Wow.  What a video. I have tears running down my face.

I love the class and respect being shown.  It’s what makes me proud to be an American.

Thanks to Los for finding this first.

How I got punked by an early-2000’s era Life Fitness Treadmill.

Having joined the YMCA in the heat of new years resolutions, I found myself relegated to the “older” treadmill.  I punched in a few numbers to start, and selected the “fat burn” setting, enabling the machine to monitor my heart rate and adjust the difficulty (read: the incline) accordingly.

Target heart rate: 128.  Current rate: 121.  Current incline: 0.1.

Let’s get this party started.  I glanced up at the TV in front of me.  A daytime courtroom show.  Awesomely boring, even with subtitles.

Five minutes passed.  Still hadn’t hit the target heart rate. In fact, I was still right at 121.  The machine had adjusted the incline to 8.0 (I assume that’s 8 degrees of incline).  I was starting to feel it.  Back to Judge Joe Brown to pass the time.

Three more minutes passed.  I felt a cramp coming on, which is odd considering this was supposed to be a “low intensity” deal.  I noticed that the incline was on 15.3, and that compared to the machine beside me, I am a mountain climber.  Sweat dropped from the end of my nose, and I had to white-knuckle the heart rate handles to even stay on the machine.  My heart rate, however. was still at 122, which I found strange, being that I could feel my heartbeat in my ears.

It was probably ten more minutes of panting (and 5 more degrees of incline) before I decided to test the heart rate monitors, and let go of them.  It stayed at a steady 122.  The machine was not actually monitoring my heart rate, but some phantom rate!  As tempted as I was to learn how far the machine would go in trying to get to the target, I immediately switched workout type and lowered the incline back to zero, so that I could finish my workout without involving paramedics.

Moral of the story:  the older the machine, the more skeptical you should be of the monitoring capabilities.

Second moral of the story: after you have been abused by the “back in the day” treadmill, don’t try and walk down the steps to the locker room without holding the hand-rail.  You’ll fall down.  People will try not to laugh or make eye contact.  They will be unsuccessful at both.

What a phenomenal speech from a phenomenal man.  Here’s my favorite part, a part that I find universally applicable to any situation where someone or some group is trying to overcome oppression:

“But there is something that I must say to my people, who stand on the warm threshold which leads into the palace of justice: In the process of gaining our rightful place, we must not be guilty of wrongful deeds. Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred. We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. We must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence. Again and again, we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force.”

Thank you, Dr. King.

And now, as we prepare to inaugurate our first President of color, let’s be sure to continue to judge him and all others not by the color of skin, but the content of character.

I’m praying for you, President Obama.  But my faith is not in you.

Proverbs 21:1

Still amazing, no matter how many times I watch it.  A 7’2” Frenchman tries to take a charge from Vince Carter.  Vince, however, jumps OVER him.  I’ll post this to my blog about once per year.