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Quick Review: The Uninhabitable Earth: Life After Warming

Though “reality” did even “better”, considering how recent and yet already outdated the data is, it does a good job of pointing out how bad things are and how much worse they’re going to get, explaining thoroughly, spelling out both the urgency and the complexity of the situation. It also stresses that the disaster is of our own making and we can avoid it if only we’d make the effort, and also that the important changes are the large scale ones, laws, regulations, government intervention, while the pressure for individual lifestyle changes is more of a way for society as a whole to feel that it’s doing something while continuing to avoid the drastic and sometimes painful changes that are desperately necessary. And the inequality aspect is also pointed out, the less guilty and powerless suffering more while the more guilty and powerful can avoid the negative consequences for much longer and may even benefit.
I’m not sure what the target audience is, however. Maybe it’s an attempt to avoid the usual problem with any such work, only being picked up by those already interested and involved, but the author disqualifies himself in my eyes when he says he’s not an environmentalist, even showing disdain for environmentalists and activists in general, and continues along those lines, even stating that he’d choose economic growth despite knowing that nature pays the price and spelling out his single-mindedly, unapologetically anthropocentric stance, saying he’d agree with the loss of most of what’s generally considered nature if only humans could live well in such a world, only acting because that can’t happen. He even sees caring for other species as an excuse for not acting, or at least not in what he’d consider an efficient manner.
Otherwise, there are awfully many notes, and towards the end they also become descriptions and comments, which might have been better placed in the text itself. And, at least in this edition, the numbers for notes are oddly placed, and the months were clearly automatically translated in the notes, including in English titles and URLs and the word “may”.

Rating: 3/5

Written by Cavalary on September 18, 2021 at 11:48 PM in Books | 0 Comments

About Going to Coltea a Second Time, Before the Third…

I was saying that Thursday I was going back to the hospital, willing to try to let them hospitalize me if they’ll still want to, though I couldn’t even imagine spending even one night in a hospital, nor going through some of the procedures that were recommended. And I did just that, and the fact that I’m here now and writing this isn’t because I turned or ran away, quite the contrary, because I insisted to be seen and eventually was, but that only happened in the evening, and I was told to come back Sunday morning to see the test results and discuss options.
But let’s start from the beginning, with saying that I got in bed at 5:25 AM that morning, got up when I woke up the third time, at 9:50 AM, struggled to fit everything I wanted to take with me in two backpacks, turned off the computer and left just after 11:45 AM. The first destination was an Orange Store, where I meant to just charge 1 EUR to activate my credit, but I was told they could only charge with a minimum of 3 EUR available, even though it was a store and therefore it shouldn’t have been a matter of what codes they still had. So I considered the possibility of being tricked, them just wanting to earn a little bit more, but I hadn’t prepared for any other scenarios, so I just accepted that, neither arguing nor switching to higher amounts, even though charging with 3 EUR just activates the credit for 15 days, without adding a grace period, while 4 EUR would have meant 30 days plus the grace period and 7 EUR 60 days plus the grace period, therefore ensuring that I wouldn’t have had to charge again at the time of the marathon. Either way, I then also quickly checked the two confectioneries from that area and then walked to Coltea, getting there a bit after 12:50 PM.

Stood around for a while at first, only seeing a guy at the reception desk, not the woman who had helped me a month before, and when I tried to look into the emergency area when the door opened I couldn’t spot the other woman who seemed to understand me more either. Had actually tried to find out whether she’ll be there that day, calling the day before and asking about a doctor with the name listed as the person who requested my tests, but was told they had no doctor with that name, so I then assumed she must have been a nurse and, after managing to work up the courage to talk to the receptionist, I also asked him about a nurse with that name, but he said there wasn’t one in the emergency area either, so I have no idea why that name showed up there and also don’t know the name of that woman. But, getting back to my reason for being there, it was 1:05 PM when I managed to get myself to talk to the receptionist, but he just told me to call to schedule an appointment, not seeming willing to offer any other options. Crap.
With nothing else to do, I walked out, took some time to work up the courage to call, did so at 1:15 PM… But only got a busy signal, which continued to be the case as I tried a few more times, a guy finally answering at 1:25 PM… And after I quickly said what the issue was, he stayed silent, so after a few seconds I asked whether he heard me, he said he had but asked me to get back at 2 PM, exactly, without missing that time, and use a certain extension. I had no idea what that meant, however, so a few minutes before 2 PM I went back to the reception to ask. That guy had left by then, the shift changing at 2 PM, and out of the two women who were there instead of him one clearly looked like she knew and cared a whole lot more, so I asked her, and I later saw that it was a good thing I did so just then, because she also left once she finished what she had been doing at that point, just the other one being left from then on. Either way, she told me to call the number with those digits at the end instead of the last three of the one I called, proving that she was indeed the one who knew more, the other receptionist saying repeatedly that she didn’t think it worked like that. But it did work just like that, so I called, said the name of the doctor which had seen me a month ago when asked whether I had been seen before and by whom… And got told that the first available date for her was November 2, because she’s only there on Tuesdays and many ask for her. I said I had been there on a Monday, but the woman I was talking to said she didn’t know what to say about that and can’t stay on the phone, so I had to take it or leave it and for the moment I accepted that appointment.
I didn’t struggle to get myself to go there, willing to try to let them hospitalize me, just to come back and wait for nearly two more months, however, and I didn’t want to work with that cardiologist again in the first place, so after taking a few minutes to recover and be able to think again, I realized I should have asked whether another cardiologist was available sooner and tried to call back… But there was no answer, and I remembered that part about needing to not wait until after 2 PM to call, so after trying twice I gave up, found another place to sit, after a janitor asked me to move from the spot I had been sitting in, and just sat there in shock for a while, until I guess the guy who asked whether I was all right snapped me out of it to some extent… At which point I went back to the reception, finding both of those women still there and again approaching the one who seemed to know and care more, to ask about other options, since that date’s two months away and things are definitely not getting better. Also asked how come they wanted to hold me right away a month ago and now can’t even see me for two more months and got told the hospitals are filling, everybody’s coming back from vacation, nobody waits around for me to change my mind. But I tried to insist, though I’m not sure what came out and said that because of my social anxiety I hardly even knew what I was doing anymore, and she eventually said that I could either try to go up to cardiology right then, plead with them and see whether anyone will see me, go back home and maybe wait for some other obvious symptom to use as an excuse to be again seen as an emergency, or try to wait at the emergency room and see if they’ll see me again right then.
In hindsight, I probably should have chosen the first option, and even if I’d have been refused I’d have likely still been able to also try the last one, but it’d have meant more talking and trying to persuade people and I couldn’t even think of that anymore, so I chose to just wait. I was told to talk to a nurse when one will come out, however, and had no idea what that meant, which person to approach, when, how, so I just stood there for a while, but eventually, when the one who seemed to be handling the triage walked out more than a few steps, I asked what I should do, since the receptionists hadn’t registered me. I was told I didn’t need to be registered, I just had to wait my turn to be seen, but was also asked what the problem was, and when I tried to say I was there to continue the investigations recommended a month ago, I was told you don’t come to the emergency room for investigations, you schedule appointments for that, and when I said the appointment was on November 2 that woman said we’re in September and I should wait, and walked away.
I just broke down at that point, started crying, just went to the entrance area and sat down and cried my eyes out for some minutes. But after that I wandered back in and waited some more, and surprisingly, a bit before 4 PM someone did come out to ask who else was there for triage, asked for my information and accepted me, sending me to the receptionist to be registered, even if we had a hard time finding something for her to write down as my reason for coming to the emergency room. And soon after that I was called again, for the quick test, even though I didn’t think anything else was going to happen for quite a while and I had gone to the toilet, a guy who had apparently been waiting there since 10:30 AM coming to look for me and telling me I had been called when I came out of the bathroom.
Well, just that guy turned out to be the big problem, the guard saying soon after that two men had tested positive and they’ll have to close the emergency area for an hour or more to disinfect it. But either she was wrong about the second one or he was isolated immediately, because it was just that guy who was later identified as having tested positive, and that actually happened when he was called to be notified of the result, which started a big scandal, because the person who called him said he had a positive PCR result, not a quick one, though the doctors assured him they had just used a quick test, and since he kept saying he’ll pay for a PCR test and call the police on them if that will be negative they said that the PCR test overrules the quick one, so if that will be negative all restrictions will be removed, but until then he can’t leave and will need to be taken away by ambulance… Yet they allowed him to stand around, arguing and being on the phone, for an hour or more after that point. And he was fully vaccinated and was there with a woman, and I gather mostly for her to get checked up, and she tested negative and wasn’t vaccinated, and kept saying she was against the vaccine and had told him it’ll split them up… Which proved to quite literally be the case, since quite some time later, long after he was finally taken to isolation and she asked how long it’ll be until that ambulance will arrive, she was told that the ambulance will come when it comes, they have no control over that, but it’ll just transport him, so she’ll need to get back on her own. But, either way, what sense does it make for them to take an hour or more to disinfect the emergency area, where he had been for mere moments, and do nothing about the waiting area, where he had been for hours, and all the rest of us who had been there with him?
Either way, for a while I went outside, sitting on my backpack, and the woman I had initially approached for the triage poked her head out at one point and asked why was I sitting there when I thought it’d be obvious that I was trying to do what little I could to protect myself. But I eventually went back inside, even before that guy was taken to isolation, and definitely well before the woman he was with left, and I kept waiting, since I was obviously not an emergency and was left for last, only being called in around 7:45 PM… When pretty much only the emergency section remains open after 7 PM, though the ORL doctor is also there and it seemed that she only started seeing patients around 7 PM, probably also because that area had been closed off, and finished just after I was called in.
At least the emergency doctor was the same one as a month ago, and he seems all right, and finally seeing a familiar face, who wasn’t that cardiologist who neither understood nor believed me, was a relief, but he just asked a nurse to take some more blood and do another EKG, looked over the results from a month ago and said it was too late to have results or talk about where to go from there that evening, and also that it doesn’t work that way when I said I had come prepared, or at least willing to try, to stay there if they’d still say I’ll need to and go through whatever tests they wanted to put me through in order to figure out what’s wrong and what to do about it and know I won’t need to come again. He also asked whether I’m eating, saying that the previous test results don’t exactly show that I do, but at least, just like that previous time, when he even spoke up to contradict the cardiologist who didn’t believe me, seeming to take my word for it… And just before leaving I did remind him of the cardiologist not believing me and said that I can’t work with a doctor who won’t believe what I say, and he seemed to agree that I had a point. But yes, he released me quickly, without any other recommendations or prescription, telling me to come back Sunday morning to look over the results and discuss options, and when I asked whether I should still be prepared to be hospitalized he said he didn’t know, anything’s possible, we can only discuss it after seeing the results.

I walked out just before 8:10 PM and quickly sent dad a message, asking him to call me, but soon after that told him to hold on and put the phone down, realizing that the cotton ball which should have been stuck to the inside of my left elbow, after blood had been drawn from there, was coming away under the shirt and jacket, eventually using one of the rubber bands I had taken with me to try to make it stay in place at least to some extent. But by then dad had hung up and immediately called back, and said he should leave me to it so I won’t get distracted again and we should talk when I get back, and even though I really needed to babble, I agreed that it was probably for the best, considering what happened on my way back from Floreasca, and finally got moving at 8:25 PM.
Didn’t come straight back though, deciding to go to the Carrefour from Unirii, since I hadn’t planned to be home for the next days and didn’t really have things left to eat at dinner, and I fortunately found some expiring things to get and also some nice discounts. The one issue was that the cashier was rushing to close, I guess her shift being shorter, since it was just getting to be 9:30 PM and that location closes at 11 PM, and she didn’t give me my receipt and I only realized that after stepping away and didn’t go back to try to get it, just retrieving my things from the cabinet and making my way back. Also checked a Mega Image on the way, however, just walking in with two backpacks and a bag, since there was no way to stuff all of that in their small cabinets, I just wanted to look at the discounted bakery products and the guard was right there, so I assumed he’d keep his eyes on me… Only to be stopped by him on my way out, being asked whether I had walked in with all of that and saying that I had, he must have seen me and the purchases were from Carrefour, hoping that glancing at the labels would be enough and he won’t ask for a receipt, which indeed proved to be the case. It was definitely enough to make me decide against also checking another Mega Image I walked past, however.
It was after taking off and throwing away my mask in a trash can, not wanting to bring it back here, that it really hit me that I was coming back when I shouldn’t have been back that day, and in a few days I’ll have to go through it all again. I was walking past the church on Basarabia at that moment, so I should have been six or seven minutes away, but it took me twice as long to get here, was rather stumbling, weaving around, most likely seeming drunk to anyone who was looking. When I walked in, just before 10:30 PM, I guess I was in shock, nothing seemed real, I could hardly move, sat down and cried a little more… And there’s the matter of having been around that guy for all that time and putting dad, and through him my mother and grandmother, at risk, and that he’ll be a contact if they test me again and I’ll be positive and won’t be able to go on that trip he has planned. But I eventually managed to have some sweet pastry, a banana and a few plums, then took a bath, then found myself really needing to go to the toilet while making dinner, which also included lunch, as it used to be until not so long ago, so I ended up starting to eat a bit after 3:20 AM. And it was a bit after 6:05 AM when I was finally in bed, after also staying up to watch something.

Yes, I’m again still awake at this hour, and I’ll need to wake up at 6 AM and go back there now, so if I’ll sleep at all it’ll be very little, and who knows what the day will bring, but I wanted to post this and make sure I have a second post this week, in case I’ll have to stay there this time around. It should have also included the part about the first time I went to Coltea, on August 9, and I realize that some of the things written here may not make that much sense without that part, but it’s not like this is written for anyone else, and either way I barely managed to write this much, so there was no way to also add that, even if I initially meant to.

Written by Cavalary on September 12, 2021 at 4:11 AM in Personal | 0 Comments

Bucharest Half Marathon 2021

Actually fell asleep quickly, despite getting in bed unusually early, so I got just about an hour and a half of sleep until the alarm rang, at 5:30 AM. And then I rushed straight to the toilet and actually crapped a little bit more. Then I used safety pins to pin the sticker with the number to my bag, since it wouldn’t stick to the material the bag’s made of. After that, had both a banana and an apple, put both almonds and peanuts in dark chocolate in the yogurt and cereals, had some more of those expired nicer biscuits, with added honey, and also took the iron supplement before leaving with dad at 6:55 AM. Almost forgot that loyalty card I was going to use to pay for the food I’ll get after the race, but realized it just after we stepped through the door and dad went back to bring it to me.

Since he drove me there and the roads weren’t yet closed, it wasn’t even 7:20 AM when I was walking through the gate, which was too early. I had expected some checks, but despite being told to not remove the bracelet placed on my arm two days earlier, when I went to pick up the kit, I had both the jacket and a shirt over the t-shirt, so it wasn’t visible at all, and nobody said anything. And there was obviously less interaction, just one person approaching, and startling, me to talk about an app, and the tent of the NGO I had chosen to support was unmanned, so I just walked around for a while, spotting those from Dream Trek in the sponsor’s area and eventually, after seeing someone else who didn’t seem to have anything to do with that group just walk in and take one, asked whether I could grab a protein milk and did so. Then, with nobody else seeming to hand out anything, I took the jacket and shirt off, put them in the bag and left it in the wardrobe, seeing that those who were there were handing out safety pins to participants in order to hold those stickers in place. It was still cold though, so I stood in sunny areas after that, but even though that’d have also helped I didn’t care to take part in the warm-up, just halfheartedly doing a few moves while walking around, before deciding to make my way to the start area before it was over. It was then that I realized I had left the protein bar I had taken with me, meaning to eat it right before the start, in the bag, but didn’t go back for it even though I’d have had the time, instead just walking slowly, waiting in a short line forming at some of the toilets from the park, to avoid what were certain to be longer lines at those from the start area, also making a little detour to a drinking fountain to wash my hands, and eventually getting to the start area with plenty of time to spare.
We were required to wear masks not only while waiting in the start area, but also until the first turn, the announcer alternating between saying the first 100 or 150 meters. But I left my mask in the pocket of my tights and took one of those they were handing out, then made my way towards the front, since there were no sectors and the pacemakers aiming for times under two hours had gathered there, with small distances between the groups. Actually, I could have advanced even farther, to give myself the best possible chance to have an official time under two hours even if I’ll struggle, but there were only seconds to gain and I wanted to start around the 1:45 pacemakers, planning to judge my initial pace according to how fast they’ll pull ahead and then stay ahead of the 1:50 ones at least until half distance. I ended up standing around for quite a while, however, since on top of arriving with time to spare, the start was a few minutes late.

The start time I saw on my stopwatch was 26.24, while the official one was 27 seconds, and since this time around only the seconds are shown, not hundredths as well, I can’t know whether the difference comes from my reaction time or it’s still rounded up, as the time displayed on the classification was before. Either way, it seemed harder to breathe through that mask than through a surgical one, and quite a few had it off all along, but I kept it on until that turn, and while a few bins for masks were placed there, runners obviously being expected to just throw away their masks, I kept it, slowing for several seconds while I folded it and put it in my pocket, which was the reason why I covered the first kilometer in 5:13, ending up worrying that the 1:50 pacemakers were going to catch up too soon, since they had started just a little behind me and their pace was supposed to be 5:11. But then I covered the next kilometer in 5:06, even though it included that climb towards Stirbei Voda and I had done my best to avoid exhausting myself on it. Then I seem to recall 5:10 on the third kilometer, and definitely 5:04 on the fourth, but then missed the marker for five kilometers, likely because it was just after the refreshment point and I was drinking.
Speaking of those refreshment points, there were only water bottles and cups of some other drink, no fruits and no water to put a sponge in, and in fact there had been no sponges in the kit, I guess for obvious reasons. And the lack of those sponge points, which used to be placed between the refreshment points, starting at 7.5 km, meant we just had the refreshment points, placed roughly every five kilometers, though the one that came after ten kilometers was somewhat late, at about 10.5 km, and the last one was very early, at 19 km. But, to return to my use of them, it’s the drinking that’s the issue, as I used to be able to grab a piece of apple or even one of a banana and eat while running, so not having that likely didn’t really reduce my loss of time but might have caused me to have a bit less energy, but drinking meant slowing to a walk while I had the first cup, and if I tried to jog a little after grabbing a second, that only resulted in splashing quite a bit of it on me, so I slowed again to finish it. And since I took two, even if they were identical, from each refreshment point, I knew to just walk while drinking them from then on, though I tended to drink the first immediately, then grab a second from the second table, have a sip and then jog for a bit before slowing to a walk for a few more seconds to quickly finish it, which resulted in splashing far less on me and also seemed to me to reduce the loss of time a bit, though it’s possible that it was a wrong impression.
Back to the run, considering the loss of time at that refreshment point, I was surprised to see that I had covered kilometers five and six in 10:13 and was frustrated that I didn’t have the actual time for the sixth kilometer, since I might have covered it in less than five minutes, which might have been the fastest time. On the other hand, now that I think of it, it doesn’t quite seem to add up, and it’s possible that I didn’t calculate that time correctly, maybe dividing the seconds by two right away, so the total time might have been 10:26, averaging 5:13 per kilometer, which seems more likely. Either way, I did have a 5:01, I believe on the eighth kilometer, making good use of that slope, and maybe also because two runners who had been around me for a while had attracted my attention and it was on Victoriei, before that detour, when I pushed a bit in order to get back in front of one of them and see his number, despite fearing that I’ll pay for that effort later. But I likely paid less for it than they did, since when we reached the end of that detour and had to climb back towards Victoriei I again did so carefully, doing my best to get the most traction with the least amount of effort for each step while they seemed to just keep running, and soon after that they seemed to fade, so I rather quickly got in front of her as well, though she had stayed some distance ahead of me and that guy until then, and when I looked back after reaching Unirii I couldn’t spot either of them anymore… And they don’t show up as having finished… Though they’re actually listed as DNS, and they definitely started and passed at least the first two timing points, so that may be an error, and there seem to have been plenty of those, including for me. But I’ll get back to that later.
The third timing point was right at ten kilometers, at which point I was expecting the 1:50 pacemakers to be pretty much right behind me, being surprised when that wasn’t the case. But I had meant to stay ahead of them until after that refreshment point, and another thing that surprised me was that it wasn’t there, but pretty much at the halfway point, as I already mentioned, so I pushed, at first meaning to stay ahead of them until the 11 km marker, and when I was still a fair bit ahead despite stopping for a few seconds to tighten the shoelace from the left shoe, again thinking, likely wrongly, that it was coming loose, I ended up just trying to see how far I’ll get, eventually reaching 13 km before they were right behind me, and being passed at about 13.5 km. But that was too close to two thirds of the way, so I struggled to keep up until a little after 14 km, the fourth and, interestingly, final timing point also being there, even though there had been one between the start and the first relay change and another between the first and that second one, so I’d have expected one more before the finish.
The wind had been a problem until then, occasionally even on the first kilometers and definitely once we reached Unirii, as we were running right against it on Unirii, Decebal and Basarabia, so I had gotten a fair bit slower despite pushing and trying to stay behind others where possible, but once the pacemakers and those running with them passed me it was easier, since they were blocking a fair bit of it. I doubt it was as easy as the time showed, however, since it seemed I had covered the 14th kilometer in less than five minutes, something around 4:45, but since they should have been running in 5:11 and I had been slower, even if by just a bit, that seemed impossible, so I didn’t even try to calculate the exact time, thinking that I either remembered the one for 13 km incorrectly, had pressed the button at the wrong time or the markers hadn’t been correctly placed. This latter possibility of course also allows for problems with others, and there was one more kilometer, later, where something seemed wrong, but since those markers were all I could rely on, I had to keep doing so.
Either way, the race became rather lonely after deciding I had struggled long enough and allowing myself to fall behind those pacemakers, but the route also turned then, so the wind finally got behind me and things became a fair bit easier, more so than I expected, in fact. At that point, my target was still 1:55 and I was thinking that I might even lose sight of the 1:50 pacemakers after the 15 km refreshment point, but it seemed that they lost more time with it than I did, as they seemed to be closer after it, so I aimed to keep them in sight for one more kilometer… Only to miss the 16 km marker, I have no idea why, and ending up aiming to keep them in sight until 17 km instead. And then 17 km became 18 km and I could still make them out, albeit in the distance, and I was quite sure I was looking at 1:52, at least as real time, and wondering whether I should skip the last refreshment point, not get anything and just keep running, to have a tiny chance at a real time of 1:51. But when that refreshment point ended up being at 19 km instead of 20 km, and I could see the pacemakers actually stop there for a few moments, I also took the usual two cups, then really pushed all the way to the end, repeatedly calculating my time, realizing I did have that chance and deciding I was going to really try for it if the pacemakers will still be visible at 20 km, not taking the turn in Constitution Square before I’ll reach the marker. And that was just what happened, the one on that side maybe just starting to take the turn at that very moment, so I really went for it, hoping I won’t hit the wall by the end, and for the last few hundred meters I also set my target on a guy who was ahead of me, somehow just managing to pass him right before the finish line.
The real time was 1:50:54, with the official one being 1:51:21, and what I had on my stopwatch was 1:51:20, so there was still that difference of just one second, caused either by my reaction time or by them rounding up. Also, on top of managing to stay under 1:51, at first I was listed as 335th out of 1007, and at the time of writing this post I was 339th out of 1017, either of which making me the last in the first third on the road, according to the official time, though a few of those behind me had worse start times and therefore better real times. However, the list has since been updated again and I’m editing this to say that, at least when I checked on the evening of September 10, I was 342nd out of 1021, so three of the four who were added were ahead of me and I’m no longer in the first third either way. The problem, however, is that, besides the start and finish, my time was only recorded at the last timing point, at that second relay change, so it looks as if I cheated and used some other route, avoiding the first three timing points, and the rules state that only the times of those that have all of them are taken into account, so I sent them a message after noticing this and sure hope the issue will be solved and I won’t find myself thrown in the last sector next time, if there will be start sectors again and if I’ll be capable of taking part. I’m yet to have any reply, but with more than 10% of those who finished having missing interval times, it’s quite clear that there were issues with their system and the runners shouldn’t be the ones paying for it.

A few steps past the line, there were several people handing out the finisher medals, but the first one had just dropped hers and that seemed to have distracted the others, so nobody paid any attention to me right away when I got there and I rather ended up taking my medal myself, out of the hand of one of them. Then I went to the refreshment area, where on top of bottles of water and cups of that drink they finally also had apples and bananas, so I grabbed a bottle of water and two of each of the others, drinking the cups right away but keeping everything else for the moment. Then, even though I later saw that we should have been given new masks after the end, nobody did so, or at least not to me, and it’s not like I’d have needed another one anyway. Completely forgot to even put it back on after walking back across the park, retrieving my bag from the wardrobe, eating that protein bar and drinking that protein milk, however, so I returned to that area without wearing one and, even though the signs stated that one should be worn, nobody said anything… And hardly anyone was wearing one anyway.
Then again, even if I’d have put it on at first, I’d have soon removed it, since I wanted to have a picture taken and, after walking past the tent of that sponsor once again and being handed one more bottle of protein milk by one of the girls who were there, I went to the tent of the NGO I had chosen to support, which was finally manned at that point, albeit by a single person. And, after exchanging a few words, I asked whether she could take a picture and she took a few, I also had one more of those biscuits, talked a little more, also mentioning my health issues and hospital visits, and after she said I really should accept hospitalization if it was recommended, also told her about my social anxiety. Then I made my way back to the finish area and spent some time trying to work up the courage to ask someone to take a picture of me there as well, and without the banner I had been asked to hold the first time around, eventually deciding on a woman I had seen taking a few pictures just then. I realized as I was standing around that she had actually just taken pictures of her family, and looked at a couple of others who were nearby and seemed to have taken pictures of other people, but couldn’t get myself to approach any of them and eventually went to that woman after all… But she said that the man she was with, maybe her husband, should do that because he’s better with cameras, and he did, actually asking me to stand so he could take them from both directions.
Then I peed, quite a long time having passed and no line being left at those toilets, struggled to use one of those things to wash my hands a little, then went back in the park and to the drinking fountain I had also used to wash before the start, washing myself better there and then also washing and eating a banana and an apple. Then I placed my bag on a nearby bench, removed my number and medal, took my time to check that I wasn’t missing anything and arrange everything somewhat more properly in the bag, put my headphones on, spent quite a while skipping songs until one came up that I wanted to start listening to at that particular moment, and then finally left the park. I had just taken a few steps, however, when I realized that, with my phone in my backpack, the cable of my headphones had to be arranged differently, so I spent a couple more minutes sorting that out and was finally walking away at 11:45 AM.

Since I had decided on something from there as well, at first I wondered whether to get food from that location of that restaurant, to then just come straight back, only having a look through the Carrefour from Unirii on the way, but quickly decided to go back to the pizza place I had gotten a pizza from while walking the route instead, and then get to Obor on the way back and check more stores while there. So, after spotting another drinking fountain on the way and using it to wash my hands again, I did just that, and the pizza was indeed ready in ten minutes this time around, and 15 minutes after getting there I was walking away, the additional delay being caused by the fact that a different guy was there at the time and, even though I showed him what I wanted to pay with when I said what I wanted, I guess he assumed it was a regular card, so when someone else brought the pizza she also brought the machine used for cards, which he couldn’t use for that one. She had an annoyed reaction when she noticed that, asking why hadn’t he mentioned that I wanted to pay with that and walking away, and he actually ended up asking me whether I knew how to use it, to which I just said I had used it the first time not long before and that it was their own card, showing him the ad for it that was attached to the bill he had handed me. But another guy came after a moment, asked whether I wanted to accumulate or spend points, then took it and returned a little later, with it and the receipt.
The problem was that I already needed to pee again, but only did so at 1:30 PM, in that mall from Obor, by which time I was truly desperate and there had even been a few moments when I thought I might not make it. But I did make it, then found that the pizza box even fit in the cabinet, pretty much exactly, so I didn’t need to leave it sideways, and went in Carrefour… And found some food placed among the expiring products, though it was all made that day, at least according to the labels. Maybe it had been ordered and not picked up, or even returned, but I was going to microwave everything thoroughly, so I got some more pizza and two other things, plus the cakes I had meant to get from there, just one box of two of them being left, all of these costing almost 30% less than the pizza from that other place, though of course I hadn’t actually paid anything for that pizza, while the additional amount I had meant to reward myself with was determined by the real time at the end, up to an amount of 1 RON per minute under two hours, rounding up, then 1 RON per 30 seconds under 1:55 and 1 RON per 20 seconds under 1:50, so a real time that was just under 1:51 meant 14 RON and I ended up spending almost 21 RON, just about 50% more. But I decided that what I found was too good to pass on at that price and bought it all anyway.
Dad called me while I was there and while we were talking I realized I had no way to check both Kaufland and Penny, which had been my initial plan, and still get back by 4 PM, to watch the race, so I decided to just go to Kaufland, getting there at 2:20 PM and buying what I meant to buy from there. The lemons wouldn’t scan at the self-checkout, the bar code being tiny and possibly not even complete, but the employee knew the issue and immediately entered them manually when I called her over, and there were no other problems. So I then peed again, then took quite a lot of time to arrange everything in bags and the backpack, walking away from there at 3:07 PM and getting back here right at 4 PM. I had only carried 12 kg, but had a hard time with it, since I had held the pizza straight all the way, and the rest of the food was on top of it, in that bag, and this backpack offered by the half marathon’s organizers this time around is quite small and has thin straps that really dug into me when I put a fair bit of weight in it. But, while I’m on the matter of weight, I interestingly had half a kilogram more when I got back, after peeing yet again, than when I left, but in the evening, after peeing three more times and taking a crap and showering, I had lost two kilograms. However, when I weighed myself the next day, after really stuffing myself at night and then crapping twice more, I had the exact same weight I had on the morning of the race, 47.1 kg.

Back to that afternoon, in part because I had spent that additional amount and wanted to do something else in exchange for it, I went back out at 5:45 PM, quickly checked a Mega Image on the way and then went to Penny, meaning to get frozen green beans for dad and some canned fish which would have mainly been for me. But it was rather fortunate that none of that canned fish was left, so I got one more bag of beans and also a little garlic instead, therefore having one more reason to feel less guilty for spending more earlier. Might have probably spent a tiny bit less there as well, since the cashier thanked me, maybe for all the small bills, and seemed to ask for 18.20 RON when the total was 18.29 RON, but I was already about to give her the exact amount in small coins as well and just did so before really realizing what she had said. But I ended up getting something for free on the way back, deciding to enter a bakery which was just opening, the announcement stating that the opening will be the next day and they’ll give free bread then, but a guy being there and having some bread even then, and he gave me one when I went in.
I got back just after 6:50 PM, went to the toilet, showered, then after some time on-line had some watermelon and eventually started making salad. So I didn’t have lunch, not eating any of that purchased food during the evening, but started to eat a huge dinner at 12:15 AM. Took a picture as well, though the picture includes everything I purchased, the two things above the pizza box, as in the one that’s still wrapped and the cake that’s still in the box both had been in, being left for another time, which ended up being yesterday, after I went for another, and awfully bad, run. But I had to run then, since tomorrow I plan to go back to the hospital I was at on August 9, and maybe get hospitalized for those tests, if they’ll take me and I’ll somehow be able to handle it.

Written by Cavalary on September 8, 2021 at 11:02 PM in Personal | 0 Comments

Catching Up on Runs Before Bucharest Half Marathon 2021

With the half marathon in a matter of hours and no less than five runs I still haven’t posted about, I’ll get right to it, starting on August 11, when the neighbor again woke me up, at 9 AM. Wondered if there was a chance he’ll stop after that first bit of noise, so I tried to get back in bed, but he didn’t, so just before 9:20 AM I got up. My feet were still rather swollen and the right one still burned, but I had the usual stuff plus almonds and a piece of boiled corn, with doughnuts with added honey as the sweet thing, just wasted time on the toilet, put on the full running gear, with some things in the pocket of my tights, drank all the tea, took the plastic and metal and left at 11:50 AM, when the reported temperature was 28-29°C, supposed to increase by 1-2°C by the time I’ll finish. Obviously dropped off the plastic and metal in a bin on the way.
The time was 51:52.01, with sector times of 4:23.01, 5:18.50, 6:23.32, 4:49 (4:48.87), 5:32 (5:31.31), 6:26.56, 4:53 (4:52.59), 5:39.54, 6:30.22 and 1:59 (1:58.09), making for lap times of 16:04.83, 16:47 (16:46.74) and 17:02.35. Was thinking to aim for 51 minutes, and stay under 16 minutes on the first lap, and on its sector three I was sure I’ll squeeze under 16 minutes by a couple of seconds at the end of the lap, being very surprised when I didn’t. So I switched the target to 52 minutes after that, and at least managed that, though I’d have liked to stay under 17 minutes on lap three and failed even that.
It was quite all right in the shade, but in sunny areas I felt it burning, so that was one obvious problem. On the other hand, there weren’t many people, so there was still some weaving and going the long way around, but not so much even of that. Physically, again there was the lack of energy, and my legs feeling heavy at first, and I was rather sleepy, for obvious reasons, but that time lost on the toilet also returned to bite me, first feeling it on sector one of lap two, then sector two of lap three, and then on the final sector, as I was trying to sprint on the straight. I felt quite exhausted from the start of lap two, but that time on sector three of lap one and the fact that I didn’t realize I was that slow at all meant I had actually been exhausted even then and didn’t really realize it. Also, right after finishing, I thought I’d throw up for a moment, but the feeling passed in a few seconds.

Then, after having a look in that sports store that’s next to it, I went to that Carrefour and grabbed some vegan sausages that were among the expiring products I guess because they were the last, because it was a week until they expired and I couldn’t find any others on the shelf. The cashier didn’t notice the discount sticker though, so I pointed it out when she asked for the full amount and she had to call someone to cancel that. Then, after stopping to ask at another pharmacy on the way and being told an even higher price, I went back to that location of that cheaper pharmacy where I had asked two days earlier, on the way back from the hospital, about the price of the iron supplement I had been prescribed, and bought it even though it’s awfully expensive. Also asked whether they could tell me what the diagnosis written on the prescription was and two cashiers looked but still said they couldn’t make out anything after “anemia”, which was all I could read as well.
Next stop was Kaufland, and I actually meant to look for a few coins before going in and should have done so, but decided against it and got some cat food for Liza, some deeply discounted expiring sour cream, and two expiring breads for dad. Had also meant to get myself an ice cream, but the sour cream used up exactly the amount that’d have been, and the total was more than what I had left even so. So I started looking, but after checking the self-checkouts and then also wandering around the other checkouts, I couldn’t find anything. After I got back to the self-checkouts, a guy who was in front of me left his change, including bills, in the machine when a woman who was butting in, having also pushed past me while asking how those machines worked, placed her stuff on the machine before he bagged his, but I obviously wasn’t going to take that and called after him, so he came back for it and the few coins I spotted on the floor weren’t enough, so I had to leave a bread there for the moment. Returned for it quickly, however, since after putting the purchases next to the others in the cabinet, I looked a bit more, found what I needed and rushed back, even finding it still there. Then I walked back, being here right at 4 PM. On top of my right foot burning even worse, the socks I had on had torn and rubbed that heel.

On August 19 I was up at 1:30 PM, when the neighbor briefly drilled again, but I was already awake for some 15 minutes and meant to get up anyway. Then had the usual stuff, putting almonds as well as peanuts in dark chocolate in the yogurt and cereals, and also having some of those expired nicer biscuits with added honey as another sweet thing, put on the full running gear, drank all the tea and left for the first of that series of three runs in five days just before 3:55 PM, when the reported temperature was 25-26°C, supposed to hold steady.
The time was 1:19:52, with sector times of 4:14, 5:08, 6:01, 4:36, 5:13, 6:06, 4:41, 5:21, 6:17, 4:46, 5:20, 6:09, 4:42, 5:15 and 6:03, making for lap times of 15:23, 15:55, 16:19, 16:15 and 16:00. The initial target was just 1:24 and even what I allowed myself to hope for was only to stay under 1:23, but I also wanted a first lap in less than 15:30 and after I managed that, while allowing for 16:30, I wondered about 16 minutes on lap two. After also managing that, I doubted I’ll stay under 16:30 on lap three, yet I did that as well, so I recalculated the target times to add up to 1:22 and pushed on lap four, being surprised to see a better time than on lap three, even more so since it was thanks to sector three. So, if after sector two of lap four I knew I was going to stay under 1:21, after the end of the lap I wondered whether I had half a chance at 1:20, pushing like hell on lap five and making it. And I was actually disappointed at the end because I covered that lap in exactly 16:00 and didn’t manage to also get under 16 minutes, especially since there were a couple of moments on the last sector when I briefly lost focus, and I might not have optimized the last few steps either. Either way, it was the least bad time over this distance since May.
It was nice when I was in the shade, felt some heat when I wasn’t, but there seemed to be more shaded areas than I remembered, so it was fine overall. It was windy though, there were gusts that bothered me, and the worst headwind was towards the end of sector two of lap three, just when I was climbing that little slope towards the bridge. And earlier on that same sector I had to briefly stop when a kid came running down a slope and crossed the path right in front of me, but otherwise there were few people and they caused no other notable issues, even the several runners coming from the opposite direction in twos and threes which worried me on the first sector being more scattered when I met them again later during that lap, and that was the last time I saw them. Back to sector two of lap three, I also started feeling a certain pressing need at that point, and on the next sector, but it seemed to go away from lap four. And physically, I felt tired at first, but better as I went along. And just to show that I could actually push again to some extent, my nose was irritated at the end, and my throat seemed a little irritated as well.

After getting back, I meant to go out again just after 7 PM, but it was almost 7:40 PM when I did, grabbing the recyclables and a small bag of trash and dropping each in the first appropriate bin. Then I went to the Auchan I used to go to, since I hadn’t found the kind of bread I wanted at that other one, and I did find it there, and also got a cozonac that was cheap but seemed all right, to reward myself for that time, and some tea, not including that one for kidneys I couldn’t find at the other location, since I did find it there but didn’t realize that the price was higher until I scanned it to check, at which point I meant to look for an employee and point out that the price was different from the listed one but first checked the price label again and saw that it was the listed one after all, it had increased, ending up being more expensive than at Carrefour. On my way out, I also saw a pile of coins, most, if not all, just 0.01 RON ones, scattered next to one of the checkouts, but didn’t try to gather any, the checkout being manned and also having a customer at that moment.
After going to wash my hands, it was almost 9:05 PM when I walked out of there and almost 9:40 PM when I reached the Carrefour from the park, so I had to rush. Found expiring bio (organic) eggs, and also some with code one that were deeply discounted and not cracked and also quite large, and in those cartons with the bio ones most were also large, but not all, so I switched the couple of smaller ones from the carton I took with larger ones from another one and also got some more of those code one ones, then also got some tea, including one of those for kidneys, and rushed to the checkout as closing time approached… And since I was rushing I forgot to use that 10 RON code I had, paying almost all I had. Then I retrieved my stuff from the cabinet and at closing time I was arranging everything in the bags I had, so even though I got there just before they closed the area around the information desk, it was a relief that I hadn’t needed to use one of the larger cabinets from that area, since it’d have been really tight otherwise. I got back at 10:20 PM.

The next run was supposed to be on August 21 and I stuck to that plan despite feeling off late in the previous evening, cold, shivering, too much so to be explained solely by the cooler night, and either way the temperature couldn’t explain at all the fact that I also felt weak, even got dizzy at one moment, and it seemed that I had crap in my throat and chest again. But after a while, at night, I started feeling better, so I was more at ease when I went to bed and got up a few minutes before 2 PM, without having set an alarm, though I’m not sure whether I napped for a few more minutes or not after waking up at 1:35 PM. Then I had the usual stuff plus almonds, again really getting back to what used to be the usual stuff for the sweet thing as well, having those wheat things, one with honey, another with jam. Put on the full running gear and left at 4:20 PM, when the reported temperature was about 30°C, supposed to hold steady or maybe drop by 1°C by the time I’ll finish.
The time was 49:41.45, with sector times of 4:24.33, 5:08.03, 6:06.00, 4:33.03, 5:10.25, 6:06.10, 4:44 (4:43.53), 5:22 (5:21.93), 6:14.22 and 1:54.03, making for lap times of 15:38.36, 15:49.38 and 16:20 (16:19.68). The target was always 50 minutes and I’m surprised to have managed it, and by such a clear margin, and even more so after missing the target of staying under 15:30 on the first lap. But the next goal was to stay under 16 minutes on lap two as well, which I managed, after which I just had to lose less on lap three than I had gained on the first two, which was just what I did.
The weather seemed fine, less hot than I thought and with next to no wind, and there were way fewer people than I feared, seeing as it was Saturday afternoon. I did occasionally have to weave and go the long way around, but there was pretty much nothing notable bar maybe two dogs going for my legs, on sector two of lap one and sector one of lap three, and needing to move a bit to avoid them… Things only changed on sector three of lap three, when I kept thinking that the right shoelace was coming loose. I saw at the end that it wasn’t, but at the time I kept looking at it and first almost ran into the low branches of a tree, having to duck and slowing as a result, then there was a bit of confusion with two people, so in two different spots, since I was noticing them rather late, and just as I was thinking that I had managed to avoid any roadblocks, right at the end of the lap one formed ahead of me, and while I didn’t quite stop I slowed a lot as I squeezed through. But that was it, and physically I felt very tired at the start but got better as I went along, and also at the start it seemed that the bone spur was stuck in a bad position, but that also got better, quite quickly actually. My nose was irritated again after the run, staying that way to some extent even the next day, but the worse issue was that my feet were burning again, even the left one to some extent.

I went out again at 7:15 PM… And when I crossed the road a car turned quickly and then had to slam on the brakes, since I was on the crossing, in the middle of the street. Then I checked this Mega Image for some cheap zacusca for dad, not finding it, not that I expected to in such a small one, which was also the case for the Shop & Go. Then I went to the Carrefour from the park, for the cabbage dad had asked for, struggling to find one that didn’t look too bad, and also got myself a bag of corn puffs, so it again wasn’t enough to use that 10 RON code. And then I made a detour, first to check the Mega Image next to the farmers’ market, still not finding that zacusca, and then deciding to also check that Supeco, where I found an even cheaper one. I had decided to get myself one of those from Mega Image as well, after seeing the ingredients on their site, but that one had sugar, so I just got one for him, plus one more thing I added, also for him, to get to a certain total.
After that, I finally made my way to Kaufland, first peeing and washing my hands, then I saw evening discounts for the dill and cucumbers dad also wanted, so I got the one bundle of dill that looked better, out of the two that were left, and the handful of whole cucumbers that were left bar one that was rotten. Also grabbed some expiring bread, also for dad, and then finally heard the announcement about bakery discounts and saw the employee starting to place the labels, though it was almost 9:15 PM, so I had a look and eventually decided on a few things, though there was none of that bread left… And at the self-checkout I saw that the prices for two of the three bakery products were in fact much lower than the listed ones. Had also meant to look through the potatoes, to see whether any were large enough for dad to want them, but I forgot, only realizing it after I left.
On the way back, as I was about to cross a road after a car sped past, the bus behind it also seemed to accelerate as I was just about to step on the crossing, making me freeze in place, and be surprised that the rush of air caused by it passing right by me at that speed didn’t blow my cap off. But at least I did stop in time, and got back at 10:20 PM, having a sweet pastry after that, after having had no lunch that day. Then, though dad wasn’t working that night, I went back to the kitchen at 12:35 AM and made myself mamaliga, starting to eat dinner at 3:20 AM. Got in bed at 5:20 AM.

After again feeling quite out of it the previous evening and during the first part of the night, on August 23 I didn’t set an alarm and got up at 3:25 PM. Then I had the usual stuff, putting almonds as well as peanuts in dark chocolate in the yogurt and cereals, and also having some of those expired nicer biscuits, with added honey, as another sweet thing, put on the full running gear, drank all the tea and left at 6:20 PM, when the reported temperature was about 31°C, supposed to drop by a few degrees by the time I’ll finish.
The time was 1:21:54, with sector times of 4:33, 5:15, 6:06, 4:44, 5:17, 6:09, 4:49, 5:24, 6:22, 4:55, 5:32, 6:28, 4:49, 5:25 and 6:06, making for lap times of 15:54, 16:10, 16:35, 16:55 and 16:20. That was frustrating, because I was aiming to be less slow overall than I had been on the previous such series, in April, but ended up having the exact same total time, 3:31.27, not even one second better. And let’s not even compare with the 3:24:20 of the best such series, in the autumn of 2018. Admittedly, it’d have been more frustrating to be slower by a second… Either way, I aimed for just under 16 minutes on the first lap without pushing, so I didn’t at first, but still aimed for no more than 4:30 on the first sector and when I saw I didn’t manage that I put more into the next two sectors. Initially hoped to also stay under 16 minutes on lap two, but after the first lap I switched to 16:15 and managed that, but then the targets required 16:20 on lap three and after losing 15 seconds the overall target seemed gone, my only chance being to be helped by the dropping temperature. And that wasn’t the case on lap four, each sector being way off and the total basically meaning that I had no chance. But I still gave everything on lap five, and on the last sector in particular, and somehow just managed to match that time, but not beat it.
Did feel the heat at first, but from sector three of lap two it was starting to get better, and on the last two laps it seemed quite fine. A few gusts of wind bothered me in a few places, but that wasn’t much of a problem overall. Physically, I again felt tired at the start but got better later, and there were some warnings from my right knee, maybe on sector two of lap three, but I’m not sure I recall correctly. As for people, there was maybe a brief stop on sector one of lap two because of a misunderstanding with a cyclist, and definitely a brief stop on sector three of lap five, when a child on a tricycle or something of the sort went towards the side I meant to pass him and his father on and almost fell right in front of me. There were also issues towards the end of sector two of lap four, first a kid riding a scooter or skateboard coming from the side and almost running into me, and then it was crowded from that point until I passed the bridge, some cyclists also coming from the opposite direction, so I had to slow on that entire section, though I didn’t actually stop. And there was also a sector one, maybe on lap three, though it’s also possible that it was on lap four, when I slowed to let some kids on scooters pass me. I’m not sure whether the runner who passed me on sector three of lap five, after that stop caused by the child, helped or hindered, since I moved to let him pass after hearing him coming from behind, but after he did he turned to look twice and seemed to slow, having probably taken me as a target, and I’m not sure whether trying to keep up meant that I pushed harder or was in fact a bit slower than I’d have been otherwise. But I think I gave it pretty much everything, and those last few steps also seemed optimized.

Changed after getting back and went out again a bit after 8:35 PM, only jogging for a couple of minutes on the way to Penny, when I thought I’ll be late, though when I got there I saw that they close at 10 PM in that location, so I didn’t have to hurry and got what I meant to get. Then I just went in and out of Kaufland to check what had evening discounts, left the purchases in a cabinet there, jogged to Carrefour and found unsliced bread and a few more plums. First managed to get a quantity of plums that were all right and just fit what change I still had, but dropped one between some crates and couldn’t retrieve it, so I tried to use others to get to the same weight but ended up just over and was out of time, so I was just getting checked out when the 10 PM announcement that the store was closed came and I gave cashier what coins I had, 0.01 RON short, and she accepted it, the total again not being enough to use that 10 RON code.
At least I no longer had to hurry too much when I got back to Kaufland, so I first peed and then got ten bundles of very discounted radishes. Wanted to also get something from the bakery area, but it was just after 10:30 PM when I got there and there were no paper bags left, the employees seeming to get ready to throw away what was left, and I didn’t ask for a bag. So I made my way to the self-checkout, where an old man was asking for help and moving slowly, and he also dropped a coin and I handed it to him, then I used another machine but returned to the one he had used after I was done, grabbing a coin I had seen left in the change slot. But I wasn’t quite done, having also decided to cross the road to that Mega Image, which I thought was non-stop but saw then that it closes at 11 PM, and it was just after 10:45 PM when I went in, so I again had to hurry, but at least found that cheap zacusca, just three jars being left and one looking in a way I didn’t like, so I grabbed the other two, plus an expiring chocolate, and was just getting checked out at 11 PM, the coins I had found that evening being exactly what I needed to be able to give the exact amount.
I was back at 11:40 PM, putting things in their place, except the radishes, and gathering all the water from the fridge, as it had defrosted itself and the drain was clogged and of course dad hadn’t even noticed that it was full of water even if it was even flowing out of it. Then I had a late lunch, finished just before 1 AM, so it was around 1:10 AM when I went to shower and got back in the kitchen at 1:45 AM. Still had other stuff to do, however, and also had some watermelon, so I sort of started making salad at 2:30 AM, but in fact it was more like 3 AM, since I had the radishes to deal with. Started eating dinner at 4:05 AM, finished at 5:20 AM and got in bed at 6 AM, after staying to watch something.

After making the tea and putting some things in the pocket of my tights before going to bed, on August 31 I had the alarm wake me at 7:15 AM, then had a banana instead of the apple, added almonds in the yogurt and cereals, unfortunately just wasted time on the toilet, which I had also done at night, had some more of those expired nicer biscuits, with added honey, put on the full running gear, rearranged the stuff in the pocket, drank most of the tea and left at 9:10 AM, when the reported temperature was 16°C, supposed to increase by a couple of degrees by the time I’ll finish.
The time was 50:43.38, with sector times of 4:19.76, 5:15.15, 6:12 (6:11.91), 4:46 (4:45.84), 5:24.25, 6:16 (6:15.69), 4:49.06, 5:27.00, 6:18 (6:17.50) and 1:57.22, making for lap times of 15:46.82, 16:26 (16:25.78) and 16:34 (16:33.56). Thought I was at the level of 2017, thinking that I had seen 50:45 for that run, but in fact it was 50:15, and I was managing problems with my right leg at the time and still managed to be slightly faster on each lap, while this time I pushed from the start, thinking of trying for a first lap in less than 15 minutes even if I’ll end up going towards 17 minutes after that, but could barely sustain that pace for some 200 meters, and after the first sector my body was telling me to stop. Pushed through that moment and stayed on the revised plan after that, pretty much on each sector, even though on lap three I was quite done, but that revised plan wasn’t the right one, since I should have aimed to be 30 seconds faster, not that it’d have been in any way possible. And even that would have been an awful time anyway, but this one makes me seriously worry about even staying under two hours this morning.
Stood around for five minutes after I’d have been ready to start, wanting to start at 9:30 AM, and maybe that caused me to cool down a bit too much, but that was hardly the problem. And there were few people, though right at the end of the first sector a dog crossed in front of its master just as I was getting there and got in my way, forcing me to briefly stop and sidestep, and on sector two of lap three a little kid threw something in my way, though it was small and I didn’t really have to avoid it, just that it startled me and I sort of missed a step. As for the weather, there was some wind, mainly on sector three of lap three and on the final sector, but the temperature was just about perfect for running. Physically, however, on top of the lack of energy, I felt bloated, stomach hurting on sector two of lap two, and while that feeling went away after that, it seemed to do so because what had caused it made its way down, so on sector three of lap two I briefly thought I’ll feel a pressing need, and while that also went away during sector one of lap three, when I was struggling to pretty much just jog, that long straight seeming endless, on sector two of lap three it really did come, staying until the end. And while I felt sleepy all along, on sector three of lap three I caught myself rather drifting off a couple of times, almost as if I was going to fall asleep while running. And my nostrils were closing on the final straight.

After the run, I went to Carrefour, finding that they had just filled that area with expiring products and picking up a few, and also seeing cheap eggs again, the vast majority with code three and a few of the others cracked or already expired, but could find ten to buy. Then I went to the farmers’ market, finding cheap cabbage for dad and also getting some cheap Kapia peppers, even if plenty were rather bad. A little girl was lost as I was wandering around the market, other people wanted to make her stay somewhere and preferably stand up on one of the stalls, to be more visible for her grandfather, but she was just getting more and more panicked and running from everyone until her grandfather finally came… And, instead of trying to calm her down, immediately scolded her for leaving his side, which resulted in plenty of comments about people who are unfit to have children. Also while in the market, I started feeling crap in my throat and coughed, and did so a few more times on the way back, and seeing as that was after waking up with a stuffy nose, I was getting worried, though at least the problem seems to have gone away since then…
Was back just after 12:15 PM, had some doughnuts with added jam, also had watermelon, then eventually took a long shower and got in bed at 3:40 PM… But I was getting up to pee every hour, once or twice the noise made by dad also kept me awake for a while, though he was admittedly doing what he could to be quiet considering the fact that he was cooking, and I eventually started reading at 7:30 PM, at which point I had been awake for a few minutes again.

And that’s about it. And yes, I am awake at this time, though the start is at 8:30 AM and the alarm is set to ring at 5:30 AM. Started eating dinner at 12:05 AM, finished at 1 AM, then actually did get things out on the toilet, shaved, got my bag ready, or at least I hope I did, and now let’s see whether I’ll manage to get any sleep at an unusual hour, since I mean to be in bed at 3:45 AM when I’m normally barely getting in bed, and definitely not yet sleeping, at the time when I’ll need to be up this morning.

Written by Cavalary on September 5, 2021 at 3:26 AM in Personal | 0 Comments

Quick Review: The Great Escape: Health, Wealth, and the Origins of Inequality

Expected an infuriating rose-tinted view of the present, and it does start that way, but it also makes plenty of good points, such as the value of knowledge over wealth and growth, the fact that things quite often get worse, and definitely that market forces can’t be trusted with progress and public works and policies are needed. The section about poverty in the USA, which applies in general, is also surprisingly good, as is the later one about measuring poverty, plus most of the section about politics and inequality and most of that chapter’s conclusions.
But population growth being clearly listed as positive is infuriating, as is the rant against population control, spewing the usual idiocies, and the repeated assumption that life is in itself worth living. Same goes for stating that inequality can be good because it can show the way to those who are behind, and while saying that progress creates inequality is fair, it doesn’t really tackle unfairness, injustice, why wealth would determine who benefits first. Actually, the author seems to often fail to grasp the limitations created by lack of money when goods and services are just business, even repeatedly wondering why the knowledge and developments that work in wealthy countries fail to bring the same benefits to poor ones and mentioning social acceptability as a likely answer! And he flits between positions, not taking stances and repeatedly seeming to change conclusions. For example, contrary to the good points mentioned above, still trusting and relying on the free market too much, as well as the impossible concept of endless growth, or failing to grasp obstacles and largely blaming the worse off in the part about labor market inequality, or stating that poverty may be overevaluated and listing particularly low thresholds for it. And then there’s the chapter about aid, which makes some good points about potential problems but has utterly dreadful conclusions and recommendations, largely boiling down to “hands off and let them handle things themselves”… And that USA and Sweden example, offered in support of that stance, is something that would actually be great!

Rating: 2/5

Written by Cavalary on September 3, 2021 at 11:54 PM in Books | 0 Comments