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Thursday, March 31, 2005

The Schiavo Case

If you are interested in the recently fallen Terri Schiavo and the controversy over the case, I highly recommend these two articles:

Whose Life Is Worth Living?, by Orson Scott Card

Terri Schiavo: Judicial Murder, by Nat Hentoff

They are very well informed and very powerful.

Monday, March 28, 2005

Spring Break

Spring Break is over and classes have started again.

Over Spring Break, I went to Glasgow, KY to visit my Dad. He owns a 20 acre property that has a creek running through it, and it's verrrry nice there. I spent a night in Lexington, KY where my Dad's family is from, at my Uncle Gerry's house. I had a good time just being with my Dad, and I appreciate that I can spend time with him that's fairly uninterrupted. I was there from Monday until Friday.

Also, on my way down to KY, I stopped in Bloomington, IN to have lunch with a friend named Russel. He's helped me a lot with programming in the past year and it was nice to sit down with him for a while. We went to Django Cafe, which is an interesting jazz cafe with an Asian/Indian/Vegan menu. I got a veggie pita and a strawberry smoothie.

On Easter I went to breakfast at church, then went to the Easter service there, and then I made some fried sweet potatos (yum!) for a potluck lunch over at Natalie's house. It was a great time :-)

By the way, Rachel is my darling girl and I love her very much ^_^ She is so good to me and does everything she can for me. I am blessed and lucky and everything.

Saturday, March 19, 2005

Locked Out!

Today, the morning did not go so well...

I woke up at 8:30, decided to sleep 15 minutes more, so I set my alarm for 8:45. I get up and my clock says 8:45 so I take a shower. When I come back to look at my clock, it says 9:51!!! Still time to catch the bus if I hurry really really quick. So I rush out of the house and...I don't have my keys! So after a while of thinking, I find a paper clip in my backpack and attempt to pick the lock for a half hour(unsuccessfully) while I wait for the next bus to come.

This was the perfect day to be locked out. It just so happens the both of my roommates were out of state just today. One roommate went to Colorado today and the other is in Salt Lake City and will come back tonight(Saturday). At least it was sunny and really warm though, so I didn't get depressed. I missed phonology class and went to my research assistant meeting. Then I called my roommate who owns the place and leave a message to see if anyone has a spare key, then I call a Linguistics grad friend, but no answer there either.

Then I went to the Student Union, ate some snack mix I had, and slept. My friend called me eventually and picked me up and took me to his house. We played NHL 2001 quite a bit and had fun checking everyone into oblivion. His parents came into town today as well, so I got to meet and talk with them. At around 9PM I got a call from Rick, and he told me that his girlfriend has a key to the house. So I called his girlfriend and agreed to come pick up the key. Charles and I went first to Applebees to get a bite to eat and then picked up the key.

Quite a silly day I'd say :-P I would prefer if it didn't happen again, but I think God was teaching me a lesson about something. Maybe it had something to do with taking my time or getting up the first time my alarm goes off. Maybe it had something to do with enjoying the nice day or not having my computer with me 24/7. Maybe I was supposed to hang out with Charles and meet his parents for some reason. Whatever. I did all that today, then got home and played some Warcraft 3 :-)

SPRING BREAK IS HERE!

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Movement

I love to move my body. If you observe me in person, I'm always thinking of interesting ways to move my body and a lot of times I do them right in front of people and I don't care. :-) I get this from inspiration from my martial arts training. The body, when it's fine-tuned and strong in certain ways, can do amazing things.

I have a philosophy that the way to exercize your body should be to train motions, not muscles. I think that many people go to the gym and lift weights, but they don't really know what their purpose for it is, and it doesn't necessarily help them in their life practically(except making them have larger muscles).

The better way to train is to think of some action you want to be strong at, and find some exercize that approximates that action. And the less you have to use weights, the better, in my opinion. Muscles like the biceps almost require weights to train, but most muscles can be trained very well without them. Weights are convenient, but they aren't as practical. Why does this matter? Besides your large muscles associated with an action, small muscles are developed by everything you do. So, the exercize you do should closely resemble the practical motion you want to improve.

Think of your body as a multi-functional tool and having a high potentiality for adaptation. If you do certain tasks, actions, and performances in your life, your body would be best served and would look most beautiful if it was extremely efficient at doing the things you do in your life. Especially as we get older, it becomes harder and harder to reshape ourselves for other activities.

Most people don't realize how intricately we can shape the muscles and bones and everything in our body toward a certain goal, fine tuning in such detailed ways that we're not even conscious of. Being conscious of and in control of that fine tuning process will help us to improve our body for what we do in our lives and not just because everyone says it's a healthy thing to do.

My exercizes that I do most everyday I think serve me very well. I mostly want to improve my martial arts skills, so I have three exercizes that I do once per day. One set of each until my muscles max out:

I do push-ups on my knuckles(on carpet). Push-ups are an excellent exercize for improving punches, and I have done this exercize for about 8 years straight almost everyday. To do knuckles push-ups, make fists and put only the knuckles of your index and middle fingers on the ground. Make sure no other fingers touch the ground.

I do leg-lifts/hip thrusts. Laying on your back with your hands palms down under your butt and your legs straight out, knees locked, hold your legs 6 inches from the ground and proceed to lift your legs without bending your knees until your legs make a 90 degree angle with your torso. Then using your abs and lower back(but not your hands or arms), push your hips up toward the ceiling. Then let your hips touch the ground again(controlled). Then lower your legs back down to 6 inches off the ground(don't bend your knees and be in control of the descent). Repeat.

I do uppercuts with a weight. Holding one or two weights, you stand for this exercize. Start with the weight(s) at your side. Then, leading with your fist raise the weight to eye height in an uppercut punching motion. Control the rest of your body so it doesn't move, and control the desent of the weight(s) so that the motion is the same as the one going up. Repeat.

Push-ups generally work the triceps, the wrist, the whole back, the chest, abdominals, thighs, shoulders, and gluts. If you do them on your knuckles you can make your hands and wrists even stronger.

The leg lifts/hip thrust exercize works the lower back, the abdominals, and the thighs. It is a very good exercize to improve the kicking motion, especially the front kick.

The uppercut exercize is good for improving the uppercut punch motion. It works the biceps, hands, wrists, forearms, and shoulders.

Notice that even though some similar muscle groups are worked for these exercizes, the strengths developed will be different. Form is also very important. My philosophy is that if you can't do a repitition of an exercize perfectly, you should not continue doing the exercize until your muscles recover or you can learn how to do it from someone who is trained in doing that exercize. If your muscles are not strong enough to do a certain exercize now, you should find an easier alternative until you gain enough strength to start doing the more difficult exercize.

Well, I hope this provides some insight for some people. Enjoy!

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Shopping Intuition

So I went to Meijer and for the second week in a row I resolved to spend under $25 for my food for two weeks. I don't use a calculator, I just sort of estimate as I go, accounting for tax and such. And amazingly, both time I've gotten within 20 cents of $25!!! The first time I spent $24.83, and this time it was $24.94! :-D It makes me happy when I succeed in something like that.

I learned to play Euchre tonight. It's pretty cool, but hearts is still my game. Challenge me any time :-P