Print Story He lives upon pickled grasshoppers and sauced mushrooms
Diary
By TheophileEscargot (Sat Jul 28, 2007 at 10:42:46 PM EST) Reading, Consumerism, MLP, ODGF (all tags)
ODGF. Reading: "The Yiddish Policeman's Union", "Future Shocks". Consumerism. Stuff.


What I'm Reading
Finished The Yiddish Policeman's Union by Michael Chabon. Took a break two-thirds through to read Potter 7, so while I found the ending a bit anticlimactic, that might have been due to the break.

It's a kind of detective novel set in an alternate world where the fledgling Israel was crushed in its independence war of 1948, and a temporary home for the Jews is set up in Sitka, Alaska. The book is set as that is set to cease to exist.

The parallel history isn't explored in depth, but the milieu is extraordinarily well set up: this Sitka feels absolutely real with great detail and a fascinating atmosphere. Characters are interesting and larger than life. The mystery is moderately well set up: some nice detail and foreshadowing, but also with a huge and unsatisfying gap. Plot-wise it's quite compelling with a fair amount of pace. Very well written in a florid style.

The politics didn't feel quite so real: it's hard to believe certain things could happen. The satire seemed a bit vague and clunky too.

Overall, worth reading for the atmosphere, but a few too many holes to be a classic.

Review, review, review, review, Wikipedia, interview.

The novel was inspired Say It In Yiddish: A Phrase Book for Travellers (discussion).

What I'm Reading 2
Also nearly finished a comic: Future Shocks is a round of short (2-6 pages) comics done by Alan Moore for 2000 AD back in the day. Pretty good, emphasis on trick endings, showing his remarkable inventiveness. Some are obvious, but some pretty haunting. Can't read too many in one sitting though.

Operation Don't Get Fatter
Still not totally convinced it's not dehydration, but the results were excellent this week: another 2 pound loss taking me down to 11st 6, which would completely wipe out the recent weight gain.

Due to bad planning, I have a shedload of weight-loss stuff arriving in this week's Tesco order though. Could have cancelled it, but that seemed like tempting fate. Also, they had a 2 for 1 offer on Slim-Fast® milkshake powder; which means I now have two and a quarter huge tins sitting around.

So, planning to keep going for another week, though maybe not trying so hard. If the current reading is a water glitch, that should take me down to the target; if not I'd probably only be down to my Week 47-50 low of 11st 5. Though I'm still a bit soft in the middle (why am I soft in the middle now? The rest of my life is so hard) so maybe should keep going till the diet food runs out.

Oddly, I went shopping again and still can't fit into Marks and Spencers 32'' trousers. Maybe they have changed their sizes to reflect reality after all.
Weight

Saturday July 21
Breakfast: Toast, HE couscous (225kcal,9.6g protein), 25g soft cheese, tomato.
Lunch: Chilli burger, steamed egg, potatoes, carrot, peas. WW eclair
Supper: Ham and tomato sandwiches, olive.
Booze: 1 beer, 2 whisky
Snacks: Slimfast pretzels
Exercise: 5BX Chart 4 Level A+.

Sunday July 22
Breakfast: Scotch broth (150kcal) 2 slices bread, ham.
Lunch: 180g steak. Potatoes, carrot, broad beans. WW eclair
Supper: Meal replacement bar (210kcal,14g protein)), kiwi fruit, apricot.
Snacks: Hot choc with shot whisky
Exercise: 5BX Chart 4 Level A+. 1.75 miles walking .Dumb-bells 3x10 heavy, med. 1x10 light with med weights (except mil press).

Monday July 23
Breakfast: Slimfast shake,
Lunch: Chicken wrap
Supper: Chilli con carne, 4 toast, olives. 2 finger kit-kat. 2 plums, apricot
Snacks: another apricot, peach
Booze: 2 brandy
Exercise: 5BX Chart 4 Level A+. 1.75 miles walking

Tuesday July 24
Breakfast: Meal replacement bar
Lunch: Dal soup, small chicken sandwich
Supper: Ocean pie, 2 toast, tomato. Light yoghurt.
Snacks: Hot choc. Peach, plum, apricot. Slice ham
Booze: None
Exercise: 5BX Chart 4 Level A+. 3.5 miles walking

Wednesday July 25
Breakfast: Slimfast smoothie (212kcal, 14g protein)
Lunch: Smoked salmon and cream cheese bagel
Supper: Goulash, bread, tomato. WW eclair.
Snacks; Slimfast pretzels
Booze: 1 beer, 1 whisky
Exercise: 5BX Chart 4 Level A+.

Thursday July 26
Breakfast: Slimfast shake
Lunch: Chicken flatbread
Supper: WW chicken hotpot, toast, tomato. WW eclair
Snacks: 2 bananas
Booze: 1 brandy
Exercise: 5BX Chart 4 Level A+. 1.75 miles walking .Dumb-bells 3x10 heavy, med. 3x30 light

Friday July 27
Breakfast: Slimfast shake
Lunch: Hummus and vegetable wrap
Supper: WW chicken curry (294kcal,17g protein), light yoghurt(102kcal,8g protein), toast, tomato
Second supper: 4 Ryvita, ham, olives
Snacks: Banana, pear. WW choc chip
Booze: 1 beer, 1 whisky
Exercise: 5BX Chart 4 Level A+. 3.5 miles walking

Consumerism
Bought a wind-up torch/radio/phone charger. I have no actual need for such a thing. However, after watching "The Descent", "28 Weeks Later" and reading "House of Leaves" I think I've seen far too many cases of people being chased by monsters through the dark with the batteries on their torches running out. Well I'm ready for ya, suckers.

Bit bulkier than I'd like: jacket-pocketable but not really jeans-pocketable. Quite bright: has a 3-LED and 1-LED mode which lasts longer, the 3-LED mode seems slightly brighter than my old torch with 2 D-cells and a wire bulb. Theoretically a quick charge lasts quite a long time for torch and radio. Tried hooking it up to the phone and I think it would be quite strenuous to charge it that way: you'd have to be pretty desperate to use it. Which I think I would be if my phone ran out and I had no other charger.

Apology to Oliver James
After slagging him off in my last diary for not defining Selfish Capitalism, I looked it up in the index and it is defined after all. Sorry, dude.

Also, I may have been confusing him with other psychologist/author/celebrity Oliver Sacks.

By Selfish Capitalism I mean four basic things. The first is that the success of businesses is judged almost exclusively by their current share price. The second is a strong drive to privatise public utilities, such as water, gas and electricity, or, in the case of America, to keep them in private hands. The third is that there should be as little regulation of business as possible, with taxation for the rich and very rich so limited that whether to contribute becomes almost a matter of choice. The fourth is the conviction that consumption and market forces can meet human needs of almost every kind. America is the apotheosis of Selfish Capitalism, Denmark the nearest thing to its Unselfish opposite.
I'm not quite sure why regulation of business and low taxation are one item.

Also found an off-hand reference to cognitive therapy which is interesting since the other Happiness Agenda people want a lot more of it.

It [Chinese cultural optimism] is very different from the 'call black white' school of positive psychology fostered by Western cognitive psychologists, Whereas they would advocate a crude deletion of negative thoughts and painting your bubble rose-coloured, Tai is facing up to reality first of all, and only then declaring her intention to change things for the better.
Web
Belated but hilarious YouTube. Fox News "They get what they call LULZ".

How the internet ruined poker.

VoxEU. Gender quotas at the top do not increase hiring lower down the ladder.

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He lives upon pickled grasshoppers and sauced mushrooms | 12 comments (12 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback
poker ruined by internets by MillMan (4.00 / 1) #1 Sat Jul 28, 2007 at 11:27:29 PM EST
meh, five years ago maybe 100 people knew what the WSOP was.

I've worn 34" waist jeans for years. I once measured my waist: 37".

When I'm imprisoned as an enemy combatant, will you blog about it?

I got measured for a tux last week by cam (4.00 / 1) #2 Sun Jul 29, 2007 at 06:18:15 AM EST
my waist was 36 inches. The pants that fit me were 32-34. Someone is lying, and I doubt it is the measuring tape.

cam
Freedom, liberty, equity and an Australian Republic

[ Parent ]
men are vain too by yankeehack (4.00 / 1) #3 Sun Jul 29, 2007 at 07:25:10 AM EST
at least now you can feel the pain of what women have to go through.

I'm a size 2 in most stores.
"...she dares to indulge in the secret sport. You can't be a MILF with the F, at least in part because the M is predicated upon it."-CBB

[ Parent ]
but you're itty-bitty! by R343L (4.00 / 1) #5 Sun Jul 29, 2007 at 08:36:33 AM EST
but is it "sometimes 2, sometimes 0 and sometimes 4"? Because that is what sucks about women's sizes.

"There will be time, there will be time / To prepare a face to meet the faces that you meet." -- Eliot
[ Parent ]
I watch the history channel and by cam (4.00 / 1) #6 Sun Jul 29, 2007 at 09:11:00 AM EST
the NFL network: every second ad is for hair loss.

cam
Freedom, liberty, equity and an Australian Republic

[ Parent ]
I don't care about the numbers by MillMan (4.00 / 1) #7 Sun Jul 29, 2007 at 09:41:50 AM EST
The mirror tells me what I want to know or don't want to know.

When I'm imprisoned as an enemy combatant, will you blog about it?

[ Parent ]
yeah by dev trash (4.00 / 1) #4 Sun Jul 29, 2007 at 08:14:53 AM EST
I have a pair for 46 or 48s that are tight on me.  The 44s I have though are baggy.  Not really sure what size I am.

--
Click
[ Parent ]
I heard a review of Yiddish Policeman's Union ... by lm (4.00 / 1) #8 Mon Jul 30, 2007 at 04:16:52 AM EST
... on NPR a few months ago. It sounded like an interesting book. But for some reason, I have trouble suspending disbelief for the whole alternate history thing.

There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
Odd by R Mutt (2.00 / 0) #9 Mon Jul 30, 2007 at 04:37:36 AM EST
Normally that's the sub-genre of SF that seems to have the most crossover appeal. (Philip Roth's "The Plot Against America", Kingsley Amis' "The Alteration", Stephen Fry's "Making History", Robert Harris' "Fatherland" etc.)

[ Parent ]
I don't think I'm in the crossover market by lm (4.00 / 1) #10 Mon Jul 30, 2007 at 04:51:57 AM EST
I cut my teeth on Heinlein and Tolkein before I reached a double digit age.

There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
Simple test for dehydration by ks1178 (4.00 / 1) #11 Mon Jul 30, 2007 at 09:39:11 AM EST
If you think your weight loss is mostly because of dehydration, take a piss (or pay attention to the last time you do) prior to weighing yourself. Also pay attention the rest of the day as well to see how much it varies.

Urine normally goes from clear, to a dark yellow/brown color. The clearer it is, the larger percentage of water is in your system, the darker it is, the less amount of water is in your system.

If the stream is clear, you're definately not dehydrated.

If it is a lightish yellow, clear color you are probably just about right.

If it is a dark yellow, almost brown, you are definately dehydrated.

If it's another color not in that progression of clear, light yellow, dark yellow/brownish you're either taking some wierd food coloring that's not getting washed out (but that usually shows up in fecal samples, not urine) or you need to see a doctor immediately.

Helps if you know what shade of white/yellow your urine normally is when determining dehydration levels.

Pink for beet[root] by ambrosen (2.00 / 0) #12 Tue Sep 18, 2007 at 06:24:32 AM EST
But otherwise other colours are bad.

[ Parent ]
He lives upon pickled grasshoppers and sauced mushrooms | 12 comments (12 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback