I haven’t really been able to keep up with LJ In recent months, so I just came across the news about Jay Lake going into hospice. I would hereby like to offer a heartfelt “Fuck off!” to that insatiablely raving maw, cancer, itself. I’m only less slightly enraged at the people (on my FB feed and elsewhere) who keep insisting that eating the right foods, having the right attitude, and drinking distilled water will cure cancer – especially one guy who’s telling people not to have actual treatment (radiation, chemo) because “those don’t work”. (It’s true my uncle and dad died of cancer despite medical treatment, but I’m pretty sure chemo in the one case and radiation in the other bought them time. In my dad’s case, that was the time that allowed him to play with his only grandson – who might, just barely, be old enough to remember him. Time matters.) I try not to ill-wish anyone, but some people make it difficult.

Anyway, on to more cheerful stuff.

Next week I will be taking a whirlwind cross-country trip to speak to a group in Rhode Island – fly out one day, fly back the next. I’ve got the first draft of my presentation ready; it’s basically “Why you, yes, you right there, need processes and a process system” tailored to this particular audience. I’m not sure if it’s as well organized as I’d like, but at least I have my thoughts pried out of my head and dumped onto slides. I imagine the trip will be fairly exhausting (and I have to run a big meeting the next day) but gratifying, and anyway I miss traveling. It really irks me to have gone from platinum frequent-flyer status last year to nothing this year – no more early check-in, short lines, or cheaper seat upgrades.

Last weekend we went to the lake. We went into town Saturday and finally got the kayak we’ve been talking about for years, so I spent Sunday morning in a kayak. It’s amazing how different an experience that is from rowing; a bit like the difference between hiking and jogging, I guess. The whole point is to look at everything around you and be able to investigate things out on the lake; you’re not unconcerned with form, but technique and exertion aren’t paramount as they are in a rowing shell. We’d been worried about whether the cheap ‘yak we got would track straight enough that it wasn’t frustrating to paddle; after my long poke around the lake and a trial session for Ted, we went back and got another one 🙂

I’m hoping that, on days when the weather cooperates, we can row in the morning and do a leisurely paddle before dinner. Later on Sunday the wind came up, so I did a very short tryout to see how well the boat would handle rougher conditions. It did, though it was definitely more tiring. The morning was beautiful, in looks and sounds and smells – just the kind of day when the weather wants you to be out. In the evening the wind came up, and I had to sit outdoors – the wind made it feel so big and alive I’d have felt cut off and numb if I’d gone to sit indoors.

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They are called Curiosity and Opportunity. We talked briefly about eventually adding a double sit-on-top model, so if we do, it will be christened Spirit.