Why I Climb - Plodding toward Creativity

I started rock climbing because it freed me from the monotony of training for sprint kayak. Climbing on rock is athletic and inspiring, and takes you to beautiful places. It can also be dangerous. Your decisions matter when you're hanging from tired fingers far off the ground. The danger and »

Book: The Measure of a Mountain

Last Spring, while preparing for my attempt on the Rainier Infinity Loop, I bought two books on Mt Rainier... and failed to read either of them. My invite to that adventure had come out of nowhere; I knew nothing about the park, the area, the mountain or its history, and »

Trip Report from the Other World

I recently ingested psilocybin mushrooms for the first time in my life, a decision that would have shocked and disappointed the straight-edged sprint kayaker I used to be. And I'm alive! I'm sane!My goal was to have some sort of spiritual experience; or, more accurately, to figure out how »

Creative Fear at Red Rocks

I write software for fun and profit, and writing great software - like all creative work - requires long stretches of deep thought. I don't know where creative insights come from, but two things are clear to me about how to find them:You can study and obsess over a »

Goals for the Truly Insane

I want to expand on the last piece I wrote on courage and goals, and talk about some of the traps that endurance racing can set for athletes looking to push their limits. That piece makes the case that aggressive goals are important because they force your ego to adapt, »

On Courage and Goals

This post is about courage and failure, and how to think about success or failure when the objective is difficult. Aaron Steele's 2014 Leadville 100 race report is one of the more honest and inspiring race reports I've read. Leadville is a brutal, high altitude 100 mile running race in »

Seth Godin and Clear Thinking

Tim Ferriss's interview of Seth Godin was stunning. It made me feel the way I did at my first TED conference, at 16 in Monterey - "Why didn't anyone tell me that it was okay to think this way?" Seth thinks about the world, his mission and his »

Cascalog + Hadoop Counters, Finally!

I've just merged a Cascalog pull request of mine that gives Cascalog operations access to the statistics that Cascading generates at the end of each job. I've also added global inc! and inc-by! functions that let you increment custom Hadoop counters from within your functions and operations without having to »

Wyoming Rando Roundup, Pt 2

This is my race report from the 2015 Jackson Hole skimo race, the second of two ski mountaineering races I completed this weekend. (Here's my report from yesterday's race at Grand Targhee.) Jackson was going to be bigger and badder than Targhee, no question. I knew that I'd be hucking »

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