Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Training, friends, Obama, winter

Every so often my home gym, the Vsion, has a bouldering comp. All the local climbers rejoice not just because the comp is fun, which it is, but because the new routesetting means a total reorganization of the holds on the wall, and a lot of new boulder problems. Something like 50. Yesterday I went in with Scott, and we started on the easiest, 1, and worked ourselves up to about 35. Yeah, it's not the best mixed training but it sure was fun! Lots of big hold jug pulling and body tension, I feel it today after the relatively lower-angled climbing in Poland.

Then my friend Keith and I went and chopped down some dead standing trees as part of Firewood Quest 2008. This is undoubtedly the most dangerous thing I do; I don't know shit about chopping trees down, so we're making it up. My favorite line from yesterday was, "Keep running!" from Keith as I headed out of the danger zone. It was a big tree, and not really going the direction I'd have liked it to... Some kind of workout for sure. 

A few interesting bits from friends:

-Andy Kirkpatrick, one of the more entertaining guys in climbing, just finished his book, Psychovertical. Worth checking out for sure, and part of the Banff Book Festival.

-Kev Shields, the one-handed but all-talent climber, went and soloed a classic M10--again.

-The Coldsmoke powder festival is on again for Nelson. I can't imagine any sort of cold smoke coming out of Nelson given the astounding ability of the locals to create hot smoke. Wait, I think that means powder, not greenery. A really cool event by all reports, I'll be heading there this winter to get my ski on.

Finally, Obama, as anyone who doesn't live in solitary confinement knows, is the president elect in the United States. Politics generally just piss me off (I've got a degree in political science so it's an educated annoyance), but this is genuinely cool. Finally a slim majority of Americans got their heads out of their asses and voted for something different. I say that as a part-American; nothing is more frustrating than watching a country you know reasonably well go so wrong for so long. Maybe Obama is just another pawn of the powers that be, maybe not, but I am damn glad he's president-elect and not McCain. On the other hand, a bunch of states voted for anti-gay marriage ballot measures, so fear and loathing of the "different" is still alive and well. I can't fathom the fear and small-mindedness of voting against allowing someone else to marry someone he, she or it truly loves. With all the problems in the world, so many children in pain, so many people suffering, gay marriage is worth spending millions to fight? Shame on those who would rather spend money on fighting for fear and intolerance rather than helping others.


Anonymous said...

Hey Will
Watch out for those dead trees. They are called widowmakers for a reason. I've been heating with wood for about 25 yrs.and trick to it is to cut enough wood during the off season so you have at least one cord of seasoned wood in reserve. I could never do it but some I know cut and stack like fiends, always stacked neat, with at least a cord in reserve. Nowadays a smaller saw is better for the reasons you state. The new generation of saws are small and have enough power to do most cutting us amatuer woodcutters, like you and me, need to do. I have and old Husquivarna 2100 that still runs great and carries a 48" bar. Let me know if you need a really powerful saw for a really big job. Keep your chains sharp and an extra clean air filter on hand. James

Butch said...

You think Obama is different than McCain? Read the following and hsow me "change."

Counterpunch ( points out

"Sen. Barack Obama’s vote to renew the Patriot Act, his votes to continue to fund the Iraq war, his backing of the FISA Reform Act, his craven courting of the Israeli lobby, his support of the death penalty, his refusal to champion universal, single-payer not-for-profit health care for all Americans, his call to increase troop levels and expand the war in Afghanistan, his failure to call for a reduction in the bloated and wasteful defense spending and his lobbying for the huge taxpayer swindle known as the bailout..."

To which we could add his bellicose saber-rattling at Iran, his promise to roll back "Russian aggression" and extend war-triggering treaty protection to an aggressive Georgian regime (which cluster-bombed its own people, as we learned this week), his advocacy of destabilizing and civilian-shredding military strikes in Pakistan, his opposition to gay marriage (and campaigning with gay-bashing preachers), and his support for extending the death penalty to cover non-fatal offenses, and so on."

Will Gadd said...

Thanks James, I'm kinda looking a little bigger saw, if anyone has a Husky 2100 or similar for sale cheap let me know and I'm up for it!

Butch: I write that Obama may be the same pawn of the "powers that be" that Bush/McCain are, but let's see what he does in office. Obama is a very bright guy as even Chris Floyd (the guy who wrote the quote on counterpunch) admits, let's see how he uses that intelligence. It's one thing to say what you need to get elected, what you actually do in office is another...


Anonymous said...

Most of sociopaths are intelligent.