31 January 2014

I Wish You Could See What I Can See

HD footage of Felix Baumgartner's jump from space.
I loved it.

29 January 2014

Sloths are the Best

Hat Tip to Big Cheese for sending me the article in the NYT about sloths. No wonder so many predators find them tasty. It's meat dish that comes with its own salad! (Plus some moths.)

28 January 2014


This was on deadspin. They sourced it somewhere but I forgot to find it. I copied it here because it is awesome. You may have to download it to your desktop to achieve full-resolution awesome. I'd prefer a chart that made all the toy and miniature dogs more opaque so that they could be identified but easily ignored. If your dog is a toy then it sucks.

The sad truth is that pure bred dogs in general tend to have health problems. Mixed breeds from the shelter tend to be the longest lived, most robust dogs, but getting a dog at the shelter doesn't have the same cache as a purebred dog.

Buying a mixed breed dog has been all the rage for the past several years. It's got all the cachet of a pure bred and poodle mixes don't shed! It's highly likely that if you buy a labradoodle or golden doodle then you're a Range Rover driving, whole foods shopping, fair-trade coffee drinking, montessori school, slow food cliche. Not coincidentally I have yet to meet a trendy poodle mix that was worth a damn, although that probably says more about trendy people buying 'trendy' dogs than it does about the dogs themselves. With enough love and training almost any dog will turn out great.

26 January 2014

President Forgets to Lie About Marijuana, Confuses Idiots Everywhere

I don't even have a passing interest in marijuana legislation. It's not one of my vices.
I do love me some stupidity, and we can find that in abundance in the drug war, especially anti-marijuana crusaders.

The short version is that no, marijuana isn't as bad for you as booze, and you can buy booze everywhere after you turn 21, but weed is mostly illegal in the USA. Why is that? The reasons are many and varied, but you can rest assured they are a load of baloney.

24 January 2014

Gun Ownership, Explained

Yoga people often ask me why I own a gun and practice shooting. Apparently the notion of a progressive, yoga-practicing gun enthusiast is... unusual.

I counter by inquiring why they don't own a gun. The reasons are many and varied: guns are scary and/or dangerous, or they aren't comfortable having one around the house, they will call the police if they need help, or they 'don't believe in violence'. That last reason is funny, mostly because violence doesn't give a shit if you believe in it or not. As for the police showing up in time to save you from an attacker: LULZ! Police exist to generate revenue and clean up the mess. (As an aside, guess who knows way more about police response times and behaviors than you do? People that commit crimes! Awesome, right?)

All the reasons for not owning a gun are just shorthand for the fact that someone is unable or unwilling to learn how to safely own and operate one. That's perfectly reasonable and understandable on the face of it. Guns and ammo are not inexpensive, and training is a commitment. But if you dig a little deeper, these same people almost always know how to drive a car and do so on a regular basis. So if people have no problem learning to drive, why can't they learn to use a gun?

They don't want to, because it forces them to confront facts about their vulnerability that are more easily ignored. To quote Sam Harris, "a world without guns is a world in which the most aggressive men can do more or less anything they want". If you don't know how to use a gun then that is your world.

To be clear: owning a gun will not protect you from violence or make you 'more safe'; it enables you to act in your interest if/when violence is visited upon you.

Depending on where you live it is highly unlikely that you will be the victim of a violent attack. You may decide that learning/practicing shooting is more trouble than it is worth. Armed with knowledge of the statistics you discern that you are probably perfectly safe. That line of reasoning is sound, but I take a more proactive approach to my personal safety. I encourage you to do the same.
A world without guns is one in which the most aggressive men can do more or less anything they want. - See more at: http://www.samharris.org/blog/item/the-riddle-of-the-gun#sthash.Lt1cAct0.dpuf

22 January 2014

I Am an International Financier (again)

All my kiva loans were repaid so it was time to re-fund another venture. I opted for Alice in Kenya. She wants the loan to buy more stock of plastics (shoes and bowls, mostly) and fruits for her shop. I'm on board with that, so I funded a portion of her loan. As of this writing she still needs another $125 to get her loan fully funded but I think we'll get there.

20 January 2014

Lukewarm Runnings

The Jamaican Bobsled Team was trying to raise the money to make it to the games in Sochi. They crowd-sourced a fundraiser and were paid in dogecoin, which is itself an intersection of online currency and doge. (Doge is shiba inu's, comic sans, and engrish applied to just about anything.)

So that's how we got here. Thanks, internet.

I've Been There

This is my exact look when I see people hurl themselves into unhealthy or dangerous yoga poses.

Also I think it's funny as hell when Louis C.K. does it.

Namaste, bitches.

17 January 2014

I Am an International Financier (n+1)

My last Kiva loan was repaid. Boaz bought some dairy cows with the $700 he borrowed and today he made his final payment. My own contribution was only $100 of that total, but it's awesome that it worked out.

His plan for the money was to grow his business and send his kids to school. Sounds good to me.

16 January 2014

Bird of Prey

Been busy. Whatever. This was on deadspin but I'm posting it here because: fuck yeah, falcons! Utterly fantastic and amazing.

13 January 2014

Naked Yoga Is Bold? I'm Unconvinced // The People Have Spoken (n+1)

Friend sent me this link:

The web copy suggests that participating in naked yoga is extremely freeing. Since most yoga clothes are skin tight already, and probably 5% of girls already wear see-through pants (unintentionally, one presumes) the added value in a naked class seems psychological, not aesthetic.

Looks like gimmicky bullshit. I am not sure being naked would make me feel 'free'; I don't find boardshorts restricting either physically or psychologically.* Nor have I ever been on a yoga mat and thought, wow this class is great but you know what it needs? It needs more dick. Because it would be so much better if I could just get my genitals out and happening. Also, why is my ass covered? Damn that is restrictive. My ass needs to be free. Heck it would be better if everyone took their pants off and tops off. That's freedom! Root chakra FTW!

Nope, never said that. Because I don't equate exposing my genitals with being 'free' any more than I equate not exposing them with being 'restricted'. At a minimum it's a courtesy. You're not leaving much to the imagination anyway.

* No I never wear a shirt. They are not comfortable because I'm a sweaty mess.

The people have spoken about the xfit promotional photo. Sweet Katie's husband wants to know "Where are the leg workout pics?"

I'm not in charge of the photos; I will ask. (The photo I posted was unsolicited and unexpected but I appreciate that they sent it to me.) They tend to feature the ladies for squat pics. Because you can see their, uhh, form. Alternatively, come to a yoga class. Plenty of man-thigh on display there. : )

12 January 2014

I Love Dessert

Hanging Out (HONK!)
Starting yoga teacher training this week. 200 hour course, if you're curious. Entry level. (There's an additional 300 hour course for more committed / heavily funded / future teachers.) Keeps me busy, which is good. Turns out there's only so much xbone I can play.*

Although I'm becoming more and more convinced that I like hot girls in yoga pants far more than I like yoga it will be good to learn new things. Broaden my horizons, meet some new people, etc. And spend a lot of time with (possibly hot) girls in yoga pants. Synergy!

Long time readers will know that when I'm not being awesome at my job or bumbling at yoga I spend my free time flailing at a xfit gym. The weights aren't going to lift themselves, people.

One of the coaches took this photo over the summer. I didn't know they were taking pictures or I would have kept my shirt on. Hah no I wouldn't. F that noise. Shirts just slow you down and I need all the help I can get.

* Not a euphemism. 

11 January 2014

Throwback Thursday (early) - The Last Best Time

The bulk of this post has been kicking around for a while. I wrote the original draft 6 March 2013, about 2 months after Reese died.

Hat tip to Big Cheese for the awesome jam.

It's not a coincidence that my Soundcloud profile name is SweetMeatball. That girl loved, loved, loved to dance.

Anyway, the post:

Before I said goodbye to Reese, about 10 days before she died, we had our Last Best Time.

She and I danced to this song. She was so happy. I cradled her in my arms and sang to her while she licked my face. When I got tired I put her down and she chased me around until I picked her up again. We listened to it twice in a row. 8 minutes of love and joy.

We had more good times before she left us, but that one stands out to me.

As Best Times go it could have been better. By then Ambra and I knew that Reese was very sick. We both cried while we smiled. I'll never forget it.

10 January 2014

Losing Reese, One Year On

Oh Were You Using That?
It's been a year since the Great Sadness. If I had a dollar for every word I've said or written about the emotional cost of losing Reese I would have an unfathomable amount of money. I would also still feel her absence just as sharply as ever. Tried to review some photos of her this week for other posts and it broke me just the same as if she died yesterday. Borrowing from Ken Layne, it is absurd to grieve for a dog this way, but that's how it is.

For a while I thought that I would get back to my 'old' self, the person I was before I met Reese's mom and fell in love with both of them. That guy was fun to be around. Took me a long time to figure out that's not going to happen. I'll never be that person again. Different, sure. Older, definitely. Wiser, maybe. But not the same.

No doubt I am lucky to have made it so far in life before having these experiences. Didn't make it any easier.

If you have a pups or cat of your own then please give them a hug and a kiss today. Do it every day. But especially today.

Thanks for reading. See you out there. 

05 January 2014

The People Have Spoken (Again)

From the post with the videos of the cute kid interviewing Luis Suarez and Steven Gerrard we get this from Ze Newbs:

I still hate SG. I just hate him a tiny bit less now. 

To which I respond: 
Your team suits up A$shley Cole AND John Terry. They are two of the most loathsome people in all of football. Yeah Stevie G. is overrated these days and he whines a lot and winning the Champions League in a penalty shootout doesn't, to my mind, count quite the same as winning on goals* but still: A$shley Cole. And John Terry. Seriously.

(Actually I don't much care for Stevie G. either but I never miss an opportunity to point out that John Terry is puke.)


Unrelated: I tried to figure out how turn off the shutter sound on my iphone and the easiest way to do it is just hit the mute switch on the exterior. No bigs. This works in most places but not in areas where people were prone to perving out so hard that they outlawed taking photos without an audible cue. Places like Japan. WTF, Japan? 

* Penalty shootouts to decide championships are the worst. Both teams lose, but one loses slightly less and they get the trophy. I'm not the only person that can't stand penalties. Just sayin'.

02 January 2014

Glad That's Over

Sloths Love Hugs
2013 is in the books. I hope yours was good. Mine, well, into each life some rain must fall. It's possible that 2014 will be worse (life is uncertain) but more likely we will regress to the mean and it will be better. Call it statistically induced optimism.

To kick the new year off right, here is a photo of a sloth, courtesy the internet. If you want to get lost in a rabbit hole, google 'sloth picture'.