First, exercise. I’ve been pushing a lot harder the last couple of weeks. I’ll do 20-30 minutes of alternating stretches and exercise (squats, sit-ups, push-ups), followed by 45+ minutes on the elliptical. My “best” day of the week was yesterday: I managed 60 minutes, 8200 strides, 1000+ calories burned on the machine. I probably pushed too hard – it hurt when I did a normal workout today. But overall, I feel better, and I sleep better. Those are both good things.
I skipped a day on Wednesday. The body was demanding a short break, and the UP24 was mis-behaving. Taken together, those are good enough reasons – I only managed about a total of 4500 steps that day, which dragged my daily average for the week down to 13,500 steps a day. The week before was nearly at 15K steps daily.
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Turns out that among certain circles, last year’s Hugo winners were seen as an upsetting bunch of diverse and progressive upstarts. So this year, the upset ones decided to mount an outright campaign to return the awards to people they like (which appear to be mostly conservative/libertarian white folk). This, while playing within the rules of the Hugo nominations, has now upset a bunch of the progressive wing of SF&F (authors *and* fandom). Here’s an article on io9 that might bring you up to speed if you care to know more. Me? I liked many of the stories that were nominated last year.
More to the point, there are an unlimited amount of fucks I don’t give about the politics going on. There are lots of wonderful people and authors in SF&F. There are some who are … less wonderful. Some are outright assholes. But, importantly, what I want is good stories. Since I’m not a good enough writer to make them myself, I want other people to write them. I don’t care (much, if at all) about the politics, gender/sex orientation, race, or anything else about an author. What I care about is that the author has one job. ONE JOB. Entertain me. For their sake, I hope there are lots of other people that they can entertain, too, or they won’t eat well.
So this year, for the first time ever, I’ve become a WorldCon Supporting Member. This means that I can vote for the Hugos in the way that’s most important to me: The stories. The stories. If it turns out that the stacking of the nominations means that the stories I like are written by people who dislike diversity and people having sex with some old white guy non-approved person … oh, well – I like the story and it will get my vote. IF, however, the stories suck … it doesn’t matter who wrote them. No vote for you.
If you’re a Science Fiction fan, and want to make a difference in the fiction that’s rewarded by fans, in a way slightly less important than, say, buying the author’s work, then register for this year’s WorldCon – Attending if you can, Supporting if you can’t. And vote. If you want to vote on the politics, fine. If you want to vote on the stories, well, that’s what the Hugo’s are for, and I’d like you to do that. But you can’t make a difference if you don’t register and vote.
Also remember – the most sincere way you can register your love of an author’s work is to support their anti-social writing habit by buying the stories they produce. If you like short fiction, subscribe to those markets (I’m a fan and subscriber of Clarkesworld, myself). If you like novel-length work, buy the books. Support the authors so that they can write more. Hugos are nice on the mantle, but royalty checks can feed the family.
Oh, yeah: As a favor to me, if you do register, remember that I’d like it very much if you voted to bring the WorldCon to Washinton DC in 2017. Just sayin’.
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Last week, I impact tested one of my remote backup disks to the point of failure. So I bought a new 1TB drive, which should arrive tomorrow. I’ll talk soon about how I’m encrypting these backups.
Also coming up, a new table is getting ready to emerge from the woodshop. I’m also putting another new handle on one of our kitchen knives, since the plastic
is crap was cracking.
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No casualties were announced by DoD in the last week. Yay. Ciao!