The Future Is Unwritten

Somehow I missed it, but Julien Temple put together a documentary about the life of Joe Strummer entitled "Joe Strummer: The Future Is Unwritten". Shown at the Sundance Film Festival, it looks to be released on DVD soon (Netflix shows an unknown release date and Amazon doesn't have it listed at all) Strummer was a member of "The Only Band That Matters" and has quite an interesting history, pre and post-Clash. There aren't a ton of (good) books about the Clash so hopefully the DVD will help fill the void. Thanks to Paul for the tip

California International Marathon (CIM) 2007 - Finisher!

Last Sunday I ran the California International Marathon, starting in Folsom and ending in Sacramento.

LIke most out-of-town participants, I stayed at a downtown hotel, 3 blocks from the finish line. Up at 4:15am, I headed over the host hotel to catch a bus to the starting line. Arriving at the start at 6:15am, I stretched, ate more food and tried to stay warm.  At the 7am start, the weather was in the high 40's with a slight headwind of about 7 mph.

The first half went pretty well. I stuck to my pace, finishing in 1:58. One thing to note about this race - it is a net downhill, but there are plenty of hills in the first half. My GPS said it was over 1000 ft of vertical. The second half was a bit tougher though. The wind picked up quite a bit (~20mph) and the temperature dropped. I bonked really hard at Mile 17 - I've never hit the wall that hard, that early. Over the next 5 miles, I drank a ton of fluids and by Mile 22 had climbed the wall.  The finish was great; there was a vocal group of people supporting the race. Their cheering helped push me across the finish line.

Overall, here's how the run rates in my book:

Organization - Accurate mile markers, 18 aid stations. My only complaint is that the aid stations weren't laid out in any organized/published fashion (i.e. every 2 miles, etc). Grade: B+

Course - First third of the course somewhat scenic. Grade: B-

Aid-stations - Well staffed and stocked. Grade: A

Swag - Short sleeve, dri-fit shirt. Grade: A

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Cal International Marathon (CIM) - 2000 Additional Runners

Apparently CIM is really popular this year - there are 2000 more runners this year than last. I was already planning on taking the bus to the start, but this leaves no doubt (from an "official" CIM email -- bad karma for the person sending the email hoax btw)

 

2,000 MORE RUNNERS MEANS MAJOR START AREA CONGESTION!

RUNNERS BEING DROPPED OFF MUST ARRIVE EARLY!
If you are being dropped off at the start, arrival at the starting area between 5 a.m. to 6 a.m. is highly recommended. Long lines of bumper-to-bumper cars are anticipated along both the north and the south start area runner drop offs.

CONSIDER TAKING THE BUS!
If you haven't already made this wise decision, purchase a bus ticket at the Expo and drive to Sacramento on Marathon morning to take the bus! You will end up saving time.

EMAIL HOAX ABOUT RELAY START TIME
An evil email was being circulated this morning (Friday, Nov. 30) about a change in the Relay start time. DISREGARD it! NOTHING has changed; the Relay runners will start with the marathoners at 7 a.m.!

 

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Groklaw Article in ITPro

Great interview with Pamela Jones of Groklaw over at ITPro.

She plays down her contributions to the SCO battle - IMO Groklaw was a major contributor to stopping the SCO FUD.

Great quote about media bias in the US that applies to a lot more than patent/copyright issues:

There is, in the US anyway, a trend to attack people, not ideas, to try to defeat an idea by smearing someone who holds an idea you don't like.

 

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Portland Marathon 2007: Finisher!

Last Sunday, I ran the Portland Marathon (10/7/2007)

We arrived in Portland on Saturday afternoon, checked into the host hotel (Portland Hilton) and went directly to the expo. After picking up our numbers, chips and race packets, I bought a waterproof vest as rain was expected for the race. After a great pasta dinner, we crashed and got up bright and early for the race. Fortunately, the rain did not materialize, so we had a dry start with the temperature in the mid 50's.

With over 9,000 runners, it took a few minutes to cross the Start line. Overall, the course was great, fairly scenic and flat. I had heard about the St. John's Bridge at Mile 17 from several people prior to the race, but nothing prepared me for the sight of the bridge.  

 

One minute, I'm running along a fairly flat stretch of road, the next I'm running up the off-ramp, gaining 150+ feet of elevation in a half mile or less (check out the topo map below). I managed to run all the way to the highest point and the view was a great reward.

I never hit the wall, but definitely slowed my pace after Mile 21. I cranked up my iPod, ignored the cries of pain from my legs and had a strong finish. I would definitely recommend Portland, it was well organized and a lot of fun.

Overall, here's how the run rates in my book:

 

 

Organization - Incredible. Very well organized and staffed. Grade: A

Course - Fairly scenic, a few "industrial" spots that could have been avoided. Grade: B

Aid-stations - Well staffed and stocked, approximately every 2 miles. Grade: A

Swag - Long sleeve, dri-fit shirt. Grade: A

 

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Redfin: The Cost of a Startup

The CEO of Redfin, Glenn Kelman, has a fantastic guest post on Guy Kawasaki's blog.

 

Glenn provides an incredible amount of visibility into the costs of a startup, providing side-by-side projected expenses vs actual. In particular, I found his comments on the business side of things (lawyers, accountants) to be great advice. Many entrepreneurs (esp. ones that are R&D oriented) aren't aware of the requirements placed on the company when taking outside investment.

 

 

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At the Airport on 9/11

I spent part of the sixth anniversary of 9/11 at the airport, traveling back from Phoenix.

CNN Headline News was playing all over the Sky Harbor Airport. Relentlessly, they jumped between live footage of the memorial service at Ground Zero to various reporters describing the events that unfolded on that horrible day. After a bit, I realized that the CNN Anchor was crying as she read the news. Most of the people around me were glued to the screen. I couldn't help but watch it either.

Boarding the plane was surreal ... frightening ... was I ever glad to reach my destination.