Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Odds and ends

Belladonna update

Bella graduated with her Bachelors in Science back in December.

In discussions with her academic counselor, she realized that her degree didn't provide her with the opportunities she desired. The counselor advised her to finish the degree since she was SO CLOSE, and then get additional education.

Bella followed the counselor's advice.

The most promising program for additional education was selective. They announce their decision on October 15.

Bella used the time between December and October to beef-up her credentials. There was nothing secret about the selection process. It was a point system with a heavy emphasis on good grades in science classes.

Belladonna was on pins and needles.

The selection committee sets the hurdle to manage the class size and it changes every year. This year, the hurdle was 75. Bella coasted in with an 89.

Way to go Belladonna!

I hate when I am right

I decided to add something to "my run" to increase the number of muscle groups I am strengthening.

As reported earlier, the park where I am running shut down some of the trails I normally run on. Rather than find new trails, I shortened my run from 5.5 miles to 4.0 miles.

I finished my run with a sprint of about 100 yards. No big deal...right?

It was a big deal. Sprinting involves lots of upper body strength as the runner throws his arms to counteract the up/down and fore/aft inertia of his legs so his center-of-mass glides in a straight line. Also, the runner gets up on the balls of his feet to minimize the choppy up-down motion of heel-strike running.

Yup, sure as heck. More muscles ache today than the last time I ran.

Last day for cattle on the property

Sprite's cattle go back today or perhaps tomorrow morning.

We have barn cats

My attitude is drifting toward live-and-let-live.

Ticks have something to do with that. Ground squirrels and mice are alternate hosts for ticks. Fewer chipmunks means fewer ticks in May and June.

Simmons .22 Magnum Scopes

Walmart had them in stock for $15 less than on-line.

There are still places where a simple, fixed 4X scope with good optics is exactly the right medicine.


  1. Hooray for Bella. Education is a good thing. I never wasted any of the money I spent on education. It all came in handy at one point or another.

  2. I compliment you and Mrs. ERJ with your good parenting. Belladonna has done well by her own actions as well as great guidance. --ken

  3. If you look at elite distance runners, they don't heel-strike; they land about mid-foot. If you focus on lifting your knees a little more, you'll naturally land about mid-foot. Heel-strike puts a terrible shock on your ankles and knees but mid-foot lets your muscles and tendons be shock absorbers. Finally, heel-strike actually decelerates you with every step, while mid-foot conserves your forward momentum. It may take a little practice but much worth it. I wish I'd known this for my first 20 years of running. Now I can barely get up the stairs due to knee problems.

    Just lost our two barn cats. Don't know what happened, they disappeared - one a month ago, the other last week. I hope some neighbor is feeding them but fear the worst.

    Our six guinea hens are great for tick control.

  4. Congratulations to Belladonna. Hopefully her new graduate program will put her in a better position to do what she wants to do. It seems (to this non-degreed fella that's done OK in life) that even having a Bachelors degree these days is no longer "good enough" in many fields of work. Just to get a Fisheries Technician job (i.e. entry level field grunt) in Alaska usually requires a Masters degree. Supply and Demand...


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