Roughing It

Here’s a photo my brother shot Sunday night, just a bit after we arrived and set up. Then we got to cooking, and as you can see I have my favorite cooking oil on hand: coconut. If you’ve never used it — and I hadn’t until a couple months ago — you may really be missing out. Here’s a shot of what I was cooking.

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Off the Grid and Up in the Air

Arrived yesterday at Hat Creek, after a brief stop-off in Chico, CA en route for a 50th anniversary party. We’ll be here for the whole week, ad I’ll be doing some flying off the rim. Like this. Maybe I’ll mash up some more video along the way.

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Faceoff

I’ll do a better one later, but I just couldn’t stand looking at my fat face to the right any longer, which was the middle one in the left-to-right series of photos I’ve had up there since I began my new Life Way. The one to the left is from two years ago. I’d say at least three pounds of my total wight loss is in my face and neck. Later: Well, in the comments, my dad thinks I look like “a refugee from Iraq” in the pic to the right. I knew it wasn’t a great photo, but… Anyway, I took my own jab back, then went and redid the thing. Dad & I get along just fine. He says what’s on his mind, I say what’s on mine, and then we go out for breakfast or lunch somewhere. It’s been going on for a couple of decades like that, now. Bea & I will be leaving Sunday to join the parents and my brothers for a week of camping, the 11th (or is it 12th?) annual Hat Creek trip. Here’s the redo, with the new pic now at the root. I cropped it from this: Hey, what’s that…

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“Some of the people who are offsetting your cheating”

cheatneutral “Helping you because you can’t help yourself.” (via Art) Later: Well, I was half-tempted when I blogged this to include some crack about Edwards, speculating whether he, as is Gore with his carbon offsets, behind any of it. Now it’s official (the affair, that is). How is it that all these Democrat darling “pretty boys” can’t control themselves? Well, let’s just say that I come from a time and place where such behavior isn’t engaged in just as much due to plain old self-respect as anything else, like causing pain and hurt to someone you supposedly care about. Then again, Edwards preaches a lot of selflessness and self-sacrifice, doesn’t he? I’d say that at least he practices what he preaches, only I see no evidence of any self-respect for him to lay at the altar of sacrifice. Genuine self-respect has a prerequisite: rational selfishness. Edwards is a selfless as they come. That’s why his conscience will permit him to wreak havoc in the lives of others for the sake of his own pleasures and perceived gain. Pathetic; through and through.

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Concert Follow-Up

Still working out details, which will take a while. I’ve received a few emails from friends asking how the concert went. I must say: I’m somewhat embarrassed that the tickets were only $45 each. Could have sat up in the regular seats, but I think we had the perfect deal. See here. And here’s a wide-angle shot of the venue, just as Charlie Musselwhite took stage. It was a good time, though I think that Charlie and Buddy Guy would have been sufficient. “George Thurlgood and the Deleware Destroyers” — the headliner — were great, but I’m familiar with all their stuff. Interestingly, Bea was somewhat unfamiliar and loved George (especially the “I Drink Alone” song). But she got it, and this please me immensely. On the drive home, she says, “I see. It’s all about the Blues, isn’t it?” Yep. I really enjoyed Charlie Musselwhite, playing his harps. He did a number of things, old and new, and then something he learned in South America where street performers in Rio have managed to fuse blues and Latin rhythm. It was interesting and something I can definitely enjoy in reasonable doses. But mostly, it reminded me of a friend from…

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A Brand New Direction

I’m heading in a different direction with this blog. Over the last year, you may have noticed that it’s less and less about politics and its roots, and more and more about diet, fitness, and my own journey to improve myself in that regard. That includes a large dose of independent discovery, research, thinking, and experimentation. But just as there are lots of sites already that deal in politics in all its varieties, there’s plenty of sites — very good ones I often link to — that provide excellent information in the area of what I loosely refer to as “Evolutionary Fitness,” which really comes down to the dietary and health implications of evolutionary biology in the main. So what can I bring? Well, it’s funny, and you may not see this, but the reason EvFit appeals to me so is that it’s quite a lot like my political philosophy, i.e., individualism. But even more so, the reason I’m an individualist — aside from the fact that we are individuals and not a collective — is that I wish to live in accordance with the facts of reality and not the dictates of “authorities,” and that goes for “health authorities”…

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Walking in Gloves

I said I’d let you know how it goes, but Justin has written up a review of the Vibram Five Fingers that can pretty much stand up as my own. Take a look. Five Fingers have helped me be a kid again That’s the most important part. I haven’t gotten yet where I wear them much on my morning walks. Frankly, the sensory explosion is a bit overwhelming. I like to focus on the dogs, enjoy the morning. So, the deadening effect of padded running shoes is OK. However, I love to use them at the gym, and then my favorite is the shorter evening walks. It’s like a treat. Last week, for instance, Bea had already taken the dogs out for the evening walk when I got home. I tossed on the Vibrams, tracked her and the dogs down, and continued on the walk. It’s quite a pleasurable sensation I highly recommend.

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One Man’s Vices are Another Man’s Virtues

Still catching up with Mark Sisson, with 80 posts to go. I can’t bear to just dump it; he’s got so much good info. So, there might be a highlight or two. Like this one on “vices.” On the consumption of lots of fat: Don’t you love the look on peoples’ faces when you say that? I do, and it’s quite often. People I haven’t seen in a while are now always commenting on “all the weight I’ve lost.” I clarify: it’s not weight that’s important. What’s important is that I have shed 50 pounds of fat and gained 20 pounds of lean muscle. I’m now benching 205, and that’s after a 10-rep warm up at 135, then 5 reps at 185. When I began, I could not do 10 reps at 135. I weigh 30+ pounds less, yet am more than twice as strong as before. I used to be “big,” and man could I get a good pump going in the gym. Fooling myself. I had ribeye steaks for muscles, i.e., much of the “big” was simply visceral fat. Now, my muscles are actually quite smaller in many instances, yet rock solid and very strong. But yea, I…

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Tropical Fats: Good

I’m way behind in my reading. This is from May, but definitely worth the read. Scott Kustes of Moder Forager, guest blogging at Mark’s Daily Apple. I now do all of my stir frys in coconut oil. It is by far the most pleasant fat I’ve ever worked with and cooked with. I even use it in non-cooked things, like a spoonful in a whey protein shake with vanilla and a couple of raw eggs, and heavy cream and ice in the blender. It offers a wonderful and light coconut flavor. It has a tremendously high smoke point, so it’s great for the wok on full blast. Here’s another: heat some up in a sauce pan and use it as a dip for grilled shrimp, just like you’d dip crab or lobster in drawn, clarified butter. Yummy.

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