Big Hawk

I was a little tired; so I walked a hodgepodge of courses in West Peoria and on Moss.


71 F, 90 percent at the start, 75 F, 76 percent at the end. 3:17 to walk 12.3 miles (12.11 by “map my walk”).

I did see Tracy at the bottom of the cemetery and I saw a massive hawk on Heading avenue, near Western. There was some construction on part o my usual route, near the end of the golf course.

I didn’t exactly kill myself out there. And I got yet another 200 mile month under my belt.

July 31, 2016 Posted by | walking | Leave a comment

DNC: parting thoughts …

Ok, the DNC was over a couple of days ago. And yes, one of my Facebook Friends (and real life friend too) complained about my high number of tweets that appeared on FB. Well, I’ll have to work something out for the debates…maybe have a “goat debate watch party” on FB or something.

But I like using both FB and twitter…we’ll work something out.

Now to the Convention itself: Here is a fair fact-check of Hillary Clinton’s speech. I think that she comes out well. There is a “spin” here, “not the whole story” there, and in one case she used outdated data.

Now while many women preferred Hillary Clinton to Bernie Sanders, not all of them did…particularly the young women. It turns out that the dominating factor was “life experiences”; those who have had kids and those who have been discriminated against (for being female) preferred Hillary Clinton at roughly the same rates, regardless of age.

Sanders supporters at the convention: This was funny. Some really believed that, going into the convention, that Sanders still had a bona-fide chance. Some complained about “microaggressions” (aka “slights”) that hurt their feelings. And, as a group, they were unprepared for the Clinton supporters being prepared.

Some unsolicited advice: expect your opponents to be smart and prepared. That happened to me in 2004 when my “team” (Kerry) was out-campaigned by Bush. The Bush website was much better organized. And the Kerry organization was a disaster; I remember calling up people who had volunteered to find out that I was the first person to call them…IN SEVERAL MONTHS. And you had competing pro-Kerry rallies in close proximity to each other…it was a real mess. On the other hand, the Obama campaign was magnificently organized. If you said you’d do something, you had someone following up to see if you did. If you took a trip, you got a call the night before.

This was a great metaphor: on election day in 2004, I drove back from Iowa ALONE to get the bad news as I drove. In 2008, I drove home with friends and we cheered the good news TOGETHER.

Now about Trump: David Frum (NOT a Trump supporter) wrote this article to describe how Trump supporters feel. And here are some Trump supporters, telling you that they aren’t stupid, evil, blah blah blah.

Man, have things changed. Now the Democrats are the “patriotic” party pushing the “American Dream” and the Trump party (formerly known as the “Republican party”) is the party for those who “feel” marginalized …mistreated…etc.

And yes, I saw the “Hillary leads by 15 points” poll, but it is just one poll so the forecasts have not changed much.

Just Because Based on what I’ve seen …Trump’s disastrous press conference, comparing his “sacrifice” to that of a parent who had a kid killed in combat and making excuses for not debating Clinton (“she will rig it”!!), I think that he is going to get creamed.

He’ll found out that he isn’t in a Republican primary:

First, he’s running a campaign fundamentally based on racism. But Republicans couldn’t call him on that, because more or less veiled appeals to racial resentment have been key to their party’s success for decades. Clinton, on the other hand, won the nomination thanks to overwhelming nonwhite support, and will have no trouble hitting hard on this issue.

Second, Trump is proposing wildly irresponsible policies that benefit the rich. But so were all the other Republicans, so they couldn’t attack him for that. Clinton can.

Third, Trump’s personal record as a businessman is both antisocial and just plain dubious. Republicans, with their cult of the entrepreneur, couldn’t say anything about that. Again, Clinton can. […]

And there’s one last thing, which I suspect may make the biggest difference of all: Clinton’s campaign can go after Trump’s fundamental buffoonery.

I mean, he is a ludicrous figure, and everything we learn just makes him more ludicrous. So why couldn’t Republicans make that stick? I’d argue that it was because there was something fairly ludicrous about all his opponents, too.

Think about Marco Rubio: even before his famous brain glitch, it was just obvious that he was a prefab candidate, a nice-looking guy with no real convictions or experience reciting lines he was told to deliver. The infamous “We must dispel with …” wasn’t just vile and stupid (even the first time, let alone repeated); it was also, transparently, not something Rubio believed or even cared about except that his handlers told him to say it.

Or think about Ted Cruz, whose mean-spiritedness and self-centered nature evidently stand out even in today’s conservative movement, making him a hated figure even among those who should like his message.

Clinton, on the other hand, is not ludicrous. She can think on her feet; she’s tough as nails. Do you really think the person who stared down the Benghazi committee for 11 hours is going to wither under schoolboy taunts?

This isn’t JV; it isn’t “low A” baseball.


I say that Clinton holds all of the Obama 2012 states and adds North Carolina (Obama 2008), Arizona (Latino) and Missouri (close…and she actually leads in a recent poll. No, she isn’t “really” ahead in Missouri and Arizona right now, I predict that she will be by election day.).

July 30, 2016 Posted by | politics, politics/social | , , , | Leave a comment

Not there but

Well, I started at 6 am and finished at 10:43 and covered 20.76 miles (13:37 pace by the clock; probably about 10 minutes of pit stops included); 15.45 in 3:04:19 (run/walk; 11:55 pace).

1:31:55 out, 1:32:23 back, then I walked 5.3 miles more. On the way back I walked a bit less but was slightly slower. 70 F, 97 percent humidity at the start, 75 F, 79 percent at the end of the run; low 80’s by the time the walk ended.


The walking made it a bit easier and only cost me 5-6 minutes of time.

July 30, 2016 Posted by | running, walking | Leave a comment

DNC wrap up…Democrats snatch “American Dream” paradigm from Republicans

Ok, the Democratic National Convention is over. I admit that I enjoyed it. The upshot: it appears that the Democrats have rallied around “Love of Country” and “The American Dream” whereas the Republicans have become something of a personality cult. Trump didn’t handle it well; he spoke of wanting to “hit” some DNC speakers. He has shown himself to be unsuitable to be President.

As far as the day itself: well, Chelsea’s introduction was, well, in my opinion, forgettable. Ivanka’s introduction of her father was much better. But Hillary Clinton’s speech, while not as good as Bill’s or either Obama speech, was good enough at, at least, watchable. She carried the day. Many were moved, especially many middle aged to old women.

For me, the most moving part was Khizr Khan’s speech concerning his son, who died in battle. He just nailed it; he called out Trump pointing out “you’ve sacrificed nothing” and invited him to read our Constitution (re: freedom or religion).

Will this change the course of the election? I don’t know; it appears that the betting lines have moved slightly in Hillary Clinton’s favor (most lines being lower than 1/2) but we’ll have to wait a week or so to see if there is any “bounce” in the polls.

On a lighter note, I loved Katy Perry’s tight dress…got to love frontal VPLs.

July 29, 2016 Posted by | political/social, politics, Uncategorized | , , , | Leave a comment

Marathon reality

Ok, it is sinking in. I had dreams of “running” a sub 5 hour marathon this fall. But I’ve never been able to get my long “run” past 15 miles or so, at least without walking.
Then it dawned on me: “in the day”, my long runs were never longer than 3 hours or so and my marathon “runs” were never longer than right about 4 hours.

What makes me think that, as an older man, I can run for a longer duration than that?

So the reality is that while I can finish those marathons, I am going to have to walk a bit so I may as well “run/walk” my long training sessions also…and mix in walking from the very start. We’ll see how that goes tomorrow.

Workout notes: weights only
rotator cuff
pull ups 15-15-10-10
squats: 2 x 10 weightless, 2 x 10 with 45, 2 x 5 with 65, 2 x 5 goblet with 50 This was enough for me to feel that I’ve done something. I’ve got such a long, long ways to go.
bench press: 10 x 135, 4 x 185, 10 x 170 (good)…had to keep it reasonable due to no spotter (have safety catches)
incline press: 10 x 135
military press: 2 sets of 8 x 50 standing, 10 x 40 standing (better)
roes: 3 sets of 10 x 50 (single arm)
head stand (shaky entrance)
abs: 2 sets of 12 twist crunch 10 yoga leg lifts

July 29, 2016 Posted by | marathons, weight training | Leave a comment

Democrats: becoming the American Values party…


For the record, my favorite speeches have been:
Elizabeth Warren (fire up the troops, unity)
Corey Booker (values)
Bernie Sanders (unity)
Bill Clinton (Hillary’s unsung work and competence)
Joe Biden (HRC’s competence, DT’s lack thereof)
Michelle Obama (optimistic full campaign)
Michael Bloomberg (for HRC’s skeptics)
Barack Obama (HRC’s readiness, momentum, DT’s unAmerican values)

Now what happened last night
People laid out the case for Hillary Clinton in terms of her competence, her record and how her values are more in line with American values than Donald Trump’s. And yes, Donald Trump was attacked for his lack of knowledge (and interest) in the details, his deportment and for his un-American values.

Oh yes Tim Kaine gave his speech too…frankly I found it boring.

Tim Kaine

Barack Obama Notes that what we saw in Cleveland wasn’t especially Republican nor conservative. He painted Donald Trump as being opposed to traditional American values.

Joe Biden Talks about Hillary Clinton’s competence and how Donald Trump doesn’t know that much.

Michael Bloomberg Attacks Trump’s business record; points out that one doesn’t have to be a liberal to see that Hillary Clinton is the better choice.

Reminder This is the graph of poll average of Romney vs. Obama in 2012. Yes, Romney got a bounce and overtook Obama for a short while.


July 28, 2016 Posted by | politics, Uncategorized | , , | Leave a comment

Why Guys (and conservatives) should give Hillary Clinton serious consideration.

Yes, I get it. I am a liberal and you probably aren’t.

And yes, liberals can be infuriating at times…just so self righteous and sanctimonious. If you complain about this, you’ll be called a “hater”, a “racist” or both. If you deign to fact check stuff like “women make only 7x cents on the dollar that a man makes” and try to bring some context into it, you’ll be called a “sexist” by some.

Some of this politically correct finger wagging can get tiresome.

And, of course, you might just plain disagree with me about how harmful public debt is, the effects of cutting spending during a recession, or on other matters.

But no one is going to agree with one candidate on all of the issues. And there is the issue of deportment and who is better suited to hold the office.

Does Donald Trump’s emotional instability worry you? What about his deportment? Can you imagine George Bush, John McCain or Mitt Romney saying the things that he does about women, or can you imagine them calling for a ban on people of a particular religion?

Yes, I know: Hillary Clinton is basically liberal (I wish all Sanders supporters understood this). And I am not going to try to convince you to become a liberal. I wouldn’t be able to, even if I tried. But in terms of deportment, knowledge and belief that one SHOULD make an effort to understand the world prior to taking long term action she probably has more in common with you than Donald Trump does.

Hey, voting for her in 2016 doesn’t mean that you can’t back someone else in 2020. But Donald Trump is unsuitable to be president and I think that you know it.

Take 12 minutes to listen to Mayor Bloomberg, a moderately conservative billionaire:

July 28, 2016 Posted by | politics | , , | Leave a comment

Using the treadmill

Even when the weather is good, I sometimes use the treadmill to save my legs (and do a cool down walk outside to take in the weather)

Today: 10 minutes (5.2/5.3) warm up..

Then 10 minutes at 6.7, 1 mile at 6.8, .5 in 6.9, .5 in 7.0. splits: 8:57, 8:48, 8:36 (26:23), 27:17 for 5K, or 37:36 for 4 miles.

Outside: 2 miles of walking, including .5 with Barbara.

I was ok with it, though the last .5 miles of the faster segment was work. Then I realized that I averaged 8:19 mpm for a full marathon in 2000. Sigh…

But I was 41 years old then…56 now.

July 28, 2016 Posted by | running | Leave a comment

Day 2 of the DNC convention, etc.

Yes, my workout first. Just scroll past.
rotator cuff, pull ups (5 sets of 10), squats: 3 sets of 10 (2 weightless, 1 with 45), goblet squats: 5 with 35, 3 sets of 5 with 50
incline press: 10 x 135, 10 x 150, 10 x 140
military press (dumbbell) 8 x 50 standing, 15 x 50 seated, supported, 10 x 200 machine
rows: 2 sets of 10 x 50 single arm dumbbell, 1 set of 10 x 200 machine
abs (2 sets of 12 twist crunch, 10 yoga leg lifts), headstand (so-so; I’ve done better, I’ve done worse)
easy 2 mile walk to loosen up.

The DNC day II
The highlight was Bill Clinton’s “spouse speech”

He kept the focus off of himself but instead made it all about Hillary. He focused on the many “behind the scenes” things you might have known about.

There were other minor talks. One was the “Mothers of the Movement” which are black mothers who have had a kid killed by violence (some at the hands of law enforcement, one was suicide, some were killed by criminals)

And yes, they were introduced by the Pittsburgh Police Chief, who made some good remarks:

Of course, some conservatives bellowed on about “mothers of criminals”; in fact, one person’s encounter with the police was started by an improper lane change (and yes, she didn’t behave well when stopped; she appeared to have some mental/emotional illness), one was shot by a murderer for playing his music too loud, and one was just a kid walking home, minding his own business when he was stopped and hassled by a thug. Yes, Michael Brown’s mom was there too…that made me cringe a bit.

You can read some of the fact-checks here and here. I see some spin to be sure, but nothing egregious.

The state of the race Hillary Clinton remains a modest favorite at about 2-1.

But yes, Trump has a bonafide shot of winning the election, as President Obama acknowledges. But he has to have a lot of things go his way…and sweep almost all of the toss-ups.

THAT will be a tall order…though possible.

July 27, 2016 Posted by | political/social, politics, walking, weight training | , , | Leave a comment

Warm run, bounces and day one of the DNC

Run: 1:47:05 for my 15K course. It was 76 F, 79 percent humidity at the start, 82 F, 62 percent at the end. I was 46:13/46:42 for my 2 “halves”; 14:10 for the 1.25 lower loop. Every time I was in the shade, I felt fine; I got hot out of the shade though.

Afterward, I did some more yard work, and my goodness do I stink. (TMI) I know that my online persona is that of a goat, but I’ve gone too far. 🙂

Presidential Race
This is what a “convention bounce” looks like; note that after Hillary Clinton’s numbers fell over the winter/spring (e-mail stuff) she maintained a steady level of support and Trump was down. But his numbers have trended up, very sharply.


Still, the long term forecasts mostly favor her, albeit narrowly.

Her betting odds are just over 1/2 (lower odds means a stronger favorite)

I watched the major speeches (Michelle Obama’s, Warren’s and Sanders’) and they were pretty good. You can find the highlights AND the full speeches here. If you only want to watch one, watch Michelle Obama’s.

Cory Booker’s speech was pretty good too:

Now there are some hard core “Bernie of Bust” people out there. Yes, they were called out:

But there are some Sanders supporters who will never vote for Hillary Clinton. Ed of Gin and Tacos fame explains what he thinks is going on (and I agree with him):

The more I listen to them, the more it’s clear that the fundamental disconnect between Sanders supporters who will vote for Hillary and Sanders supporters who will not vote for Hillary is not an ideological one. It is a difference in worldview. And while not all of the “No Hillary” Sanders supporters are young, they seem to share in common a worldview that is often stereotypically ascribed to “millennials” (if that term even means anything anymore). There have been moments in my career dealing with college students in which I’ve been left speechless – you can appreciate how rarely I’m unable to fill the air around me with words – by their worldview. It’s not a liberal-conservative thing, it is the apparent expectation that the world somehow has to make itself appealing to them. For example, I’ve had exasperating conversations with students who refuse to accept their only job offer because it either doesn’t pay them what they have decided they’re worth or it isn’t “fun” enough for them. And I ask them sincerely, “So do you expect to just wait until the job market gives you what you’d like it to give you?” And you’ll have to take my word on this: Some of them say yes. Some of them really do move back in with mom and dad and not work at all for years – years – waiting for something they think is worthy of them to come along. And of course it never does.

Of course, you can always posture and tall others how much more insightful and principled you are than everyone else. But oddly enough, that never shows up in their actual lives. 🙂

July 26, 2016 Posted by | political/social, politics, running, social/political | , , , | Leave a comment