General Neglect; but Photos

I suppose the blog is being so neglected lately because the rest of my life isn't. I'm working quite a bit, every day, and there's lots of activity and legal stuff and presentations to VCs and whatnot. Then, every time we present, it's go back and change everything to be that much more tight for the next one. I've got the photos in my possession. Here's the best one, and it's only a 3x2. The 1200x1200 dpi scan renders it better than the actual photo (click the photo to get the full size). From the left, that's my dad Lothar, his younger brother Hans, older sister Brigitte, and the firstborn, Manfred. Circa 1941, I'd say. All but Manfred are still fine and dandy and now live here in or near the Bay Area. Manfred died in about 1978 when most of the family still lived in Reno. He was a Type 1 diabetic and an alcoholic. Not a good combination. I'll probably get to scanning up the rest tomorrow and will probably do a static page that I can fill in with details so and as family members are able to sort out who's who and report back. Can you...


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Part of What It’s About

Nice 'thank you' email from Billy-J, accompanied by this post. Then, there's longtime reader and friend Justin Owings (that's a 5-page post, the whole thing a good read). Good work, gentlemen, and it's just as Billy-J says: "...the more I get into it, the more I want to do it." Precisely; there is no way I'd advocate any of this stuff if it just didn't feel so right. It takes a while. You'll have fatigue, some headaches, nauseating hunger, and workouts at the gym that make you feel as though you're going to die. Then, you begin sleeping like a baby. You break through to a point where you're almost never very hungry at all. Your whole attitude about food changes and when you do eat, you do so luxuriously, with wonderful food -- or you leave it. I'd just as soon skip a meal or two than to eat junk, anymore. The other day I piged out, like: gorged myself practically. On fruit. Some neighbors had some of the best cherries I have ever tasted, along with a bunch of ripe berries, and I had some perfectly ripe Kiwis. Never thought I'd pig on colorful fruit, and not on...


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“The Audacity”

Yep. Kyle's got it dead on, and I can't see a reason in the world to be any more comprehensive or analytical than that sort of short sarcastic post in the run up to the November Disaster. So, do you have the "audacity of hope?" No? Well, looks like Obama's got you covered.


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Virtual Flight

Very nice hang gliding video out of Germany. Note: the string to the right of the control bar you see the pilot fiddle with is the "VG," or variable geometry control. It essentially makes the wing stiffer and more efficient, with the trade off being less easily controllable. If you're flying cross country, you'll go "full VG" when on glide between thermals.


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Phone Call from Berlin

Just got off the phone with my dad, who's in Berlin. That's not so incredible these days; that he's there with three of his brothers is. Lothar (dad), Hans, Ingo, and Wolfgang met up in Denver two days ago and flew Lufthansa to Berlin, from where they'll make numerous excursions over the next week or so. The other important tidbit is that the last time the four of them were together in Europe at all was when they left as a family of eight in 1952 on the transport General M.L. Hersey. Since then, my dad has been back once, but only a few years back. Ingo is there all the time, as he works for an Austrian company that makes power-grid scale transformers, as a U.S. representative out of Reno, NV. Hans and Ingo haven't been back until now. Yesterday they went to Wriezen, about and hour northeast of Berlin where their grandparents lived and where my dad got separated from his mom, dad, and siblings during the war -- and for about two years after. The house still stands, is a total wreck, but according to the guy across the street, hasn't been occupied since 1962. But that...


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I’ll Concede

I must agree with this. But the appeals court said the state acted too hastily in sweeping up all the children and taking them away on an emergency basis without going to court first."Even if one views the FLDS belief system as creating a danger of sexual abuse by grooming boys to be perpetrators of sexual abuse and raising girls to be victims of sexual abuse ... there is no evidence that this danger is 'immediate' or 'urgent'," the court said."Evidence that children raised in this particular environment may someday have their physical health and safety threatened is not evidence that the danger is imminent enough to warrant invoking the extreme measure of immediate removal."The court said the state failed to show that any more than five of the teenage girls were being sexually abused, and offered no evidence of sexual or physical abuse against the other children. Half the youngsters taken from the ranch were 5 or younger. Only a few dozen are teenage girls. The court also said the state was wrong to consider the entire ranch as a single household and to seize all the children on the grounds that some parents in the home might be...


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Kudos to TypePad

Well. After nearly destroying my whole blog last evening and sending off a number of "stream of consciousness," expletive loaded trouble tickets, I got quick action this morning from an engineer. He immediately began restoring the content and asked me to describe my work flow, which took two or three iterations and the final one was the tiny bit of info they needed to locate and fix the bug. I began searching Google last night and discovered I was not the only one with posts being wiped out and links being broken, so I was glad for the quick fix -- which was done by about 2:30 this afternoon -- and I'm glad to have indirectly helped others already affected or who would have been. It could have been a disaster of important proportions. They completely overlooked my shouting and cursing, were impeccably pro, effective, and even contrite for my inconvenience and -- yes, I'll say it -- stress. Good job, folks. I really hate firing people and am gratified to be sticking around.


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Huge Blog Problems

"Upgrade." It messed up the categories, and in sorting it out, broke links to many, many posts, mostly in the "Food & Fitness" Category. Many other problems as well. We'll see how it turn out. Not a happy camper, right now. Later: Well, having now worked with WordPress over at the company blog, I think I've decided to make the switch on HonestyLog. I'll for sure use the same guys to design. TypePad has been pretty flawless, and most of the upgrades and improvements that happen without you having to upgrade your own server installation have been welcome. Other obvious should-bees have been way too long in the making (like, for instance, getting your links to open in a new tab or window without using a global widget that kills Firefox's ability to remember commenter personal info). Anyone know of a good paid hosting service for hosting WordPress?


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Whew!

I thought for a good three minutes about a title, but nothing fit. It's lame, but it fits for me. I left Vegas yesterday afternoon (Monday), and my last meal was breakfast at 10am. It's now 8:30 Tuesday evening and I just finished preparing and eating dinner. That's about a 34hr fast, and I worked out hard at the 30hr point. Excellent, strong workout. Then, I came back, shopped, and trained Bea down at our condo gym for 30 minutes hard. It's her third workout and she's doing great. Art's seminar provided some good information as to what to be cautious of with women (mainly less upper body strength). Here's what Bea and I had for dinner. That's an almond crusted tilapia of my own design. Simple: coat the fillets in olive oil while the pan is heating at medium with a little more oil in the pan. Finely chop up a handful of almonds, place on a plate, and rub it on each fillet. Into the pan, a few minutes per side (I don't really care for medium rare fish -- though I love sashimi; so, cook it, or don't -- the one exception being seared ahi tuna), and...


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Art De Vany Seminar

It was really good. Comprehensive and integrated. None of it would make amy sense at all without an understanding of evolution. I'll try to put up more later, including a 3-minute video clip I shot. He had professionals record the whole thing and a DVD will be forthcoming. Later: Here's the video. I managed to process it whilst sitting here at the airport waiting for my return flight (got the $50 upgrade to 1st class again!). Oh, by the way, Art will be 71 years of age in a few months.


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Kennedy

I'm sitting here at a bar in a casino (where else at 5:30?) the TV is going, sound off, no subtitles, and it's wall to wall Teddy. Did he check out, or do I need to start praying?


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Las Vegas or Bust

Bit of a delay, and whereas Beatrice was going to come along, she has remained back to supervise dog procreation efforts. But US Airways seems to be handling everything just fine, and I managed to snag the $50 first class upgrade. I'll be downtown this time, at the Golden Nugget, for Art De Vany's EvFit seminar on Sunday. Should be at the hotel by noon. Steak, eggs and fruit for breakfast it'll be. -- Sent from my iPhone


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Automatic Lying

That's all this is about. Here's Warren's take. And Billy's. This bears reflection: For years now, it's occurred to me that America would bring its characteristic (almost an instinct for) innovation to tyranny. This government would write new chapters in its annals, sprung from a uniquely American ambition and sincerity but bent so far around historic corners that all sight of home was lost. And so it would sink below its nature to something old and sick, but uniquely descended. Get it? Billy also linked this by Roy Spencer, who, of course, also notes that the polar bear population is likely at or near a record high since keeping track of such things. But what does that matter? There are "positions to stake out," "roles to play," "stances to take," and "poses to strike." ...All, euphemisms for plain old lying. By the way, I picked up Spencer's book last weekend and would definitely recommend it. The sort of tragic-humorous-ironic style in that article is throughout the book. Here's a six-page excerpt (once you get there, click on the "Excerpt" link in the left sidebar).


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What’s Guaranteed to Set Me Off

Well if you must know, it'd be, for example, when a well-meaning employee emails a link to "Bike To Work Day" to all employees. Here's the touchstone of disgust: Throughout the Bay Area, dozens of local events taking place during the month of May will get people excited about bicycling and the benefits it provides for public health, traffic reduction and our environment. The best description I can think of on the fly is that of a smiley face telling you how great your sacrifices are going to be for everyone and everything else but you. I love bikes. We got bikes. I use mine often, particularly so since the weather has warmed up. Why do I use the bike? Because it's the best thing for me, according to the context of the particular facts of the specific event in which I intend to use it. I live downtown, and it's usually far more pleasant, for me, to take the bike -- not the least of which is parking. And, it's just plain fun. You know, it's always about guilt, isn't it? Either you're vermin who're messing up god's perfect universe, or you're more sophisticated -- not so weak minded...


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Finally; I can tuck in my shirts

It's been a number of years, perhaps six or seven, since I've been comfortable tucking in my shirt, save for when I'm wearing a suit and the coat covers the sin. Here was my last photo set, not quite three months ago, end of February. Net weight loss has been real slow (only about 5 pounds), but very steady. I think I've reached somewhat of a tipping point, however. Fat loss has been far in excess of what would be implied by weight loss. I estimate just on volume that I've gained 10 pounds lean in my thighs. They are getting to be quite large and dense, and I can't pinch but a quarter inch of subcutaneous fat. The belly is the big challenge, but when I began, it stuck out a good six inches. Now, maybe one inch or so. In addition, I have the subcutaneous layer between the skin and the abdominal muscle that has not yet seemed to kick in. My trainer says that in men, it's always the last to go. Anyway, here's this afternoon; about 20 hours since the last meal and an hour from a workout. Art told me in an email to smile...


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What I See

Recently, I began receiving this Financial Times newsletter in my email box. I was awestruck by the image, and I still am every time I see it. The sorts of people I hate & loathe would look at that as a scar on the planet. Those whom I consider stuck in dead-end, primitive superstition and fairy tales downplay such potential as "merely" the work of man. For me, it represents the path to the very highest ideals achievable by man through molding and leveraging physical reality, capital, values, and relationships in the pursuit of his highest moral purpose: the advancement of his life, ultimately reflected back in happiness and genuine, long-term well being. You want to go to heaven? Look right up there. It's actually achievable; not through repentance to and redemption from either mother nature or imagined gods, but rather through reason, capitalism, individualism, and the exchange of values to mutual benefit.


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How Do You Do It?

I caught like five minutes of Terry McAuliffe on Tim Russert yesterday as I was packing up in San Fran. It's all just automatic lying, all the time, and everyone is perfectly happy to play along. Disgusting. I don't know what I'd do if I thought that ultimately, what I make of my life somehow necessitates a daily dose of the bullshit they're peddling. I don't think the nightmarish disaster that is national politics will in any way be solved until people lose interest in the spectacle, beyond derisive ridicule and moral condemnation for the whole lot of it, without distinction or equivocation.


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San Francisco

Bea & I are up for the weekend, along with my mom & dad. We have a membership with Worldmark, which we have never regretted buying for a minute. In fact, we've gone back two more times to buy extra credits. Highly recommended. But it spoils you. It's very difficult to stay in a standard hotel room, any more. That was taken from across the street, just outside of the Tunnel Top bar (Stockton Tunnel, just off Union Square). It's a fun bar, and, they stock McCallen. We'll head over in a bit for breakfast atop the Hyatt, then maybe head down to the Apple store, shop generally, maybe a movie over at the Bloomingdale's Mall (or whatever it's officially called), and dinner tonight is at Ruth's Chris Steakhouse. That'll require a cab ride (once my car gets parked, it stays parked until I leave).


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Oversight

I think I was remiss in not highlighting this wonderfully descriptive image in this post, specifically the link to Mark Sisson. It concerns doing lots of cardio, which makes you hungry, especially for carbs, which spikes insulin, driving the carbs to fat and making you even more hungry, so you do even more cardio. It’s like digging a hole to put the ladder in to wash the basement windows. That could apply to a whole lot of quotidian clusterfuckery I observe.


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