It’s late on Sunday evening . . . so this might go out on Monday. Heck, it’s already Monday in most of the U.S. Mainland.
“What could you be thinking about?” you ask.
Good question, Bob. One thing is the Ironman Triathlon. The 2016 Championship war run yesterday here, in Kailua Kona. Our original plan to attend the event — or at least the beginning of it — morphed into let’s go for a drive far away from here and the 30K+ people that are attending. So, that’s what we did. Sorry. No photos of the event.
I got me other photos, and no, the photos on this post are not them. These are all miscellaneous photos suited for a post where I am not specifically discussing said photos. Filler photos, if you will.
Yes, you can click on them for a larger view and you can see the original size photos at the ongoing SmugMug Gallery HERE.
I did get a few photos of various athletes and spectators during the week leading up to the event. I also have to admit I will miss certain aspects of the event. This whole past week there was an atmosphere of excitement and anticipation, so much so that even we felt it. That’s why we actually considered standing shoulder-to-shoulder with a bunch of strangers looking at people we don’t know doing things we don’t do.
We do exercise, pretty much every day. Aside walking 4.5 miles in the morning, we typically make it to the gym five or six times a week. There, we do cardio (I typically row and/or use the stair climber) and weights. Not big on building muscles, but we do want to make sure we retain some of our strength as we age.
When I do process the photos I took throughout the week, you will immediately know when you are looking at an athlete . . . they are typically tall and fit. But, that’s not all the athletes. We met a woman our age or older that was going to run her second triathlon. She would try to beat the time of her first one — 16 hours.
For them who don’t know, you can “Swim 2.4 miles! Bike 112 miles! Run 26.2 miles! Brag for the rest of your life!”
Yesterday, October 8th, 2,315 people tested their endurance on the 140.6 miles event. The top male finishers did it in 8:06 hours. The top female finishers in 8:46 hours. You can see all the results and age brackets HERE.
The oldest person to finish was in the 80-84 age division and they finished in 16:49 minutes. The cut-off for finishing is 17 hours.
I said before that if I trained for a year or two, I could do it. I think I could. I’ve never recovered from losing my hamstring, so I can’t run very well. Then again, I could hardly do anything after I got hurt, but I came back to play competitive racquetball and do pretty much anything I wanted to do. I suppose I could train my body to run.
The point I’m making is that this is one of those sports most people do as a test of themselves, to see if they can finish.
Like most sports, it’s a whole different ball of rubber bands if one wants to “win.”
Not saying that it cannot be done by anyone, but winning the race favors certain body types. In endurance racing, a slight build means less weight to carry around. Depending on body type, racers will do better in one leg of the event over another. Even if only competing in an age division, your height to mass ratio will matter, and you can only control that to a certain extent. For instance, you cannot control height.
I’ve written before that my personal approach to life does not encompass being “the best” at anything I do. It also does not include being the “best that I can be.”
The complimentary approach to life is to carefully choose what to get into. Could I do the triathlon? Probably. Is there any chance I will catch the bug and attempt it? Nope.
It involves a lot of tedious work, you see. Swimming hours on end, running hours on end, biking hours on end, as I would have to do while training for the actual race, does not appeal to me at all. It sounds boring as hell. As boring as sitting in front of a computer and write sounds to a lot of people.
. . . if they had competitive sitting at a computer and writing, I’d be all over that . . .
Speaking of writing . . . I noticed a steep drop in my interest in TV shows and movies. What does that have to do with writing?
Well, in the last few years, I’ve been writing more than in previous years. I’ve also been more serious about my writing. By that, I mean that I look at it with an eye to publication.
That means that I have to turn a critical eye to it. I like to think my writing has improved. In no small part, because I am critical of it and catch the stupid before I set it on a page and send it off into the world. Or, as I said, so I like to think.
Unfortunately, that has made me hyper-critical about all my entertainment choices; TV shows, movies, books. But, especially TV shows and movies. These days, I tend to find most things puerile and not much of a challenge when it comes to cognitive abilities.
Sometimes that’s OK, especially for movies that are mostly action. But even there, plot holes and inconsistent characters tend to jump out at me, grab me by the lapels of the jacket I never wear, and shake me with vigor as they yell “don’t you even dare write anything this stupid!”
I have been watching more anime shows. While they too span a wide range, I have found more anime series I enjoyed than movies I enjoyed. One recent series I enjoyed is RWBY.
Still, even as I enjoyed the series to date, lots of things annoyed the crap out of me. Characters with inconsistent powers, characters with little agency, mysterious plots spun off from statements that seem made-up on the spot, and the ubiquitous most awful of annoyances, characters who do stupid things for the convenience of the plot.
Some of my irritation was difficult for me to focus on . . . and then, I came across THIS review of the series (and THIS and THIS). I don’t know who this guy is, and I don’t know his credentials, but I can tell you that watching his reviews helped me think about what I do with my writing.
As I am in the process of editing my last year’s NaNoWriMo (and planning on writing one for this year), the particular way he looks at action and characters was very useful. Meaning, I think I learned a few things.
. . . man, I wish he would beta-read my stuff and tear it apart bit by bit.
So, we’ve been here almost four months. Still renting, still not close to finding a house.
What’s it like living in Hawaii?
I covered the whole heat and humidity stuff before. We are a bit more acclimated to it, but we still take two or sometimes three showers a day. The way it works, if we do anything — get up from a chair, sneeze, turn our head to look at something, or even blink too fast — we break out in a sweat. I don’t know about you, but I hate wearing sweaty clothes, hence, shower and change.
Another thing we do without a second thought is put on sunblock whenever we head out. I found a sunblock called No-Ad that actually works. I tan very easily, and this is keeping my bronzing in check.
After having lost all that weight during the month leading up to our closing on our house and moving, I put a few pounds back on. I’m at a comfortable 173lb, but will likely try to drop back down into the high 160s.
Mind you, I’m not strictly looking at weight . . . since I’m back at gaining muscle, I’m also looking at how my clothes fit. Why do I mention this?
Because exercising in hot weather really takes a lot out of you. Afterward, we hardly feel like doing anything.
So far, all the dreams I had of being super-productive and focused . . . yeah, well, not so much. However, I am a dedicated eater. As in, I dedicate myself to the task.
Neither of us sleeps all that well. In part, that’s because of our mattress . . . it’s OK but not great. Consequently, I’m back at sleeping 4-5 hours a night. Trying to sleep longer just has me wake up at 3:30am or 4:00am and then I’m unable to go back to sleep (the alarm is set for 5:30.)
One thing that has improved, is my skin. I used to have cuts open up on my thumb and forefingers because the low humidity would dry the skin out and it would split during use. None of that here. Smooth fingers and no cracks.
Another thing you notice around here . . . the homeless people. Well, some actual homeless people and some who pass for homeless.
Many of the homeless have obvious cognitive issues (talking to themselves, loud swearing at imaginary beings, OCD-like gesticulations and rituals) and can occasionally raise one’s concern with regard to one’s safety.
Others appear to fully embrace the lifestyle. Have you ever seen people at a street corner holding up a sign that looks semi-professionally made as they smoke a cigarette and chat with other people also smoking and holding up similar signs?
I can’t adequately describe how much their action remind me less of desperate people in dire straits and more of people on the job, the job being bumming money from people walking by.
Don’t get me wrong; I am sure there are people who are legitimately down on their luck and are hurting. You can usually recognize them by their mode of dress, the look in their eyes, their gaunt appearance, and their demeanor. The ones we regularly see are not giving us that impression.
In case you are wondering, there are organizations that bring food and clothes they distribute for free. I prefer donating to those organizations than to give money directly to the people on the street.
Well, it’s official; I’ve crossed into Monday, Hawai’ian time. I should probably wrap this up since I have to get up in about 5.5 hours and I still want to read a bit.
Let me leave you with a few more odds-and-ends photos . . .
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. . . my FP ward . . . chieken shit.