Tuesday, February 28, 2006


Inscrutable Skiing Scruples

You may have noticed that the USA's alpine skiers didn't do so well in the recent Olympics. I've got a theory about that. A fair portion, nay a majority, of the worthwhile skiing areas in the States is not coastal, but significantly inland, sheltered behind coastal ranges. Consequently, they receive lighter, drier snow, not Cascade Concrete or the Atlantic equivalent. Kids who grow up skiing at these areas live for powder days, as evidenced by the local paper reporting that nearly 1 in 6 students were absent from the local high school following "the storm of the year." Their health was reportedly "going downhill." Contrast this ethic with the inscrutable scruples of ski racing where
Course workers pulled an all-nighter to prepare the Giant Slalom course for yesterday's race, trying to get rid of all the powder and scrape it down to that bulletproof ice that only a ski racer could love.
Not only are the majority of American ski areas blessed with conditions imperfect for ski racing, but also they are culturally skewed against conditions conducive for racing.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006


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Monday, February 13, 2006


Yup, It's a Yepp

About six months ago I broke down and bought a digital audio player after six months or better of looking for the correct device and price. I settled on a Samsung Yepp, specifically a YP-MT6Z, for which I paid $117 including cheap skate shipping at futureusa.com, refurbished. It's a 1 GB flash based player of mp3s, oggs, etc, as well as an FM receiver and mp3 encoder. In all ways but looks and naming I believe it excels similar devices on the market for value.

In general I've been very pleased with the device.

I am displeased with the device in a few ways.

I can't comment on the quality of the earbuds that come with the device as they fell victim to my bike's spokes early. Neither can I comment on the player's ability to play Windows Media files or to interoperate with any form of music service; I indemnify my bike for my ignorance in the latter, however.

All the same, I recommend the device if you're in the market for flashed based MP3/Ogg player and aren't addicted to iTunes.

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