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In my continuing quest to simplify my life, I've started standardizing some things in my life. Part of that has been about developing routines to simplify my day-to-day life, although that's not really different than how I normally operate. Everyone will develop daily routines to efficiently get through mundane tasks and move on to dealing with the rest of the day. Mostly though, I've been moving towards standardizing my possessions and things I need to use.

Lessons from Fist of the North Star, part II

I am now nearly 60 episodes into Fist of the North Star. That comes out to about 40 episodes watched in the past 3 weeks, only two of which I've actively watched the series. Hey, what can I say? When your wife is off traveling to foreign lands, you have a lot more free time living a bachelor life. Anyhow, I've picked up some new lessons hidden in the plot of FOTNS. I'm still really enjoying watching Kenshiro kick ass, but these little points stuck out for me:

What motivates you?

In the capitalistic model, it's money. But we all know (hopefully we all know) that money isn't everything. So, then what does motivate us? I thought this video had an interesting answer:

Lessons from Fist of the North Star

I've recently started watching Fist of the North Star since I've discovered the Hulu has the complete series. I had watched the animated movie in college, but I never saw the t.v. series. I'm around 17 episodes into the 152 episode series, and I must say I am enjoying it (1980's graphics and all). But I am glad that I didn't watch the series as a kid. While it is technically a cartoon, I'm not entirely sure my 7-year old self would have been quite ready for all the animated gore. I also think that the cartoon quirks may have taught me some erroneous lessons.

Weight bearing exercise

Conventional wisdom tells us that weight training increases bone density (ex. here and here). The force of your muscles moving a load stresses the bones slightly and causes them to grow back stronger. That's a decidedly good thing, at least assuming that you don't do anything really (excuse the pun) bone-headed like lift weights you're not ready for or do exercises with terrible technique.

The next big thing

Flipping through Shape magazine (it's my wife's, honestly), I came across the page with the latest fitness fads which included some yoga hybrid workouts.  I'm usually pretty leery of fads.  By the time an idea is mainstream popular, they're usually more marketing than substance.  The resurgence of yoga is a good example.  Sure, yoga is great for you, but its sheer popularity means that a lot of people are trying to milk the popularity cow.  You get a lot of unqualified people with serious misunderstandings teaching classes just to meet the demand.  You

The Cornucopia

My apartment complex actually forbids growing vegetables on the premises. It's actually explicitly specified in the rent contract. It makes me a little sad to not be able to garden here, but I did bend the rules a bit by growing basil (ha, take that evil apartment management! it's an herb, not a vegetable.). But who needs a vegetable garden anyhow? Especially when you've got friends willing to share their bounty.

Whale Watching

We went whale watching in Boston today. Apparently, off the coast of MA is prime whale feeding grounds. There are lots of whales off the coast feeding off the rich schools of fish. We were really blessed today with two humpback whales the revisited our boat several times during the whale watching tour. Unfortunately I was too slow with the camera to get the really cool footage of the juvenile whale flipping its tail right next to the boat. I did still manage to get some cool footage:

Colt 45, shaken not stirred

Reading through the recent news in one of my surfing sessions, I discovered that numerous states have laws allowing people to carry guns into bars.  Tennessee just passed a law allowing handgun permit holders to carry their handguns into playgrounds, school parking lots, civic centers, and establishments selling