Drivel that cannot fit in a single panel comic.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Exercise Log

This week I ran, walked and biked 31.03 miles, burned 3367.4 calories and weigh 176.7 pounds.

Monday: ran 3.05 miles in 35:00
Tuesday: biked 2.56 miles in 15:00
Wednesday: ran 7.22 miles in 1:23:36
Thursday: biked 2.38 miles in 15:00
Sunday: ran/ walked 15.82 miles in 3:47:09 - the heat really got to me.

Next week's training plan
Monday: rest
Tuesday: bike and weight training
Wednesday: 10 miles @ 12:23
Thursday: bike and weight training
Friday: walk
Saturday: 9 miles @ 12:23
Sunday: rest

Sunday Morning Run

Route:--Elev. Avg:358 ft
Location:Bryan, TXElev. Gain:+0 ft
Date:09/30/07Up/Downhill: [+482/-482]
Time:08:32 AMDifficulty:4.5 / 5.0
Weather:A Few Clouds
86F temp; 63% humidity
92F heat index; winds S 13

Distance: 15.82 milesGoal:12' 26 min/mi pace for
18 miles
Speed:4.2 mphAttained:87%
Pace:14' 21 /mi


This is what happens when I sleep in and try to run later in the morning. I catch the heat of the day. I ran in some new shoes with new insoles. I might try the shoes with the regular insoles for comparison. Rabbit Run Road is a challenging road and I would have enjoyed it more in cooler weather. I saw a couple of Coonhounds and a Bloodhound out and about. I stopped and petted them. Very beautiful dogs. I would like to try this road again in cooler weather.
Elevation (ft.)
Pace (min/mile)
MilePace (min/mile)Speed (mph)Elevation
actual+/- avgactual+/- avg
111' 33-2' 485.2+1.0-33 ft
211' 05-3' 165.4+1.2+14 ft
312' 54-1' 274.7+0.5+29 ft
412' 25-1' 564.8+0.6-32 ft
512' 25-1' 564.8+0.6+26 ft
612' 52-1' 294.7+0.5-23 ft
713' 11-1' 104.5+0.4+36 ft
814' 40+0' 194.1-0.10 ft
915' 06+0' 454.0-0.2-26 ft
1015' 06+0' 454.0-0.2+26 ft
1113' 59-0' 224.3+0.1+3 ft
1214' 11-0' 104.2+0.0-39 ft
1314' 27+0' 064.2-0.0+23 ft
1417' 38+3' 173.4-0.8-26 ft
1518' 34+4' 133.2-1.0+3 ft
end20' 45+6' 242.9-1.3+19 ft
Versus average of 14' 21 min/mi

Posted from

Friday, September 28, 2007

Friday Five Minute Art

This is an experiment to see how much I can draw in 5 minutes using Sketchcast. The video is actually just under 4 minutes long. The 5 minutes included set up, typing title and other tasks.

A bit of abstract art.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Stop Centering Paragraph Text

Poor Popeye got the shaft in the food conferring super strength department.

Damn, Dr. Cory talking to his adult, doctor son like a child. Drew is getting double teamed here. Maybe he can call in his sister for help.

This morning I was assaulted by a bit of design ignorance. I was reading a website (linked from that a woman set up to document some chemical burns from some Chinese made flip flops that she bought at Wal-Mart. The woman is a photographer and judging by the photos pretty good at it but damn, the writing was awful and she centered everything. Every picture, line of text, links, everything was centered. It became quite unbearable to read.
So here is a bit of layout advice from a professional: Do not center everything! Confine the centering to titles and appropriate graphic elements. Do not center paragraph text, lists, and other types of text.
Look above for example. I chose to center the comics to get around Blogger's weird word wrapping but note that the accompanying text is left justified and the reader's eye can easily find the beginning of the next line.
Think about the reader once in a while when laying out a website.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Preview Gag

This a preview of a gag that I will draw tomorrow. The sketchcast moves a bit slow because I'm still getting the hang of the tools.

Disclaimer: I'm not some anti-smoking fanatic. As long as you don't blow in my face or force me to breathe your second hand smoke and expect me to pay for your medical bills then you can do what you want. This cartoon was inspired by the smoker who sat on a bench outside to smoke and then put out his/her butts on the ground and left them there. 10 steps away from a trash can. A trash can with a nice ledge that would have allowed the smoker to put out his/her butts. 10 steps and I would not have been forced to think less of you or been inspired to draw a cartoon. If you are the smoker in question and you see this rough drawing and the finished product in a couple of weeks, yes, this cartoon is about you.

Dust Speck!

The Gumbos have the same intelligence level as a kitten.

Darth Vader in drag. Ha. Darth Vader would look better in a little black dress than Ann Coulter. Some argue that Ann Coulter is in drag.

and harassment by the police because of complaints from people thinking it's not a cannonball. You will be forced to become a recluse.

What's up with Mary's eyes in the second panel and is Drew's mascara running? What is the purpose of mascara? I've seen countless commercials touting the "benefits" - long eyelashes, etc., but I've never heard a man when describing a woman who has captured his attention describe her eye lashes. I've never pay attention to someones eyelashes unless my attention is drawn by running mascara or tons of it applied to the lashes or obvious fakes. This causes me to think, "Wow, that is a shitload of mascara there." rather than, "Wow, she has beautiful eyes." Mascara does not draw my attention to the eyes and if I notice the mascara then I'm distracted from the feature that the wearer wanted to highlight in the first place. This may make me seem geeky but I do not see the benefit of time and money spent on make up.

My local paper runs this comic strip but reduces it so much that it is barely readable. They wonder why people turn to the web.

A different Pluggers premise from the usual, Pluggers are fat, lazy, poor, old and apathetic. This one: Pluggers are disgusting. Wait maybe it is not new - Pluggers do not care about their cats or their children. Apathetic.

The Oyl's greed shocks Popeye. I never thought of Popeye as a socialist. This will turn out badly in order to maintain the comedy.

On spell check the first suggestion for Coulter is Colder. How appropriate.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Family Guy Vs. The Lockhorns

Take that, Family Guy! Insulted by the Lockhorns.

I think Family Guy is pretty funny, despite the non-plot related random gags.

Will this get mentioned on Family Guy?

Monday, September 24, 2007

Totally Cool Web App

Sketchcast ( is a totally cool web based app that allows the user to draw little sketches and then embed them into blogs like YouTube videos. People can see the work in progress and you can add voice to your recordings

Below is my first attempt. I don't draw well with a mouse. It looks the same as my attempts to draw left handed.

Water Ceremony

The church had its annual Water Ceremony. The source of much contention among the worship committee and the church as a whole. I had forgotten about it only to be reminded upon entering the sanctuary. My feelings on the ceremony are rather neutral but I understand the tension and its sources.

The worship committee had its annual discussion and debate about the ceremony and one of the people who voiced objections ended up serving as co-service leader. The other service leader was a person who in years past very vocally opposed any radical changes to the ceremony.

The short talk before the actual ceremony consisted of two parts. The first presenter shared his experiences and impressions of the first water ceremony he attended. He was not impressed and said why. He had made a mental note not to attend the next one but his wife wanted to go so he went and felt a bit better about it but still not quite impressed. The first time he felt unwelcome because he was new and he had concerns about the classist overtones, water from the Amazon or the Nile? He hadn't really gone anywhere that year.

He shared his objections with the other presenter. They had a dialogue (at meetings) and it was decided that she would present her reasons why the ceremony as it is moved her to the congregation.

[I leave out names because I haven't received permission to use them]

She gave a lovely short talk about how the water people brought from exotic lands, conferences, taps and other sources represented the journeys we as people took and transitions we experienced that year and that we shared the results with each other when we come together as a community. She stated that while she would enjoy being there for hours to listen to everyone's stories, she acknowledged that our time was limited and others may not have the same joy.

Some of the more memorable sharing of water:
Water from the Southwest UU Summer Institute. That water was from all the churches from the Southwest District represented at SWUUSI.

One of the gentleman, also expressed some class concerns about the ceremony but he realized that he always conducted a private water ceremony after a loss or transitions and that the water he poured symbolized those losses and transitions.

A newer member who recently moved to our community shared water from her refrigerator door. She said that through most of her marriage they lived in pre-1900 houses. She said it can be romantic at first but dealing with the problems of a pre-1900 structure can get old after a few years. When she moved to this community she decided she would live in a modern house and she knew she arrived when she could use a refrigerator with an in-door water dispenser.

Another member brought water from the tap out of gratitude that we live in a society where clean water is readily available and in remembrance of all the people who do not have access to clean water.

Another newer member shared that the water came from the water cooler in the back of the sanctuary and it symbolized the spiritual home that embraced him and his wife.

Others brought water from taps of new homes they bought (transitions), conferences they attended (personal growth), and family vacations and reunions. The water represented losses, joys, transititions, growth and realizations.

Some totally new people shared water. People who had not come to a service before.

I shared a bit of water from a family vacation (symbolic water because I forget to water even though the annual family vacation is at a lake) and talked about the sustaining power of water and thought of all the volunteers at various races who made sure I received my cups.

I think the worship committee and the two presenters did a wonderful job of addressing the concerns about and maintaining the tradition of the water ceremony while adding a spiritual element.

After the service I shared PeaceBang's ( story with folks after the service. A native Spanish speaker and the other not-so fluent people thought it was funny and agreed that the person in the story would not have been able to pull that off in our district without provoking a lot of giggles. It is the restroom but not necessarily the toilet, according to my source.

Random Thoughts

I have reach $175 of my $500 fundraising goal for Crop Walk (If you wish to contribute: Make an online donation for Crop Walk ).

The Jane Long Middle School band has decided to take a direct approach to fundraising. Instead of selling overpriced crap door to door, the kids now go door to door and just ask for money. I think it was some kind of practice-a-thon based on the sheet I filled in after giving the kid $10.00. The kid did not give any details, just said he was raising money for the band. The boy came to the right house, two former band geeks. The boy said he played the clarinet and both of us also played the clarinet. The goal on the fundraising sheet was $50.00. After our house he had $35.

I prefer this direct approach. All the money goes to the activity, the kids don't have to sit through some pitch by the fundraising company salesman, no one has to deliver the crap, and I don't have to choose which crap could have the most possible bit of use to me in order to support an activity.

In a slight fit of insanity, I registered for a 50K race ( This occurs on October 13. I had a 20 mile training run scheduled that day anyway so I thought I would do this for may training run since it would be in a non-vehicle traffic area with aid stations. Yes, it is 11 miles more than the planned training run but I'll give this a try. I managed to run 35K on these trails in a previous race. This will be my second trail run and I have a better idea of how to run on these trails.

The Bryan/ College Station Crop Walk is on October 14. I will be running this race on Saturday and walking on Sunday. Yes, I will be walking, perhaps a bit slowly but I will walk. I am insane. I will rest on that Monday.

Dream Home

Your home is a

Philanthropic Mansion

Your kitchen is someplace you never go, because you "have people for that." There's a Chocolatessen, which is rapidly becoming your favorite room of the house. Having one is also becoming a trend among your wealthy neighbors. Your master bedroom is the size of a small barn, with carpet thick enough to reach your ankles. Your study has hardback editions of every classic ever written, plus a special edition of Rich Dad, Poor Dad with the parts you ghost-authored highlighted. One of your garages holds your collection of ferraris, and is measured in acreage.

Your home also includes a guest wing and private quarters for your servants. Outside is your hedge maze and gardens, meticulously tended by a team of world-class botanists.

And, you have a pet -- a doberman pincer named "Warren".

Below is a snippet of the blueprints:

Find YOUR Dream Home!

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Running Log

This week I ran, walked and biked 34.37 miles, burned 4128 calories and weigh 177.7 pounds.

Monday: ran 2.82 miles in 35:00
Tuesday: walked Loki 4.46 miles in 1:31:18
Wednesday: ran 7.94 miles in 1:41:07
Thursday: biked 2.62 miles in 15:00
Saturday: ran 16:53 miles in 3:34:16

The Saturday time is an estimate. Bimactive stopped recording without me touching anything at about 14 miles and I noticed it and restarted .35 miles later. I added the times from the two saved runs plus 5 minutes to account for the .35. I mapped out the small gap to find out what distance was not recorded. I did 14.40 miles at an average pace of 12:51 and 1.78 miles at an average page of 13:29.

Bimactive also stopped recording on my Tuesday walk with Loki. About a half mile was not recorded.

My marathon is 7 weeks away.

Friday, September 21, 2007

What time of day am I?

You Are Midnight

You are more than a little eccentric, and you're apt to keep very unusual habits.
Whether you're a nightowl, living in a commune, or taking a vow of silence - you like to experiment with your lifestyle.
Expressing your individuality is important to you, and you often lie awake in bed thinking about the world and your place in it.
You enjoy staying home, but that doesn't mean you're a hermit. You also appreciate quality time with family and close friends.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Agnostic Hymns

Agnostics do sing hymns. They may have some doubt about the truth of the lyrics but they do sing anyway. Agnostic hymns would be funny, for example, "Nearer my God to Thee, Maybe" I'm sure others can come up with something funnier. Feel free to share in the comments.

First, it was Vera's idea to go riding in Clifton, second you don't own the stables, third watch where you point that finger, fourth take off that helmet and finally get a car in which the door does not close automatically between panels.

I really wonder about Giella's technique. Does he draw the panels on separate sheets of paper and then the syndicate puts them together? If he's drawing the panels side by side he really needs to get something checked - eye sight, perception, ability to move neck or eyes to the left. The steps are basic:

  1. Draw panel one with car door open
  2. Draw second panel but before drawing car
  3. Glance slightly to the left and note the open car door in the first panel
  4. Draw car in second panel with an open door

It just occurred to me, maybe Giella draws the right panel first. That would explain some of the continuity errors but then he just has to do the same steps as above except glancing to the right and carrying that information to the left panel.

Giella does draw better than me but even with my limited skills I make the effort to keep some continuity between my panels on the rare occasion that I draw multiple panel comics. I don't think Giella tries anymore.

Common Plugger premise: Pluggers are old (somewhere between 60 and 70). Okay, but this Plugger is extraordinarily old. At least 85 years old, assuming that the hairstyle that she has had since 1941 is an adult hairstyle. She is one hot geriatric mama. She looks good for over 80.

Do Pluggers age in human years or in the years of their respective species?

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Thanks for reading

Something about this comic rings familiar.

Witty retort there, Dawn.

I had a little more success with the waking up earlier experiment. I set the alarm to 5:05 am and actually got out of bed at 6:18 am. I sat up at 6:00 am and put on my glasses then laid in bed next to Walter. Walter thought I was going on a run because of the early alarm.

I've been wasting a fair amount of time in the evening watching TV this week. Tonight, I will be too tired from my speed work to spend much time doing anything. I have a few updates on the redesigned site to catch up on.

I did get to enjoy a nap before taking Loki to the vet yesterday.

Before I forget:


Walking with Loki at Lick Creek Park

Route:--Elev. Avg:218 ft
Location:Wellborn, TXElev. Gain:+13 ft
Time:04:09 PMDifficulty:2.4 / 5.0
Weather:Partly Cloudy
93F temp; 42% humidity
98F heat index; winds E 9

Distance:4.46 miles
Speed:2.9 mph
Pace:20' 41 /mi
Instead of working out in the gym, I took Loki for a walk at Lick Creek Park as a reward for his great behavoir at the vet. Loki chased a couple of rabbits and wallowed in some shallow pools of water. He got very dirty. He did great off leash and greeted other dogs very nicely. He stayed off leash in the parking lot and went into the car while off leash.
Elevation (ft.)
Speed (mph)
MilePace (min/mile)Speed (mph)Elevation
actual+/- avgactual+/- avg
121' 58+1' 162.7-0.2-16 ft
219' 44-0' 573.0+0.1+13 ft
320' 04-0' 373.0+0.1-14 ft
419' 17-1' 243.1+0.2+20 ft
end22' 33+1' 512.7-0.2+9 ft
Versus average of 2.9 mph

Posted from

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Ben Franklin can go to hell

I'm trying to work out the trajectory of that slap. Maybe Dawn did a Captain Kirk karate chop on the back of Drew's head. Will Vera counter with a roundhouse kick?

So far this week, my attempts to wake up earlier have failed. I set my alarm for 5:00 am to go on a run on Saturday and have kept that setting. I can muster the strength to get out of bed to meet people to go on a run at 6:00 am but have difficulty doing the same thing to go to work. Getting up early for a run is different than getting up early to get to work on time because after the run there is time for a nap.

All the things I've read about wealthy (self-made millionaires) people say that the successful get up early in the morning. I guess I will give up some measure of success because I've tried and cannot sustain waking up before the butt crack of dawn without having to take a nap around 11:00 am.

Once I've acquired the great wealth from waking up early in the morning then I can take a nap because as a successful person I can set my own hours. In the meantime, I can enjoy the journey in a sleep deprived state. I'll skip it.

I really need to completely cut myself off from a strange little subculture that I've found myself sort of sucked into. I haven't drunk the Kool-Aid but sometimes I feel myself worn down by the copy. Fortunately, I'm not there in person so the rational mind can kick back in and I can hit delete. I think studying this little "teach you success, make you wealthy" sub-culture would be fascinating but a proper study would require getting further inside and I don't think an academic or journalist would be given access without paying the $1,000 (price will go up in two weeks). I'm not in any kind of program (academic or journalistic) that it would make sense to delve into this. My own curiosity and blog are not sufficient reasons.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Crop Walk

Loki says, "Sponsor me as a Crop Walker, please."Loki wants you to sponsor him for Crop WalkI will be participating in Crop Walk in College Station, Texas on October 14. I have set up a web page to take donations for sponsorship. Walter, myself and Loki will be raising funds as an individual. You can sponsor 8 legs for the price of 2.

Make an online donation for Crop Walk

The Unitarian Universalist Church of the Brazos Valley has been challenged by Friends Congregational Church in College Station to see which congregation can raise the most funds per capita. The respective ministers will have to preach or perform a service at the winning church.

I set a goal of $500. That's $62.50 per leg.

The UU Church has not participated in the past few years so the local Crop Walk organizers were thrilled to see us again at the first meeting. I would like to have my church have a big comeback.

Now I find out just how many readers I have for this blog.

Help the UU Church of the Brazos Valley kick some Friends CC butt (in a kind, gentle, respectful way, of course), help the Church World Service with their programs to provide sustainable self-help and development, disaster relief and refugee assistance in some 80 countries, keep my minister from having to preach an early service at another church, and give because it feels good.

Fist of Fury

Bonus avatar of Dawn Weston's Fist of Fury: What's up with the plot pacing in Mary Worth? A single conversation can take a week and a half but the discovery of Drew's two timing takes two days. Does Giella ever look at a drawing once he has completed it? Dawn changed shirts between Sunday and Monday. I wonder if Giella looks at a panel once he has completed it. It would explain some of the continuity errors.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Beloved Community

I had a great day today. Ate breakfast with Walter. He traveled to Temple to see his dad. I went to church. While traveling to church an incident from the night apparently had been percolating in my subconscious and had worked its way up to the forefront of my mind. I guess I finally put together the full implications of the incident.

I was angry about it. I tried hard to ignore it during the sermon, which was titled, "Forgiveness - Face to Face". Great time to be angry at someone. I really needed to talk to someone other than Walter about this and think about my course of action. Fortunately, SM was available and she helped me realize that I was not insane and that my anger may be justified. I ended up joining her, her family and another couple for lunch. We shared food, laughter, funny stories and possibly scarred SM's 8 year old daughter for life with some of the tales. I really needed this and am grateful for these people. I was able to meditate in greater peace - the incident still occupied some of my thoughts but the anger was gone.

Walter came home. His dad bought dinner and told him to spend more time with his wife. I talked about the thing that upset me and shared a potential course of action. After talking about things I was able to let the incident go. I won't take any action unless it is done again in my presence. Both of us agreed that the conversation as part of the incident may have sent the right message to the person who offended. I would not have taken action without talking to Walter first anyway.

After dinner, we came home and enjoyed the cool air outside. We saw a fireball streak across the sky, listened to some drummers, listened to the radio, watch Loki stalk imaginary prey, looked at the sky and just enjoyed each other's company.

Turned out to be a great Sunday. Even with the blackened mood.

We do plan on having SM and family at our house for dinner some time.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Running Log

This week I ran, walked and biked 29.39 miles burned 3545.3 calories and weigh 176.5 pounds.

Monday: ran 2.94 miles in 35:00
Tuesday: bike 2.29 miles in 15:00
Wednesday: ran 7.09 miles in 1:20:06
Friday: walk 3.05 miles in 59:45
Saturday: ran 14.02 miles in 2:59:04

Next week's training plan:
Monday: 30 minute hill run
Tuesday: weight training
Wednesday: 8 miles speed work - 4x1600 @ 10:10 with 800 jogs (warm-up and cool down included)
Thursday: weight training
Friday: walk dog
Saturday: 16 miles @ 12:23
Sunday: rest

Saturday Run - 14 miles

Route:--Elev. Avg:280 ft
Location:College Station, TXElev. Gain:+36 ft
Date:09/15/07Up/Downhill: [+515/-479]
Time:06:12 AMDifficulty:4.0 / 5.0
Weather:Mostly Cloudy
78F temp; 81% humidity
82F heat index; winds E 6

Distance: 14.02 milesGoal:12' 26 min/mi pace for
14 miles
Speed:4.7 mphAttained:99%
Pace:12' 46 /mi


The last three miles were tough. This route had two large hills that I went up three times. The third set happened in miles 13 and 14. I met some people in Central Park to start this run. I walked a little bit at the beginning after I started my recording, that's why my first mile is rather slow. I don't recall stopping between mile 4 and 6. Maybe a traffic stop.
Elevation (ft.)
Pace (min/mile)
MilePace (min/mile)Speed (mph)Elevation
actual+/- avgactual+/- avg
113' 32+0' 464.4-0.3+43 ft
212' 05-0' 415.0+0.3-33 ft
312' 16-0' 304.9+0.20 ft
412' 36-0' 104.8+0.1+13 ft
511' 47-0' 595.1+0.4-23 ft
611' 43-1' 035.1+0.40 ft
712' 19-0' 274.9+0.2+39 ft
812' 34-0' 124.8+0.1-16 ft
912' 13-0' 334.9+0.2-23 ft
1013' 09+0' 234.6-0.1+23 ft
1112' 52+0' 064.7-0.0-26 ft
1213' 16+0' 304.5-0.2+7 ft
1314' 21+1' 354.2-0.5+40 ft
1413' 55+1' 094.3-0.4-10 ft
end12' 30-0' 164.8+0.1+3 ft
Versus average of 12' 46 min/mi

Posted from

Friday Evening Walk with Loki

Route:--Elev. Avg:355 ft
Location:Bryan, TXElev. Gain:+0 ft
Date:09/14/07Up/Downhill: [+82/-82]
Time:05:31 PMDifficulty:2.1 / 5.0
Weather:A Few Clouds
92F temp; 42% humidity
96F heat index; winds NE 9

Distance: 3.05 miles

Speed:3.0 mph

Pace:20' 00 /mi


Walking with Loki. He did a great job with off leash recall with people around. At one point he wanted the leash back on to run with me. We ran a short distance. Since, I walked with a male dog you can guess what some of the stops were about. If I could afford it or even find one, I would love to place a GPS device on Loki. It would have to be waterproof because he likes to walk and lay in streams.
Elevation (ft.)
Speed (mph)
MilePace (min/mile)Speed (mph)Elevation
actual+/- avgactual+/- avg
118' 17-1' 433.3+0.3-19 ft
219' 02-0' 583.1+0.10 ft
321' 21+1' 212.8-0.2+17 ft
end20' 41+0' 412.9-0.1+3 ft
Versus average of 3.0 mph

Posted from