Life goes on, with me or without me

Here, some stores have curbside service but even these might have to close. I do use takeout for meals. But with those exceptions, I am basically following the “stay at home” guidelines shown here.

Wednesday: I diligently assembled my pull up bar…incorrectly, but then fixed it. There is a slight rock (they recommend bolt-down) but using loaded dumbbells as counter weights really helps.

I also am doing dumbbell presses outside; our porch ceiling is high enough to allow for that, even during rain.

And I do bench presses, power cleans, curls, dead lifts, hex bar rows in the basement.

So, here is what I did, workout wise, over the past couple of days:

Wednesday: 6.4 mile run…very slowly…Cornstalk hill plus lower loop; 1:28 ish. I’ve really gotten slow…then assemble equipment (racks, pull up bars)

Thursday: yes, I got a great deal on this bench (150 dollars!)

But I did my own workout first:

rotator cuff and back exercises. (I forgot to plank…better work on that)

pull ups: 10-(5-5)-10-(5-5)-5-5 (the 5-5 sets were when I changed grip)

dips: 4 sets of 5 (getting used to it)

shoulder press with dumbbells: 3 sets of 10: 40, 44, 44, 1 of 5 (44) for photos

goblet squats: 3 sets of 6 with 58 (decent depth)

bench press: experiment: 10 x 134, 5 x 156, 5 x 167 (had the spotter)

rows: 3 sets of 6 x 134 (hex bar)

power clean: new 25 lb bumper plates: 3 sets of 5 x 94

curls: 3 sets of 5 with 55? (22/4.4 on each side)

I am still working things out.

Navy 20, Kansas State 17, Liberty Bowl

This was quite the game. We got there early to walk around, and there was a great deal of energy and an announced crowd of 50,000 which LOOKED like an honest number.

The prelude: we got to see both teams leave their buses. Navy had fans waiting for them; Kansas State didn’t. But both teams had some big guys…and the spirit in the stadium was great. Fans were in a good mood.

I love bowl games for that..especially when both fan bases are well represented.

The game: on the first possession, Kansas State moved it a bit but blew two potential touchdown passes; one ball was under-thrown and one potential td pass was dropped.
Navy got it and drove it for a field goal.

The teams then exchanged punts in which case Kansas State returned its punt for a touchdown; a spectacular run.
Navy got it back with a long drive. Kansas state answered with a field goal drive and it was 10-10 going in.

Navy got a nice drive to go up 17-10 but then K State got a big return. But on a 4’th and 1, they made it but got a dead ball unsportsmanlike. That was key because a sack and a fumble drove them way back.

Navy appeared to take control but missed a field goal after a long drive from its 10.

Kansas State tied it with a drive based on a long pass and it was tied with just over 5 minutes to go.
No problem for Navy; a drive burned clock and got it to about midfield. But with 30 seconds to go, Navy ran an halfback option pass off of a sweep on 4’th down that got the ball down to the 5 with 20 seconds to go. Navy clocked the ball and kicked a field goal with 2 seconds left in the game; K State’s desperation pass failed.

What a game! The stats were lopsided for Navy, but K State got a lot of return yards to even it up.
Total yards were 420 to 170 (deceptive due to the return yards) Navy had 323 yards on the ground with the quarterback getting 213.

Before the game

Game action:

Exhausted…politically speaking..perhaps…

No, I am not physically nor intellectually:

workout notes: slow walked my workout.
rotator cuff
pull ups: 4 sets of 10, 2 of 5
goblet squats: 2 sets of 6 x 25, 6 x 50
bench: 10 x 135, 4 x 185
incline: 10 x 140
decline: 10 x 165 (easy)
shoulder press: 10 x 50 standing, 15 x 50 seated, supported, 7 x 85 barbell (standing)
rows: 3 sets of 10 x 110 machine
hex dead lift: (handles turned down): 6 x 135, 6 x 185, 1 x 225 (struggle), 6 x 185
plank: 2:30

Weight: 192. bloated from too much hot cereal; I was eating portions that worked well for me 4 years ago..I am older now. Time to cut back. Still, the pull ups were fine (and I worked out in sweat pants)

Exhausted: I know that David Brooks can write “cliche columns” but I agree with much of what he says here:

There are two power blocs driving politics today. First, there’s the proletariat. These are the working-class voters who go to Trump rallies in the U.S. and powered Brexit and Boris Johnson’s campaign in the U.K. They see their best world receding and they want a tough guy to bring it back.

Second, there is the precariat. These are the young and educated voters caught in the gig economy, who see no career security ahead. They want leaders like Bernie Sanders and Jeremy Corbyn who will promise enveloping policies — free college, free internet, free child care — to give them some sense of safety.

These two groups are different in some ways. When the proletarians attack their enemies, they do so from a position of perceived social inferiority, so their attacks are resentful and brutal. When the precariat attacks, it does so from a position of perceived moral superiority, so its attacks are filled with ridicule, mockery and scorn.

But the movements do have parallels. Both are driven by a fear of the future, and of each other. Both have a tendency to embrace catastrophic, apocalyptic visions of the ruin around us. Dystopia has become the opiate of the activist class.

Haunted by economic insecurity, they will tolerate any sin in their leader — racism, anti-Semitism, dishonesty — so long as that person is willing to fight and be on their side. They both support massive, unrealistic policy proposals, because they reject the idea that politics is simply the muddled way we settle differences with people we disagree with.


People in the exhausted camp are tired of having politics thrust in their face every hour. As Ryan Streeter of the American Enterprise Institute has found, young people who are “lonely at least once in a while” are more than seven times more likely to be active in politics than those who are socially active. Those who are exhausted have other things to do. They want to restore politics to its rightful place, and find meaning, attachment, entertainment and morality in something else besides Twitter wars and election campaigns.


But the chief feature of the voters in the exhausted group is timidity. They do not get energy from conflict, the way, say, Trump does. Their instinct is to keep their heads down and just get through this craziness.

I might NOT label it “timidity.” Few who know me would call me “timid.” But I simply walk away from discussion now. I quit engaging Bible beaters a long time ago; if they want to think that the universe is less than 10K years old, there is little I can do to change their mind. And the same goes with the ulta-woke and their ridiculous social codes that THEY think that THEY have the power to enforce.

I just hope that the Democratic party leaders learn the lessons from yesterdays UK elections …from what I can tell, the Twitter liberals haven’t.

Thanksgiving..went ok..

I didn’t stuff myself..maybe I am a bit too full…but a lot of it is simple salad.

Chocolate Turkey run, 2019

Well, I did hex deadlifts yesterday and felt it today; yes, I was out of breath early (9:12 mile) and hung on for 28:10.

It was 32 F. I jogged from home to warm up, walked back home to cool down (7 miles total) and, well, I was hurting just a bit in the first mile. I did see people on the return leg; I kind of like the new course. And it was the largest of these I have done.

I did walk briefly during mile 2 but that really didn’t slow me much.

Past versions of this race (different courses)

2013 24:56
2014 24:53
2015 26:02
2016 26:54
2018 26:43
2019 28:10

Oh boy…not the best progression; I really think the weights had something to do with it.

Later: lunch with the whole crew at Alexander’s then football on TV.

The Democratic Primary Race: as I see it:

Disclaimer: I support Klobuchar. I also like Booker and, well, Joe Biden is my “fall back” choice; I honestly think that Elizabeth Warren would have trouble in the Electoral College and Pete Buttigieg is too inexperienced in politics. Well, now you know who I like at the moment: 5 candidates, all with big flaws.

Why Biden and Sanders tend to not vary in the polls as much:

In other words, they have some rock solid support, but neither has enough of it to be THE front runner.

Klobuchar: not inconsequential in the crowded Iowa field.

General political statement: the set up of the US Senate, gerrymandering, and the Electoral Collage makes it harder for Democrats; we need to win by very large margins to win elections.

I’d be VERY comfortable with our position IF the election were decided by popular vote.

Redbirds beat Bears in turnover fest; Bradley beats UIC in basketball

Ok, I got my own workouts in:
Saturday: slow 1:19 Cornstalk 10K run. Sunday: dead lifts in the basement: 5 x 135, 5 X 185, miss 225 (rounded back), 5 x 205, 5 x 185, 5 x 135 sumo, then a 10K plus hilly walk in Bradley park.

Saturday: I made the Illinois State vs. Missouri State game. It was a close one: 17-12 ISU, though Mo. State made it interesting.
The offenses mostly sputtered though two interceptions set up the first Redbird touchdown. The Bears responded with a lovely 74 yard touchdown run up the middle. A weird miss on the 2 point conversion left it 7-6.
A long drive made it 14-6, but Mo. St. got a field goal to cut it to 14-9 at the half.

In the 3’rd: a long Bear drive was thwarted with a botched shotgun formation snap; that lead to a field goal and a 17-9 lead. Mo. State cut it to 17-12 midway through the 4’th.
A turn over set up Mo. State at the 50 but they could not advance and with 2:30 to go in the game, ISU appeared to be in position to run out the clock with a first down. But the 4’th Redbird turnover (fumble with a return) set Mo. State. up late in the game where they got down to the Redbird 8 with first and goal to goal. On the next play, they made it to the 3 where they had 3 tries, but the Redbird defense came through.

Though the game had 42 F and somewhat sunny weather (not that bad..I was actually slightly overdressed), few were there to see it. Official attendance: 5701 though there were lots of no-shows.

That evening: my Hostage and I caught a Bradley Basketball game vs. Illinois-Chicago. UIC came in depleted and BU was favored by 11.5. But woeful first half shooting had the Braves in a 33-25 hole. Great defense held UIC to 10 points in the next 14 minutes or so and Bradley regained the lead (took about 7:20 to tie it at 33) The lead got up to 13 and ended 65-56.

Attendance: 5411 was the official count, though the arena, for a change, looked as if it actually had that many.


There was drama at the end; the 1-8 Bears showed up and played hard. Both teams made enough mistakes to keep the other team in it.

Great ball game!

The evening basketball game:

The Harris attack on Biden and swing states

Every so often I watch this to fire myself up:

“If you want to work here, CLOSE.”

That’s one cares that you are a nice guy, love your kids, etc.

I see the election in a similar manner: if you want to win, GET VOTES IN THE SWING STATES. Period.

So, what is going to work there? There appears to be three strategies:

1. Flip enough of the Trump vote in the key states.
2. Excite the large number of non-voters to show up and vote your way
3. Discourage just enough Trump voters to not show up.

I don’t see 3 happening. 2: well, I see no one exciting out there. Oh sure, some (e. g. Sanders supporters and some Warren supporters) will tell you that these voters will show if the plans are big enough..bold enough…they’ll show for THE FREE STUFF. Color me skeptical.

Ok, that is satire. Here is an honest article (non-voters in the mid-terms).

Edmond’s bottom line — her life hasn’t gotten better or worse since Trump took office: “I’m not really affected.”


Abramson, 36, calls himself a moderate Republican, but “I really don’t think it matters who is the president. People said the world was going to end when Obama was president — it hasn’t ended. People said the world would end when Bush was president — it didn’t end. People said the world would end with Trump — it isn’t ending.”

But then others go on to complain about government decisions (to shut stuff down) and then say it doesn’t matter.
You think enough of these will show up because of promises and plans?

So, I see our best option as “flipping a few voters”, probably by showing that Trump has conned them..hasn’t delivered on the promises he has made to them. Yes, the stock market is doing well..that is good for ME at the moment, but is it for everyone?

So, how are we going to do that?

I don’t think we will do it by calling Obama’s VP a racist. Yes, I heard the disclaimer at the start. Here is the video.

Oh, this did give her a temporary bump in the primary polls. But I can see the attack: “ah, those Democrats…they call EVERYONE racists…even Obama’s VP.” Why would this bring anyone into our tent?

Yes, ok, politics isn’t bean-bag, and she was trying to dig into Biden’s support…and he currently has a lot of black support. And as far as bussing….well, that is a complex issue..not sure one I’d want to raise.

Now about Biden’s response: this did put him in a “no-win” situation, as far as Democratic voters are concerned. Had he hit back hard, he would have been seen as “punching down” as he is a “OLD WHITE MAN” and she is a “WOMAN OF COLOR” (woke liberals are all about “privilege”, who has it, who doesn’t, and it is seen as bad form for someone “with privilege” to hit back at someone who is “not privileged.”

BTW, here is a humorous video about the debates:

And yes, Noah’s assessment of the Biden-Harris exchange is a popular one among woke circles.

BUT, somehow…I doubt if Trump will play by those rules…he’d just say that she was just another angry activist angrily playing the race card..winking at the voters.

Now how did things shake out?
Morning Consult poll (not just a “before/after poll of debate watchers)

Trend: Biden down a bit, Harris up (almost doubled her support), most everyone else stayed within MOE of their support.

BUT..the second choice is interesting: I’d expect Sanders supporters to have Warren as a second choice and Biden supporters to have another moderate as a second choice. That isn’t the case.

This sure smacks of “identity politics” but ..not only by the wokes.


Democratic Debate Part 2: I get sick…

Ok, this started off ok but then the “kiddie table” candidates started to butt in…desperate to be heard. Gillibrand was one of the worst.
Biden was doing ok; Buttigieg was doing well and Harris was doing very well.

Then Harris admonished the ill behaved: “America does not want to witness a food fight.”

I felt good. Then came the question to Buttigeig about the civil unrest in his city: a white police officer killed a black guy. Hickenlooper and Swalwell got into it and went after Buttigeig.

Then Harris..the only black person on the stage, interjected.

Ok…heated but…

Then she turned to Biden and went after him about race: specifically his remarks about working with segregationists in the Senate and his stance on bussing (which is more nuanced than presented in the debate). Biden was more talking about who could enforce bussing and on which types of circumstances…and how effective was it in terms of integrating schools and on how well the children learn.

But this was a 1970’s issue!

I felt sick..absolutely sick. I unsubscribed from the Harris mailing list (I had sent her regret it). isn’t that I am wedded to Biden (he is 3’rd on my new list, behind Klobuchar and Booker). No, it isn’t that I think that the front runner should not be attacked.

But, despite “you aren’t a racist but…” she basically called him an out of touch racist..over a 1970’s issue! That is about a divisive of an attack as one can get; identity politics all the way.

Yes, Trump uses identity politics, but their block is bigger and more united. We need to build a coalition and these sort of attacks retard the formation of such coalitions.

And imagine her debating Trump: “oh, she will mop the floor with him” the wokes coo. Yeah…”Hey Trump, you are a racist” will be met by “LOL, you call everyone that, even Biden, who Obama picked as VP. You are just a nasty, angry woman.”

She sure got a short term bump, at least in the prediction markets, and there are LOTS of reactions like this one out there:

But there are some other types of reactions:

Well…I am dejected, just deflated. I am tempted to back Yang or Williamson just so I can have some fun.

Wonks and Trolls

Workout notes: weights only. rotator cuff, pull ups (15-15-10-10) (good), bench: 10 x 135, 3 x 185, incline: 10 x 135, military: 10 x 50 standing, 15 x 50 seated, supported, 10 x 45, rows: 3 sets of 10 x 50 single arm. Goblet squats: 6 x 25, 30, 40, 50 (good depth..knees did not hurt), headstand, planks, crow, etc. Ah, forgot knee-stretches. Weight (after weights): 189.

Lots of gabbing today; this gave me more than the usual rest between sets.


I love Titania McGrath, the “fake woke” queen of Twitter.

Policy wonk politicians: beware. White papers don’t convince anyone. And..there is the fact that the current metrics might not reflect day-to-day reality. Example: employment can remain the same, but if the old higher paying jobs are replaced by low pay, low benefit service jobs, lives have gotten worse. Remember that metrics are a type of projection of reality onto numbers, and any projection loses information.

Democrats and Republicans: the rank and file don’t understand one another. Seriously. I have Republican and conservative friends, and often I am shocked at how much we agree on. One Republican friend of mine: is pro choice, pro science, supports gay rights, supports economic stimulus at certain times and is pro public investment…and is an atheist! On the other hand, she was shocked that I am a capitalist who is pro-personal responsibility. She accepts that environment can affect outcome, and I accept that personal agency matters also.

Here is what I think is going on:

Most of us are closer to each other than our politicians are to each other.