Sunday, September 13, 2009

Still there's more...

After my most consistent week of running (18 miles) I ran my most challenging route so far this morning (above). Just 3.5 miles, but with a long uphill stretch on Ironworks Rd. I've been reading Brendan Manning's book "Ruthless Trust" as a morning devotional, and today I realized that, while my running has been increasing in quality and duration, I've never really dedicated a run to the Lord. I guess I'm so "cliche-averse" I miss out on lots of obvious opportunities like that. Anyway, I chose to do so this morning, and that's what inspired me to break off of my standard 3-mile neighborhood run. I didn't do anything too fancy, just kept thanking God for things along the way. This seemed to keep me focused on this "dedication" and somewhere along the way I found myself adapting Todd Rundgren's catchy song "International Feel" with new lyrics that expressed gratitude and amazement. His refrain "Still there's more..." lent itself nicely to my words (I'll have to jot them down later, although they aren't exactly poetry). The result of this bit of discipline, combined with the perfect running weather -- cool, damp and bright -- was a wonderfully visual experience with nature bursting into sight and drawing my eyes down long vistas and into green pockets I'd never noticed before. And over it all, the orb of the sky seemed to gaze down and take notice of the same details as I did, affirming them with extra light. People on my runs are always notable, like gravity wells to a passing asteroid. As I've taken to the same streets over and over, I've started to recognize a few other old shufflers like myself, some real runners and a number of dog walkers. We exchange that little flick of the fingers and a mumbled "namaste" (we actually say "morning" but the meaning is the same) that passes for a greeting when you are slightly winded. Anyway, just as I was nearing home and rounding the last curve from Sunset to Jordan Ave. I saw a man come out of his house with his schnauzer and his little plastic collection bag and he looked up and me and said, "Keep up the good work." I smiled and said thanks. Nothing like a little blessing to end a perfect run.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Transcript Gibberish

I needed a long interview transcribed, so I decided to run it through speech recognition software. I assumed it wouldn't be perfect, but at least I'd have a kind of baseline of the interview and I could correct the parts I wanted to use a lot more easily than typing the whole thing up -- or so I thought. The gibberish that resulted from the "transcription" was so alien to the actual speech that it was completely useless for my purposes, but it made a kind of weird poetry. Here's a "verbatim" paragraph:

[Speaker 0] he has to do that the students you can see the highlight of my way to Italy three I ran into me you think another thing about it the glass it was at the end the stories I can only announced Wednesday because that way well in my mind how security has been hit by one they called the hearing that is the Army with Jackson and Grant D Haren there's not a scary movie that is going to be their commercials are secure you know I think is so corrupt but I think the fact is there like if you treat it as going beyond that yes and bad with seventeen percent it's creepy a lot of them will be when you see it actually kind of oh it was pretty scared let me add one thing that yanked my inner light the once pristine and I know with my son yesterday an hour there is actually cheaper it's interesting which was a progression for me according to Cannon finally starting to laugh and scary movies because the technology is