29th month of 5th era 2020-08-18 (?) · 377 words · 2 min

My friend Nick, after whom my parents probably named me, died.

He was a photographer and videographer and teacher of those skills. My father often says that the first book he wrote, A Vineyard Year, takes most of its worth from Nick's photographs. I think they deserve equal credit, but we agree that the pictures are at times radiant, at times humane, and almost always arresting. They make you love their subject, while the writing makes you weep for it. The book is dedicated to my mother and Nick's wife, who died within a few years of each other. The dedication reads: To Cathy and Paula, who said "You guys should write a book."

I adopted another two tabbies, who I'm currently calling "the girl" and "the boy" until I can overcome my reluctance to re-name things. The use of pets is to give you something to nurture, and they serve that use very well.

I only finished one book, Kate Evans' graphic biography of Rosa Luxemburg.

Rosa does what any sensible, childfree, independent, broody soul should do. She gets herself a cat.

Kate Evans, Red Rosa

I did a fair amount of reading, because I signed up for a seminar with the Brooklyn Institute, Intro to Gun Studies. It turns out I greatly missed seminars. I plan to keep joining them. A substantive conversation, with the ostensible guarantee that all participants are interested in the subject, is deeply relaxing to me.

Another addition to the household: I've finally been able to complete a useful home gym - mats, a barbell, a rack, a bench, and enough weights to deadlift - and start using it. I've been losing weight for the past two months, however slowly. I don't find controlling my diet difficult, but I do find actually losing weight quite difficult. But the nice thing about coming back to lifting after an unplanned break is that you've essentially become a beginner again, and it's much easier to get stronger.

I weigh about 208, and my best guess of my current one-rep max total is around 910, which on a scale I like makes me a 43. We'll see where it goes in a month.

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