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Parallelepiped (31 Jul at 23:01)
This month I tried a thing, which was to run every single day, no exceptions. Running of course isn't that new for me, but I haven't done it this way before, where I was keeping up a lengthy streak rather than working on a number of miles a week or something like that. And it's probably not actually good for my bones and leg-strings to do it every day, but the idea of keeping up the streak has been motivating, sort of like posting a blog post every month, but without the forgetting. I usually run a 3 mile route or a 7.5 mile route. I got a new watch with a wrist-side heart rate sensor that actually works, and also discovered that Garmin has a Strava-like "segments" feature that you don't need to pay for and that isn't as competitive because cheapskates like me use it, which is good because it means I have some chance to win the segments. Segments is like some stretch of road or trail that has been designated by the community, and then you can see who's run it the fastest. I was fastest for a few days on Negley, a stupidly steep hill in my neighborhood in Pittsburgh, for example. The segment stuff and the heart rate monitor have both reminded me of the importance and pain of running fast, too; over the last decade I've really gotten in the habit of going for fairly leisurely runs without really noticing! So now pretty much every time I go out there's a part where I run as fast as I can, and almost puke my guts, and I think this has been helping significantly with fitness. We're going to try a half marathon in September, and although I don't think I'll be able to beat my twenty-something record, I think I'm on track to put in a good showing for my age group (i.e., OLD).

I know running training is boring, but another side-effect of this project is that although I feel generally good and sleep better, after I run I feel basically drained of creative energy and don't get "anything" done. I'm sitting on an almost-complete project that I just need to turn into a video from last month's post, and just haven't gotten the activation energy for it. I made (but didn't complete) some electron songs, and played through some hard video games, but the brain sugars to get through some of the slog and finish open-ended projects are a precious resource, and yet are consumed so readily by my day job and exercise. A better routine is probably to reserve the weekend mornings, at least, for a long stretch of uninterrupted project time.

I did one project, which was to build way of mounting my TV to this wooden pole in my living room without damaging it or other downsides, a project that had been simmering so long that it spanned a TV replacement and then the subsequent deprecation of the mounting bracket for that new TV, which meant that to even begin this absurdly involved project I had to drop unreasonable coin on hard-to-find new-old-stock non-VESA metal mounting thing on eBay, at which point I could start drafting in CAD:

CAD model in strange side-of-road environment
Fantasy


Then you just build it:

Parallelepiped tree sections in strange indoors environment
Reality


Real reality is of course harder because you have to deal with tolerances and bolts don't come in that length and Not Actually Flat and That Operation Seems Dangerous on the table saw, but this one came out rather close to the specifications. I used the approach of printing out 1:1 plans and pasting them to the boards (solid oak boards for extreme! unnecessary! strength!), which I then could use as templates for shaping on the table saw, mostly by eyeballing the lines.

Trees ground up and pressed into planes, then attached horse polymer to tree parallelepipeds, to be further sectioned
template<>


The only major downside of this is that it was hard to get the templates off the nice wood faces at the end—harder than it looks when the YouTube geniuses do it. Would try this again, though.
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Tom 7 (104.132.224.81) – 08.01.17 17:31:38
WOOD try this again, heh heh heh
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Otto (67.1.217.255) – 08.03.17 00:09:20
finish those songs!
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