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Celestial Healer wrote:
Treppa, every time I hear this aria I think of you. Probably because of all the gorgeous flute playing.
Thanks! :D I am getting back into flauting (again) after being off for a couple of years. So... rusty. :(
Aaron, if you want contemporary classical that's more lyrical than dissonant, you could do worse than Joaquim Rodrigo. Here's Pepe Romero in concert with one of Rodrigo's more famous pieces. Rodrigo is very Spanish, of course, so if you don't like that style, you won't like him.
Lord Snow wrote:
I try. :)
My reading speed it second only to Lt. Data's. It's ridiculous when I want to power through something. So I can generally blow through one or two chapters pretty quickly. If it grabs me, I finish. If not, I don't.
Hard to believe Ancillary Justice grabbed me, but there's no accounting for taste.
Reading Lev Grossman's The Magicians right now, with The Great Gatsby, Raising Steam, and Ready Player One on deck.
If you have charlie horses, you may need to check your mineral intake (calcium, magnesium, potassium, zinc). Shortages of those will give you awful cramps and/or tics/twitches. Well done on your circuit training, though! I've been really good with my water workouts, except when it's storming. Screw that.
I really enjoy Hal Clement and Cliff Simak. The stories of both are rather dated (products of their time), but those guys could do wonderful things with hard science, particularly Clement. It might be difficult to find their stuff. Iceworld was one of the first SF books I ever read, and I've been in love with Way Station and The Big Front Yard since grade school.
You might also try some of the older Hugo collections. They had great stories, some of which were pretty hard. It's a good place to dabble around in the old-timey authors and see what you like.
Yeah, if you don't have 'em targeted for disarm when the beeping starts, you barely have time to think "s~$&!" before you've lost a limb.
14 is a nice haul! I tend to save them for Old Olney rather than selling them. They come in handy there, though your real best weapon (for some reason) is a dog.
Fine, I'm starting a Fallout game... :)
Breq is a stunted individual at the beginning of "Justice" because the rest of the hive mind has been lost, which makes the early chapters rather heavy going. Breq develops into a more complete person as the book develops. Understanding Breq helps readers understand the antagonist(s), introduced later in the book.
Yeah, the first five chapters were rather dull but managed to make me curious enough to continue.
Just finished "Wicked" by Gregory Maguire. With the book spawning a musical, I expected it to be light-hearted and fun. Instead, it's a rather dull and heavy-handed political treatise. Think a depressed and listless Tolstoy rewrites Oz badly.
I did like "Ancillary Justice", mostly because the narrator is an interesting character, the lone survivor of a hive mind. Though the action was rather slow at first, I thought the ending was tense and frantic. The uneven pacing detracts from the story, but I enjoyed the plot, the use of the hive mind mechanic throughout, the various characters, and the universe.
The "she" affectation (meaning the gender-blindness of the narrator, not the use of "she" as a generic pronoun) was initially annoying. My brain kept searching for clues as to each character's gender, but it finally gave up about halfway through "Justice" and let me concentrate on the story without caring about sex. I read "Sword" and liked it and am looking forward to more.
havoc xiii wrote:
So, yeah. We went fishing with 10# test yesterday. Yeah. And caught nothing. I took pictures of birds and trees and... and water. So... yeah.
Not really. Just jealous.
Yeah, if you cook for yourself, eating healthy is cheaper than trying to eat out healthy. A burger, fries, and sweet soft drink is a lot cheaper than, say, a salad with grilled chicken at fast food places.
One writer did a very nice tally of energy availability based on the $29/week food stamp allowance showing how difficult it is to get sufficient calories from healthier food using a $29/week budget. Here it is.
David M Mallon wrote:
Starting to come to my attention that I need to start getting back in shape and eating better. Problem is, a) I have basically no money, and b) my back is shot and my knees are on their way out. Any suggestions?
Eating healthier is more expensive, so you will end up eating less. I have read of people eating well off dumpster diving grocery stores because of all the discarded produce, or scavenging in other ways. Take it how you will. I have not tried it.
To get in shape with a bad back and knees, start with a no-cost home regimen. First, get your core strong to help support your back. Not your abs, your core. Here's a nice set of exercises for your core. Do those a lot. Typical theraputic reps are 3 sets of 10 for each, resting between sets as needed, but a lot of core moves (like planking) require holding the pose for as long as you can. Start with shooting for 15 seconds and use 3 minutes as an ultimate goal, adding 15 seconds every couple of days.
To help your knees (and I don't know exactly what is wrong with them but stronger is always better), strengthen the muscles by doing at least straight-leg lifts: front, back, side. My PT recommended 3 sets of 100 each day. She has me do them standing on one leg, lifting the other to the front, side, and back as many times as possible until the 100 count is reached. Switch from front to side when the front exhausts, then side to back when side is toast, then back to front and so on until the 100 are complete in each direction. Then switch legs and do it again. Do that morning, noon, and evening to get to the 300 total for each of the 6 leg-directions. If you can get a set of ankle weights at a garage sale, it will be even more effective.
Simple balancing exercises will help your core and legs, too. Stand on one leg and try a bunch of different poses, keeping your balance the whole time. A SERIOUSLY killer exercise is to stand on one leg and touch your toes very slowly about 15-20 times, 3x on each leg. Do it with weights in your hands if you want to suffer greatly. Zowie!
On top of those, do regular calisthenics: push-ups, etc. Try doing squats. Even with my need-replacement knees, I can do some squats by pointing my toes outward and proceeding slowly. With knees, let your pain be your guide.
I swear to you, if you do core and knee exercises faithfully, you will see improvements in your life within 3-4 weeks even if you're in terrible shape. You do have to push yourself and endure some pain, but it's worth it. Once your back and knees are less troublesome, your options for cardio and other exercises expand.
If you come into some cash, I highly recommend TRX straps. They give you a lot of freedom to exercise using body weight very effectively for strengthening. I use them at the gym and absolutely love them. One of those giant sitty balls is also helpful. Sitting on it routinely (especially with your feet together) improves core strength, and there are a bunch of exercises you can do with it that also help core.
For cardio, do as much walking as you can manage. You might want to do a week or two of core and leg strengthening before you start walking, to avoid damaging any shaky joints. Try to find a cheapo bike on craigslist.
If you can, find a place to swim or water walk. I've been in despair at the cost of pool membership around here, but this weekend found that a reservoir very close to us has a $55/year membership which includes a beach which is open from 0530 to 2100. That will give me tons of time to work out. It will probably be cold and miserable, but that's better than doing nothing or doing cardio that will damage my knees further.
Hope this helps. All the old-fashioned calisthenics still work well (like the old Canadian Air Force exercises or other military workouts) if you adapt them for low-impact to save your back and knees. Look for walking trails nearby that have exercise stations for pull-ups, etc. Your tax dollars at work.
Yoga and/or stretching are great and necessary complement for strength training to keep from getting muscle bound and to improve your balance.
Hope this helps. I've been in the same boat lately and this has all been useful for me.
We just returned from the theater and, though I'm not a huge fan of explosion/violence flicks, this was an amazing film. You should definitely set aside any preconceptions and go see it.
I expected to be wowed by Max or Furiousa's stories, but what really affected me was the entire story/life of Nux, the War Boy. Kinda got me... right... there...
Of course, there aren't many happy stories in the Mad Max universe, but we all know that.
I've been doing very little video gaming since our Xbox 360 bit the dust. I prefer Xbox to the PC but went ahead and replaced most of my favorite Xbox titles via Steam and GOG. However, my video card kept crapping out. Replaced my power supply, mobo, CPU, and put in a better (used) video card -- and now the video cuts out completely from time to time. It is a complaint about this mobo that I didn't know when I bought it on sale.
So I could go get another, but it's such a pain to remove everything and redo it. *thinks* But if I did that, I could also get more memory and another hard drive and a NEW video card... hmmm.
I do have the Xbox controller, which works for some games but not all. I prefer it to the keyboard.
and the first Asparagus and Strawberries of the season has been bought
We had our first asparagus last week. It was delicious! Strawberries will be coming soon, but I'm allergic.
To be honest, we have everything all year round in the grocery stores here, but I still tend to buy produce in season. It's better tasting and has a better chance of being relatively local.
After a truly awful day yesterday, the leg looks some better this morning (better being a relative term) and I don't feel quite as bad. The powers of infection and antibiotic side effects combined have been rather devastating. On the bright side of things, catching up on sleep and losing weight (even suddenly and rapidly) are good things.
Thoughts like "how bad does it have to get before I think about the hospital?" and "if the antibiotic doesn't work, will they remove the leg above or below my (already bad) knee?" are no longer popping into my brain today. Those are not-fun thoughts.