Monday, November 26, 2012

Movies, Runs, the Paleo Diet

Here's a photo from the day I went to the field earlier this month.

I spent Thanksgiving with The Bit. We watched Happiness, In a Lonely Place, Quantum of Solace, Headhunters, Lady in the Lake, When We Were Kings, Saturday Night Fever, and Skyfall. Those whose titles start with the letter "H" were quite good; the rest were stinkers.

I put in for Hardrock and Western States. Lotteries are next month. I kind of hate running hundreds, so I'll probably only sign up for 2 or 3 more on December 1 when the registrations opens up.

At a work dinner I had a conversation with a nutritionist about veganism. She thought I'd be low in iron. I said I don't really take supplements, and wasn't especially worried about it. She seemed to  advocate more of a paleo diet than the whole foods plant-based thing I swear by.  I'm pretty easily swayed by evolutionary arguments, so this gave me pause, and made me think I eat too much grain (though it's usually whole, which may be good for other reasons, but isn't fortified.) I think I'm easily convinced by these arguments because I don't know enough to refute them, whereas I basically have a PhD in calling bulls--- on bad correlation implies causation statistical claims. That is, I can tell all the more-expensive-running-shoes-lead-to-more-running-injuries claims in Born to Run are utter rubbish, but the we-evolved-as-persisence-hunters arguments just plain sound cool to me. 

Anyway, the moral of the story is that I got some blood work done, and my iron level is high, and hemoglobin and hematocrit are all in the middle of the normal ranges. So suck it, meat-eaters. To be fair, my B12 was actually low. So I guess I need to take supplements more regularly, or just use nutritional yeast.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Commute by Bike

An ad in the international terminal of the ATL airport. Atlanta public transit sucks. Not only did whites vote against expanding public transit to the 'burbs because they feared that inner city blacks will take the train to come and rob them, it's a 10 or 15 minute shuttle drive from the international terminal back around to the domestic terminal to catch the train downtown.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Of Kentucky and Kenya

I think I've posted this before, but this dude looks exactly like me. Shirtless, tats, baseball cap with sunglasses on top, jeans that are probably too baggy by annoying hip people standards, he's got the whole package.

Oh, and how 'bout those election results? Pretty freaking amazing. Basically everything that was in the realm of possibility went the progressive way. Obama (1-3 Supreme Court justices), marriage equality 4 for 4, marijuana 2 for 3, improving the Senate (Warren!), and not only did California vote to raise taxes so as not to further pipe-bomb public schools, they elected a Democratic supermajority who will be able to raise taxes on their own. (I'm pretty sure--some of the assembly races were very close.) If you read the quotes from the party leaders, I think their humility is pretty reasonable--they'll lose it in the very next cycle if they overplay it, but still, an oil extraction tax would be great, and they'll be able to put a marriage amendment on the prop ballot directly, saving money for the equality side in the election. Awesome.

Also, "cliff" is a horrible metaphor for the taxes that might go up soon. Going over a cliff is irreversible. If taxes go up on January 1, you can lower them (for everyone but rich people) on January 2 and everything's fine.

Lastly, Kenya's nice, if quiet compared to last summer. I forgot how much fun it is when the running trails start literally at your doorstep. Even the quarter mile through town to the grass on campus in Swat seems far.

Monday, November 05, 2012


I am back in Western Kenya for a week to help with the launch of our baseline survey. Looks like the Lake Vic hyacinth is really bad again. Venus Williams was on the same flight.