July 11, 2015

Y'all shoulda talked me out of this

I'm about to head to Richwood, WV to make another attempt at the Scenic Mountain Triathlon (1/2 mile swim in a very cold river, 17+ bike mostly uphill, 6.2 mile run). I got talked into it by a much younger friend who incidentally has a functioning heart despite the fact that I'm a terrible swimmer with a busted cardio system and have done laps in a pool exactly once in the last few years.

However, to compensate, I got one of those triathlon wetsuits for warmth and buoyancy. It's hard to put on and take off but it does make me float like a cork. I may croak tomorrow but I probably won't drown. I figure if I make it out of the lake I can finish, although it might take a week or so.

Don't wait up.

July 10, 2015

Interesting numbers

This came out a few days back, but I'm just getting around to it. According to the feds, mountaintop removal mining has dropped by over 60 percent since 2008. Here's more from Ken Ward's Coal Tattoo. Ironically, I think the market more than anything else has led to this outcome.

July 08, 2015

The latest

Here's the most recent Front Porch podcast. I had trouble getting worked up over this one, which is fine with me. It's about who gets access to elite educational institutions. I usually work the other end of the street.

July 07, 2015

Not all bad

These are tough times in WV's coalfields, but some positive things are happening there. One bright spot is Williamson in Mingo County, where work on basic issues like health and local food is starting to pay off.

July 05, 2015

Another shoutout

I'd like to give another shoutout today to a book by my friend Julian Martin. A WV native whose life has included adventures from the Peace Corps in Africa to the trackless wilds of Lincoln County WV (just kidding--I live pretty close to those trackless wilds), Julian has recently completed a second memoir titled The Soviet Union and Lincoln County, which is way more about the latter than the former. I'm almost done, but it's one of those books I don't want to run through too fast. You can order it here.

Keep em coming, Julian!