New canine distance running record

2017/09/30 at 07:46

This morning, we had some early fall weather, so I ran 9 miles with Charlies the wonder dog, which is about a mile more than his previous longest run. And I declare myself on track to run a half marathon this winter, for the first time in 13 years.

Runkeeper record

 

 

Rufus goes to work

2017/07/01 at 13:24

Welcome to the neighborhood, motherf*cker!

2017/06/26 at 07:06

There are bobcats living in the green areas among the houses in our suburban area. I saw one once myself. This photo is the clearest one yet, taken in front of the model home of the next subdivision over from us. Keep your house cats indoors, Pflugervillains, lest they become a snack for this guy and his family!

Pflugerville bobcat

Quote of the day

2017/06/26 at 07:00

“[T]here are two groups responsible for Trump’s win: those who yearn for an America that never existed, and those who yearn for an America that can never exist.” –from a BuzzFeed profile of Sherman Alexie

Artsy-fartsy Texas Capitol

2016/08/20 at 07:45

I took a walk at lunchtime and took a mediocre photo of the Capitol (I like the composition, but the cloudy day is what made it mediocre). So, I did what everyone does these days with mediocre photos: manipulate it!

Artsy fartsy Texas Capitol

One of the good guys

2016/04/29 at 07:44

A couple of years ago, I really stepped in it in a local Crime Watch Facebook group. Someone posted a link to a local news article about some burglars who had been caught. When Facebook processed the link, it displayed an image from the article along with the link and article headline: the mugshots of the two burglars, who were both African-American. As was unfortunately typical for this Facebook group, several members posted short, nasty comments, one of which was just the word “Thugs.” I responded to this comment with “You may not want to use that word. It’s racially charged.”

I thought it was an extremely mild rebuke, but I was totally unprepared for the onslaught of responses that I got. In addition to some really nasty name-calling, several comments were self-defensive: “I can’t be racist; I’m Hispanic,” or “I didn’t mean it racist.”

My takeaway at the time was that I was viewing this interaction in the context of systemic racism: you don’t have to have racist intentions for your actions or comments to contribute to a racist atmosphere. The defensive commenters, on the other hand, viewed racism as a conscious act of hatred. Therefore, by their definition, they were not racist.

Today, my favorite blogger Fred Clark posted OotGOism: ‘Whoever tries to keep their life will lose it …’ (That’s One-of-the-Good-Ones-ism). In his post, he explains that if you see yourself as a good guy, that limits your ability to take criticism, to better understand your intentions, actions and the environment in which they exist:

He’s talking about the temptation to want to be seen as “One of the Good Ones,” and the insidious way that desire will trap us in our idea of our selves, of our identity, such that we’ll never be able to become anything other than that — someone trying to be perceived as good. And that’s not the same thing as actually being good, or becoming good, or even just becoming better.

We white liberal types fall into this trap all the time. Well … not so much fall as leap into it, tripping over ourselves to reassure people of color that we’re One of the Good Ones. This often leads to earnest but awkwardly cringe-worthy gestures that aren’t so much products of good intentions as they are desperate pleas to be perceived as having good intentions.

This explains the defensive nature of the responses that I saw in that Facebook group.

Have a nice poop

2016/03/24 at 16:42

Have a nice poop

White fragility

2015/03/20 at 12:07

In regard to my previous post, On Political Correctness, what I experienced in the neighborhood Facebook groups has a name: “white fragility.” Per the linked interview:

SAB: What causes white fragility to set in?

RD: For white people, their identities rest on the idea of racism as about good or bad people, about moral or immoral singular acts, and if we’re good, moral people we can’t be racist – we don’t engage in those acts. This is one of the most effective adaptations of racism over time—that we can think of racism as only something that individuals either are or are not “doing.”

In large part, white fragility—the defensiveness, the fear of conflict—is rooted in this good/bad binary. If you call someone out, they think to themselves, “What you just said was that I am a bad person, and that is intolerable to me.” It’s a deep challenge to the core of our identity as good, moral people.

Interesting.

 

My beautiful wife and me

2014/08/22 at 08:45

We were dressed up at a wedding reception recently.

Katie and me

Jobs that no longer exist?

2014/02/28 at 15:56

Today, I saw a Reddit thread about jobs that no longer exist. Of course, the entire discussion thread consisted of people naming instances where the jobs do still exist but are much less common than in the past. One of the jobs on the list was: bowling pin setter. Well, this job does indeed still exist among the nine-pin bowling league of central Texas. One of my first jobs as a kid was setting pins at the Spring Branch Bowling Club. It was a rough job, and I didn’t last long at it. And it is also dangerous. The pin setter sits up in the superstructure above the pins, and when someone bowls, the pins can go flying pretty far and fast. In fact, certain bowlers threw the ball so hard that the pin setters watched for them and the pin setter for that bowler’s lane and the surrounding couple of lanes moved away from the lane altogether so as not to get hit by flying pins.