. There is a fairly obvious analogy in this for daily life, too, about the big things being hidden by near-term petty concerns, but it might be too didactic to add that to the poem.

V. On a foodie note – cod is still not my favorite fish, but I can recommend this recipe for it with mustard-caper sauce. What a pleasant change, to try a new recipe that only takes about 15 minutes and very little effort to make. Ted suggested that the sauce might also be good on asparagus, as well as other white fish. One warning: that recipe is from Real Simple, who have an annoying habit of giving instructions for a whole dinner at once, with ingredients and instructions for each thing all muddled up together. The Bibb lettuce, red onion and cucumbers are for a salad on the side and are not part of the fish recipe. (We had Brussels sprouts with it instead, that being what I wanted to use up). On the other hand, the spaghetti squah we had the night before will not be repeated – it’s clear that winter squashes in all forms are not welcome in my household. Though I may serve this tomato sauce with gremolata again, only over actual pasta. I used a mix of canned and fresh tomatoes, but it would be better with fresh ones only – maybe Roma ones for cooking and an heirloom one on top.

VI. Knitting
I cast on another project last night, bringing my total WiPs to four. Annoyed at myself for this. I know lots of people enjoy having many projects in work at once. That’s great if it’s what you like, just not for me. I try to keep not more than two in work, because I like finishing things – I get tired of a project when it’s been in work too long. I don’t really seem to have that much time to knit – or don’t focus on it when I do – so having too many projects going just drags everything out.

Currently I’ve got 1) a lightweight sweater (Cecchetti) that has the body and one sleeve done, second sleeve barely started. The body on this went nice and fast, sleeves seem to be taking for-freaking-ever. Also, I put it aside with the advent of cooler weather, because it’s more of a summer sweater. Unfortunately I think the sleeves may end up a little tight. 2) a Dr. Who tie for my brother Hitchhiker necktie). Speaking of taking forever! I thought I’d knock this out in a week for his December birthday, but here it is March and it’s only 36” done. I’m into the narrower part, so it’s going faster now, but moss stitch is an unfortunate combination of slow to knit and boring. 3) Another, heavier sweater (Wisteria) – this one has the body done and I’m into the cabling at the bottom of the first sleeve. I’m still loving this one and would be happy to spend all my knitting time on it, but it has gotten too bulky to carry around to knitting outings or on travel, so that does justify one other project. Also, I’m sad that it won’t be done in time to wear this winter, because it’s beautiful. And 4) a shawl I cast on a few days ago, for no good reason but the desire to do something different. (All Things Oregon). I don’t know why. This is part of a local MKAL and it just looked like fun. Also, I’m doing it in rustic brown and beige yarns, so it will be different from any other shawl I own, while still going well with some colors I wear. At least the clues only come out every two weeks, so I’m hoping it won’t be too hard to keep up with.

Mirrored from Dichroic Reflections.

dichroic: (oar asterisk)

I’m almost looking forward to this year’s Concept 2 Holiday Challenge (the goal is to do 200,000 meters on the erg from US Thanksgiving Day to Christmas Eve. This year will be my 12th time doing the whole thing. I did my first one in 2001. There was one year when I didn’t do it at all due to injury, and two years when I only did the 100000m version – 2006, when we first moved to the Netherlands (our ergs hadn’t arrived for the first part of it, so we had to erg in the boathouse there) and 2011, when we spent much of December doing a driving trip through France and Spain.

I started doing a marathon training programagain a couple months ago, so I’m about midway through it now, doing around 50 km a week. (That plan uses four week periods – in each period, you ramp up your distance for three weeks, then get one easier week to rest a bit before plunging in again.) I’m already doing enough distance now to finish the Challenge in time; by the time it happens I’ll be up to around 65 km/week so it should be no problem. Once again, I don’t know if I’ll finish the marathon program, since I have no reason to actually do a marathon any time soon, but it is a good way to build up an endurance base.

It’s also a pleasanter way to do the Holiday Challenge; I used to just row 6-7 km a day (whatever the average was that year – it changes since Thanksgiving Day is on a different date every year) for 30 days straight. With the training plan forcing me on, I do more distance each row, but I get two days a week completely off. Of course there’s a down side – just ask me this Saturday when I’m cranking out my 18000 meters! (It will take me about 1.75 hours.)

Amazon’s Matchmaker program has been a godsend for erging, even better than the Librivox recordings I had been listening to. A lot of them are only a couple dollars more to buy if you already have the e-book – and since I reread everything I like at all I do want the e-book version. Right now I’m almost done with the latest October Daye book; I’ve concluded that those, the Kate Daniels books and the Chronicles of St. Mary’s are really ideal erging books, because no matter how hard the workout is, at least it’s usually easier than whatever the heroine of the book is going through. (Yesterday, I was cranking out 1km pieces, while Toby was holding her arm in the middle of an animated rosebush that was using its thorns to sample her blood.)

Meanwhile, getting ready for Halloween. I like to do a more subtle, office-appropriate costume at work. This year I wanted to be Middle-Aged!Hermione; according to JKR she went to work in the Dept of Magical Law Enforcement, so she’d be wearing robes to work at the Ministry, but I figure she’d have to liase with Muggles occasionally and would dress accordingly. I will wear a loose hip-length black seater, with a white collared shirt under it (sleeveless, so I don’t get lumps in the sweater sleeves and a Gryffindor scarf. unfortunately I can’t find the Gryffindor scarf I knitted years ago – I suspect I gave it away because I never wore it. I couldn’t find a cheap tie, so I bought a knit infinity scarf in Gryffindor House colors, which is probably close to what a professional adult Hermione would wear anyway. I also bought some cheap Peanuts leggings and t-shirt at Kohl’s, after I’d given up on the tie and before I decided to buy the scarf at Amazon, but even with a skirt over the tights that seems a bit less work-proper for me. I have always loved Peanuts, though, and can wear those items as around-the-house jammies. (The scarf was $20, which is why I was hesitating, but it seems to be knitted out of t-shirt material so hopefully I will get some wear out of it when I want an accent and it’s too warm for a knitted scarf or shawl.)

I am pleased with myself for remembering to bring not only the white shirt but also my hairbrush back last time we went to the lake house – using a brush on my hair will give me the required Hermione frizz. (Normally I just gfinger-comb my hair to get tangles out without ending up with a Rosanne Rosannadanna bush.) Also I have a pretty wooden hairstick with a bit of inlay on one end; I figure I can carry that as a wand (and also use it on my hair if all that frizz gets too annoying). It’s maybe 7″ long, so smallish but not completely out of range from what the books describe – but I figure the wizards might follow Muggle lead in miniaturizing their tech.

Mirrored from Dichroic Reflections.

dichroic: (oar asterisk)

Well, this weekend ended up a bit more exciting than expected. We went down to the lake house and, having felt a bit sleep deprived since returning from Hawaii the previous weekend, slept in until 8 or so. Just as we were finally getting up, we noticed a metallic sound. We’d been wondering a bit about the roof there; during heavy rain, there’s been a plonking noise, like rain falling onto a tin roof, but it just seemed to be into the fireplace. This time, it seemed to be to the left of the bed – right where there was a bulging biut of paint that we’d poked at a while back, but that just seemed to be a loose flake. Then Ted noticed a drip onto the bed, right next to me. This is where I should mention that the ceiling in that room is about 18-20 feet high. So first we got to go out in the rain and figure out how to get the Really Big Ladder into our bedroom (answer: through the front door, up the stairs, out onto the back deck, then back into the bedroom’s door on the same deck). Then we got it set up, he sawed a hole through the ceiling drywall and pulled out some insulation, and was able to see a bit of daylight. Then we got the ladder back out of the bedroom and onto the deck so he could get up onto the roof – by then it had stopped raining and he found the crack. (He gets nominated to do all the high-up stuff by virtue of being nearly a foot taller. That roof is particularly scary, because that extra-tall bedroom and matching living room are on the second floor, so the roof is really 3 stories up.) It turns out that the roof vents there are plastic. That one had been screwed down too tightly, and a crack propagated until it was no longer covered by a roof shingle. He checked further and found a similar crack in another vent. He managed to fix them well (caulking and duct tape)enough to hold for a long time, but we’ll eventually need to replace the vents.

And then after all that we got to go out rowing, where I managed 13.3 km of the 15 I was supposed to do on the erg. It started out smooth but was getting rougher and since that was the longest distance I’ve done in a bost in years, my hands needed a break. Sunday morning, I was glad I’d planned to go out in the kayak, because even in that it was rougher than I’d really like – I did another 6km or so, then did a short interval piece on the erg to make up a bit more distance. Ow. We decided to stay a bit later than usual and it eventually calmed down, so Ted got to go out rowing – he doesn’t seem to like kayaking as much as I do. Also, I’m convinced that 1km in a kayak takes more energy than the same distance rowing since it’s less efficient, but he thinks it doesn’t count as exercise because your heart rate doesn’t get up as high. Whatever.

I do realize a leaky roof in your second home may be the ultimate first-world problem.

Then there are problems that are universal. Sadly, today I found out that one of our old rowing friends from our Texas days has just died of cancer. At least he was an older man – I think he was retired when we knew him there and we left there in late ’95. He was a crusty old guy, VP of our rowing club; that was where I learned that an organization can work really well if you have a second-in-command who doesn’t mind riling people up to get work done together with a chief who’s good at smoothing feathers.

We ran into him a few times after that when he was refereeing at various regattas; he’d never have been unfair in any way but it was always a good feeling to meet up with a friendly ref. I think our politics were diametrically opposed, since he was active in the local Republican party, but what we talked about was rowing and that was what mattered. Smooth water and clean catches, Tom.

Mirrored from Dichroic Reflections.

new stuff

May. 29th, 2014 08:53 am
dichroic: (oar asterisk)

Maybe this is about summer i-cumen in, but I seem to be in the mood to try new (or retry old) things. There are the aforementioned kayaks. In addition, I have started running, to see if it’s possibly something I could learn to like or at least tolerate – there have been so many times when I wanted to do something outdoors on a weekday but didn’t have access to a boat. or when I was traveling and could have used a way to work out that didn’t require much equipment. So far I’ve done the first two Couch-to-5K workouts, which are basically jogging for 60 seconds and walking for 90 seconds, repeated for 20 minutes, and the verdict is still out. I didn’t hate it, but my legs (shins and hips) were very sore afterward. In fact, it was a bit ironic; last week, on one day I erged 11 km and then the next day did that second jogging workout (which, if you do the math, has you jogging lightly for a whopping 8 minutes) and it was the jogging that left me sore. I don’t think I really want to have running as a big objective in my life, but I’d love to get to the point where, if I just didn’t feel like erging that day or if I needed a travel workout I could run a mile instead.

I also got my guitar put back in working order and have been practicing semi-regularly. I’ve nearly got “Hey There, Delilah” down (for some values of “got it down” – I don’t seem to be getting notes to ring out as they should, probably because doing too many bar chords still hurts my hands). I love the song, and it fits right in to the finger-picking style I do. I’ve also started to work on “Hallelujah”: I’ve found a picking pattern that works, and a couple different variants of chords that sound OK to me.

I don’t really have time to add new hobbies, but I feel like life is too short not to do them. (But it’s also true that yesterday after work I decided a nap would be more beneficial than anything else. Given that I woke up an hour and fifteen minutes later, I think I was right.)

Mirrored from Dichroic Reflections.

dichroic: (oar asterisk)

I haven’t really been able to keep up with LJ In recent months, so I just came across the news about Jay Lake going into hospice. I would hereby like to offer a heartfelt “Fuck off!” to that insatiablely raving maw, cancer, itself. I’m only less slightly enraged at the people (on my FB feed and elsewhere) who keep insisting that eating the right foods, having the right attitude, and drinking distilled water will cure cancer – especially one guy who’s telling people not to have actual treatment (radiation, chemo) because “those don’t work”. (It’s true my uncle and dad died of cancer despite medical treatment, but I’m pretty sure chemo in the one case and radiation in the other bought them time. In my dad’s case, that was the time that allowed him to play with his only grandson – who might, just barely, be old enough to remember him. Time matters.) I try not to ill-wish anyone, but some people make it difficult.

Anyway, on to more cheerful stuff.

Next week I will be taking a whirlwind cross-country trip to speak to a group in Rhode Island – fly out one day, fly back the next. I’ve got the first draft of my presentation ready; it’s basically “Why you, yes, you right there, need processes and a process system” tailored to this particular audience. I’m not sure if it’s as well organized as I’d like, but at least I have my thoughts pried out of my head and dumped onto slides. I imagine the trip will be fairly exhausting (and I have to run a big meeting the next day) but gratifying, and anyway I miss traveling. It really irks me to have gone from platinum frequent-flyer status last year to nothing this year – no more early check-in, short lines, or cheaper seat upgrades.

Last weekend we went to the lake. We went into town Saturday and finally got the kayak we’ve been talking about for years, so I spent Sunday morning in a kayak. It’s amazing how different an experience that is from rowing; a bit like the difference between hiking and jogging, I guess. The whole point is to look at everything around you and be able to investigate things out on the lake; you’re not unconcerned with form, but technique and exertion aren’t paramount as they are in a rowing shell. We’d been worried about whether the cheap ‘yak we got would track straight enough that it wasn’t frustrating to paddle; after my long poke around the lake and a trial session for Ted, we went back and got another one :-)

I’m hoping that, on days when the weather cooperates, we can row in the morning and do a leisurely paddle before dinner. Later on Sunday the wind came up, so I did a very short tryout to see how well the boat would handle rougher conditions. It did, though it was definitely more tiring. The morning was beautiful, in looks and sounds and smells – just the kind of day when the weather wants you to be out. In the evening the wind came up, and I had to sit outdoors – the wind made it feel so big and alive I’d have felt cut off and numb if I’d gone to sit indoors.


They are called Curiosity and Opportunity. We talked briefly about eventually adding a double sit-on-top model, so if we do, it will be christened Spirit.

Mirrored from Dichroic Reflections.

dichroic: (oar asterisk)

I was feeling a bit gloomy: at least I have been getting calls from recruiters, but hadn’t gotten further. One of them had me fill in six (!) forms and reformat my resume in order to apply for a state government job, and then told me – only after I queried back – that she could only submit her top three picks and I wasn’t one of them. (I hope at least she read the forms to figure that out, but I doubt it. Another definitely is submitting me for a job that is exciting, challenging, and scary, (and lucrative) a promotion past the level I had been working on but would require a move, which I don’t really want to do. I’ve let her submit it, because the move is not completely outside the bounds of possibility if the opportunity was really amazing, and because interviewing at that level would be great practice.

But! A few minutes ago the phone rang, and I have an interview scheduled for tomorrow, for a position I’m excited about. It’s supposed to be a great company to work for, the location is ideal, and the job in some ways lets me get back to what I like (engineering development processes) while simultaneously giving me an opportunity to learn new stuff (new industry but a supplier to the one I was working in). And while I was writing this I got a call from a different recruiter, who wanted to see my resume even though I hadn’t thought I had all the qualifications she’d asked for.

The editor got back from his travels a week ago and i haven’t heard from him since – should probably check in. Meanwhile I have another few chapters ready to submit to him whenever we finish this batch.

My last row on the lake kind of sucked, mostly because my brain was being flaky and anxious. However, I had been bad that day and the day before about wearing the reading glasses the eye doctor recommended, so maybe that proves her theory that close-up eyestrain prevents my eyes from relaxing to deal well with distance. And at least I did row both Saturday and Sunday. Yesterday I did the very last workout in the 2K training plan I’ve been on, which means there are two dilemma now: the unpleasant one is that I really ought to do a 2K time trial. I hate to; I’ve been feeling unenergetic and my training has been a bit erratic over the past several weeks, so I’m not convinced it would be an improvement, and the only reason really to do one is to see if the training worked (and because it’s a workout in itself). I was considering doing an easy workout today, like bicycling to a nearby farmer’s market this evening and doing the 2K tomorrow, but this interview kills that idea. The other dilemma is what to do next. Of course I could just make up rowing workouts as I go and continue to do the lifting plan I’d begun (from The New Rules of Lifting for Life) but I’m thinking of maybe going back to marathon training. This would let me do an erg marathon in September, when the AZ Outlaws do theirs and even, if I got really dedicated, got my brain under control and did a lot of logistics-wrangling, to row the marathon in Louisiana in November.

ETA 1: Well, I buckled down and did the 2K test piece. 9:15.0, which is 0.2 second than the one I did six weeks or so ago. I probably didn’t push hard enough this time, as 1) there were none of the dry heaves which slowed me down last time, so I should have seen more improvement, and 2) my heartrate only got up to 180, as opposed to 193 last time (the dry heaves probably contributed to that, of course, but it was still 183 the first time I did a 2K test this year).

Amusing as always. We took them to the lake house over Memorial Day weekend. We think they like it better than this house, but that they don’t really understand the process of traveling between houses, and think that the cages (cat carriers for them, car for us) are noisy vibrating magic devices that let the house change around us. As usual, the night after we got back, one of them was downstairs meowing – we think she was asking where all the extra rooms were, and could we please bring them back? Then yesterday, Macchiato actually got herself entirely into the carrier, despite all her protests last time we put her in it. Oolong hung around outside and batted at her as if to say “Get out of there! Are you on crack?!?” but this morning I spotted her poking her head in. At the moment, they seem to be doing their morning laps around the house.

ETA 2: Oolong got in the carrier! I think for them this is equivalent to shouting a message. We’ll see what happens next time we actually want them in the carriers. Here’s a picture of Oolong, and a couple bonus shots of Macchiato juming to reach her favorite birdie toy – she’s an amazing acrobat, and we’ve actually seen her do flips in the air.




Mirrored from Dichroic Reflections.


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April 2019

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