Ginsberg & Drooker – Howl: a graphic novel

Howl: a graphic novel by Allen Ginsberg; animated by Eric Drooker
Date read: 01 January 2017
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Challenges: 2017gnc, 2017look

Cover image of Howl: a graphic novel by Allen Ginsberg; animated by Eric Drooker

Paperback, 223 pages
Published 2010 by Harper Perennial
Source: Summit via OSU-Cascades

This was not my first time reading the poem series “Howl” but I do believe the artwork helped me to understand the poem better, in a few places at least.

The artwork is both beautiful and moody and fits the poem wonderfully. The artist, Eric Drooker, and Ginsberg worked together on several projects before this as explained in the book.

The typography is like an old typewriter and is thus hard to read at points but it also slows the reader down, which I think actually helps some with grasping the meaning.

I believe this is the version I would get if I were in the market for a copy of Howl.

Lovely. A gorgeous adaptation of a modern classic of American literature. 5 of 5 stars. Highly recommended.

This book met three of the categories from my 2017 “the looking all around list” Self-Reading Challenge [2017look] : A book you can finish in a day, A graphic novel, and A book of poems or about poetry.

This is the 1st book in my 2017 10th Annual Graphic Novel/Manga Challenge [2017gnc]

Image for 2017 10th Annual Graphic Novel & Manga Reading Challenge

Designed by Nicola Mansfield

 

2017 Reading Challenges & Goals

This post will cover my 2017 Reading Challenges and goals, as I know of them going into the year.

Generic goals: [xx = # finished in 2016]

  • More poetry; re-reading encouraged here [2]
  • More erotica, sex & gender [3]
  • More literature [1]
  • More librariana [1 in progress; slowly]
  • Translations same-ish [14]
  • More ebooks [8]
  • Nonfiction same-ish [54]
  • More essays and short stories [1?, unknown for sure]

Books currently reading being read [2017curr]

Finish all 4 of the books I am supposedly currently reading.

  • Hornsey – Alcohol and its role in the evolution of human society
  • Glushko, et al. – The Discipline of Organizing
  • Wellings – Why Can’t I Meditate?
  • Calvino – Six Memos for the Next Millennium

2017 Books To Read Challenge (personal) [2017poss]

2017 Books To Read Challenge (personal) post

“… total of 85 books (which includes some 8 on pause) I challenge myself to complete 2 from each of the 16 categories and a total of 35”

2017 “the looking all around list” Self-Reading Challenge [2017look]

2017 “the looking all around list” Self-Reading Challenge

At least 30 of 40 categories read in.

2017 A Novel Idea selection (Deschutes Public Library, Bend, OR)

Homecoming by Yaa Gyasi [A Novel Idea] I finished this on 01 January 2017 and it was excellent.

Sara and me entering Deschutes Public Library for the 2017 A Novel Idea unveiling (Dec 2016). Photo courtesy DPL.

Sara and me entering Deschutes Public Library for the 2017 A Novel Idea unveiling (Dec 2016). Photo courtesy DPL.

2016-2017 Author! Author! Literary Series

Author! Author! or here

  • Dave Eggers : 19 January 2017 [not reading anything for this]
  • Anthony Doerr : 4 February 2017 : All the Light We Cannot See
  • Siddhartha Mukherjee : 10 April 2017 : The Emperor of All Maladies

Categories I am tracking in 2017:

  • fiction
  • nonfiction
  • ebooks
  • translations
  • beer
  • biography / memoir
  • Central Oregon
  • cookery
  • erotica
  • essays 
  • graphic novels
  • history
  • language 
  • librariana 
  • literature 
  • on pause 
  • philosophy 
  • photography
  • poetry 
  • post 2016 election
  • renewal 
  • re-reads 
  • science
  • sex & gender
  • short stories
  • tech & software [2016poss only]
  • together
  • wander 
  • YA & children

Challenges hosted elsewhere

2017 Goodreads Challenge

My goal is 100 this year, same as last year.

2017 10th Annual Graphic Novel/Manga Challenge [2017gnc]

Image for 2017 10th Annual Graphic Novel & Manga Reading Challenge

Designed by Nicola Mansfield

24 for Bronze Age

The next two I also did last year and hope to do again but I have yet to see if they are being hosted so these are placeholders for now. The reason I am putting these here considering they are already included in my goals is that they require me to write reviews to get credit. I do not review every book I read but I do want to try to get many written so these goals/challenges help with that.

Update 03 January 2017: It does not appear these challenges are happening this year. The host has not posted anything at their blog since October and has not answered any comments regarding this year’s challenges. [I certainly hope things are OK in their lives.]

So I will redo these on my own terms.

Nonfiction Reading Challenge 2017 [2017nfc]

Master level 16-20 books (top)

Read a minimum of 50 nonfiction books and review a minimum of 25 of these.

Books in Translation Reading Challenge 2017 [2017trans]

Linguist 10-12 books (top)

Read a minimum of 16 translations and review a minimum of 12 of these.

Wrap-up

So … lots of diversity in my 2017 reading goals. I am looking forward to this year of reading.

Thug Kitchen Party Grub

Thug Kitchen Party Grub (TK2) by Thug Kitchen

Date read: 29 February – 02 March 2016
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Challenges: 2016nfc

Cover image of Thug Kitchen Party Grub

Hardback, xv, 240 pages
Published 2015 by Rodale
Source: Own; Barnes & Noble

Warning: This book and review contains curse words and dope references. Move along if either of those offends you.

This book is the shit! My son and daughter-in-law turned us on to the first book from Thug Kitchen, Thug Kitchen: The Official Cookbook: Eat Like You Give a F*ck, which we also own, around Thanksgiving 2014. Seeing as that [this one too] is totally a vegetarian and vegan cookbook, and neither of them are and they were raving about it, we gave it a chance. We haven’t honestly used it a lot but we both loved its attitude. [Looks like I need to read through the first book; according to Goodreads I only browsed a library copy but we do own it.]

Sara grabbed this new one a week ago when we were at Barnes & Noble for a local author reading. It is awesome! And we have already used it.

The attitude is almost over-the-top but stops shy of completing the arc. Now, if you can’t take cursing then stay the fuck away. And if you think, “Hey, I’m a loner/introvert/non-partier/etc.,” then no worries—we think that about ourselves also—then this book is still for you (x):

Image from page 10 of Thug Kitchen Party Grub

Contents

  • Picture This Shit
  • Wake and Bake: Badass Breakfasts and Bougie Brunches
  • Pre-Party Like a Fucking Champ: Small Bites, Dips, and Stuff to Throw in Bowls
  • Dress to Impress: Salads, Sauces, and Sides
  • Bon Appétit Motherfucker: Potluck Staples and Main Dishes
  • Spin the Bottle: Desserts, Drinks, and Sides of Sweetness
  • Quick and Dirty
  • Thanks
  • Index

Oh, clearly, the authors are stoners or at least trying to rope in that crowd too. If you’re not you may well miss the references; but if you can get them and they bother you then also stay the fuck away.

We both found lots of good sounding, and pragmatically doable, recipes in this book with a lot of overlap. I am an omnivore but the wife is vegetarian, although honestly she is more of a carbohydratarian, by inclination. Thanks to my health issues of the last almost two years, I am eating and cooking a lot more vegetables and more plant-based proteins, along with trying to make myself reasonable amounts of quality meat.

The wife found 22+ recipes she’s interested in and I found 53! I’d say that’s a pretty good ratio and, bonus, across the recipes she and I picked we chose 17 of the same. Score.

One of the tips I already used is in making couscous. Maybe I’ve seen this elsewhere but if so I don’t remember.

“This cooks quickly since technically it’s a pasta, not a grain. Look that shit up if you don’t believe us. Anyway, these mini motherfuckers will be ready in 10 minutes flat. Throw 1 cup couscous in a pot or heatproof bowl with a pinch of salt. Add 1 1/4 cups boiling water, stir, and throw the lid on (or cover the bowl with a plate). No heat under the pot or anything. Let that sit for 8 minutes, then fluff the couscous with a fork and serve. Fucking done” (213).

Worked excellently. Only thing that makes me sad is that even regular pasta is just a tiny bit healthier and I’m not really supposed to be eating that. Sure wish this worked on some of the tinier grains; might have to experiment.

Highly recommended for everyone who wants to eat healthier while entertaining (even if just yourself), but especially if you are an omnivore looking to be just that little bit healthier by incorporating a few more non-animal products into your diet. Also recommended for party people. You know who you are. Just don’t forget this grub is dope for introverts too; you gotta eat something while you binge on that TV show.

The book even contains a few random lifestyle tips. For instance, maybe you do want to push yourself out of your comfort zone but can’t stand the thought of even your few friends nosing through your bathroom. They got some dope advice for that worry (141):

Image from page 141 of Thug Kitchen Party Grub

“The rumors will start themselves!” Ha. I love it.

If any of our local friends are reading, be warned, we’re dreaming up a Thug Kitchen-themed party. If you play nice we’ll let you pick your own recipes from the book to bring. Otherwise we’ll be sending you a recipe and be like, “Bring this shit, motherfuckers!”

This is the 13th book in my Nonfiction Reading Challenge hosted at The Introverted Reader

Alanguilan – Elmer

Elmer by Gerry Alanguilan

Date read: 09 February 2016
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Challenges: 2016gnc

Cover image of Alanguilan's Elmer

Paperback, 1 vol. unpaged
Published 2010 by SLG Publishing [originally self-published by the author in the Philippines]
Source: Central Oregon Community College Barber Library [PN 6727 .A383 E46 2010]

This book kicked my ass! I am declaring it my favorite book of 2016. Calling it now.

I was tweeting about it all evening while I was reading it. I almost never tweet about books while I am reading them. Seven tweets in total. Simply unprecedented for me.

Utterly recommended! For everyone and anyone who may be considered “mature readers,” as labeled on the back cover.

This edition collects together all four of the originally issued comics into a single, coherent whole.

From the back cover:

Elmer is a window into an alternate Earth where chickens have suddenly acquired the intelligence and consciousness of humans, where they consider themselves a race no different from whites, browns, or blacks. Recognizing themselves to be sentient, the inexplicably evolved chickens push to attain rights for themselves as the newest members of the human race.

Elmer tells the story of a family of chickens who lives and struggles to survive in a suddenly complicated, dangerous and yet beautiful world.”

It could serve as commentary on our eating of chickens and other animals, and it does some, but its main focus is a commentary on race, hatred, the irrationality of humans, love, fathers and sons, compartmentalization of roles in society, and humanity at its best in the individual where it ultimately resides.

It is quite graphic in spots, which I will not downplay, but it is in black & white so is not as bad as if red had been splashed everywhere.

Single panel from Elmer

There are many ways to tell the story of bigotry, racism, and hatred and this may be one of the seemingly more absurd but it works very well. Of course, a “mature reader” will also explore other perspectives on these topics as one should, be it the lived experience of individual persons of color (or other targets of bigotry) to the collective movements, such as Black Lives Matter, to the things disciplines such as psychology, sociology and anthropology can teach us, to explorations of the structures of racism (and other -isms) built into our laws and societies.

Single panel from Elmer

This book can be difficult. But my heart is ripped apart every single day when I see where American society is still on these topics at this point in history. And, no, this book does not solve any of that. It is not supposed to. Its purpose is to illuminate, perhaps educate, to make one think, to make one question. Maybe even to help one love.

There were a few spots where the transition from one time frame to another was abrupt and not as clear as most, but in the end the story was so powerful that this did not detract from it for me.

I give this the highest recommendation I possibly can. Beautiful. Haunting. Hits so close to the bone that it drills in and starts sucking the marrow out.

Two panels from Elmer

This is the 16th book in my 2016 9th Annual Graphic Novel/Manga Challenge Sign-Ups

Williams & Crowell – A Pictorial History of the Bend Country

A Pictorial History of the Bend Country by Elsie Horn Williams and Jim Crowell

Date read: 15 January – 05 February 2016
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Challenges: 2016nfc
No pic available
Hardback, 223 pages
Published 1998 [Rev., 2nd ed. cover title: The Bend Country: Past to Present] by The Donning Company Publishers
Source: Central Oregon Community College Barber Library [F 884 .B38 W54 1998]

I enjoyed this well enough; it had its moments. To either side of the pendulum. I learned a few things about Bend I hadn’t known and had a few others reinforced.

Contents:

  • Preface
  • Introduction
  • I. 1825-1877
  • II. 1877-1900
  • III. 1900-1904
  • IV. 1904-1911
  • V. 1911-1915
  • VI. 1915-1920
  • VII. 1920-1933
  • VIII. 1933-1950
  • IX. 1950-1970
  • X. 1970-1983
  • XI. 1984-1998*
  • Bibliography
  • Author Biographies
  • Index

* Rev., 2nd ed. Ch. XI 1984-1998 (c)1998 by Jim Crowell. 1st ed. was 1983.

This is book of photos of the Bend area and its residents, along with captions providing context, divided up into chronological order. The photos within sections—and even across once or twice—are a bit looser.

Recommended if you are interested in Bend history. Not exactly a history as such but it is captioned historical photos.

[Of interest to no one except other book metadata geeks]

As a cataloger, let me say that this book is a mess! It does not help that the work itself doesn’t do the best job of representing itself, at least in the rev. 2nd edition I have at hand. There are records for both editions in Worldcat but the title is clearly different in the newer one. Or is it? The title page still says “A pictorial history of the Bend Country,” which according to the records should be the title of the first edition. But clearly on the cover, the spine, and the dust jacket of this edition it says the title is: “The Bend Country: Past to Present.” Title page verso has LC CIP which has the title as “Bend: a pictorial history.” Considering we use the title page as our main source it is correct. The MARC record does have an alternate title for the cover title. Still. Publishers you need to understand how things are cataloged if you want to rename works. Or generally.

This is the 7th book in my Nonfiction Reading Challenge hosted at The Introverted Reader

Reading goals for 2016

My reading goals for 2016 are as varied as usual.

This is what I said near the end of my Books read in 2015 post:

“I want to keep reading things in translation; I feel I did well this year. I should try to read a bit more poetry and erotica, sex & gender this year. I am satisfied with the amount of re-reading, the number of ebooks, and of nonfiction. I hope to read a few less graphic novels and more varied things in literature & language; e.g., more actual lit, more on language and more poetry as previously mentioned. Maybe some re-reading there. Poetry books are close at hand.”

  • More poetry; re-reading encouraged here.
  • More Erotica, Sex & Gender.
  • Less graphic novels.
  • More literature.
  • Librariana? Didn’t read any in 2015. “Who have I become?,” one might ask.
  • Translations check.
  • Ebooks check.
  • Nonfiction check.
  • More essays and short stories.

In a more specific vein I offer the following up to myself:

Books currently reading being read [2016current].

Finish all nine of the books I am supposedly currently reading.

  • Dunegan – Best Hikes Near Bend (A Falcon Guide)
  • Kabat-Zinn – Full Catastrophe Living
  • Farhi – The Breathing Book
  • Bishop – Living with Thunder
  • Hornsey – Alcohol and Its Role in the Evolution of Human Society
  • Berlin – The Power of Ideas
  • Oliver – The Brewmaster’s Table
  • Gilbert – Collected Poems
  • Bennett, ed. – Japanese Love Poems

2016 Books To Read Challenge (personal) [2016poss]

Key: * = currently reading, [on pause] = on pause

Total of 44 books, including some 8 on pause and 2 that I am currently reading. Of these, I challenge myself to complete 12.

Beer and Brewing

  • *The Brewmaster’s Table: Discovering the Pleasures of Real Beer with Real Food – Garrett Oliver
  • Water: A Comprehensive Guide for Brewers (Brewing Elements) – John J. Palmer and Kaminski
  • The Complete Beer Course: Boot Camp for Beer Geeks: From Novice to Expert in Twelve Tasting Classes – Joshua Bernstein

Central Oregon

  • Hiking Oregon’s History – William L. Sullivan [DPL]
  • Bend: A Pictorial History – Elsie Horn Williams [COCC]

Erotica, Sex & Gender

  • Straight: The Surprisingly Short History Of Heterosexuality – Hanne Blank [Summit]
  • Flow: The Cultural Story of Menstruation – Elissa Stein [Summit]

History

  • Bettie Page: The Life of a Pin-Up Legend – Karen Essex
  • The Social Life of Coffee: The Emergence of the British Coffeehouse – Brian Cowan [COCC online]
  • Marriage, a History: How Love Conquered Marriage – Stephanie Coontz [DPL]

Librariana

  • Cataloging the World: Paul Otlet and the Birth of the Information Age – Alex Wright
  • The Discipline of Organizing – Glushko, ed.
  • Everyday Information: The Evolution of Information Seeking in America – Aspray & Hayes, eds. [COCC online]

Literature and Language

Language and Related

  • Is That a Fish in Your Ear?: Translation and the Meaning of Everything – David Bellos
  • Integrating Reality – Roy Harris
  • Integrationist Notes and Papers 2014 – Roy Harris

Literature and Literary Theory

  • The Literary Mind: The Origins of Thought and Language – Mark Turner
  • Imagination in Place: Essays – Wendell Berry
  • If on a Winter’s Night a Traveler – Italo Calvino
  • The Tenant of Wildfell Hall – Anne Brontë [Summit]
  • Seven Gothic Tales – Isak Dinesen

Philosophy [loosely defined]

  • *The Power of Ideas – Isaiah Berlin
  • Culture in Mind: Cognition, Culture, and the Problem of Meaning – Bradd Shore
  • The Sovereignty of Good – Iris Murdoch [Summit]
  • You Must Change Your Life: Poetry, Philosophy, and the Birth of Sense – John T. Lysacker
  • Self and Soul: A Defense of Ideals – Mark Edmundson
  • The Nature and Value of Happiness – Christine Vitrano [COCC]

Renewal

  • The Anti-Inflammation Diet and Recipe Book: Protect Yourself and Your Family from Heart Disease, Arthritis, Diabetes, Allergies and More – Jessica K. Black
  • Spark: The Revolutionary New Science of Exercise and the Brain – John J. Ratey, MD and Eric Hagerman
  • The Wayward Mind: An Intimate History of the Unconscious – Guy Claxton
  • Feeding Your Demons: Ancient Wisdom for Resolving Inner Conflict – Tsultrim Allione [DPL]

Tech & Software

  • Mindstorms: Children, Computers, And Powerful Ideas – Seymour Papert
  • Just My Type: A Book About Fonts – Garfield
  • Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation – Pollan [DPL]

Assorted/Too Lazy to Classify

  • How to Worry Less about Money – John Armstrong [Summit]
  • Tasty: The Art and Science of What We Eat – John McQuaid

On Pause

  • Second-Hand Knowledge: An Inquiry into Cognitive Authority – Patrick Wilson [Philosophy]
  • Nocturne: A Journey in Search of Moonlight – James Atlee [Assorted]
  • Thinking Body, Dancing Mind: Taosports for Extraordinary Performance in Athletics, Business, and Life – Chungliang Al Huang & Jerry Lynch [Assorted]
  • The Ultimate Rice Cooker Cookbook – Rev: 250 No-Fail Recipes … – Beth Hensperger [Renewal, Assorted/Cookery]
  • Take Control of Automating Your Mac – Joe Kissell [Tech & Software]
  • The Good Rain: Across Time & Terrain in the Pacific Northwest – Timothy Egan [DPL ebook]
  • Healing Yoga for Neck and Shoulder Pain: Easy, Effective Practices for Releasing Tension and Relieving Pain – Carol Krucoff [Renewal] [Summit]
  • The Body in the Mind: The Bodily Basis of Meaning, Imagination, and Reason – Mark Johnson [Philosophy, Renewal] [Summit]

There are, of course, tons of others and those I will come across this year, whether for the first time or not.

The only book not followed by a source [library x] that I do not own and did not find an easy source is the one on Bettie Page.

2016 Goodreads Challenge

My goal is 100 this year, up from 75 last year. I have been alternating between demolishing my goals and being a bit over here for several years.

Challenges hosted elsewhere

Nonfiction Reading Challenge 2016 [2016NFC]

Nonfiction Reading Challenge hosted at The Introverted Reader

I did this one last year and this is how it turned out [per my Books read in 2015 post]:

“Completed 20 April 2015 [includes 1 reread from previous year + 3 in graphic novel challenge also; does not include 3 on pause or 1 I never reviewed]. I finished 68 nonfiction books but clearly did not review or link then to the challenge.”

Guess I’ll just declare myself for doing the Master level right now as I plan to read over 20 nonfiction books.

Books in Translation Reading Challenge 2016 [2016TRANS]

Books in Translation Reading Challenge hosted at The Introverted Reader

I want to keep reading books in translation so this seems like a good one. It only takes 10-12 for the top level of Linguist and I read 21 titles in translation last year. Currently working my way through a book of Japanese love poetry which I started on January 1st.

2016 9th Annual Graphic Novel/Manga Challenge [2016GNC]

2016 9th Annual Graphic Novel/Manga Challenge Sign-Ups

I started this one slow last year and ended up creaming it early.

“52. Completed on 25 April 2015. In total, I read 99 graphic novels or manga [does not include rereads: 2015 2 + previous years 2 + 1 gave up] but did not post & link reviews for the challenge.”

I think I’ll begin with 12 for Modern Age this year also. Hoping to shift some of my graphic novel and manga reading into other things but seeing as I read almost twice what I needed in the end and that I had read and reviewed the 52 I needed before the first third of the year was up I think I’ll be fine.

Wrap-Up

These reading goals for 2016 should do it for now. I know there are many other reading challenges out there but seeing however as every last one requires additional work—such as keeping track, writing a review (which I want to do more of), placing said review online somewhere, linking to the proper challenge, etc.—I think this is a more than good start.

Now I need to go create 2016-possibles, 2016nfc, 2016transl and 2016gnc shelves in Goodreads and “stock” them.

Maybe I can actually get back to reading soon?! If I had spent half the time reading as I have on data and writing about reading in the last couple of days I would have finished a couple decent length books already.

Pilot Butte Update 5: Goals attained

Intro

Back on 26 January I wrote my first post, Exercise goals for 2015, that included Pilot Butte, our local cinder cone and State Park. Due to health issues I needed to get in better shape. It has been an assortment of struggles but I have managed.

As for walking, this is what I wrote in that post as my revised 2015 goals:

  • 8 mi/week [till needs to go up]
  • Pilot Butte 1x/week
  • Make the Century Club by the end of 2015

Second Century

Yesterday (Friday, 6 November) I completed my 100th lap of either up and down and/or around Pilot Butte. My second Century completed this year! This being week 45 means I have done it an average of 2.22 times per week. Or, as I’ll get to, those 100 laps happened over 88 actual trips, so let’s say an average of 1.95x/week.

PB2ndCentury

I grabbed a blank Century Club Mileage Log on my way round the base for my 3rd.

Issues

There have been assorted delays, setbacks, etc. on the way to this achievement. I started the year pretty well broken physically and I am still working to correct that in some ways but have made great progress. My feet and legs were completely broken from bad shoes and too much walking in Portland during weeks 14 and 15.

Mentioning Portland, we’ve had several trips to Portland, Corvallis and Eugene that took away from my ability to do the Butte. Late in the evening of 14 June I spent several hours in the emergency room as every muscle in my neck and upper back was in complete spasm. That was another week or so I couldn’t do much physically. I have lately been doing physical therapy to correct that issue. Between 19-30 September it was too smoky out from forest fires. And so on.

Summiting

I started out summiting the first four trips to the butte but my back was hurting too much so I started doing the base trail, which probably has more overall up and down but is less taxing since it isn’t mostly all up and then mostly all down. I didn’t summit again until 1 April. Then 10 May, 26 September (Pilot Butte Challenge), and 27 Sep for Super Blood Moon.

Being both inspired by the Pilot Butte Challenge [here and here] (which I volunteered at this year but want to do next) and by the fact that I summited again the very next day, carrying a folding chair and goodies, for the Super Blood Moon I decided to start trying to summit more often. I have done it another eight times since the end of September. And all of those have been doubles.

Doubles

It turns out that since I have to take a good portion of the base trail around to get to the start of the nature trail to the top I have basically gone half way around just to get to the trail up. The other half of the base trail is only 0.17 mi longer. So I always now get two laps if I summit as I just go the rest of the way around the base trail on the way home. My first couple of doubles, though, were by doing the base trail twice around in the same trip. I first did that on 31 July, then 14 and 31 August. Since then, all of my doubles have been base and summit trips. Number of doubles by month: 1 July & September, 2 August, 5 October and 3 November (so far; as of 6th). The last four trips have all been doubles.

  • Jan 6 laps for 6 trips
  • Feb 9 laps for 9 trips
  • Mar 10 laps for 10 trips
  • Apr 5 laps for 5 trips
  • May 7 laps for 7 trips
  • Jun 7 laps for 7 trips
  • Jul 10 laps for 9 trips : 1st x2
  • Aug 9 laps for 7 trips : 2 x2
  • Sep 12 laps for 11 trips : 1 x2
  • Oct 19 laps for 14 trips : 5 x2
  • Nov 6 laps for 3 trips : 3 x2

100 laps for 88 trips

Centuries Completed

I completed my first Century on 20 July and my second on 6 November, as I wrote earlier. So it took me until day 201 to complete the first and only until day 310 for the second (or 109 days); I almost cut the time in half.

Can I get 25 more trips by the end of the year?

PRs

I had several PRs (personal records) along the way but the main ones were 22 July, with an average of 13:00/mile (walking) over 3.03 mi, which I thought I could never beat, and a week later on 7 August with an average of 12:05/mile and a time of 36:41 over 3.04 mi. I truly do not see myself breaking that any time soon. I was really, really, really pissed off about something that morning so I was in some sense already warmed up. Seeing as I didn’t believe I was ever breaking the 13:00/mile record I just set out. Getting that first half mile split from MapMyRun/Hike I told myself to slow down. Then told myself I felt fine and probably told myself to shut the fuck up with the self-direction giving and walk. Pace continued to be blistering and I felt good—at least for a while—so I kept at it. Eventually it wasn’t really fun anymore but I was still cooking so I stubbornly kept at it. Somehow—I still do not believe it myself except that I “was there” and I heard the splits in my earbuds and MayMyRun got the whole thing recorded with no hiccups—I took another 55 seconds per mile off my PR. Craziness.

Other Walking

Amongst all this walking of Pilot Butte, I have increased my walking around town (most of downtown is from 1-1.25 mi from our house), I walked all around Portland, Corvallis and Eugene, and I went on several other hikes, including one in Eugene. On 26 April Sara and I went out and took the Flatiron Trail in the Oregon Badlands. I also went on all three of the BMBW ONDA Bend-area brewery hikes: 20 May at Scout Camp with Crux, 12 June at the Oregon Badlands (a different section) with Worthy, and 24 July at Black Canyon at Sutton Mountain with Deschutes. On 21 September I took myself out the Cascade Lakes National Scenic Byway and hiked up Tumalo Mountain.

I have recorded walks totally 510.2 miles so far this year; divided by 45 weeks give 11.33 mi/week so far. It seems that I have achieved all of my walking goals for the year. There were a total of 14 weeks where I had less than 8 miles in them but the last was 10 weeks ago, with the previous one 8 weeks before that. Thus, the vast majority were early on in the year or due to injuries and smoke-filled unhealthy air.

2015 Goals

My other moan goals for the year didn’t work out anywhere near as well. I basically failed at all of them. Lots of extenuating circumstances, including aspects of my health and related issues, but I failed at them nonetheless. That was pretty devastating earlier in the year when it happened and, despite accepting it all, it is still fraught with repercussions for me.

This post and taking the time to look at these numbers and such to put it in perspective has helped mitigate those failures a lot. I nailed my walking goals for the year! More importantly, it has immensely improved my health and attitude.

Pilot Butte Challenge 2016 prep

Like I said above, volunteering at the Pilot Butte Challenge—a 1+ mi run mostly uphill—got me motivated for next year and I drafted an early training plan over the next couple of days. It has been modified a little since late September/early October and it will no doubt be modified in the coming months, especially as we see how my getting out during winter actually went and how soon I get started on serious training next year. Then there’s keeping healthy, needing smoke-free air and so on.

October 2015

  • Begin summiting more frequently [began Oct 2015]
  • Get a base summit time (by self) early [did 4 Oct 2015 14:45.28 (watch) :: 7 Oct 2015 0.86 mi in 14:29 @16:46 (MapMyRun)]
Screen snap from MayMyRun site of my baseline hike up Pilot Butte

Screen snap from MayMyRun site of my baseline hike up Pilot Butte. Not the Challenge course but a known entity for me to train over, Besides, the rest of the Challenge course is flat. I simply cut out the flat parts at the top and bottom.

Winter 2015-16

  • Keep hiking both base and summit, as can

March 2016

  • Start pushing through steeper sections, ‘resting’ on less steep. [aim for 15:30 through the middle uphill section (1.5 – 2.0 mi from home CCW). Did roughly 16:30 through there 28 Oct 2015]

April 2016

  • Start run/walking base trail concentrating on uphill sections

May

  • Try jogging whole way to summit

June

  • Run/walk summit concentrating on steeper sections

Mid-July

  • Run summit for time

Late September

  • Pilot Butte Challenge

Previous posts

Previous posts about or mentioning Pilot Butte:

DigiWriMo 2015 [mentioned as a writing project]

Pilot Butte Update 4

PRs and first Century. And another PR in the comments

Pilot Butte Update 3

Ran the base trail (once)

Atkeson – Oregon II [mentioned a photo most likely taken from the butte]

Pilot Butte Update 2

“Maybe I can complete two Centuries this year.”

Pilot Butte Inspiration

“The Pilot Butte Challenge is barely a dream at this point.”

Exercise goals for 2015

Pictures

For the more pictorially-minded, I have a set of 74 photos from the January 1st sunrise hike in Flickr and have just uploaded another 255 photos I have taken of and from the butte since then. [Flickr is being extremely ignorant and some of the photos are clearly not in chronological order, although most are. Asses me up!]

Wrap-Up

All in all, my progress on these goals is very heartening. As I said earlier, in other areas I have had an often horrible year; a very demoralizing one.

This.

This makes me happy.

Moning, et al. – Fever Moon

Fever Moon, 1st ed. by Karen Marie Moning; adapted by David Lawrence; illustrated by Al Rio and Cliff Richards

Date read: 08-09 April 2015

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Cover image of Fever moon by Moning, et al.

Hardback, viii, 184 pages

Published 2012 by Del Rey

Source: Deschutes Public Library LAWRENCE DAVID

I grabbed this off the shelf at the public library yesterday evening when we were early for librarian April Witteveen’s talk, “Manga: Japanese Comics Past and Present.” This event is part of this year’s A Novel Idea—Ruth Ozecki’s A Tale for the Time Being—events.

Image of Deschutes Public Library librarian April Witteveen starting her talk, “Manga: Japanese Comics Past and Present.”

Deschutes Public Library librarian April Witteveen starting her talk, “Manga: Japanese Comics Past and Present.”

April’s talk was quite good, by the way. I learned a fair bit about manga and I saw several interesting looking books, whether manga themselves or mange resources. And, no, Fever Moon is not manga [see 1st paragraph].

Contents:

  • Introduction by Karen Marie Moning
  • Prologue
  • Chapter 1
  • Chapter 2
  • Chapter 3
  • Chapter 4
  • Behind the Scenes of the Fever Series
  • Original Character Notes and Sketches

I began by reading the Introduction, the Behind the Scenes … and the Original Character Notes and Sketches. I did this because the graphic novel is an adaptation of a world created in five novels (more now), The Fever Series: Darkfever, Bloodfever, Faefever, Dreamfever, Shadowfever. I know nothing of these books or this world, so I read all the “extra” material first and I believe it probably helped the graphic novel make more sense. That said, the story is reasonably well self-contained. The author has also written many books in The Highlander Series.

Fever Moon is set in Dublin, Ireland (as is the series, I believe). [The book took about an hour to read, maybe. Forty-five minutes? I’m not doing a half hour of research to write this.]

It involves Fae and a battle between the evil Fae and humans (in Dublin, anyway) where the wall separating the worlds has been dropped.

I enjoyed the story well enough and gave it 4 of 5 stars but I’m not going to track down the novels. They might be great but too many more ideas out there. That is, it did not grab me like Manifest Destiny.

It seems Del Rey asked Moning if she would like to do a graphic novel set in her world (Intro). She also got to pick her own artist; she chose Al Rio, who died before the book was finished. The artwork was finished by Cliff Richards. I did not notice any difference in style, although I am not entirely sure what “finished” fully fleshes out to. Nor is my visual literacy in the world of graphic novels all that refined.

I enjoyed it. Very quick read. Recommended for fans of The Fever Series, fans of Fae and human struggles. Fairly mature: sex, rape, desire.

This is the 46th book in my GN2015

Harris – Integrationist Notes and Papers 2013

Integrationist Notes and Papers 2013 by Roy Harris

Date read: 03 February 2015

My rating: 3 of 5 stars*

Content: 4 of 5 stars

Fastidiousness of scholarly apparatus: 2 of 5 stars

Cover of Integrationist Notes and Papers 2013 by Roy Harris

Paperback, v, 109 pages

Published 2013 by Bright Pen

Source: Own; acquired from amazon

Let me say right off the bat I did enjoy this book immensely, in a way. Most of its content resonates with me but there are a couple problems that have arisen in this volume that, while possibly understandable, are nonetheless unacceptable.

I mentioned in my review of the previous volume that a few citations did not make it into the references list. That even happens in major press books so, while I never appreciate it, I do understand it. Let me take a small sidestep to fill you in on how I read journal articles and books (that I own) like this. These are usually on topics that are of immense interest to me, or those in a discipline or area of a discipline that I am trying to “work my way into” intellectually, if you will.

I read with pencil in hand or near enough [STOP! These are books I own and articles I have printed or copied. DO NOT do this to library materials!]. As I read, for every citation (or should be citation) I come to I mark the page number(s) for it in the reference section. If there are footnotes or endnotes and those contains cites then they get “indexed” as well. I get that this is seemingly quite anal. I do not do this for everything I  read, although I will frequently mark/index interesting (questionable, interested myself, intriguing, …) citations in other sources so that I can track those sources down at my whim and pleasure.

What does this do for me?

First, as seen above—and soon for this volume—I easily determine the level of attention to detail in this aspect of scholarly fastidiousness. Did all citations get listed? It is a seemingly simple question. This does not tell us that much but it is one indicator that something may be amiss in the argumentation.

Second, and far more importantly, this is, at least to me, critical to find one’s way into a literature; whether the lit of a single author or that a broader “topic.”

If it is a book you will quickly determine who the author uses for support and who they are reacting against. You will know whether Freud was cited only once or sixty times. Now one book does not constitute a literature so this is a single author perspective. Also, I’d caution against the one book perspective as a global overview of an author’s citing practices. Definitely look at more by the same author, if available and applicable. By looking at several items you will get a better feel for individual uses.

The same goes for journal articles but it is far easier to read multiple articles and see any similarities and/or differences in practices between authors or within the same author.

I am here to tell you that—assuming you are not a slow reader—this is an amazing way to find out who is citing who. Who are the big authors, theories, and works in this area? If most everybody you are reading is citing such-and-such then perhaps you best acquaint yourself with it/them. This is not actually about citation practices as such but of sketching the outlines of a much larger “conversation.”

This method slows one down considerably and it also makes following the development of the author’s ideas a bit more difficult. But the way I see it, the kinds of sources that I treat this way are quite possibly something I am going to re-read, at least once. Thus the effort pays off in the long run. This is not a pleasure reading tactic, folks. Not to say that this kind of reading is incapable of being pleasurable. If that is your argument then grow up or go away now, please.

In this slim volume of seven papers there are two entire essays whose citations are not listed in the references. All of the other papers are missing an assorted but generally much lower amount. I ended up writing in so many that there truly is little room left to write on every page of the reference section. And as you can imagine, my attempt at trying to get them added somewhat alphabetically went to hell quickly.

A photo of the references section of a book with lots of penciled in entries

Last page of final paper and 1st of references section showing lots of penciled in entries. The other pages of the references are just as full. Look at the page numbers behind entries though to get an idea of my method. In essence, it’s a popularity contest.

The second issue which may be even bigger occurs in paper 51, “Normality and Neuroplasticity.” On page 100 Harris writes:

“But can this be right? Not according to proponents of neuroplasticity. Bloomfield ignores or is unaware of the kind of evidence presented by neuroscientist Norman Doidge. According to Doidge, we have ‘a brain that survives in a changing world by changing itself’ (Doidge 2007: 26)” (100).

But how in the hell was Bloomfield supposed to be aware of any neuroscientific evidence. OK, if  we take “neuroscience” quite broadly then perhaps Bloomfield, writing in the 1910s-1940s, might be able to take into account some evidence. But when the author cites a book from 2007 as not being cited by another author who died in 1949 I begin to get quite cranky. I savaged Hope Olson for similar crap in The Power to Name.

This is an excerpt from the Modern Neuroscience section of the Neuroscience article at Wikipedia:

“The scientific study of the nervous system has increased significantly during the second half of the twentieth century, principally due to advances in molecular biology, electrophysiology, and computational neuroscience. This has allowed neuroscientists to study the nervous system in all its aspects: how it is structured, how it works, how it develops, how it malfunctions, and how it can be changed” (emphasis mine).

The plasticity of the brain, also included in that section, has a citation date of 1999, it appears. Again, no idea how Bloomfield was supposed to be aware of these developments. Now, certainly, we had all kinds of “neuroscientific” evidence before the mid-20th century but that is when it truly exploded as a discipline and science. If Harris means to critique Bloomfield for not citing evidence available to him in the early decades of the century then he needs to be far clearer in his critique. Bringing neuroplasticity into a discussion of Bloomfield’s faults as a theorist is a major lapse though. According to the Wikipedia article, evidence for neuronal plasticity was discovered in Rhesus monkeys in 1923. But this research was ignored by almost everyone until the 1960s. Bloomfield may not get a complete pass and while his theories can certainly—and fairly (depending on use)—now be critiqued using what we know from neuroscience I feel Harris’ critique was extremely poorly worded. He needs to better tie the specific evidence available to Bloomfield into his argument or he needs to be much clearer than he is in applying a temporally aberrant requirement.

Harris is getting up in age and, as usual, he has credited his wife for “her meticulous editorial work.” I do not know the circumstances and I do not want to falsely attribute any particular reasons for these two lapses but they are fairly serious. I am kind of dreading reading INP 2014 which is queued up next. I sure hope it “meticulous” compared to this volume. [By the by, I have read 100s of 1000s of words—many books and articles, several multiple times—by Roy Harris and have not seen such “sloppiness” until now.]

Screen cap of the Roy Harris items I have read in Zotero

Screen cap of the Roy Harris items that I have read in Zotero

I do so love the ideas in these papers but I am concerned there may be some “slippage.” I am beginning to wonder if I am missing any other howlers of the Bloomfield-nueroplasticity kind. And that concerns me greatly.

But I still love the ideas contained in it.

Contents:

  • Preface
  • 45 Ordinary Language Again
  • 46 Empiricism and Linguistics
  • 47 Why There Are No Languages
  • 48 On Relativism
  • 49 Much Ado About Nothing
  • 50 Languages and Politics
  • 51 Normality and Neuroplasticity
  • References

This is the 7th book in my Traditional Chesterfield armchair

Exercise goals for 2015

Back in December when I saw the endocrinologist we had no real leads so I brought up that I needed to get back “in shape” so we could help ascertain what are “real” symptoms of whatever is the health issue and the those of the larger health issue of absolutely poor fitness.

I have always been a “fair weather” exerciser. Motivation is my personal downfall. I have the education and knowledge (and personal library) and was even once certified by the American College of Sports Medicine as a Fitness Trainer and am a US Army Master Fitness Trainer.

So. This year. I am trying to build on the motivation I grasped at at the doctor’s office. I do NOT like how I feel and how my illness makes me so I am currently highly motivated (for me).

For annual review at the start of the year I grabbed some numbers I had written down at least a year ago, maybe closer to two, for a “goal.” I was to walk a minimum of 4 mi/week and run (once I started) a min. of 15 mi/week. Surgery and forest fires and a move and selling the treadmill all added up to zilch running and pretty much the same for walking. Since Broken Top Bottle Shop & Ale Café was about the only place to walk from our previous place and it involved a big hill it was hard to get in 4 mi/week.

Where we live now we can do all kinds of walking, although I would do a LOT more if Bend would do something about being a pedestrian here. You know, like they actually want them. Starting with some freaking sidewalks, everywhere. And then enforcing clearing of sidewalks, etc.

Anyway … we live quite near Pilot Butte State Park so I decided I wanted to walk a minimum of 4 mi/wk AND climb Pilot Butte an average of once/week.

We began the new year with a pre-dawn climb with a new friend. There was a couple day fresh pack of snow on the trails and we crested four minutes before sun up. Good thing too as it was in the single digits temperature-wise. Quite glorious actually.

Picture of the sun peaking over the eastern hills from the summit of Pilot Butte, Bend, OR

Sun up (7:41 am) 1 January 2015 from the crest of Pilot Butte

I managed to climb it again with Sara six days later and then by myself six days after that. I treated that one as sort of a “fitness test” and it almost killed me despite a strong start. My back really tried to completely break me during and for a couple days after. My next climb was about eight or nine days later (but still making average) and I took it much slower. I also took the road up that day and the trail down, instead of trail for both. My back still hurt a fair bit but began much later and did not last as long.

Picture from the summit of Pilot Butte on 7 January 2015 just a few minutes past sunup but looking west to the Cascades.

The summit of Pilot Butte on 7 January 2015 just a few minutes past sunup but looking west to the Cascades.

Another issue with climbing the butte is that from our house, if I take the most likely way and then the trail up and down, it is a 4.5 mi walk. So achieving my Pilot Butte climb gives me more mileage than I had as a goal. Silly, boy.

Nonetheless, I decided that maybe I am not yet in the shape necessary for climbing the butte. I could always take the base trail around and get in a lot of up and down and several miles but not the mostly up and mostly down of trying to crest.

With that in mind, this morning I tried to find the base trail from our way in and got off to the wrong start and was doing way too much climbing pretty much straight up the side. NOT what I had in mind. I retraced and re-found my way to the base trail and took it the whole way around. My back was not happy early on but after my mis-taken route it only made sense.

I have decided that taking the base trail around or some even longer version can count as “doing” Pilot Butte for now. When I got to the trailhead I also found the poster and cards for the Century Club.

Picture of Century Club tracking postcard

Postcard to track your Century Club progress. Available at the signpost for the Club near the trailhead.

Basically, for them, up and down once or around the base trail once is “2 miles” and 50 times gets you in the Century Club and a certificate. Some of those folks have clearly been doing it for decades as they have thousands of “laps”.

So my revised goals are:

Walking

  • 8 mi/week [till needs to go up]
  • Pilot Butte 1x/week
  • Make the Century Club by the end of 2015

Running

  • That is flexible as I have no idea if I will be in good enough shape to try running soon but I hope to, especially if the weather stays anything like this. Ha ha ha.

I am also building myself a pull-up bar from galvanized steel piping. I have an over-the-door one but I can’t make it work in this house. I am hoping that by having it there and handy I will treat it as a exercise of opportunity.

I am also doing (too infrequently) a little hopping around aerobic/calisthenic/strength routine that takes about 5 minutes to do.

There is also a Pilot Butte Challenge in September that I would like to do perhaps in 2016 if I can get in much better shape. But that is another day. I may go to registration on 7 February to see about volunteering. That way I can easily learn more about how it is run; managed, that is.

When I got home today Runkeeper joyously announced that I had achieved the most elevation gain in a month, 3488 ft. I’m guessing that’ll get broken soon.

My main goals are: to build cardiovascular endurance, gain strength, sleep better, be in far less pain, be able to determine a pain is indicative of an actual short-term problem versus arising from gross structural inadequacy, and those sorts of larger-scale more important things than simply tracking miles or reps.

Speaking of more important things, I leave you with one of my favorite junipers on Pilot Butte:

Picture of a juniper tree on Pilot Butte at Pilot Butte State Park, Bend, OR