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NBA playoffs Thu, Jul 22, 2021
I started watching NBA basketball a few years ago.  More specifically, I started watching the playoffs.  Even more specifically, I sporadically watch the last few rounds of the conference playoffs, then watch the finales religiously.  I skip through the regular season stuff (82 games?!) and just watch the good stuff. 

And I have to say, I really like the 7-game series (a.k.a. best-of-4) format.  Other sports and leagues do this too, so it's not NBA-specific.  As opposed to the NFL playoffs or even the NCAA basketball tournament, having multiple games gives everyone a chance to have an off day without ending their entire season.  It allows for home-court advantage to help and hurt (games are played alternately at both teams' locations).  The refs can make or miss some big calls and not ruin the entire series.  It even allows a little space for injury:  A player sidelined with a muscle strain in one game might come back for a later game.  I feel like if your team can't beat an opposing team in 7 games, you don't deserve to move on.  It's thorough and it's fair. 

Another thing I noticed is a comment on basketball in general:  Basketball is a very balanced sport.  Every player plays both offense and defense.  Every player uses the same general skills to play -- dribbling, passing, shooting, blocking, etc.  Sure, some players tend to do more of the shooting, while other players tend to do more of the blocking.  But there are no single-purpose players on the court; no punters or goalies or designated hitters.  And everyone is expected to be pretty good at all of them -- so much so that certain players' star status is questioned if they're bad at one of those fundamental skills.  Sure, you have to be 6'6" to get on the team, but at least you don't only do one thing. #sports

3116 Mon, Jul 12, 2021
I feel like as a project manager there's a fine line between planning a tight schedule and challenging your team to do more than they think is possible in the allotted time vs. planning poorly and getting mad when your team can't meet your ridiculous timeframe.

Vegetarian diet experiment Fri, Jul 09, 2021
I've had high cholesterol since I was a teenager, and I've tried all kinds of things to lower it.  Everything from the standard "diet and exercise" (thanks doc, I'm glad I paid for that advice) to pills.  Pills work great, but most doctors are hesitant to prescribe them to a person who'll likely be taking them for 50 or more years.  A recent doctor visit presented me with the motivation to try something new:  Become a vegetarian.  I've heard that advice anecdotally from people who think cholesterol only comes from the food you eat (side note:  it doesn't; 80% of the cholesterol in your body comes from your own goddamn body), but I've never taken the plunge.  So I decided to conduct an experiment that would either make me a permanent vegetarian, or prove people wrong so I never have to have this stupid conversation again. 

The first step was to figure out what meals I could eat in place of meat.  It took a little effort, but I found that it's less of a "replace [meat] with [vegetable]" and more of a "replace [meaty meal] with [veg+carb meal]".  Stir-fry meals are essential.  Sometimes tofu (fried and diced) was involved to add a little bulk to the meal, but the idea that you would simply replace a piece of chicken with a piece of tofu is ludicrous.  Final note:  pizza and pasta are vegetarian, so I ate a lot of those. 

I decided to give it a solid six month trial.  One month is way too short (I think) to produce any type of biological change, and three months sounded short as well.  During these six months, I never ate a single piece of animal flesh, and the only animal "product" I consumed was dairy -- not much milk or eggs, but holy hell lots of cheese. 

Eating at restaurants was a little bit of a challenge, but not nearly as much as it likely was 20 or so years ago.  Every place on earth has a vegetarian option.  It's not hard to find.  But don't come at me with some dumbass salad -- I'm a vegetarian, not a rabbit.  It's not that I dislike salads, it's just kind of the most basic vegetarian thing in existence, and it gets old quick. 

One of my biggest pet peeves is catering to other people's absurd preferences and dietary restrictions, so I made sure people didn't cater to mine.  This was sometimes difficult because people are nice.  It helps that I'm totally not a foodie; I'll literally eat snacks and call it a meal.  Regardless, some people went out of their way and made fantastic vegetarian dishes, which was pretty cool. 

Now for the results.  I got a blood test before I started, and then six months later.  My total cholesterol ... stayed almost exactly the same.  The ratio stayed almost exactly the same.  My triglycerides went up, possibly because of all the carbs I was eating. 

In short, a total failure.  Or at least that's what it felt like when I got the results.  But it was an experiment, so there's really no failure or success, just a result.  Either way the result was kind of disappointing, not because I necessarily wanted to be a vegetarian for the rest of my life (which wouldn't be terrible), but because yet another cholesterol-lowering thing produced exactly zero results.  Oh well. #food

Creative philosophy Thu, Jul 01, 2021
I realized my philosophy when creating things is this: 
  1. Make it work.  It doesn't have to be pretty.  There's a lot of trial and error.  Keep trying things until something works.
  2. Make it good.  Clean it up.  Polish the rough edges.  Apply a fresh coat of paint.
  3. Make it right.  Use best practices.  Remember lessons learned.  Don't reinvent the wheel.
I should probably switch the order around, but it is what it is.

Snakebite deaths Thu, Jul 01, 2021
I heard this statistic the other day, and I still can't believe it:  Somewhere around 100,000 people die every year from snake bites.  That's easily more than any other animal on earth, if you ignore things that simply spread disease like mosquitoes and whatnot.  Snakes kill directly by biting and "envenoming".  People are scared of shark attacks and crocodiles.  But snakes kill orders of magnitude more people than pretty much everything else combined. #nature