Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Beautiful Morning

I saw an interesting interview with Mark Levin a few days ago.  He was talking about his new book Ameritopia.  Specifically, he talked about how all the worst dictatorial regimes people think of in history were all conceived of as Utopian paradises for it's citizens.  The fundamental thing that Mark argues that all inventors of such systems did wrong was use the philosophy that if everybody does x, y, and z then everything will be great.  Put simply they ignored individualism.  This is a fatal flaw because all human beings are at their core individualists.  This was true 1000 years ago, it is true in the middle of the amazon rain forest, and it's true in a high rise office building in New York.  To ignore this is to invite failure.  He goes on to argue that the country was based on the idea of liberty.  Liberty being the individual's right to pursue happiness in whatever way without the government infringing on his rights to do so.  Then Mr. Levin goes on to make the correlation between that and what Obama has been doing yada yada yada.  I don't agree with everything Mark Levin says.  In fact, I think his brand of right wingism is a bit off to me.  I can't quite put my finger on it, but I just don't care for it.  This concept of utopia through collective control is an interesting one though. 

It was a beautiful morning today.  I hope you were able to catch a glimpse.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Smoke em if ya Got em

I tried out my new kitchen top smoker the other day with a nice salmon steak.  It was really good!  Even the kids ate it and that is saying a lot.  Wish I had taken a picture, but I guess it didn't look like anything too special.  Tasted great though.

My check engine light has been on for the past 3 weeks.  I just haven't had time to take it in.  I have felt lately that I am driving on borrowed time.  Every time I am sitting in traffic on the 405 I think, uh oh, this is it, my car is going to die right here.  That would be a real pain.  So I finally loaded my bike into my trunk and took my car to my favorite independent VW repair place in Venice.  It took me only 20 minutes to ride back to my office.  Not too bad.  So 4 hours later I called the repair guy and he said to come in.  He told me that the computer was telling them that I had a bad glow plug.  They pulled out the supposedly faulty item and tested it.  It appeared to be fine.  So they put it back in but swapped the #3 plug for the #4.  They test drove the car around and the engine light never came on.  The bottom line was they didn't want to sell me a new glow plug since they tested fine and that might not be the problem.  It could be a connection to the plug.  It is that kind of honesty that I have come to appreciate from these guys.  I am sure if I had taken it to the dealer they would have charged me $500 and just swapped out all the glow plugs.  Hopefully I don't see that engine light come on again.  The repair guy said if it was going to happen it would happen in the morning because the glow plugs help the car get started when it is cold.  I wonder how hard those things are to replace yourself?

Friday, January 6, 2012

To Juice or not to Juice?

I have been hearing an awful lot about juicing lately.  Multiple people that I work with have gone on the juice diet.  This is not the typical morning OJ that most of us enjoy on a regular basis.  No this is more vegetables than fruit.  In fact, one guy I know didn't include fruit at all.  Every story I hear about this diet goes about the same.  The first 2 days are the worst.  Your body is crying out for the sugar and garbage that you usually eat.  You are basically in withdrawal for that period.  After that it gets much better and you suddenly have much more energy.  One of the artists on my team is very anemic and has to sleep 10-12 hours a day.  He seems constantly tired.  He tried this diet and has experienced great results.  I am very interested in doing this.  I just need to get myself over to Costco to by a shopping cart full of kale, carrots, tomatoes, and radishes.  YUMM!!

Got myself out for a run yesterday morning.  This is the view from Redondo as the sun is coming over the army reserve center.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

The Garage Project

I had a nice 3 day weekend for New Year's this year.  Things have been starting to accumulate in the garage on my side so I decided to reorganize everything.  This was much more of an undertaking than I thought.  It wound up taking just about the entire day.  At the end, I still don't have my parking space back but we have a bunch of donateable items that will be leaving us soon.  I was finally able to put up the rest of my bike hooks so I got all the bikes hanging from the ceiling except mine.

This is what it looked like half way through the day.  Notice the brilliantly organized shelves next to the refrigerator.

I've been on a pretty good streak of working out either in the garage or by running lately.  I think I've run 5 or 6 times in the last 2 weeks.  The true test comes when the kids go back to school.