I Am Big Brother

first_imgI started wearing one of those fitness trackers recently—the kind of watch that monitors the number of steps you take in a day, keeps track of your various workouts and monitors your sleep patterns. I’m admittedly late to the game with these wearable fitness trackers, as it seems like every grandma in the grocery store is checking her Fitbit for a step count. I pride myself on being a late adopter to most technology, jumping on the bandwagon just as the technical trend is about to be usurped by something better. See my Napster account and state of the art VHS/TV combo as proof. But when I finally do adopt yesterday’s hot trend, I go all in. It took me a long time to acquiesce to Strava, but now I can’t imagine taking a ride without turning it on. If I’m not going for KOM, then what’s the point? So, I’ve been geeking out on this fitness tracker, digging into all of the data that it’s been collecting on me throughout each day. I’ve learned that I don’t walk nearly as much as I should. I’m lucky to reach half of my 10,000-step goal on any given day, largely because I work from home and going back and forth between the fridge and the couch doesn’t add up to a lot of steps. I’ve learned that swimming for 30 minutes and running for 30 minutes burn about the same amount of calories. I’ve learned that there’s no reason for me to be tired every day, because I actually get way more deep sleep than the average adult. It’s fun to get nerdy on all the data these fitness trackers can mine from your day, but much like Strava, there’s a dark side. It’s turning every aspect of my life into a competition. I find myself taking the long way to the refrigerator in order to log more steps than I logged yesterday. I want that digital badge the fitness tracker’s app sends me when I finally meet my step goal. I hear it’s amazing. I can take a look at a week’s worth of sleep and eliminate the factors that led to a restless night in bed. Now I know that when I have three cocktails at 10pm, I get much less deep sleep. I want that deep sleep badge, so I cut out the cocktails. This is what you’re supposed to do with a fitness tracker. Analyze the data and make adjustments to be the best version of yourself. On the surface, this sort of competition is good. The fitness tracker is making me walk more. Rumor has it that walking is healthy. But it’s also exhausting. Not the actual walking, but the caring about the walking. That’s what’s exhausting. Giving a shit. Giving every aspect of your life a goal, from your sleep to the number of bowel movements you have in a day, then obsessing over hitting those goals…that’s exhausting and I’d argue pretty unhealthy. Granted, that obsession is all on me. I’m the one that’s turning every aspect of my day into a competition. That’s a my bad situation, but the fitness tracking industry is definitely an enabler here. Still, I dig having all that data at my disposal. Although I feel there’s an aspect to these wearables that’s missing. They can count calories and log steps and measure heart rate, but they can’t quantify stoke. That feeling you get before going over a big drop on a mountain bike, or riding the first chair on a ski lift, or waxing your board on the beach before hitting the water…that combination of fear, excitement and anticipation. Imagine a wearable that tracks the number of times you’re stoked in a day. That’s a better measurement of a healthy life. Show me a tracker that can do that, and I’ll happily fork over my hard-earned money for it. Eventually. Just before it’s being replaced by something better.last_img read more

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(Updated) Wellington City Council forum: Jim Valentine

first_img2. What is the main reason why you are running for Wellington City Council?Valentine: I suppose there are many reasons I am running for city council. Mainly, I way to make a better community for all the people of this city – starting with their health, safety and welfare.3. Losing businesses is an ongoing concern to the community of Wellington. What do you as a city council member believe you can do to stop the exodus and enhance business growth?Valentine: No one can stop businesses from closing in Wellington. I don’t really feel the term exodus is the applicable word to be used here.People supporting local business is the only way to keep local businesses open. Our local news media: Channel 55, the city paper, and Newscow can be very helpful in this area along with the Chamber of Commerce.Basically what it boils down to is we all have to strive to do a better job of supporting our local business. When I was on the council, I tried very hard to point out the businesses in Wellington at least once or twice a month – letting people know who they were and what they had to offer our community. I will and have continued to do so – even to this day.4. The current Wellington City Council is studying ways to supply water to oil companies. What is your position on the matter?Valentine: Given the current situation with the lack of rain were dealing with right now, I think it’s time to weigh our options We have to be very careful how much water is sold to them.5. Staying with water, because of the current drought, the water level is low at the Wellington City Lake. Do you favor other alternative water sourcing, or do you believe we should remain status quo on our water resources? Also, will you ever be in favor of water rationing?Valentine: Bottom line you can drink water, but it’s a little hard to to swallow cash no matter how much it is.6. The total assessed valuation in Wellington went down in 2012, but may remain constant or improve with the inclusion of Wal-Mart on the tax roll in 2013. However, this may not be the case in the next four years. If Wellington has a lower assessed value as the previous year, how would you as a council member respond to the lack of tax revenue for the municipality?Valentine: That is an iffy question. None of us really know how we really would respond until we actually see which way the figures are going. No one has a crystal ball.7. Many believe Wellington has trouble promoting itself to outsiders. Do you believe as a tax entity, the city should initiate various promotional programs and if so what would you think they should be?Valentine: You can spend, spend, spend on promoting our city, but in the end it comes right back to the people of our city promoting our city — i.e. mentioning Wellington to other people when they are in their city. You can’t put a price on word of mouth.8. Do you believe in tax incentives to lure in private business? If so or not, please explain.Valentine: Tax incentives were great at one time, but given the current economic conditions, one should be very careful at picking and choosing what business actually will help this city.We do not need repetition. It only hurts the existing businesses that are actually here.We need a business that employees a lot of people that builds something that is marketable – not only to this state – but this county. We need more than aircraft and farming and railroading – not that these are not a Godsend. But we need more diversity and with diversity comes jobs and with jobs comes people making money and spending money here locally.9. The Wellington utility rates continue to be a concern to many citizens, especially the fuel adjustment rates. Do you believe they are reasonable and in line with other communities? Should the city make a change in the way it handles utilities? Valentine: I do not have a comparison figure from other cities to go on. Do I believe they are reasonable? I feel we should be open to new options if there are any and take a close look at them.I, at this point in time , have no idea of any other way the city could change the handling of its utilities. WE really have no more control over our electric billing than we do gas at the pump. The choice we have is to live with or live without — neither of which is a good answer.10. What would you say is Wellington’s biggest concern over the next four years?Valentine: Wellington’s biggest concern to me is the decline in our population. The economy is not good and the outlook is not favorable for the entire county as a whole.There are no short cuts to  success. We have got to get a major manufacturing base established here, one that is wanted and one that is needed. Quite frankly, four years is too far down the road. Things need to be happening now. by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — Jim Valentine is a Wellington City Council challenger and former city councilman running for one of six “at large” positions on the newly restructured board.Registered voters within the Wellington city limits can vote in this race which will have 15 candidates on the ballot. The top three vote-getters will receive four-year terms. The second three will receive two-year terms.Voters can vote for up to six candidates. They can vote for one candidate, two candidates, three, four, five or six – but nothing more.The city/school election will be held on Tuesday, April 2. Polls open at 7 a.m. and close at 7 p.m. at the Raymond Frye Complex. People can also advance vote at the Sumner County Clerk’s office.The following is a list of questions submitted to Valentine.1. Tell us about yourself.Valentine: I am 64 years old. I spent seven years in the U.S. Army and in the 101st Airborne Division and 69th Infantry Brigade. I was a Sgt. E5 Infantry Platoon and squad leader in the U.S. and in Vietnam.I have been a business owner for 35 years as a barber stylist at The Barbery. I am lifetime resident of Wellington. Close Forgot password? Please put in your email: Send me my password! Close message Login This blog post All blog posts Subscribe to this blog post’s comments through… RSS Feed Subscribe via email Subscribe Subscribe to this blog’s comments through… RSS Feed Subscribe via email Subscribe Follow the discussion Comments Logging you in… Close Login to IntenseDebate Or create an account Username or Email: Password: Forgot login? Cancel Login Close WordPress.com Username or Email: Password: Lost your password? Cancel Login Dashboard | Edit profile | Logout Logged in as Admin Options Disable comments for this page Save Settings You are about to flag this comment as being inappropriate. Please explain why you are flagging this comment in the text box below and submit your report. 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