Sunday, January 27, 2013

Drank Henbane

Ignorant masses gladly sacrifice whoever doesn't accept their yoke of duty. Heard of Socrates? Yet they don't really want to do anything, either. Ever notice how idiots expect a livelihood? It's unreal. Surviving may be a human right, but it's still hard earned. Giving up getting and spending could be a form of suicide akin to drinking a henbane cocktail. Humans are supposed to be smart enough to employ themselves in profitable enterprises of their own design.

Are endocrine disruptors responsible for a shortfall of healthy and intelligent individuals? Cyclists are positively hypochondriacal about toxins that might detract from performance; they choose BPA-free water bottles based on rumors. Scientists observe, "If you don't have BPA in your body, you're not living in the modern world." No evidence yet links Biphenol A with abnormal physiology except a concern for male fetuses, who might later develop prostate problems. Pedaling makes cyclists too healthy and horny to ignore reproductive issues, such as erectile dysfunction falsely attributed to ill fitting saddles and rightly a consequence of aging and rampant diabetes.

Never mind water bottles, suspect foods. Delmonte "Bursting with Life" ad cans cyclists along with green beans but neglects to mention Biphenol A. Clean your plate then take a spin. Consumer Reports wrote, "Canned Del Monte Fresh Cut Green Beans Blue Lake had BPA levels ranging from 35.9 ppb to 191 ppb, the highest amount for a single sample in our test." Little wonder why they tie consumption with robust lifestyles; deflects criticism.

If you stick to baked or boiled grains, fresh fruits, nuts and vegetables, well washed with a vinegar/water rinse, and pass up fatty meats, fried foods, pastry, and stuff on recall lists, you might live into your 80's. Unfortunately, you'll spend most your extra time hunting down wholesome and won't have time to perform tasks demanded by others.

Probably the most unhealthy lifestyle is driving a motor vehicle every day in polluted traffic to a sedentary occupation, loading hourly on caloric snacks, returning home through worse traffic, then watching television. Couldn't you include some aerobic exercise in that routine? Bike commutes on back roads nicely suffice. Yet these days you can't escape juggling coupons, mitigating taxes, wheeling deals, working daily, and worrying, which might actually be more stressful and ultimately worse than synthetic toxins themselves. Buying loyalty for 10 cents off a gallon on your next thirsty tankful of gasoline seems less inducement than insult.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Below Deign

Who's delusional? Most people believe in angels guiding actions, demons stealing salvation, and such unproven otherworldly nonsense when all evil done by men can be blamed directly upon their own fears, hormones and ignorance. Despite awareness of these needless reactions, ill will nevertheless persists. Those who don't get it radicalize those who once did. Individuals alone generally don't know much, and when they do they're dismissed as weirdos, hunted down as heretics, or otherwise ostracized. Even a work as scholarly as Bike&Chain has been falsely attributed to crack habit, like so many songs by recent artists who expressed emotions exacerbated by downers, psychedelics, and uppers, as if those sensations were not authentic human experiences. A book slowly written over decades does appear randomly compressed presented all at once, as would crap through a compactor. When you look inside your own mind, one outcome of monotonously pedaling, you might find an undiscovered universe. Most people don't want to hear about it, prefer you keep it to yourself, and rather spend time being entertained or stashing cash. Amusement and survival do seem intertwined at certain stages of life.

History's revered authors all created worlds unto themselves then found hooks to involve readers in their fantasies; how is this not complete manipulation? These include all the prophets upon whom religions were based, although they left writing to followers. They assuredly provided an ethical foundation upon which to build civilization, when it never occurred to majority that caring and sharing are simply more practical, although less efficient, than pillaging and raping. Yet religion remains the foremost excuse for carrying evil forward, forcing bizarre opinions upon others, and getting ahead at their expense. Preaching propaganda beats abiding blisters while digging ditches. Books almost write themselves, but motivations remain recondite. Desire for admiration or love, need to feed ego, urge to exert control over chaos seem just as compelling as your search for an elusive revenue stream, the only impulse that most people consider honorable. Writing to feed your kids rates higher in social acceptability than doing nothing, maintaining virginity, and pursuing zero population growth, which is how monks and nuns conduct their entire puzzling lives. Even though evangelists didn't work for pay, these days if you deign to write for any other reason it's deemed as beneath your dignity and viewed suspiciously.

Wonder whether that's why artists are so wretched. They perform actions, produce objects, or realize installations directly from ideas arising from their inner universe, something utterly spiritual, yet seldom garner credit. Mostly they toil alone struggling to be unique then wind up dead from overdoses and suicides before fame finds them. Bikes, frames and wheels have sometimes been used as raw material, or cycling itself inspires. Easier to catalog songs than write paragraphs on other art forms, yet you can't purport to survey culture unless you cover all genres.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

PES Chilblain

In wake of Oprah's interrogation of Lance, gums are flapping over insignificance of professional cycling. Tour de France doesn't match NASCAR or NFL, although it does equally share characteristics of both. Car racing is sponsored by manufacturers as a way to test new technologies under grueling conditions. Long bike races have lightened bikes with advanced geometries and materials, which likewise expanded choices and sales. NFL is allegedly promoting fitness, where rampant doping spills into every other sport. Maybe a better analogy would be runway models, who strut latest fashions costing thousands, which filter down to what everyone eventually wears off racks. Comedians joke about baseball home run leaders having only 11 midseason, when that was a typical weekend for steroid shooter Sammy. But do you have to bear indignation of sports writers who condemn Performance Enhancing Substances from contemporary medicine? Good diet helps, too, so why isn't food banned? Athletes today wear technical materials that keep body and extremities dry and warm; in original Olympics, they wrestled naked. Abusing substances is so much a typical behavior that you wouldn't recognize life without it. Beloved Hall of Fame honoree "The Mick" was an admitted drunkard off and on field. Perhaps fans pay to see the pumped and stoned soaring and stumbling.

After cyclists endure bonking exhaustion, pavement rash, pes chilblains (painful bumps on a frozen foot), saddle sores, and suffering for spectacle's sake in contests contrived to challenge and threaten, public seems to prefer the psychological tortures of witch hunts. Little wonder why identified dopers deny it. Who'd obediently relinquish titles hard fought over an equally doped field? Such are the consequences of cycling. You will never win at anything without undergoing a microscopic examination of your character, finances, or health. Consider yourself fortunate if this inquisition against you is so limited. Pleading ignorance can be a useful dodge. Peddling lies is what leaders do. Signing no contracts might get you cut, but, then again, who cares when you don't officially win? Only you. You can go forth faster than a famous Texan when nobody notices.

The same holds true with self published literature. With a publisher's imprimatur, contents are supposedly vetted, and readers assured of accuracy and honesty, neither of which are usually true, conversely sanctioned opinions serving agendas. Unpublished books can be full of real angst and unrequited longing worthy of your time. These days "independently produced" often becomes a prerequisite for attention by discriminating audiences. You'd think obtuse obscurity would be a turnoff, yet masses seem content with navigating cell phone plans designed to extract ever more fees from nuance and splinters that ought to be rolled into overall monthly charge.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Sick Suzerain

Rethink, recycle, reuse, reinvest in what's sustainable. Eventually, you scrub not only the dirt away but surface, too, and what's beneath. Nothing lasts forever. Been seeking Zero Carbon Footprint for a decade: darned difficult and negligibly effective. Must target enormous populations and processes to influence global issues. Yet must quit relationships with things once they outlived their purpose, too. A car is not a pal, pet, or protege carrying on your legacy. Cars are comfortable, masculine, but temporary vehicles struggling through liquid air and solid traffic, period. Cars are too complex to last; simple methods persist. Alternatives already exist that don't burn petroleum, but comedians are already ridiculing electric plug-ins as effeminate.

Biggest budget busters are fuel, insurances, taxes and transportation. To afford, Americans collectively fritter away enormous effort, resources, and time: 300 billion work hours plus 50 billion driven hours. Maintaining roads costs upward of $100 billion every year and increasingly marginalize cyclists. Protecting nation against enemies created by evil corporations or foreign jealousies costs $900 billion/year. Smoking is a net loss (after profits) of $150 billion a year. Thousands, both traffickers and users, die annually because narcotics are illegal. Cardiovascular diseases from overeating and using lazy ways, both mere choices, kill more people than anything else. After cancer, the third biggest killer is car accidents. More have died in collisions in the last century than in wars. Motoring is war on multiple fronts with enough collateral damage to infect society with insanity.

Earth is so vast that human vermin teeming along ocean shores seem an insignificant irritation easily neutralized by hurricanes and tsunamis. Yet they're reporting Greenland's permafrost melting this winter and record high temperatures down under this summer. Is there another reason? Ozone depletion? Sun irregularity? You might drill down to root causes, but what do you ever make of evidence? Bike&Chain instead skips self serving conclusions and sticks with is-ness. Freedoms do increase proportionally with responsibilities assumed. But you don't need some fussy suzerain ruling from afar or sick writer waxing moralistic who knows nothing of your customs or desires telling you what to do. Embracing technological convenience will always cost more; just makes sense. But "more" could mean mammals become extinct. Inevitably, insects and simple microbes will inherit earth, but sooner if mankind lets them.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Frozen Migraine

You only get one chance to make a good impression. Oops! Too late! What if you just don't care? When you're not selling anything, not trying to attract admirers, you can express whatever you want, even lay down a zero lie zone where bullshit is intolerable. But clearly nobody but a forensic investigator cares about truth; unless easy profit or satisfied hormones are unequivocally dangled, forget about holding anyone's attention. Anyway, as soon as you chronicle current events, deviate from fiction, or name real names, you suddenly find yourself amidst denial and prevarication. Everyone runs away from authenticity, won't even admit to the guilty pleasure of puzzling over paradoxes.

Books on bikes aren't needed. Pedaling itself is too dull to recount, as is an intractable issue with a soft rear tire. Anyway, after last snowstorm which left and inch of ice across streets have weeks to mount winter wheelset before next round of rides.

Bookblog was intended as a rambling nonfiction compendium that rejected typical fiction and nonfiction narrative, and so shares something in common with the Whole Earth Catalog rather than your usual encyclopedia. It defied every bit of advice from Aristotle to present on how books ought to go together. There is no rule that mandates one form over another except salability; never imagined it could be sold, so made it open source. Landmark historic works of science that changed all lives on earth were more like lab notes than novels. What you focus on is what first presents itself, but what dreams motivate existence? The urge to collect every related item is so 18th Century, but you can never derive facts without considering exceptions. Truths occur to writers in intuitive flashes and never so often as when bored by bicycling. Some say you can’t be effective unless you are guided by principles, but you can easily waste a lifetime pursuing wrong principles, like Ahab chasing a certain white whale or Titanic barring blacks and racing whites across Atlantic irresponsibly in a vain attempt to be best. Begrudging, burning vengeance is not necessarily a good principle to follow, but what of a sincere desire to imagine something new?

Nobody wants to do same thing all the time. Specialization is important to efficiency, but only well rounded individuals live well. Human flexibility works better than inhumane rigidity. Principles are points of departure. Those who understand how things are supposed to work are better off than those who know nothing or only know rules. How and why are still important. Dyed-in-the-wool and iron-clad are stuck in past without options. Integrity might as well be shorthand for value-based decision making mired in corrupt practices that don’t include majority. Reactionaries usually demand integrity, by which they mean loyalty or prejudice. Complex personalities frighten. One dimensional people are easier to exploit. What do you do with someone unique? Leave them alone? Unique can serve as a defense mechanism as long as no threat is perceived. Keeping it apolitical, crazy, light and personal makes writing easy to dismiss. This is anything but, and so crawls within, takes up residence, and wears out its welcome.

The principle, the proper study of mankind is man, leads to studying behaviors first hand. Sex? Big motivator? Some believe it equally demotivates, especially when it doesn't seem forthcoming. Coy teases surpass carnal knowledge, but both will get you fired. Reality often disappoints. Promises are what they package instead of fulfillment. Among most people abstract ideals somehow exceed physical sensations. Yet whence ideals? Hopes are exploitable. Those you get to know closely will infect to you. Illness is bad business, but not completely without merit. You will certainly appreciate relatively good health all the more after being sick. You abide physicality and sports because you can; whenever you can’t, life seems ghastly and unsatisfying.

Dark are these dreams of late, but will nevertheless stay the course. Winter’s grip on icy streets and long nights will slowly relent. Done are days with entire commute in darkness. Every day is 1 minute longer, so as weeks pass commutes will again be fully sunlit. Neither is the darkest hour just before dawn; it’s darkest around midnight on a moonless night, and sky brightens considerably before sunrise. Dawn and dusk are good times to ride as long as ice and snow don’t impede and traffic doesn’t impose.