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Photography

I've been looking over a bunch of the photo work I did from when I was trying to do it professionally. I've been thinking about digging out versions of some of the works that don't have my old business copyright stamped on them and posting them to my current personal gallery. I've found some of them, but I still need to look through several more discs to find the scans of some of the older film galleries (Mono Lake, Cayonlands, etc., so I don't have to dig out the slides and rescan them). I've also noticed a serious decline in the quality of my photography, IMHO, since I shut down the business. I know for a little while I was burned out, but I think it's mainly a lack of desire to take as much time with each shot since I've been busy being back in school. I know what to do behind the lens, but on most of my trips lately, I've been more in sightseeing mode than concerned with trying to make great art. While looking over older shots today, at first I thought maybe I was less satisfied with the digital camera than with my film work, but since I got the digital right before we shut down the business, I don't have much overlap to compare, and I do think it's more me than the camera.

Reading

Since Toni and I went to see Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince recently, it reminded me I still haven't read the last book in the series, and I'm not sure it's going to happen before at least the first film (if not both) comes out. I know pretty much what happens (I'm not hung up about spoilers), but still do want to read it. I haven't read A Feast for Crows yet, either, the latest in George R. R. Martin's series. On vacation in May, I started reading Katherine Neville's The Fire, the sequel to The Eight, one of my favorite books of all time, but only got about half finished before vacation was over. Haven't picked it up again since. On that same trip, I actually managed to listen to the audio version of Neil Gaiman's The Graveyard Book, with Toni, on our way out to Massachusetts. If Toni hadn't gotten the audiobook, I probably still wouldn't have read it. We have audiobooks for Harry Potter and for the Martin book, and I think that may be the only way I'm going to get through those before I'm done with school. I think they may be a good thing for me to listen to while I'm riding, at least indoors (I'm fairly certain using an iPod isn't legal for bicyclists here, and the concept seems too dangerous to me, anyway).

Bicycling

I'm so bloody out of shape it isn't funny. I don't really care what the scale says (we don't even own one), but I haven't been comfortable with my own fitness and lack of flexibility for my current size for a while. Sitting in the car for close to three hours a day total when I was still commuting up here from Fishers really aggravated what was already becoming a sedentary lifestyle. My latest trip to Boulder, seeing so many cyclists in a bike-friendly community got me missing it. Since I've been home from there, I've started riding the stationary recumbent bike for a few minutes three days a week. I've only been doing three to three and a half miles in fifteen minutes, but it's a start. I want to work up to getting out on my road bike at least once before the season is over. I need some new cycling shoes and cleats for my clipless pedals, because I want to try them again and see if they can help me with my stroke, but I think I may wait until the start of next spring's outdoor riding. I haven't really used them since soon after I got the bike because I was having problems getting unclipped and was falling over when stopped. Of course, I've missed the past two workout days because I thought I was coming down with what Toni has (cold that turned into nasty bronchitis within two days) - my entire lymphatic system was swollen and I was aching all over for more than two days. Feeling almost back to normal today, so I'm hoping to get back on the bike on Tuesday, my next scheduled day. Missing long rides, I've set a personal goal to be able to ride another century ride either by the end of next summer or the following (starting where I am, I'm pacing myself very cautiously right now). I looked at the one I did in 2002 in Death Valley for the JDRF, and the fundraising minimum has gotten ridiculous - $4700 compared to the $3000 I had to raise only seven years ago. There are plenty of other century rides around the country that are the kind that just require a reasonable entry fee, including one right here in Lafayette.
quasigeostrophy: (share road)
...a bicycle! That's it!

Finally got on the road bike this afternoon, first time in at least two years, I think.

I was a bit wobbly at first, but I think I'm at my heaviest (and with my black shorts, yellow day-glo jersey, and black and yellow helmet, I probably looked like a giant bee), and it didn't take long to acclimate. To remember the feelings of loving coasting downhill and hating climbing uphill, no matter how shallow either way. Of traveling along on a machine by (mostly, with a little help from gravity now and then) my own power. And getting the ol' Krebs cycle going again.

I was only out for half an hour, and only put in four miles, but it's four miles more than I'd ridden in a long time.

I had a headache and some slight indigestion before deciding for certain to go out, and I've still got the latter, but when I came home from school I decided it was too nice a day not to go. I'm tired but feel decent otherwise, although I wish I'd remembered my gloves. I realized toward the end of the ride that my hands were getting a bit red from leaning on the handlebars, and didn't realize forgetting my gloves contributed to that until I got back in the house.

GIP

Aug. 28th, 2008 06:56 pm
quasigeostrophy: (share road)
Just because I like the sign, and felt the need for a new bicycling icon.

Things

Aug. 26th, 2008 03:57 pm
quasigeostrophy: (Default)
Had my first class yesterday afternoon. Partial Differential Equations. Prof is from Bulgaria. I didn't seem to have any problems understanding him through his accent, and he seems pretty laid-back. Homework every couple of weeks, but nothing yet. The only potentially bad thing is that exams are not during class (MWF 2:30-3:20pm), but in the evenings. I see his point that 50 minutes is not long enough for some of these kinds of problems. I just hope he looks for class input for availability (they don't for lower-level undergrad class evening exams, but this class is taken by most math Ph.D. students as it's one used to prepare them for their qualifying exam), as Toni and I have Robin Williams tickets for October 2nd. My new office mate is in the class with me, and she admitted that Slavic accents put her to sleep. Add to that the fact that it's in the MATH building, a 15-minute brisk walk across campus, after lunch, in a room with no windows, and she's asked me to sit behind her so I can nudge her awake periodically. :-)

Still slow-going getting the new place in order. I still have several things to hang, but many of them require Toni's help, and she's resting a bruised ankle. Did get my desk together on Sunday, but I still need to set up the server and start unpacking the boxes in that room. Today has been blown off due to bad brain fog, even post-caffeination. I want the server so I can set up our little label printer to label my class notebooks, and so I can get the photos I took of the new place at move-in off my camera. Several people still want to see the library full of 200+ boxes of books.

I have been slowly getting my bicycle accouterments ready. I let my Camelbak reservoir sit overnight full of water with a cap full of bleach. Dumped that, scrubbed and rinsed it out this afternoon, and it's now sitting full with a couple tablespoons of baking soda for another night to get rid of any bleach taste. Washed my water bottles also. Got a battery for my road bike's computer, but I can't find the computer for the hybrid. May have to replace it, this time with a wireless one so I don't have to get someone at the LBS to install it (cabled computers, IMHO, are a pain to install). Performance is having a web sale I may take advantage of. I'd also get a jersey and padded shorts that fit if I knew what size to get. In my experience, bike clothes are inconsistent with regard to sizes. So, I may just finish this riding season wearing regular athletic shorts and t-shirts. As long as my butt doesn't die from the saddle. I have found my gel saddle pad, though, which will help some.

*sigh*

Jan. 22nd, 2007 09:10 pm
quasigeostrophy: (biking)
Le Tour de France opens with the Prologue and Stage 1 in London and Kent this year.

Cool. Can't afford to go watch any of it in person, though. And I can just imagine the crowds, anyway.

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