OrnothLand II
But if you know what life is worth, you will look for yours on earth.
 Spaces  Newsprint - April-June 2009
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Training Tips for Cyclists and Triathletes6/27: Read "The CTS Collection: Training Tips for Cyclists and Triathletes", a collection of ten year old material previously published by Chris Carmichael and his Carmichael Training System coaches. (writeup)

Dita6/26: Got out of the house early for breakfast and a long chat and walk with friend and former coworker Dita on the last day of her brief visit to this side of the planet.

Open Your Heart With Bicycling6/24: Was pretty disappointed after reading the auspiciously-titled "Open Your Heart With Bicycling: Mastering Life Through Love of the Road". I'd expected a book that captured the appeal and essential nature of cycling, and what I got was "A Neophytes Guide to Biking: With Bonus Chapter on How to Open Your Own Bike Shop". (writeup)

6/19: Since he was in town at a conference, I was able to meet up with—as Wendy would say&mdash“Dafood” and drag him out for some pretty savory Indian at Namaskar in Davis Square.

Mill dam6/17: Biked several major world destinations, including Belgrade, Rome, Vienna, Mount Vernon, Manchester, and Augusta, and somehow managed to do it all in only five hours!

Fire wire6/13: Biked 68 miles with the Quaddies, stopping in Lincoln to put out a forest fire, caught up with some Optarrhoids at a birthday party, went up to Beverly for Thai food and hung out at the beach at night with my CIMC dharma friends, getting home at 3am. What a day!

Scooper Bowl empties6/10: Was joined by dharma friends Bonnie and Philippe for the annual Jimmy Fund Scooper Bowl ice cream benefit for the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. Exceeded my customary maximum of 20 cups of ice cream by five, establishing a new PR!

Joseph Goldstein6/6: I was absolutely blown away by a day-long workshop at CIMC by American Buddhist pioneer Joseph Goldstein entitled "Practicing Freedom". Joseph managed to cover a large swath of Buddhist philosophy with exceptional profundity, clarity, and detail.

5/28: Returned to the infamous 60 Canal Street for lunch at the Grand Canal with a bunch of former BI/SAPE coworkers who now inhabit Optaros' old digs.

CIMC5/18: Completed my first standing practice group at CIMC, a productive five-week series with teacher Michael Liebenson Grady entitled "Wisdom: From Reactivity to Discernment".

Hot Shoe Diaries5/15: Finished reading "The Hot Shoe Diaries" by Joe McNally, which I picked up after the author spoke at Photoshop World at the Hynes. It definitely gave me some interesting ideas for creative lighting using flash that I hadn't considered before.

PMC Zipcar5/11: On the ride home from the Bike Week press conference, I pulled up beside a Zipcar van that was painted in the 2009 Pan-Mass Challenge colors, coincidentally just minutes before the PMC's Director of Operations tweeted about it here!

Mayor Menino5/11: Attended the amusingly short kickoff ride for Bay State Bike Week, as well as the followup press conference at Columbus Park, featuring Mayor Menino and bike coordinator Nicole Freedman.

Billy Starr5/10: In the middle of an extremely windy 75-mile Quad ride, I caught up with Pan-Mass Challenge founder Billy Starr at our regular 11am lunch stop at Ferns Country Store in Carlisle.

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Captain Sensible5/8: Checked out the MFA School's annual sidewalk sale, had dinner at Thai Basil for the first time, then spent Inna's last evening in Boston seeing her favorite band The Damned at Paradise, reliving one of our most memorable dates.

Inna5/6: Spent the day walking Boston's Rose Kennedy Greenway—the land formerly occupied by the Central Artery—with my visiting friend Inna. Stops included lunch at Legal Seafoods and watching the harbor seals at the New England Aquarium.

Enlightenment Guaranteed5/2: In the evening, our crew returned to Cambridge for Indian food chez Amber and a viewing of the German-language comedy "Enlightenment Guaranteed".

Dalai Lama5/2: Spent most of the day in Foxboro with my buds from CIMC, attending teachings by the Dalai Lama. The morning session focused on the basic tenets of Buddhism, while the afternoon was devoted to discussing universal human values. An auspicious day that I won't soon forget! (writeup)

Shea's pot5/3: On the way back from my regular weekend Quad ride, I stopped to visit my friend Shea, who was displaying her Mudflatted pottery work as a part of the Somerville Open Studios.

Bonnie5/1: Began a four-session training in nonviolent communication offered to my CIMC compatriots by fellow practitioner Bonnie Mioduchoski, based around the book "Nonviolent Communication: A Language of Life" by Marshall Rosenberg.

Tom Menino4/27: Met Boston's mayor Tom Menino at a Back Bay breakfast and thanked him for his support of Nicole Freedman and rejuvenating the city's bicycle program, Boston Bikes, even in this time of major budget cuts.

Making Money4/26: He may be a self-impressed bastard, but Terry Pratchett remains one of the very few fiction authors I still read. This time it's "Making Money", which served its purpose—light entertainment— quite well.

Nigel Knucklehead4/25: Even in Boston, ska shows have become a rarity, so I had to show up for this Saturday night lineup at the Cantab Lounge's Club Bohemia: Beat Soup, the Allstonians, and Guns of Navarone. The latter get points for surreptitiously inserting song lyrics making fun of Mickey Bliss for spending the last hour of the show literally asleep at the sound board! Missed Robin on the sax tho...

Out of Our Heads4/24: Concluded "brain month" by dragging friends Mark & Mary out to a jammed Harvard Bookstore to catch a talk by Alva Noë, author of "Out of Our Heads: Why You Are Not Your Brain, and Other Lessons from the Biology of Consciousness".

Matthew Carter4/21: Attended the Society of Printers' annual Dwiggins design lecture. This year renowned Boston typographer Matthew Carter spoke about Herman Zapf, creator of Palatino and Optima, on the occasion of his 90th birthday.

Free Cone Day4/21: Warmed up for the upcoming ScooperBowl by taking advantage of Ben & Jerry's annual Free Cone Day by hitting all three "scoop shops" that are within walking distance of my condo.

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Kluge4/16: Went to the Harvard Bookstore, which is now under new ownership, to attend an talk by Gary Marcus, author of "Kluge: The Haphazard Evolution of the Human Mind". Fairly interesting, but nothing particularly earthshattering about the idea that the brain, being the result of evolutionary forces that produce something that is "just good enough", is not a perfect computing and memory device.

Freedom in Exile4/13: In preparation for his upcoming visit, I read "Freedom in Exile: The Autobiography of The Dalai Lama". About the same time, I also watched the 1997 film "Kundun", which is a pretty faithful depiction of his life as described in the book.

4/9: Took my new heart rate monitor out for a bike ride to the PMC headquarters and back, in in the process getting my first estimate for my max heart rate, my aerobic and anaerobic training zones, and a general measurement of my overall cardiac fitness. (my comments)

Bruce Hood4/9: Part two of “brain Month” featured a talk by Bruce Hood, author of "SuperSense: Why We Believe in the Unbelievable", who asserts that the brain's pattern- and meaning-making is responsible for adult superstitions. He agreed with my theories about the difficulty of controlling or even consciously knowing our own beliefs.

Your Money or Your Life4/7: Made my way through the newly-revised edition of “Your Money or Your Life: 9 Steps to Transforming Your Relationship with Money and Achieving Financial Independence: Revised and Updated for the 21st Century” and found it a singularly useful resource for marshaling one's resources and planning for retirement.

Examined Life4/7: Kicked off “Brain month” with a rare trip over to the Brattle to catch the philosophical walkabout “Examined Life”. Although interesting, the parallels with Linklater's 2001 "Waking Life" were too pervasive to ignore. (my comments)

4/4: Joined a couple people from the Flickr Boston Photo Mob to shoot World Pillow Fight Day. Held in Christopher Columbus Park, Boston's 1100 combatants were the second largest gathering out of the 70 international cities that participated in the event. (my photos)

Bobby Mac4/4: Made a rare early-season ride out to Arlington to observe Quad Cycles' grand reopening at its new location, as well as to celebrate universally-loved ride leader Bobby Mac's 60th birthday. (my photos)

Evan Brenner4/2: Saw Evan Brenner's one-man play "The Buddha: In His Own Words" at the Boston Center for the Arts. Interesting in that most of the dialog is straight from the Theravadan suttas, so it's quite true to the lineage, and an interesting way of putting together information from different parts of the Pali canon, and much less painful than inflicting the whole Majjhima Nikaya on yourself!

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