Return home..

I did catch one final talk and one final walk (15 minute pace)

This latter talk was an overview of applications of knot theory; the mathematician giving the talk was very encouraging to me when I was young. It meant a great deal to me.

On the way to the talk, I did see a cool mushroom.

On the WKU campus…what a mushroom!

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And back home, a waitress wore an engineering shirt. (I have a photo of the front as well)

Heart equation with graph…

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The walk wasn’t that much; I did see the football team working out.

Now for something that I hope will be more significant.

July 21, 2018 Posted by | travel, walking | | Leave a comment

Is age catching up with me?

I am feeling a bit fatigued, at least physically. Part of the reason is that I am doing quite a bit of non-workout related walking in addition to my usual workouts, and the campus is hilly. But in the days of old, I never worried about that. But within the past 10 years or so, I noticed that routine hill and stair climbing was more difficult on the days I ran.

Today: weights at the WKU gym (a nice one) and then 4 miles of running: 1 on the treadmill (11:10) then 3 on the upstairs track (6.9 laps to the mile, and I did 21 laps in 31:26 (10:50, 10:44, 9:50..chased a young woman). I have to remember that this was sort of 5K-ish and within 2-2:30 of what I race these in these-a-days.

weights: weak..perhaps I rushed? 5 sets of 10 pull ups (good), bench: disaster. 10 x 135, 1 x 185, 5 x 170, incline: 10 x 135, decline: 5 x 165. Military: ok, 3 sets of 10 x 45 dumbbells (standing), 3 sets of 10 x 200 Hammer rows (usual), headstand and plank (2:30..easier?)

Note: my back can “feel” my not doing my back exercises.

Talks: good, as usual:

Slipknots in random walks (appears in proteins).

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The last one combined some serious global analysis, PDE and knot theory to deal with “almost real world” knotted cylinders.

July 20, 2018 Posted by | running, travel, weight training | | Leave a comment

Wills and Ways Part II

Ok, I am learning stuff…but lunch was a bit too heavy.

I walked 3 miles just under 15 mpm in the morning (72 F, 76 percent) and then another 4 over lunch 86 F, 47 percent) at about 15:30 mpm. The combined courses are above; I might want to stroll past the Bowling Green Hotrods stadium though they aren’t playing at home this week.

The Western Kentucky University campus does have one wicked hill on it; I wonder how any of their students ever get fat.
Note: while eating at the Student Union, I met the baseball coach.

Two talks; closing up "knotted" strings and dynamical systems.

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Mat presenting his work.

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Knot mosaic number..forming knot projections via certain types of decorated tiles.

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July 18, 2018 Posted by | travel, walking | | Leave a comment

One reason for Trump supporter’s hostility to higher education

I will not deny that *some* right wing critiques of US higher education have a bit of merit (e. g. hostility to free speech..among some, and yes, there are a few kooky is inevitable in our country of our size).

But if you go to any math conference you will see professors from all around the world..and in the hallways you will hear many languages being spoken. The reality is that outlier level talent (e. g. the main speakers) really is spread out all over the world; even our country would be hard pressed to gather enough outlier level talent for a good conference using only, say, native-born Americans. And yes, universities do draw professors from around the world, especially the highest ranked ones. That is just a fact of life. Academia (at the higher levels least in the sciences) and xenophobia are incompatible.

From the conference:

Lori Alvin discussing dynamical systems.

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Applcation of Riemannian Geometry.

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Professor Kosterlitz, Nobel Laureate in physics.

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And yes, I did run across one anti-Trump, anti-Rand Paul protest on my way back from dinner to campus:

I saw this outside of Rand Paul's Bowling Green office.

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Running: 44:25 for 4 on the gym treadmill…I just had a rough time of it. Not sure as to why (big week?)

July 18, 2018 Posted by | education, running, travel | | Leave a comment


Lifted weights yesterday (usual..highlights were 2 sets of 5-5-5-5 and 1 set of 10 pull ups, 4 x 185 bench, 8 x 170 bench, 7 x 170 decline) and got on the road to Western Kentucky University.

Crescent moon.

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That saved me from listening to Trump with Putin in Finland…and this is extraordinary:

US President Donald Trump, in a stunning rebuke of the US intelligence community, declined on Monday to endorse the US government’s assessment that Russia interfered in the 2016 presidential election, saying he doesn’t “see any reason why” Russia would be responsible.

Instead, Trump — standing alongside Russian President Vladimir Putin — touted Putin’s vigorous denial and pivoted to complaining about the Democratic National Committee’s server and missing emails from Hillary Clinton’s personal account.
“I have great confidence in my intelligence people, but I will tell you that President Putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial today,” Trump said during a joint news conference after he spent about two hours in a room alone with Putin, save for a pair of interpreters.
Trump’s statements amounted to an unprecedented refusal by a US president to believe his own intelligence agencies over the word of a foreign adversary and drew swift condemnation from across the partisan divide.
His words signaled that he continues to equate the assessment of Russian election meddling with efforts to deligitimize his election, even though the US intelligence community made no such assessment.

And earlier:

I suppose that this “blame America First” is fine with the Republicans so long as they get their deregulation, tax cuts and SCOTUS picks.

Oh, and there is this outlandish claim that is being put forward to distract the rubes.

July 17, 2018 Posted by | politics, social/political, travel, weight training | | Leave a comment

A few days of contrasts…

I had traveled to Alabama to give a math talk; it was a welcome diversion from, well, the day to day grind of teaching a couple of large sections of a service course. I got back home in time to catch most of Bradley’s 6-3 win over Indiana State in baseball (picked it up in the bottom of the 4’th; saw every run including a loaded bases clearing double. Then I went to a memorial service for an old friend.

I said a “pre goodbye” to a dear friend to is retiring and leaving the area. Then tomorrow, I get to see another dear friend who had left but returns from time to time. All the while, a trail ultra marathon is going on; one that I was once able to do (50 and 100 miles, two times each). My PF problems precluded me from doing one of the shorter distances.

I had 70 F degree temperatures in Alabama; it hit 18 F this morning in Peoria. Oh well.

Workout this morning: weights, then 57:40 for 5 treadmill miles: did “5 minute froggy” for 35 minutes (5.1) then walked to 4 miles (47:10) then jogged it in (10:30 final mile). Left heel: not perfect, but ok.

Weights: protect the left shoulder pull ups (5 sets of 10: ok), military presses: 10 x 50, 10 x 45, 20 x 40 (standing), one armed rows with 60 (3 sets of 10), shoulder not ready for incline or bench, so did light dumbbell bench presses: 10 x 30, 10 x 40, focus on full range.


flight to Alabama:

Leg one: Peoria to Charlotte.

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Mobile, Alabama airport.

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The campus

Now THIS is spring weather.

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The flier

I had better not lay an egg.

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After the talk: nice, scenic walk with two mathematicians

Near the South Alabama campus. Saw an alligator.

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The airport again: (with art)

Early in Mobile. Not a long line; had time to take in some of the local artwork.

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6 am take off means sunrise photos

Sunrise…and changing clouds.

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Cold weather baseball

Not baseball weather. Bradley beat Indiana State 6-3.

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Bonnie’s memorial service:

RIP, Bonnie Gudat.

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April 7, 2018 Posted by | baseball, Friends, running, travel, weight training | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Interesting first evening

I enjoyed last night’s dinner; the trip here came off without a hitch.

Workout notes; though the weather is glorious, I was on the treadmill for 5 miles. I switched at mile 4 as the first one slipped a bit..second one was fine. The heel is feeling MUCH better after getting tight on the trip.

5.1 froggy (10 min); 23:18 at 2, 45:09 at 4, then 9:30 final mile.

April 5, 2018 Posted by | running, travel | Leave a comment


Ok, now I am working both my left..well, not quite shoulder but pectoral? and my left foot. Hmmm…

weights: I modified it a bit; usual PT, pull ups (5 sets of 10, NO SWINGING), standing dumbbell military: 15 x 40, 10 x 45, 10 x 50 (all ok), rows (Hammer) 3 sets of 10 x 200. Then I used the Hammer incline press machine for two sets of 10 x 90 (45 on each side), striving for slow, full range reps. Yep.the soreness is there and while it isn’t debilitating, it is enough to keep me from straining in that motion.

Did the usual abs, headstand, 2:30 bent elbow plank.

run/walk: 3 minute froggy 5.1-5.3, then up..11:25 first mile, 8:41 second mile, walk 15-15:30, then jog the final mile at 5.2-5.3 going up 1-2-3 in incline (last .5 at 3) to finish 4 in 46:50. Foot: ached the most during the walking phase, not much at all during the run.

I am a mess. 🙂

Later: fly to Mobile, Alabama. Fly back on Friday. It is only a seminar talk, but I am a bit nervous/anxious/excited. This is only my second “invited” talk to a math department (last one was in 1993) and I really don’t want to lay an egg.

What is different is that this is a non-specialist audience so I have to explain what is obvious to specialists (those who have looked at this stuff for years) while not being insulting by giving an undergraduate level talk.

April 4, 2018 Posted by | running, travel, walking, weight training | , , , | Leave a comment

Back for round 2

Back in town…finished grading some exams.

The drive there and back: as easy as I have ever had. I was surprised. Now I am going to work on the book Shattered (about the Clinton campaign…so far..what I expected as far as strengths and weaknesses.

Workout: hotel treadmill again; 3 miles on the treadmill (33:50) then 1 walk: 47:45. The heel, while not well, is doing better. No NSAIDS over the past 4 days. Medium distance running appears to be ok.

March 19, 2018 Posted by | running, travel, walking | , | Leave a comment

Cleveland trip..

Workout notes: 4 miles on the treadmill in 46:40; 3 run in 32:50; 33:50 for 3.1 (breaker trip at 2.55 at 28:10; 6.1-6.2 to get to 3.1, then walked.

Later: Rocky River Park stairs (note: 2 minutes per uphill walk, steady, not fast, but deliberate).

Overall, it was a nice visit with Olivia and Barbara was great company as well.

Yesterday: Greater Cleveland Aquarium and Brunos.

Today: Rocky River Nature Preserve and lunch, and Half Price books.

We took a trolley tour of Cleveland afterward. Note the colorful blue paint on the bridge.

They had all sorts of fish.

Note the size of this could take air from the surface too.

The shark tank was interesting.

Yes, you could put your hand in the water to pet the stingrays.

Handsome toad.

At Brunos.

At Rocky River

The Nature Center has lots of rocking chairs and some animal exhibits.

The Stairs: 2 minute walk up. I did this 3 times, just for the heck of it (some ice still left). Great views from the top.

March 18, 2018 Posted by | family, hiking, running, travel, walking | , | Leave a comment