training starts on Monday

Ironman Canada is in August so I've got a good 4 1/2 months of training left (most of August will be tapering). The real training starts and it'll be pretty intense — where weekends are shot, and we're essentially doing a century bike ride a week.

All good stuff. Can't wait.  I'm feeling hungry this year.

Tonight I Can Write

Tonight I can write the saddest lines.

Write, for example, 'The night is starry
and the stars are blue and shiver in the distance.'

The night wind revolves in the sky and sings.

Tonight I can write the saddest lines.
I loved her, and sometimes she loved me too.

Through nights like this one I held her in my arms.
I kissed her again and again under the endless sky.

She loved me, sometimes I loved her too.
How could one not have loved her great still eyes.

Tonight I can write the saddest lines.
To think that I do not have her. To feel that I have lost her.

To hear the immense night, still more immense without her.
And the verse falls to the soul like dew to the pasture.

What does it matter that my love could not keep her.
The night is starry and she is not with me.

This is all. In the distance someone is singing. In the distance.
My soul is not satisfied that it has lost her.

My sight tries to find her as though to bring her closer.
My heart looks for her, and she is not with me.

The same night whitening the same trees.
We, of that time, are no longer the same.

I no longer love her, that's certain, but how I loved her.
My voice tried to find the wind to touch her hearing.

Another's. She will be another's. As she was before my kisses.
Her voice, her bright body. Her infinite eyes.

I no longer love her, that's certain, but maybe I love her.
Love is so short, forgetting is so long.

Because through nights like this one I held her in my arms
my soul is not satisfied that it has lost her.

Though this be the last pain that she makes me suffer
and these the last verses that I write for her.

– Pablo Neruda, W.S Merwin translation

Home Computer Setup – Apple Mac Mini and 23" Cinema Display


The hard drive in our iMac (lampshade version) seems like it's dying. We're going into our fifth year with the old iMac so it's about time for a new one. Plus, I'm in the "industry" so I should have a more up-to-date machine. A 2-3 year hardware cycle for a software company or someone in the business is about right.

Our next machine is going to be a Mac Mini with a 23" Apple Display.

I wish I wrote down all the systems I've ever used, it would be pretty neat to be able to reference it all. From memory I've had an IBM PS/2 desktop thingie, a PowerBook 240, a Compaq notebook, an HP notebook, a SGI desktop, a Dell notebook, an IBM Thinkpad X31 and an X40, and an iMac.

Specs for the new computer:

  • 1GB 667 DDR2 SDRAM – 2×512
  • 100GB Serial ATA drive
  • SuperDrive 8x (DVD+R DL/DVD±RW/CD-RW)
  • Wireless Keyboard & Mouse Set – U.S. English
  • Apple Cinema HD Display (23" flat panel)
  • Mac OS X – U.S. English
  • AppleCare Protection Plan for Mac mini (w/or w/o Display) – Auto-enroll
  • 1.66GHz Intel Core Duo
  • Intel GMA950 graphics

Porcupine Roach


I looked up roach on the various search engines and all I got was Papa Roach, Roach clothing, and cockroaches. Not a peep about porcupine hair roaches not even on Wikipedia. That's awful.

Here's the history of the porcupine roach which is a Native American headdress made out of porcupine guard hair and deer hair. Sometimes roaches are made out of skunk hair (instead of deer hair) and I've heard the very early ones were made out of turkey beard hair.

Porcupine roaches are what essentially every modern Native American pow wow dancer wears on their head, except for the women and not all Southern Straight dancers (who wear a hat made out of otter fur).

Most roaches are between 15" and 24" long, mine is 24". It's broken down like this, an inside layer of deer hair, a main row of porcupine hair, another row of porcupine hair in the front, and then a layer of deer hair on the outside. Traditional deer hair colors are red all around or white all around but modern roaches have some bits of color on them.

Roaches cost about $300-$500 or $75+ for a roach kit. I've made two roaches, one I still have and one that was 15" that I sold a long time ago. They take forever to make. The hardest part is sorting the hair. You have to sort the hair in .5" groupings from 5" all the way to 11" – that by itself could take you a week to do. Probably takes a month to build out a roach.

To put on a roach the right way, you have to have long hair. You take a braid of your hair, put it through the hole in the roach, and secure the roach down with your hair and a roach pin. I'm talking about a different roach pin…I don't have long hair so I use leather laces.

The finishing touch to the roach is a couple of eagle feathers secured via a spreader. The spreader is supposed to spread the roach hairs so that it fans out and looks cool, versus sticking straight up and looking not so cool.

So that's a porcupine roach.