On Saturday I predicted hitting a new PR for total steps in a 7-day period on Thursday. I actually hit it yesterday: 151,791. I wound up getting over 18,000 yesterday, 65,500 for the weekend.
And now, I am sore. But I have to give a shout-out to my new Keens, the best hiking shoes I've ever bought, and which I wore for the first time on Saturday's walk.
You can get sunrise info for any location on earth (just not quite as pretty) at Weather Now.
The Washington Post enumerates them:
MYTH NO. 1
The Beatles objected to trading leather outfits for suits and ties.
“In the beginning,” John Lennon told Melody Maker, the British music magazine, in 1970, Brian Epstein, the Beatles’ manager, “. . . put us in neat suits and shirts, and Paul was right behind him. I didn’t dig that, and I used to try to get George to rebel with me.” Lennon later complained to Rolling Stone that by giving up leather for suits, “we sold out.” Soon, the story of the Beatles chafing against Epstein’s directives was part of the lore.
The other Beatles — and sometimes, Lennon himself — remembered things differently. “It was later put around that I betrayed our leather image,” Paul McCartney said in “The Beatles Anthology,” “but, as I recall, I didn’t actually have to drag anyone to the tailors.” George Harrison said that “with black T-shirts, black leather gear and sweaty, we did look like hooligans. . . . We gladly switched into suits to get some more money and some more gigs.” Lennon put it this way to Hit Parader in 1975: “Outside of Liverpool, when we went down South in our leather outfits, the dance hall promoters didn’t really like us. . . . We liked the leather and the jeans but we wanted a good suit, even to wear offstage.” To which he added, “I’ll wear a fucking balloon if somebody’s going to pay me.”
Yeah, that sounds like John.
I believed a couple of the other myths, too.
Back in June 2016, I walked 29 km in one go, and posted "I don't need to do this ever again."
You can see where this is going.
Here's what I did yesterday:
That distance, 32.2 km, is exactly 20 miles. I actually walked about 800 m farther than that because I accidentally paused my Fitbit for a few minutes. Also, the map's big red 32.16 km (which is just short of 20 miles) appears to be a rounding error as you can see from the official total at the top.
This time I walked up the North Branch trail, and I'm proud to say I walked the entire length of the Red Path, from Gompers Park in Chicago up to the Skokie Lagoons Trail in Glencoe. It's shadier, and leafier, and doesn't parallel a working railroad. I mean, you don't meet this guy on the Green Bay trail, for example:
The weather was nearly perfect: 25°C under crystal-clear skies. (I might have done better a few degrees cooler.)
And now for my personal records (PRs):
- Farthest distance in one continuous walk: 32.2 km
- Most steps in one continuous walk: 36,942
- Longest continuous exercise (including biking): 5 hours, 15 minutes
- Most steps in one day: 47,452
- Farthest walked in one day: 41.09 km
- Most active minutes in one day: 520
Depending on the weather, on Thursday I expect to hit another PR: most steps in a 7-day period. Currently that's 147,941 (set February 27th), but the 7 days ending yesterday totaled only 144,651.
My top-5 single-day step records are now:
Also, not for nothing, I am kind of annoyed with myself that I didn't sucker any of my friends into a step challenge this weekend.
That's my guess for how often Chicago's weather looks like this. Today's forecast calls for cloudless 23°C skies and a cool, clear evening.
So, naturally, I'm going to try to walk 30 klicks.
And I'm totally not watching the England/Sweden match that's on right now. Nope.
I didn't have a chance to read these yesterday:
Now I'm off to work. The heat wave of the last few days has finally broken!
Just hours after I posted a Citylab article reciting all the ways the EPA has helped people's lives over the years, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt has resigned:
Mr. Pruitt had been hailed as a hero among conservatives for his zealous deregulation, but he could not overcome the stain of numerous ethics questions about his alleged spending abuses, first-class travel and cozy relationships with lobbyists.
Mr. Pruitt also came under fire for enlisting aides to obtain special favors for him and his family, such as reaching out to the chief executive of Chick-fil-A, Dan T. Cathy, with the intent of helping Mr. Pruitt’s wife, Marlyn, open franchise of the restaurant.
White House advisers for months have implored Mr. Trump to get rid of Mr. Pruitt, including his chief of staff, John F. Kelly. Ultimately, the president grew disillusioned with Mr. Pruitt after a cascade of accusations of impropriety and ethical missteps overshadowed Mr. Pruitt’s policy achievements.
In recent days, people who have spoken with Mr. Trump said he sounds exasperated with his EPA administrator’s negative headlines. “It’s one thing after another with this guy,” one person close to Mr. Trunp quoted the president as saying.
Notice that the scandals didn't matter to Trump; only that the scandals "overshadowed...policy achievments."
So the swampiest critter in Trump's new swamp has quit. This is excellent news. But don't get too excited:
The E.P.A.’s deputy administrator, Andrew Wheeler, a former coal lobbyist who shares Mr. Pruitt’s zeal to dismantle climate change regulations, will act as the agency’s leader until a new administrator is nominated by Mr. Trump and confirmed by the Senate.
So the policies won't actually change; but at least Pruitt finally got fired.
Before Scott Pruitt and friends destroy the Environmental Protection Agency, it's worth remembering the good it has done over the years:
Whatever happens to the EPA, this might be a good time to reflect on its legacy, especially in urban spaces. Though environmentalism conjures “America the Beautiful” images of purple mountains and unspoiled wilderness, much of the EPA’s heaviest lifting in rescuing this nation from its own filth happened in cities.
Long before fracking made tap water ignitable, Cleveland’s Cuyahoga River caught on fire—a lot. The saga is a well-trod part of the EPA’s origin story, but it’s still worth revisiting. A 1969 river fire caught Time’s attention in an article on American sewage systems, headlined in print as “The Cities: The Price of Optimism.”
The EPA also went to great lengths to clean up the Great Lakes. That Time article described Lake Erie as a “cesspool" created by the waste of “Detroit's auto companies, Toledo's steel mills, and the paper plants of Erie, Pa.” More notable city water cleanup projects include the agency’s 1983 project to restore the Chesapeake Bay or the 2002 project to clean up the Hudson River after New York City became the last city to dump sewage at sea in 1992.
Congress passed the Clean Air Act in 1963, but it was the creation of the EPA, combined with amendments to the law in 1970 and 1977, that added regulatory weight to the law’s mandate of reducing air pollution. The agency worked with companies and set limits on air pollutants and emissions from source like chemical plants, utilities and steel mills. Before the EPA, smog enrobed many U.S. cities in a lethal hydrocarbon haze, none more infamously than Los Angeles.
On that last point, I remember L.A. in the 1970s, and I watched it transform. Same here in Chicago. When Republicans whine about regulations hurting business, what they really mean is they want to pass along all the external costs of industry to us, the way they used to. Environmental regulations do cost industry money—because those are the real costs.
So when Scott Pruitt says he wants to reduce the burden on business, realize that he wants to put that burden right back on you.
Large areas of the planet are experiencing record heat this week, as predicted by the anthropogenic climate change hypothesis:
No single record, in isolation, can be attributed to global warming. But collectively, these heat records are consistent with the kind of extremes we expect to see increase in a warming world.
As we reported, Quriyat, Oman, posted the world’s hottest low temperature ever recorded on June 28: 109 degrees (42.6 Celsius).
That's right; in Oman overnight on June 28th, it never got below a potentially lethal temperature.
It's beginning to look a little like Christmas...on Venus.
Writing for NBC News, UT law professor Steve Vladeck reflects on how we celebrate today, and not Constitution Day, as the birthday of our nation:
As Lincoln would have it, Union soldiers weren’t fighting for the separation of powers, the Bill of Rights, or even the supremacy of the federal government (although that theme had often been invoked in the earlier years of the war). Instead, Lincoln suggested they were fighting for liberty from tyrannical government and the equality of all men (and, belatedly, women). This, despite the fact that no provision of the original Constitution reflected such principles (and several were expressly antithetical to them). Our “founding,” in Lincoln’s view, was not when we agreed to the legal system under which we currently operate; it was when we agreed to a more fundamental commitment to everyone’s right to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”
What this choice of birthday suggests is that, whereas we are governed by the Constitution, our national ethos is more than just the sum of the rules of our legal system — which, too many times in American history, have indulged, if not directly perpetuated, inequality and oppression.
We aspire to more because that was our justification for breaking away from the British in the first place. And so, ever since 1870, July 4, and not any other date, has been recognized by Congress as the day on which we celebrate America’s birthday — defining our core national identity as one of egalitarianism, first and foremost.
This government, of the people, by the people, and for the people, shall not perish from the earth.