The North Face Men’s Dominant TriClimate

Finally, it’s coldish and there is snow here in Minnesota, which was a sudden reminder that I need a new winter coat. My old orange and navy blue Columbia Fire Ridge served me well for many years, well since seventh grade to be exact (do the math). The only problems with it are it’s now too small for me, two years ago I accidentally punctured it while running near a fence (a long story but I did repair the hole with some superglue), and it doesn’t have Omni-Tech (breathable waterproofing, similar to Gore-Tex.).

I initially wanted a Columbia Titanium series jacket but not a single store in our area handles the good Titanium jackets. There are several cheaper Titanium jackets which are, well, inferior. So we found ourselves in REI and they have tons of The North Face apparel and some Columbia stuff too, but not the good Titanium jackets. They have a 400 USD Deceptacon TriClimate jacket which is top of the line for what REI carries. There are about 5 or so better jackets produced by The North Face. There is also a 280 USD Vortex TriClimate jacket but it doesn’t fit right, for some reason the arm length on the right side is too short.

Today we went to a new Sports Authority which opened in EP. They have this Dominate TriClimate jacket which is made by The North Face and it is 300 USD list price but on sale for 250 USD. It fits correctly as did the Deceptacon and is much more moderately priced so I ended up with it. I haven’t really tested it yet but will soon. The only thing I can’t figure out is why The North Face doesn’t acknowledge its existence for a men’s variety. It is supposedly a women’s jacket name so then I tried to find out what it really was and why it was miss marketed. Sports Authority doesn’t have the jacket for men or women on its website so I’m back to square one. It appears to be directly based off of the Deceptacon but without the 200 USD liner (“Soft Shell”) that it has, and not as many internal pockets. But, all the other vitals are there, waterproof via HyVent (works the same as Omni-Tech/Gore-Tex) and the correct size.

-John Havlik

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StatTraq: WordPress Stats Plug-In

Ok so I’ve installed a nice little page stats plug-in for WordPress to mainly explore whom from my area are visiting my blog and which pages. This was mainly to see the impact of having several links to my blog from the CHS Podcast website. Strange things have appeared such as Yahoo, Google, and MSN search engine bots visit very frequently, approximately three times a day. To me this seems very odd but at least I know that my site is being indexed. It is amusing to see some of the search terms people use and some how make it to my site. My favorite has to be the Google search for “healthy socks” that some how linked to me. It is also interesting that there is a lynx user that has visited my site twice.

-John Havlik

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I’ve Been Accepted

Well I was wondering when I’d receive information from the U of M TC. I found a postcard that they sent me a few weeks ago and went online and checked out my application status. To my surprise (Well I knew I’d get accepted, it was just a matter of time.) I was greeted with this message:

Congratulations! You have been admitted to the Institute of Technology. A letter was mailed on November 23, 2005 with additional information and your next steps.

So it looks like I’ll be attending the U of M TC next fall. I haven’t recieved that letter yet though.

-John Havlik

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Mtekktux: Up, Running, and Self Sufficient

Well today I took the time to change where my cable modem and wireless router plug into. Specifically they are now plugged into the UPS of my server now instead of my computer’s UPS. I also gave up on getting FTP to work for right now and instead shared through samba the www root on mtekktux, which is nicer since I can work fully from within the server while on my desktop, thumbnail images work and everything.

The dog broke our vacuum cleaner, well more specifically his hair did. While I was cleaning out near where my desktop’s UPS is the vacuum quit, I tried different outlets and just about everything. The weird thing is that I didn’t get any burning electric motor smell which usually occurs when some electrical device stops working.

-John Havlik

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Water and Socks

Water

Cold, heavy, squishy, slippery, wet, replenishing, and refreshing water is a runner’s friend and foe. It is a vital friend after a race or long run. During the hottest of days it’s the friend that helps one keep running. On the coldest days it helps keep a runner healthy and warm. Yet during a race water can be a runner’s greatest foe. Falling from the sky in various forms cooling a runner past comfort, adding the burden of more weight to increasing fatigue. Water collecting in the low lands on the course creates another obstacle for the runner to overcome.

Socks

Warm, dry, light, wicking, tight, comfortable and cool socks are essential tools for any successful runner. For a runner socks are the first defense against Mother Nature’s wrath. On the hottest days of the summer they keep one’s feet cool, and on the coldest days of the fall and winter they keep one’s feet warm. During the wettest of days socks keep a runner’s feet dry. They tightly cradle one’s foot reducing the chance for the development of blisters and enhancing comfort while racing.

-John Havlik

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