I came across this site last spring when looking for help with my fitness nutrition and training and I've been hooked ever since. I mainly use The Daily Plate feature that helps me track the calories I consume and burn to keep me on target with my training goals. There's also an iPhone/iPod Touch app that I use to do the same. My wife gives me a hard time, thinking I'm a little compulsive about it, but using The Daily Plate improved my eating habits and helped me drop 10 pounds that I couldn't otherwise seem to shake. Most features on Livestrong.com like The Daily Plate are free, including additional helpful tools, and insightful articles and videos on a wide range of healthy lifestyle topics, as well as a social networking component. Livestrong, of course, is Lance Armstrong's brand, and Livestrong.com also contains resources for cancer patients, survivors, and their supporters.
Posted December 08, 2009
I saw a terrific film a couple of months ago—"Man on Wire," a documentary about Philippe Petit, the French aerialist who walked a tight rope between the twin towers of the World Trade Center in 1974; a feat which some have described as “the artistic crime of the century.” I was living in New York at the time, and remember the sensation it caused, but the film brought out the truly breathtaking audacity of his undertaking, not least of all how he managed to get a reliable tight rope strung between the twin towers without the permission or cooperation of the authorities. What no public artist today would dream of doing without approvals and major financial support, he and his friends did pretty much on their own; do-it-yourself public art on a grand scale. Aside from the beauty of the feat itself, and the unexpected effects it had on his personal life, re-thinking this relatively benign and artful transgression, eight years after 9/11, evokes a complex mixture of thoughts and emotions about how much the world has changed in the last thirty-five years.
Posted March 04, 2009
A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson. A great book to share – it’s been given to me by two former students and, in turn, I’ve passed it along to friends and family. It lives up to its title, skimming the surface of most branches of the natural sciences, starting with the origins of the universe and ending with the descent of humans. The student who first handed it off was particularly enthusiastic about the odd bits of knowledge into every page. To me, the beauty of the book is how these scientific facts are embedded within personal and political histories of those who discovered them. Sure, it’s fun to learn that humans have about the same number of genes as grass and far fewer than newts, but somehow more fun to learn that, when they weren’t dying from X-ray exposure, pioneers in the study of DNA were using family connections to steal one another’s work, being refused passports for their liberal views, and alienating their colleagues to the point of early retirement.
Posted March 03, 2009