Monday, February 8, 2016

Online Panhandling, a Date Night and Winter Riding

I read a story recently about an overweight guy who is bicycling across the country to both win his wife back and lose weight while paying for his adventure via crowdsourcing. I had no reason to suspect his effort to be anything other than a legitimate endeavor but today Tammy was watching Dr Phil and he was interviewing Eric on his program. Apparently Eric has more than a few skeptics, and for good reason. I was looking at his Strava page (Strava is what a lot of us cyclists use to track our progress) and Eric is spending very little time trying to reach his goal but he still has his hand out looking for whatever money people will throw his way.

Crowdsourcing is one way to generate income online -- making viral videos is another.

A friend posted a video on Facebook today of a guy walking the streets of NYC with dozens of dollar bills taped to his suit while holding a sign that encouraged passers-by in need to take whatever amount of money they wanted off of him. I had no reason to doubt the legitimacy of what I'd just watched but one of the commenters to the video shared a video link describing videos such as this to be nothing more than staged scenarios intended to tug at your heartstrings with hopes of going viral and generating tens of thousands of dollars for the person who uploaded it.

I'm so leary anymore of giving to any charities in general with the amount of scammers that are out there.

I got a text from Karen one morning recently telling me to look out my back windows. There were 4 deer in our backyards that still hadn't bedded down for the day, feeding on whatever it is they feed on. I know they're commonplace but they're also elusive and when I see them I always stop whatever it is I'm doing to have a look. Karen said she usually sees them in a group of 7.

Rachel and her friend Michelle came over Saturday night to give us relief from watching Mom/Grandma and let us get away for a date-night. That was sweet of them.

Tammy is a bit of a sci-fi nerd so I took her to see Star Wars: The Force Awakens at Mall of America. MoA isn't a favorite venue of ours to see a movie because of their lack of stadium seating but we liked the idea of spending the evening kicking around the mall, seeing a show and having dinner.

This was my first Star Wars movie so I wasn't sure what to expect or if I'd be able to understand any of what was happening after being dropped into the middle of the action but I managed okay. I think Tammy was hoping for more from the show but she still liked it as did I. She says the first Star Wars is still the best in the series.

I gorged on way too much candy during the movie and got dizzy and sweaty as we left the theater for Twin City Grill. The bread tray and beer brought me back around. We put our diets on hold and guiltlessly enjoyed our dinners and conversation which mostly centered around our parents and thoughts about our years growing up. It was a nice night out together and something we've been missing being able to do more of.

I had such a good workout this afternoon on my CompuTrainer. I was racing against two previous efforts I'd done (one from a few days ago and one from two years ago) and that usually causes me to work harder than I otherwise would.

I took a photo to show what I'm looking at while I'm on my CompuTrainer. Today I rode a simulated course of the Diamond in the Rough Triathlon in Perryville, MD. The left view is my current effort while the other two views are from two separate previous performances. The monitor shows me where I'm at on the course in relation to the other two riders. It'll also show my current data as well as the performance data from the other rides. You can see the course profile along the bottom and if you look closely you can see where each rider is at along the profile line.

Riding an indoor trainer can be mind-numbing and most cyclists will do anything to avoid it but with all of this geeky stuff to help take my mind off of the suffering, I actually enjoy the challenge.

But outdoor winter riding in Minnesota can be a lot of fun as well. The foot of snow we received last week was just what the trails were in need of.

Video from our Faturday ride from two days ago...

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