David Cook (davidcook) wrote,
David Cook

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Still not the con report ...

Con report coming soon - in the meantime, some random things.

First, this article from The Age , showing that (some) top-level athletes can eat a diet not entirely dissimilar to mine and still do well (two gold medals counts as "well", and then some).
Quoting :
"Most people do the right thing and eat the right foods," said Bayley, the gold medal resting on his lean stomach. "I just do what I want to do. I eat whatever I want to eat and it seems to be working for me."

Bayley's girlfriend, Katrina Purcell, was asked to name the worst meal she had seen the newly-crowned Olympic champion eat. "Well, he's had steak and chips for dinner, followed by ice-cream," she begins. "It always has to be chocolate and chocolate topping."

(for me it'd be vanilla with strawberry topping, but that's a minor detail :-) )

Meanwhile, coalescent posted an interesting set of questions and answers about reading and viewing habits.

So, how much do you read?

Books - not much these days. I'm not regularly commuting anywhere at the moment, and I don't seem to make time for it otherwise. Earlier in the year, I was spending 30 minutes a day on trains reading, plus occasionally finding time in the evening.
However, I do spend quite a lot of time reading things on the web and on Usenet - news articles, LJs, discussions, forums, newsgroups, etc. At least a couple of hours a day, usually.

What have you been reading this year?

Aha, this is a memory test too. I know I read Sean McMullen's Greatwinter series and the first two of his latest series, and Joel Shepherd's Cassandra Kresnov series, "Wee Free Men" and "Monstrous Regiment" by Terry Pratchett, and more recently the Fall Revolution series by Ken MacLeod. Beyond that, I can't really remember - probably around 25 books in total for the year so far.

How do you find time to read?

These days, mostly by dragging myself away from the computer for a while, which happens rarely. Once I find a job I'm sure there'll be commuting of some sort involved, and I'll read during that at least.

Given two hours a night for a week, how many books would you get through?

As others have said, that depends on the length of the book, and the "density" of the text. Typically I read around 100 pages per hour, maybe 120 for a real page-turner with simple writing, down as low as 20-30 pph for some books (e.g. Gravity's Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon). So, around 3-4 "standard" 400-page novels a week.

(when I was in high school, there was a phase where I was borrowing 10 or so books at a time from the local public library and finishing them in a week - but I was reading in every spare minute I had at the time, and I managed to make a lot of time into spare minutes)

For comparison, here are my answers for film and TV.

So, how much do you watch?

Films - not much these days. Less than once a month, for an average. Again, this is well down on a peak from about 10 years ago, where I saw 75 films one year, up to three or four in some weeks.
TV - this is a tricky question to answer. The TV is on, and in the same room as me, for 5-6 hours a night sometimes - but I'm sitting at the computer, and generally not paying much attention to the TV. It is background noise and vision, most of the time. During the Olympics, I've been paying a little more attention, mainly in the hope that they'll show some fencing (ha !). Actual amount of time paying attention to the TV would be under an hour, most days.

What have you been watching this year?

Films have mostly been SF or Fantasy - last film we saw was King Arthur.
TV has often been Time Team, an archaeology show hosted by Tony Robinson. Otherwise, news or whatever looks interesting when channel-hopping.

How do you find time to watch?

For films, usually by having a free weekend - weeknights never seem to have enough time or energy for movies on top of everything else we do.
TV is, as I said above, a background while doing other things - eating or doing things on my computer, mostly.
When I eventually get wireless networking working properly on this computer and move it out of the lounge, I suspect I'll end up watching hardly any TV unless there's something I specifically want to watch (and I know it's on, and I remember to watch it).


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