Sunday, 22 April 2012

09:34 – I’ve finished stubbing out the company web site. It was getting embarrassing to have just the order pages for the kits. There are still missing and broken links, and some of the text is just placeholder stuff, but at least the framework is up and working.


Colin needs more exercise than he’s getting. Working Border Collies routinely run 50 miles a day or more. He doesn’t need that much, but he does need more than I’ve been giving him, which is a half dozen short walks a day, down the block and back. Watching Amy on Heartland exercising horses on leads in the coral gave me the idea to try exercising Colin the same way. I connect him to the 6-meter roller leash and stand in the middle of the front yard, with Colin running in circles around me, at about 35 to 40 meters per circuit. If he stops, all I have to do is turn my back on him and take a couple steps in the opposite direction. His Border Collie instinct is to circle out to cut me off. I figure that if humans can run 4-minute miles, a BC on the run should do 3-minute miles, so a few minutes of that gives him at least a mile (1.6 km) of flat-out running. I try to do that at least 2 or 3 times a day. The trouble is, a young BC like Colin could run a full Marathon and be ready immediately to run another, literally. BCs truly are running machines.

28 thoughts on “Sunday, 22 April 2012”

  1. RBT wrote:

    “Watching Amy on Heartland exercising horses on leads in the coral gave me the idea to try exercising Colin the same way. I connect him to the 6-meter roller leash and stand in the middle of the front yard, with Colin running in circles around me, at about 35 to 40 meters per circuit.”

    One day when I was cycling to work I was approaching a bend in the path and a chap came around the corner on a bike, not peddling, but being towed by two medium-to-large sized dogs, with a third running free on the other side (my side) of the path. Fortunately there wasn’t a collision but if you could find a quiet stretch of road or cycle path you could exercise him without having to exercise yourself.

    Or you could tell him he has a kill quote of half a dozen cats a day and just let him loose.

  2. Last night, there was a cat outside my window caterwauling nearly all night long. Cats are only fit to keep the barn free from meese.

  3. Yeah, we’re having early March Redux here, after a nice week of sun and blue skies and temps in the 60s. Noah’s Ark to be refloated in the next couple of days, looks like. 36 this morning.

  4. Two images came to mind. One, our host dizzy from spinning around, throwing up. Second, Barbara coming home to find her husband on the lawn wrapped in dog lead.

  5. Agreed with dmr1965: the site is uncluttered, straightforward, fast-loading, and effective in presenting the information of interest to potential customers. If I may abstract a bit of wisdom from what I’ve seen from professional web site designers, this will not do! You need to lard it up with some megabyte JavaScript libraries and a handful of animated flash objects which serve no purpose except to annoy visitors.

    As for the site content, it’s good, but I’m thinking there should be more awesome. That is, the word “awesome” should appear here and there. For example in the FAQ:

    Q: Are these science kits as awesome as they appear?
    A: Yes.

  6. “exercising horses on leads in the coral”

    Wouldn’t your SPCA object to that? I’m fairly sure the horses would.

  7. On the topic of typos, I read a book a while ago called Heratige. (I think that was the title but I can’t find it now.) The apparent typo in the title caught my eye so I downloaded and read it. Not a bad read, not many typos at all, and “Heratige” was in fact supposed to be “Heritage”. Sure, you’re never going to squash all typos, but it’s odd that the author got the title wrong.

  8. I had a boss in my younger years, who felt that people who could not spell were just plain dumb, and he did not want them around him. He was an Ivy League graduate, so I suppose that factored into the equation. But the older I get, the more misspellings bother me, too. One that I saw in a store recently: “Sale on all Sandles”. Geez, they are in the business of seeing and selling that item, day after day, and they can’t spell “sandal”?

  9. Spelling, grammatical and typo errors get me worked up a bit, too. But esp. those which clearly indicate the dumbing down of the language and lack of any caring about it. There’s even a flaunting of it.

  10. Chuck wrote:

    “One that I saw in a store recently: “Sale on all Sandles”. Geez, they are in the business of seeing and selling that item, day after day, and they can’t spell “sandal”?”

    With most spelling errors I just automatically read what was intended, usually without noticing.

    The thing that bugs me is the use of split infinitives. I know it’s okay in English but it still irritates me. Except for “To boldly go where no man has gone before.” That’s okay.

  11. Blame Oxford. They have been responsible for some of the most severe dumbing down of the language in their many books teaching the basics. Prepositions at the end of sentences, split infinitives, lack of periods for abbreviations—admittedly they have accepted lots of Americanizations along the way; so has the BBC. Latest for the BBC is presenters identifying themselves with “this is [Insert Name]”. Formerly, they always used, “I’m [Insert Name]”.

    Still, having taught from a variety of books to people who barely know how to say “hello”, the Oxford books are the slam-dunk best at actually getting people to learn the language. Repetition, repetition, repetition.

  12. If I ever teach or tutor English again I am sorely tempted to start the buggers on the Old English and move on from there, with heavy emphasis on Chaucer later, de Vere, the 1611 Authorized Version, the 1559 BCP, and Pilgrim’s Progress, even though the author of the latter was a stone-cold Puritan hadji. Next up, a slew of the 17th and 18th-c boyos. For American stuff, Hawthorne, Melville and Whitman and then I’d stop.

  13. Blame Oxford.
    Hey! Uncalled for. Something I can’t adequately respond to. To nonchalantly expect to be feted is something Oxonians are used to.

    (I’ll stop now… perhaps it’ll please you to know the weather here is dreadful.)

    If I ever teach or tutor English again I am sorely tempted to start the buggers on the Old English and move on from there, with heavy emphasis on Chaucer later, de Vere, the 1611 Authorized Version, the 1559 BCP, and Pilgrim’s Progress, even though the author of the latter was a stone-cold Puritan hadji. Next up, a slew of the 17th and 18th-c boyos. For American stuff, Hawthorne, Melville and Whitman and then I’d stop.

    I guess this is for students of a higher level than those Chuck mentioned. In my limited experience, Chaucer is hard to read. I wonder if it would be easier had I studied German.

  14. Oh, I have quite an affection for Uni of Oxford and the town. Have spent quite a lot of time in the town, and the weather was always nice. My big problem is that every time I went to Brighton for some beach time, the weather was abysmal.

    Positively wonderful bookstores in Oxford. Well, at least last time I was there. One of my most memorable moments was in a bookstore there, where the books for younger people was upstairs. I was perusing some books below when a father and his about 10 year-old son came in, and the father was immediately distracted by some display and began looking at books there. After a short couple of minutes, the son proclaimed, “Daddy, can we go upstairs now, before I go absolutely mad?” I guess the kid had gone mad before, because the father immediately dropped what he was doing and took the boy upstairs.

    I do not know anything about the University, except what I hear. A former girlfriend of my son’s, spent 2 years there getting a graduate degree, and reported that the degree has done nothing to advance her career (education) or get her jobs, and the libraries at Oxford paled compared to our own here at my alma mater and hers, Indiana University. One thing about American universities, is that if their library is a ‘full government depository’, it will be awesome!

  15. There are still a lot of good bookstores, though fewer than there used to be.

    I imagine the degree’s lack of success is more to do with its subject than its alma mater. As to libraries… for STEM subjects, they seem to suffice. I don’t know what more I could want, really. I know the Bodleian has a book or two bound in human skin, which the humanities students enjoy. Funding for undergraduate research projects is much smaller here than at places like MIT, but good by UK standards.

  16. When I first visited the UK in 1990 I spent several wonderful days in Oxford, not just seeing the sights, but investing the enormous bookshops. Took 20-30 books home with me. Did the same on several subsequent visits. I was staying at Aylesbury with friends, so it wasn’t too far to go. Visiting Oxford never gets old.

  17. Chuck is right about large American university libraries; it is stunning how large and comprehensive many of them are; I used to go up into the higher stacks as a grad student and never see another human being for many hours and look at volumes untouched by other humans for decades.

    And I am pretty sure that British and European libraries have more than one or two volumes bound in human parchment. This former humanities student and teaching assistant finds them absolutely creepy and morbid and disgusting. As I do the persistent recent displays in museums and other ‘edutainment’ venues of those plasticized human cadavers in various states of arrested activity. WTF.

  18. OFD wrote:

    “Chuck is right about large American university libraries; it is stunning how large and comprehensive many of them are; I used to go up into the higher stacks as a grad student and never see another human being for many hours…”

    Yeah right! Our host has told us stories about what really happens in the stacks, even posted a link to some pics… 🙂

  19. Our host sometimes tends to, shall we say, embellish the truth. Nothing untoward ever happened to me up in those dusty old stacks…and more’s the pity, sir, more’s the pity.

  20. I know the Bodleian has a book or two bound in human skin, which the humanities students enjoy.

    Heck, *I* have a book bound in human skin, but in my defense the guy really did annoy me.

  21. Our host sometimes tends to, shall we say, embellish the truth. Nothing untoward ever happened to me up in those dusty old stacks…and more’s the pity, sir, more’s the pity.

    Eh? I’ve never embellished anything.

    All I can say is that your stacks must have been defective. Something happened to me in the stacks of three different libraries with at least four or five different girls/women.

  22. Women are always asking to have their wicked way with me in the stacks, but I don’t let them. It would appear that our host is more compliant and sensitive to their needs than I am.

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