14
Jul 21

Life in slower motion

We set out for a bike ride this evening. Nothing serious, just a quick hour through an hour’s worth of neighborhoods. About seven of them, I’d say. Then again, not every stretch of road runs through a tightly grouped neighborhood. I bet if you went door-to-door along today’s route not everyone would think they lived in a neighborhood. They’d wonder why a person in a helmet and funny clothes was knocking on their door. Asking about their neighbors. And sweating all over the place.

I’ve had to swap inner tubes in a few front yards. You get self conscious of that quite quickly. It’s probably the funny clothes.

Anyway, a nice little ride. I was slow, because that is my lot lately. The only solution to that is more riding. The Yankee was faster. There’s a turnaround on the route, and she made it there first, slowed, turned and was coming back the other direction.

I don’t think she was going especially fast, or trying overly hard, she just was fast. Maybe it’s the bike or the gearing, but probably it’s just she’s good at this. Also I’m not riding especially comfortably just now. If I thought about it too much I’d convince myself someone has been tinkering with my bike setup. Which always feels precarious, anyway. I’m like the princess and the pea over here. Change the tires, use different bottles, I can feel it.

And if you’re going this slow you have plenty of time to notice!


13
Jul 21

What is the community risk? Here’s a podcast to answer that

I got up in time for a run this morning, a simple neighborhood shuffle to cover 2.75 miles. I made it back inside just in time to grab a shower and then record a podcast.

After which I made a quick to drop off the recycling. Which I did just as the best part of the day’s rain decided to fall upon us. So I was soggy for much of the day.

And later in the morning I edited the podcast, making this officially the most productive day of the week. It’s going to be difficult to top Tuesday, rest of the week, he said without looking at his calendar.

Here is that podcast. This is IU Northwest economist Micah Pollak. He’s part of a team of a physician, a med student, a biostatistician and more. They got all of the data from the school districts across Indiana this past year and tried to create an understanding of the risk involved with sending more kids back into their classrooms. What is the risk to the larger community? Take it away, Dr. Pollak.

Now, what expert am I going to ask questions of next? It’s not that easy of a question to answer in the summer. You’d be surprised how many people don’t check their email when they aren’t in their regular weekly campus routine. (Lucky.)

When I pitched this program last year I said I could do a lot of shows within the context of Covid-19, and this conversation with Pollak makes 50. Soon I’ll be expanding it into other topics, I think.

That’ll be something to start figuring out tomorrow morning.


12
Jul 21

Happy usual Monday stuff

I went out for an easy 5K run on Saturday morning. It was pleasant, temperature-wise, if a bit muggy. The sidewalks were empty, the roads were generally quiet and I shuffled along at my own slow pace. Just the way it should be done!

I did see one friend.

If that’s not close enough for you, here’s a better version. Same deer. Same spot. Only got antsy if you made direct eye contact. I was probably about six feet away and it was just my eyes that were bothersome.

My eyes are a pair of my better attributes, too. What does that deer know, anyway?

Soon after, I ran into my lovely bride, who had been off on an early morning bike ride. We did not plan this.

Sometimes we plan things like this, but not in this instance.

Time to check in with the kitties! I know, I know, it’s perhaps your favorite weekly feature.

Here’s Poseidon, who one recent evening took a passing interest to the television. Usually they don’t acknowledge it at all. Poseidon, if anything, is more interested when it is off because he can better catch his reflection on the screen, which is always a dangerous concern, since he must go fight the reflection. But every now and again he jumps up on the little table and marches around the screen, or notices some movement that intrigues him.

This time, he was a space cat.

And he’s got some concerns about how this mission is going.

This crew has a problem.

Phoebe is ready to change the channel.

And here she is, later, up on a little ledge where she does not belong. She seems to be saying, “Can you blame me, really?”

“Really?”

She does not belong on the ledge, and she doesn’t care. There, at least, she is removed from Poseidon’s dramatic cinema recreations. (There’s lots of cat emoting involved, usually.)


09
Jul 21

Highlighting research

We haven’t done this in a while. Let’s look at some of the things I’ve posted on the ICR Twitter account. The point here is to highlight some of the really cool research coming out of The Media School and, specifically, the Institute for Communication Research.

These studies are all published or appearing at conferences and so on. All of the work is quite brilliant and there’s a little something here for everyone. But check all of these out.

If you play them simultaneously you’ll get an incredible symphony. Give that a try, too.


08
Jul 21

Other views from the same roads, but in the opposite direction

It’s quiet and still, but don’t be fooled. They’re feeding America right over there.

Or at least part of America, right? If that was it our portions would be awfully small. There are little places like that all over the place, of course. You’ve seen them and pay them no mind, because they are quiet and still. And, of course, there are the much larger producers a bit more removed from a casual drive by.

Mostly I just like that shot because of the colors.

Did you ever wonder what it is about the occasional cloud that creates that sharp angle of light? Maybe there’s a corner or a shelf lurking around in there, and the sun has to work around it. Maybe the angels are moving furniture or something.

These are different grain bins. See? There are a lot of them, if you know where to look. These are empty right now.

We saw a volcano of clouds. It was a scenic look west, but without all of the lava.

Or smoke or ash or general destruction. Just your regular sort of Thursday evening impact.