Stupid distance running

We decided to do our longest distance training run today instead of Sunday. That meant that I wouldn’t have to get up early on Sunday and I could go out to New City on Saturday night. That plan seemed so much more plausible before I pounded 62.5km over an eight hour period today.
My official excuse is that my party clothes don’t fit anymore. It looks like someone implanted contraband plastic bags in my legs. My waist is fine, but my thighs are grossly out of proportion. And I don’t have fat person pants.
This was the longest training run I’ve ever done. The planned route had an interesting concept; only cross two bridges. And the bridges were the furthest two that pedestrians can take in Edmonton; Rundle Park and Anthony Henday. Looking at the map, we left the city limits on both sides of Edmonton.
The weather, for the most part, was very good for running. It was overcast and cool. However, the weather report lied and it got sunny in the afternoon.
There was a 22km section where there was no place to refill water. So before we left, I went over my orienteering map for Laurier park and found where all the water taps were. The first one was broken; the top came off of it. I couldn’t find the second. The third one was fully operational. Unfortunately it was right next to a big picnic party. After 45km we didn’t care. Plowed right through it and tried to take over the tap. There were a lot of kids playing around, having water fights. They also kept cutting in line ahead of us. But eventually we were able to soak our heads and fill our water backpacks.
The last 15km was especially bad, because the sun really came out. We split up as we were all going different speeds.
I discovered that my shoes are only really good for 58km before they stop working. Better than my colleagues. The cushioning was gone by then. Still, I made it all the way back to our marshalling point. I actually tacked on half a kilometre extra so that I would be at one half of the distance of the Death Race. And now I can’t help but think that if I had run 800 meters further, I would have completed a marathon and a half.


Planned obsolescence is not a good thing for consumers. It strikes me as something only villainous companies would do. And MEC has just sauntered into that category. I no longer believe their greenwashing.
Let me explain.
When I was in L.A. several months ago, I brought my two pairs of sunglasses with me. As these things are wont to happen, I lost one pair down there. So, in my household I only had one pair of sunglasses that now needed to do double duty between driving and running.
When I went to Florida a few weeks ago, I brought that one pair along. Due to me using my backpack as a pillow (word of advice, backpacks aren’t very good pillows) one of the lenses popped out and was lost. I scoured my backpack for it, but it was gone. Probably in an airplane or in the Toronto airport. In either case, lost forever. I was completely without eye protection.
Florida is very sunny. I think they may even advertise themselves as that. So, after a few attempts, I decided that sunglasses were a necessity and so I purchased a cheap pair from the hotel gift shop. With these, I was able to survive the Sunshine State.
When I got back home, I decided to try and get new lenses for my previous sunglasses. The only reason a lens was lost was because it was interchangeable. If they had been more solidly built, I would have been fine. Still, the lenses should be fairly cheap.
But planned obsolescence can be covered by discontinuing a model and no longer supporting the parts for it. I see no reason they needed to do this. The technology of frames has not significantly changed, and even if they had, interchangeable parts have not. So to spite them, I purchased two more pairs of sunglasses. (Yes, I realize that doesn’t make sense, but I’m bitter.) I know I’m going to lose a pair eventually, and I want a good backup.
Half a week later, while turning my backpack upside down, the missing lens showed up.
From zero to four sunglasses in a week.

With Great Power comes great responsibility

I’m continuing my development and things are shaping up nicely. Right now I’m focussed on cleaning up the code. With the sphere stuff mostly working, I’m concentrating on all the other basic features that the program should have and fixing bugs.
So it is actually starting to look like a real application. And this evening I put it through its paces. I slapped together support for printing, and I’m finding out what a monster I’ve written.
Here’s the deal: The program will generate a world map that is rather rough. These can be spit out very quickly. When you find a map you like, you should then start manipulating it. One of the basic manipulations is to make it less-rough. I call it “increasing granularity”. It adds more details, allowing you to zoom in more and still have a nice view. Since a printed copy is more detailed than the screen, it makes a better image for printing. But it also quadruples the size of the map.
So I found a world I liked, increased the granularity several times and then printed it out. This brought my printer to its knees. I have a nice laser printer, and it took 14 minutes to spit out the final map. One page. Simple maps come out easily, but this was a 12mb file.
I wish I could say that it looks gorgeous, but it doesn’t yet. It looks impressive. The problem is that I haven’t been doing as much with colour as I would like. The water is nice and vibrantly blue, but the land is in greyscale. So it looks rather bleak.
Still, I like looking at it and seeing all the coastal features that have shown up. There are a few interesting archipelagos that catch the eye.
But as much as I would like to get more colours in this, I want to finish cleaning up. Once I have done that, I’m going to put it online so that it can be downloaded by people who are interested in this. (Or, as I like to refer to them, “my testers”.)

Stuffed to the gills

I declared my home a unicorn-free zone because of the growing plethora of stuffed animals. I wanted to make a hard limit as to where the girly-ness could go.
It doesn’t help that when I come back from vacation I find that my stuffed dog seems to have acquired a friend. The new dog seems to be eyeing the ball of my old dog. So far no stuffing has been drawn, but I don’t know how long the peace will last.