April 25th, 2009

ace the wonder dog

It's a dog's life.

This morning the GRD and I went for a run, so I could earn my carbs for breakfast and he could continue getting in shape for the ring.

Apparently, the Shadow Unit message board community is embarking upon a fitness challenge, which means that by January 1, I need to be able to run a mile and a half in 13:59 or better. Since I'm currently doing a little better than a 12 minute mile, (and my best recent time for a mile and a half is 18:58) this will require some fairly serious work on my part. *

But that's besides the point. The most amusing thing about this whole deal is that I am such a slowcoach on uphills that the GRD doesn't even break into a trot to keep up with me. Just his herding-dog slink (and he has a most wonderful herding-dog slink, when he wants it) which makes him look like a drifting stormcloud intent on mayhem.

Especially when he's stalking squirrels.


*And, like the climbing and hiking and yoga everything else athletic in my life, it will be easier if I am hauling fewer pounds up those hills. So I'm back on the no-refined-carbs-except-after-exercise program.** Alas! Alackaday! Life is hard.

**Current research seems to indicate that it doesn't matter what you eat, really, for weight gain or weight loss: the important factor is the calories. However, if I avoid the white flour and white rice, my blood sugar stays a lot more stable, and I don't raven nearly as much, or get dizzy-hungry or frail-feeling, so I don't mind the calorie restriction*** very much.

***Calorie restriction, for me, is somewhere in the range of 1800-2200 calories a day: I burn somewhere between 2800-3500, depending. I do seem to do better with dropping weight if I vary my daily caloric intake a lot, including a day every week or so where I eat the moon.)
sf sapphire and steel kiss (darkness)

Madagascar closes its borders!

Not to be overly paranoid or anything, but: This is not promising. 

The virus is an influenza A virus, carrying the designation H1N1. It contains DNA from avian, swine and human viruses, including elements from European and Asian swine viruses, the CDC has said.

That's a very bad recipe*. (Also now, possible reports of cases in a private school in Queens, NY.)

Globalization has its drawbacks. And if this sucker does go pandemic, the world economic situation will not help.

Which doesn't mean it's time to panic and run through the streets, because that never helps. But it's not a bad idea to review your reasonable precautions, such as stocking a flu kit, handwashing, and avoiding crowded public places**. Like the convention I'm going to be attending next weekend. *g*

http://www.cdc.gov/flu/swine/investigation.htm
(CDC updates, for those what wants 'em)




ETA:
*I've been seeing some people cite the genetic makeup as evidence that This Must Be Bioterrorism. Well, Barth's excellent book aside, not so much. Viruses, because of the manner in which they reproduce, swap genetic material with just about everything they come within a loud shout of. The reason you get flu outbreaks originating where you get them is because those are places where humans, pigs, and poultry live in very close contact and serve as viral reservoirs for each other.

However, the problem here is that this is a swine flu with avian elements apparently a flu which has been transmitted from avian to porcine to human hosts, and which has also mutated to be transmissible between humans.

http://www.who.int/csr/disease/avian_influenza/avian_faqs/en/index.html for more info on how it works and why it's bad.

**stocking up on ammo, hoarding canned goods... the usual...