Fall Colors

Click for big!

From My Living Room 04

Tracklist:

  • Dj le Roi feat. Roland Clark – I get deep (animal trainer rmx)
  • Dry and Bolinger – Say What (Original Mix)
  • Hot Since 82 – Knee Deep In Louise
  • Robosonic – The Edge (Original Mix)
  • Claptone – Wrong (Original Mix)
  • KANT – Get On up (Low Fat Fashion Bootleg)
  • Clouded Judgement – Waiting to Love You (Original Mix)
  • Silverstar – Music Is Magic (DCUP Deep Bitch Remix)
  • Kolombo – Throw Your Hands (Original Mix)
  • Sofia Zlatko, Vijay – Rap a Verse (Vintage Culture Remix)
  • Mihai Popoviciu – Here
  • Francesco Bergomi – $46 Per Night (Original Mix)
  • Sidney Charles – Soul Station (Moog Line)

From My Living Room 03

1.West Coast Tool (Original Mix) – Softcash
2.Believe in My Band (Original Mix) – Raphaell C
3.Music Is Magic (Dcup Deep Bitch Remix) – Silverstar
4.Another One Bites The Dust (Vijay & Sofia Zlatko Remix) – Queen
5.Chordy – Alex Connors
6.Blue monday (Vintage culture rmx) – New Order
7.Get Up – Josh Butler
8.JACK (Tainted Souls & David Alexander Get Jacked Remix) – Breach
9.Square 1 (Original Mix) – Paul Kalkbrenner

From my Living Room 01

I’ve decided to start a little podcast. Mostly so that in many years I can say “oh yeah, I had a podcast back in the day“, but also so that I can commit to practicing this hobby that I’ve been passionate about for almost 2 years now.

The concept, in a nutshell:

From my living room to yours: mixes to vibe to while you go about doing your thing. Sort of like turning the TV on for background noise, except for without so many commercials.

Live From my Living Room

Episode 01 – tracklist:

1.Night Watch (Original Mix) by Audiojack
2.So in love with you (nic fanciulli edit) by DUKE
3.Music is still the Answer by Multifarius
4.The Click (Original Mix) by Breach & Dark Sky
5.Shoot Him Down (Parov Stelar Club Version) by Alice Francis
6.Give It To Me (Original Mix) by Egoism, Max Bett
7.The Main Ingredient (Richard Dinsdale Remix) by Pleasurekraft
8.Get Down (Original Mix) by Tom Bull
9.Rhythm Of The Night (Kill Them With Colour Remix) by Corona
10.One Day (Detroit Swindle Remix)by SOFTWAR
11.Tell me baby (Original Mix)by SHEER
12.Disco Nights (Original Mix) by Vintage Culture
13.My 3 Wishes (Kolombo Remix) by Channel X
14.Mushrooms (Justin Martin Remix) by Marshall Jefferson vs. Noosa Heads)
15.I Don’t Think About You (Original Mix) by JAN BLOMQVIST
16.Snap by H Unit
17.Get Lucky (Radio Edit) by Daft Punk

I hope you enjoy!

My loves

Here are some of the other pictures I took on Kelly and Jovi’s last walk of 2013.

wow

Wow, I haven’t blogged in a long time.

Wow, a lot has happened since the last time I blogged! There are many, many things I could have written about!

Wow, it’s so hard to catch up when I haven’t done this in a long time. Feels like a tremendously big empty canvas ready to be painted, and also having a lot of paint, a lot of imagery but the size of what needs to be tackled is overwhelming and it feels like it’d take forever.

Wow, I know better than that. Just start, and since it’ll take a long time to get there, might as well enjoy the journey.

Wow, I was right! This is kind of fun. I really do need to blog more often.

Wow, what a lame intro. Story time.

Kelly last Saturday, and is now in Costa Rica. She’s chasing her dream, and I’m incredibly proud of her for finding the strength to do so after going through some really trying trials of life. I won’t see her for another 13 days or so.

Kelly and Jovi, Nov 30 2013

Wow, I miss her.

I ran a marathon

Yesterday, I ran in the San Francisco Marathon. What an experience!

But I’ll start telling this story from the beginning, which was the end of 2012. This is when I signed up, marked my calendar and chose a training plan. February 11th was the first of many, many training days.

The training was pretty great. The first week didn’t feel hard, and this probably planted a big seed of confidence early on. The continuing weeks built up in the length of each training run, which in turn means longer duration… and soon enough, I was spending more than an hour running for practice. A few weeks later, it was going to even longer.

Important background detail of things also happening during this time: my BB love had a career change after realizing that some things are more important than others.  She was in need of a student to practice teaching a new subject: Yoga. I sometimes became that student, and I’ve really been enjoying Yoga!

In some styles of Yoga, I find it possible to get a slice of something that I can best describe as ” inner enlightenment”; being in certain poses, focusing on my breathing and with my eyes closed, I become aware of things that can only be seen without seeing. Luckily for me, the Yoga that Kelly likes to teach does this for me, and frequently. However, it probably also helps me that I’m in love with this woman, and her smile alone makes me happy.

Anyway, I’ve been able to find that kind of trance-like state of mind during running. It seems that somewhere after 45 minutes of running, my brain finally lets my body be in auto-pilot to regulate my breath and effort, and maintain a decent form… and then BAM, there I am: a clear mind -and probably a creepy smile to all the people that see me run by.

I would often come home and talk to Kelly about all the things I thought about while I ran, with a catchphrase that I thought about myself: “You know… I was thinking… because I was running, right? And when I run, I think, right? ( wait for acknowledgement> So, I was thinking while I was running that…” and then something would come out. Good ideas, things to talk about, different points of view on things we’d already talked about… stuff that was interesting to talk about, and all of that talking would make me feel closer to her.

I started to love running. How could I not, right? It was an outlet of energy, an excuse to eat uncontrollably, a source of blocks to keep building the relationship that I hold dearest, and also time to be alone, outside and even unplugged at times.

I think that a big part of this training program -and probably that of any program- was that it was sort of a snowball and it builds momentum, and also kind of like an athletic version of How To Eat an Elephant. I made the commitment way ahead of time, and the strategy was simple: I would take 4 bites a week, and the last bite would be a big splash.

SF Marathon 2013 results

The last bite was indeed interesting.

I got to the start line with enough time to walk around and shake of the nervousness. I was about 30th in line for the porta-potties with 25 minutes to go, and I decided that the chance to get locked out of my corral was not worth the little pee I had to make.
The Marathon started, and things got going smoothly. Pretty soon I was feeling pretty good! I was sticking to the pace-keeper for a 3:45 finish along with about a hundred other hopefuls, with plenty of time to take in the gorgeous sights as the sun rose.

About 50 minutes into the whole thing, I ran past one of the aid stations, which had a line of 3 already for the porta-potties, and I thought to myself “If I could just pee already, this would all be even better!”. So it was without shame that I pulled over as soon as I saw a suitable tree to hide behind on the side of the rail, and emptied my bladder.

45 seconds later, I was a new man. I joined the human train of sweaty faces huffin’ and puffin’ into the first hills, and aimed to catch the 3:45 leader who was now out of sight.

The course was fun during the first hour, and running on the Golden Gate Bridge was pretty amazing. I enjoyed the view, the privilege of running on the bridge itself (fun fact: it’s the only time of year that this is legally possible!), the cool ocean breeze and the cheers of encouragement from people that drove by. I also really enjoyed the company of so many people that were doing the same as I was. Being one of thousands, felt kind of like a pack, or a herd. Men and women of all ages, sizes, shapes, religion and origins, all doing the same thing.

SF 2013 Marathon Golden Gate Bridge1

The first half of the San Francisco marathon is quite scenic. One of the last landmarks before going into Golden Gate Park is Baker Beach, and then something more than just the landscape changes: supporting locals come out. Some hold signs, some blast their stereos and dance on the sidewalk, some poke their head from behind their front door as they sip coffee in their bath robes.
To each and every one of those people being unofficial cheer volunteers: I noticed you, and I appreciate you!

The volunteers of the race were phenomenal. Most of them could be classified as either young kids at the water stations, or some sort of gnarly 50+ year old sportin’ leather and chillin’ next to their Harley which was blocking a street or two. At each water station, there were at least 2 super-enthusiastic volunteers who would go out of their way to make sure no one missed water/gatorade if they needed it. I hope these people were properly recognized with more than a souvenir T-shirt, because they were super-duper-cool.

Back to the running story now: that good feeling faded, and by mile 14 I was starting to feel worrying discomforts in my legs. Then reality sunk in: I hadn’t caught up to the 3:45 leader since that pee behind a tree, and there had been a few more pees behind trees since that, too!

Novice wisdom I’d read and already knew about says that you should make sure to not go too hard at the beginning, to pay no attention to all the endorphins and to slow down. Turns out, that’s kind of hard to do! Also and in retrospect, I wasn’t very good at going slower during training either.
So, in the last 10 miles of the Marathon, I worked on finding exactly where that gear is between “boring slow” and “building heat“. If I could re-do my training, I’d make a bigger conscious effort to run in that gear.

Photo Credit: Dinno Kovic

Photo Credit: Dinno Kovic

After running through the Haight as I listened to some trance music for motivation, I was in a mostly uncomfortable place. I took walk breaks when coming into water stations, to make sure I’d gulp everything down and stretch out calves and hamstrings.
This strategy got me to mile 23, and that’s when I felt like it was time to do as they say in the vernacular and dig deep. Another fascinating term about this practice that could also apply: HTFU.

I focused on my breath, my form, and put my headphones away. I knew I could run the last 3 miles, and after doing some fuzzy math I figured that I could still make a sub-4 hour finish… If I started going even a bit faster.
Luckily, there were tons of cheer stations along the south-east portion of the course, and they provided enough distraction from my body complaining and wanting to quit.

Quickly reviewing the recent events, I realized I wasn’t really enjoying myself. My inner dialogue became an argument about whether to finish under a time limit or to enjoy the thing that I’d been excited about for weeks.
That discussion came to an abrupt end when the finish line was within sight. It looked like I was going to finish under 4 hours, and that alone gave me a boost to also enjoy every second of  that moment that lasted about 3 seconds.

After the finish line, I was quickly wrapped in a cool space blanket, accosted by paparazzi and eating and drinking whatever was within reach. It was probably during this time of of exhaustion, accomplishment and enjoyment of delicious snacks that I managed to do what I’ve just now discovered happened at some point: my activity was deleted from my Garmin GPS wristwatch.

But that’s ok, Garmin. You can’t take my marathon away, because I did it! Sure, I would have loved to see the pretty graphs that show my speed, heart rate and elevation gain over time, I don’t need them.

Yesterday, I ran the San Francisco Marathon.

Cooking with Jovi: Alfajores de Maizena

To make Alfajores, you’ll need to get your human to bring home the following:

  • 2 1/2 cups cornstarch ( Maizena Brand)
  • 1 2/3 cups flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 cup butter (two whole sticks!)
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • The rind of one lemon, as small as possible.
  • 1-2 teaspoons caramel liqueur
  • Dulce de Leche

Ingredients

First of all, you’ll be in the kitchen for a while (up to 2 hours if you get distracted by bunny rabbits like I do), so go put on some good music to jam to. Wash your paws while you’re at it.

In a big bowl, beat the butter until creamy. You might have to put it in the microwave for 40 seconds to make it easier to work with, but it gets there after a good while of whisking.
Add the sugar gradually, beating until the mixture feels light and sandy. Add the egg yolks one at a time, beating well after each one goes in. Then beat in the vanilla, lemon rind and liqueur.
Alfajores-Jovi-step-1
Now we add the dry ingredients (the cornstarch, flour, baking powder and salt). Gradually add them to the butter mix one bit at a time, beating until thoroughly combined each time. This is a lot easier than putting in all the dry ingredients at one, and also helps keep the mess down.
Speaking of mess, time to use your paws. Put both of them in the bowl and start grabbing. Work the dough until it feels like it’s all the same one thing.
Roll the dough and flatten it with a rolling pin. I like to use a shot glass to cut the cookies, and do it over and over until the dough runs out.
Alfajores-Jovi-step-2

Spread some butter on the cookie sheets, load them up and the’lly go in the oven at 350 degrees for about15 minutes.
Alfajores-Jovi-step-3
Take them out of the baking sheets as soon as you get them out of the oven, and let them cool down. If you want to leave them in the fridge overnight, that’s ok. Just don’t leave the kitchen a mess before going to bed.

The cookies should be hard, but they do fall apart easily if you mishandle them! So be careful while you spread some Dulce de leche on a cookies and make a sandwich with another one. Then, you roll this on some shredded coconut, which ends up sticking all around because of the Dulce the Leche that squeezed out. You could also help it stick by spreading just a bit extra Dulce de Leche on the side of each “sandwich” before you roll it on the coconut.
Alfajores-Jovi-step-4