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Judy Anderson (yduJ)

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California sun [Aug. 12th, 2018|07:44 pm]
Judy Anderson (yduJ)

It doesn't show as incredibly orange as to the unaided eye, but this photo kind of captures the smoke obscuring the sun in California last week.

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second percentile [Aug. 12th, 2018|12:49 pm]
Judy Anderson (yduJ)
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Today was the annual Sharon Triathlon, which runs and rides past our house. After it was over, I did my usual "unithlon" of riding the bike course. 12.39 miles in 56:21 for an average of 13.1. In between #369 and #370 of the finishers, of which there were 378. Usually I'm a little better than that... But usually there are 50 or so more finishers, too. So, maybe all the slow people stayed home this time, thus my percentile was lower.

I did start with the swim part, which I usually don't, but I had a 1/2 hour transition where I came in, changed my clothes, checked the weather, had a snack... I also only swam something like 1/4 mile or a little less, and the actual race has a 1/2 mile swim. I had a water ski ride before the swim (with another long transition of dorking around with the boat). I didn't time my swim. I imagine I'm dog-slow.

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Ash-ed rain [Aug. 5th, 2018|08:09 pm]
Judy Anderson (yduJ)

I'm in California again, for the 3rd and final summer trip. I'll be back in December with the kids, who haven't managed to come with me on any of these trips. In truth, Perry wouldn't have had a good time at my stepfather's 90th birthday celebration. Jocelyn would have, but she was headed to Smirkus camp so the timing didn't work out.

Usually when I'm here, I try to get a swim in, or take a walk in the morning, to get some exercise. However, this trip, that was not a healthy choice, because of all the smoke from the wildfires. They're over a hundred miles away, but they are blanketing the state with smoke. The sun is an orange ball, only barely too bright to look at. It's kind of eerie. You can't see the mountains for all the smoke. It's a different color than fog, and of course it isn't cold like fog. Yesterday afternoon it was raining ash, looked like snow. Not hugely thick, but noticeable, and left a powder on the parked cars. Something about the fire is the headline on the newspaper and the TV news is full of it. We looked at the interactive fire map to see which fire was likely the source of our ash -- probably the "Ranch Fire" at Clear Lake. (Which never was clear, and is probably really bad with all the ash falling in it now!)

Back home tomorrow, to clear skies and welcome damp weather.

I heard a nutty theory espoused by a right winger: The wildfires in California are caused by environmentalists, because they won't let people cut down all the trees, and thus they leave the wilderness available to burn.

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Biked back to work on new bike [Jul. 31st, 2018|10:59 pm]
Judy Anderson (yduJ)

Yesterday's ride quadrupled the miles I'd put on it; today's naturally increased those miles by 75%.

Somewhat better today. 25.95 in 2:20 for an average of 11.0. I'm still thinking the extra weight is causing me issues. The new shocks help, because I am willing to go over bumps a little faster. But only a little.

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NEW (to me) BICYCLE! [Jul. 30th, 2018|09:54 pm]
Judy Anderson (yduJ)

So, my bicycle has rust. A lot of rust. There's a hole in the frame. "Probably it's not structural," I say hopefully. OK, I must get serious about replacement.

Unfortunately below-seat steering for recumbents is out of fashion, and I really like it. One idea is to have a new frame manufactured; a buddy of Ken's has a welding setup and fancies himself a bike builder. We've been talking. But he keeps sounding more and more like hot air.

So I'm poking about online. Linear still makes below-seat steering. I rode a Linear once and thought it was OK. They make some short wheelbase versions -- I rode a long wheelbase Linear and while it was OK, the turning radius sucks and there's a big problem of transportation due to its size. So I know I want short wheelbase.

I call up Belmont Wheelworks, where I bought my bike 20 years ago. Surprisingly, the guy who sold me my bike (and is into recumbents) still works there -- and they're still the recumbent go-to place. But, mostly they sell Bachetta, which only makes above-seat steering bikes. However, while I'm on the phone, Scott says he has a used bike that a customer is trying to sell, and it's a Vision (same as mine) in good shape. I agree to come look at it.

It's a steal at $600. It has one small maintenance issue, which is that the shifters, especially the rear shifter, are flaky. Scott assures me this can be fixed with a good cleaning. I'm a bit skeptical, but the rest of the bike is in such good shape I decide to go for it. Scott said it was a 2006 or 2007, but the fact that the company's been out of business since 2004 makes that implausible. Still, it's a good 5-6 years younger than my bike, and has been taken better care of (or seen fewer miles).

So Saturday I got serious about making it be a bike. Trepidaciously I undid some screws and pried the cover off the shifter. Nothing went >SPROING<, and inside bits were accessible to a toothbrush and citrasolve. And it worked! I was able to put it back together without any leftover parts and the shifter now works flawlessly. I might do the front shifter some time. It's much less flaky, so I don't care as much. Then I spent hours undoing rusty screws from my old bike to transfer my rack and other accessories, including the front wheel because (a) I put new wheels on my old bike not too long ago and (b) the new bike had apparently been stored long enough to develop a flat spot on the front tire so it went bump bump with every tire revolution.

It has SHOCK ABSORBERS! They are AWESOME. Unfortunately it appears to be a bit heavier than my old bike and I think I can tell. Anyway, I rode it home from work today. Quadrupled the mileage I'd put on it over the weekend...

26.42 in 2:23 for a really lame average of 10.1. I can't even blame it on a different tire size because I used the tire from my old bike.

I'll have to remember to wipe it off when I come in from winter cycling. Maybe it'll last longer that way...

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Cat antics [Jul. 27th, 2018|10:41 pm]
Judy Anderson (yduJ)

For those who don't follow me on twitter, I posted a ridiculous photo of my cat, who I just took to the groomers because her mats had gotten out of control. If she enjoyed being brushed this would not happen, but she mostly hates it and so I'm pretty lame about actually doing it. I've only had to do this once before, when I first got her 12 years ago, so that's not too shabby.

I think some people do this to their cats on purpose, not as an emergency recovery measure...

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Insane trip report [Jul. 19th, 2018|07:17 pm]
Judy Anderson (yduJ)

(Is that the trip or the report that's insane? why not both?)

Well, that was 9 days of my life I'd rather have done something different with....

It wasn't all bad. There were some very touching family moments, and a generally good visit with family. Other people seem to think it was worth all the trouble, so I will accede to their opinion. It wasn't supposed to be all about me anyway. But I can still whine :-)
gory detailsCollapse )
Next up: My stepfather's 90th birthday celebration in just over two weeks. OMG, more airplanes!!!

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2000 bananas [Jul. 11th, 2018|05:30 pm]
Judy Anderson (yduJ)

When a 4th grader was visiting our house 2 weeks ago, he shared info from science class. Bananas, containing potassium, have a little radioactivity because potassium has a radioactive isotope which makes up a certain small percentage of the potassium in every banana. Thus, you can measure activities which add to your radiation exposure in "number of bananas you would need to eat to achieve this amount of radiation." Turns out, airplane flight is about 100 bananas per hour.

I'm in CA again, doing the insane wedding trip as earlier reported. Tomorrow we fly to Montana. My sister's driving with her dog and the large heirloom wedding present, and she's got my parents luggage. So it's just my luggage and their last minute things (I packed a larger-than-needed bag just to have room for last-minute items). I'm checking my bag so as not to have more things to worry about when getting onto the plane. It's hemhorraging money time!

Now I'm fussing about how badly they planned for this trip in terms of food -- the fridge is FULL of things that won't really last 4 days. Me, when my flight here was delayed 4 hours yesterday, I had trouble finding food for lunch because I'd done so good a job of cleaning out the fridge... (I could have had a pnut butter sandwich, but I'd packed 2 of those for dinner and second dinner, so I didn't really want one.) Anyway, I think we'll just be throwing out a lot of food. I sometimes cringe at the generic waste that happens around here. Run the dishwasher 1/2 full, leave the water running full blast while brushing teeth, etc.

For me, it'll end up being about 20 hours of flying. Thus, 2000 banana-equivalents of excess radiation. Probably sunscreen doesn't help with this kind...

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Home Alone [Jul. 10th, 2018|10:39 am]
Judy Anderson (yduJ)
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My family is in Puerto Rico! I can't go also because I'm spending too much time in California with my parents instead. (More on that in a later post.)

So I was home alone for 5 days. I kind of had the idea I'd do a lot of things around the house -- and I did get a bunch of things done, like took two cars for inspection/repair, and had a damaged part of my bathroom wall fixed. So, I didn't DO things, but I arranged for them, anyway! (Well, and rode my bike to and from the car shop).

Failed to get an opportunity to bike to and from work, it rained on Friday, and there was car shop logistics that I couldn't work out. Sunday morning I took a 12 mile ride, and passed mile 1000 for the year. I neglected to pay enough attention and it passed before I got a picture. It looks a lot like the picture from last year -- which happened almost a whole month earlier. There's been less biking this year, partly due to driving kids around and other errands which require a car. I did manage to ride my motorcycle to work two of the three workdays. (The other was the rainy day.)

I saw TWO movies! I wanted to see Ant-Man and The Wasp, because I like that kind of thing, but when I mentioned the movies to my friend Sue after square dancing Saturday (another thing I did), she said she'd be happy to go to a movie with me, but not that one. So we saw Oceans 8 instead. Then I saw Ant-Man and The Wasp on Sunday. I thought both of them were pretty enjoyable, and Oceans 8 totally passes the Bechdel test -- I even wonder if it would pass the reverse test -- are there any scenes with just men and they aren't discussing a woman?

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Implanted [Jun. 18th, 2018|02:18 pm]
Judy Anderson (yduJ)

Today I had the next step in my tooth adventure. I ill-advisedly rode my bike to the appointment, forgetting that she'd have to cut open the gum in order to put in the implant. It took a long time and there was one unfortunate clatter of something onto the floor and another unfortunate drop of a thing into the back of my mouth, but they got a new one of whatever if was that fell on the floor and I managed not to reflexively swallow whatever it was they dropped into me. Anyway, at the end, there I was, teeth clenched around a gauze pad to staunch the bleeding, and needing to bike home. I compromised by waiting for 15 minutes in the waiting room and then riding slowly so I didn't raise my heart rate too much and blast by the too-slowly-forming clots. It's kind of weird to ride your bike with your teeth clenched around a soggy gauze pad... Probably nobody noticed. I put some ice on my jaw when I got home, and sat quietly and read for half an hour.

Then it was a challenge to get something for lunch. I can chew on the other side but I didn't want anything to get stuck under the stitches... I'm still the toothless wonder. I get the stitches out in 2 weeks, and then the next step will be 4 months later; I think that will involve actually filling the gap. I'm hoping the fact that I sleep with a night guard is helping the other teeth to stay put and not wander off into the gap. Maybe that only happens if you have gaps in the bone where the roots were removed or rotted away, and I had the holes filled with bone graft powder. Which she says healed beautifully, so hopefully the rest will work as well.

Unfortunately, because the nearby teeth are both crowns, insurance is apparently going to deny the claim. Apparently if you have crowns they'd rather pay for the cheaper bridge treatment, but that's apparently not as good medically. Or something.

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