Thursday, September 11, 2008

Feats of Strength

Apparently I've taken up running. The last time I ran any reasonable distance was in high school. (Assuming you don't count, say, the occasional jog from 26-100 to the LSC Office to get whatever item I happened to have forgotten that night--and even those were several years ago.) My main memory of running in high school was that it was painful, and that it was unfair that the people in better shape finished the mile quicker and got to rest while I was still stuck running and in pain.

And yet, I bought a pair of running shoes a few weeks ago, and have now taken them out four times in the past two weeks. I'm still seeing what my body can handle, so I'm doing 1-minute-run, 1-minute-walk for 2 miles. The weird part is that, aside from a dull ache in my shins that I've been icing, it feels good. As in, I actually look forwards to the evenings when I can get home early enough to go out running. Maybe that'll go away once I start pushing myself a little harder, but I'm still quite pleasantly surprised.

I've also apparently taken up conducting. I got roped into calling a quarter of Plain Bob Triples this morning. Luckily, I'd studied the composition last night (W 3H, W 6H, W 6H, where each 6 is --S--S, for anyone who cares). My usual studying technique is to write out every single lead end, with the calls and the coursing orders marked in. That confirms that what I think the composition is actually does come round, lets me verify that the coursing orders are what I think they'll be, and gives me a sense of timing for when the calls come. It's good to notice that the wrong is the lead after the home, for example.

Usually, that's about all it accomplishes. But this time, I also happened to notice that I (did I mention I was ringing the 7 of the back 8?) would dodge with the 4 the lead before the last Home in each group of 3. This fact turned out to be very important when I lost count of the number of Homes I'd called, and then the 4 wasn't where I wanted him to be. Putting the 4 where I thought he belonged seemed sure to make things worse, so I just put in one more Bob than I thought I needed and called the Single Home the next time. Luckily, it turned out that the 4 was right and I was wrong, and everything went as it should have. (I got to make up for it in the last few courses, by which time I was dead certain I knew where I was and didn't hesitate to shout at people if they weren't in their designated place. The 6 also helped me keep people straight.)

And finally, since it's been too long since I showed off the view from my apartment, a photo of tonight's WTC memorial lights.


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