Biking, continued fractions, and the NFL labor agreement

Hello on Wednesday July 20th, how is everyone getting along. Good, I hope. We are now one month into the summer season. I am enjoying it now while it is hot, soon we will have milder temperatures again.

This morning I went for a 17 mile bike ride on the Poudre River Trail. From 83rd avenue to the Island Grove arena. It is really nice this time of year with some of the trail shaded. The river has receded and there were only a couple of places with standing water on the path. I saw a squirrel, a toad, a white egret, several pelicans, and lots of birds.

I have been studying continued fractions in trying to solve problem 66 on project Euler. It doesn’t seem like anything too complicated, I just want to implement a python function to calculate a continued fraction and go from there. If I give the function a value, like the square root of 23, I want it to return a list of the values in the decimal portion of the number, so it would be 4. then a list of numbers. I think this will go a ways in solving that problem as well as some of the other project Euler problems. That’s my approach for now, maybe I’ll refine it later.

Observing recent news reports on the NFL labor negotiations, it seems as though an agreement may be near. Each side is said to have won on some points, with a new $1 billion dollar benefits agreement for retired players being the high point. With all the recent research linking football players to brain injuries, that is a much needed part of the agreement. There will also be restriction on the players workouts, with player safety being the main concern. The owners will probably get a larger share of the overall revenue, the players are said to be negotiating for 46 – 48 percent, down from the 50/50 agreement that has expired. Rookies will also get smaller paychecks, about half of what some had signed for in the 2010 season.

Well, that’s all for now. I am not meeting the daily goal for 750words.com, today only three hundred and sixty – nine words.

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7 things to do instead of following pro football this year.

So what’s up with the NFL lockout? Are the players and owners any closer to an agreement? It has been going on now for over two months, and I don’t know if either side is any closer to the kind of understanding necessary for the 2011 season to be played. Anyway, I hope and pray that they resolve the situation soon. After all, what could the owners possibly want that they have not had up until now? New stadiums, a great fan base, with most of the games being sold out each week. It seems as thought the owners have enough money to contract with a few star players, several millions of dollars each season. One thing that had been mentioned about the owners was free agency for every player regardless of their situation – after three years of playing with a team. I don’t think that is such a bad idea, why don’t they try to get it through negotiations.

Americans are just too hooked on the NFL. It is a part of our culture to watch a football game on Sunday afternoon, and root for our favorite team. A great American pastime. What will all the fans do without football? Let’s try to think of some things we might be able to do instead of watch football on Sunday afternoon:

  1. Get outdoors and walk for 30 or more minutes. Exercise is great for the cardiovascular system, increases mental stability and it is always good to be close to God’s creation. Weather it be watching birds, the weather, the trees, the lawns or whatever you see in the great outdoors.
  2. You could go for a bicycle ride. Most metropolitan areas have bike trails that are to be utilized by you and me. Get that bicycle out and air up the tires, and get a workout.
  3. Learn to cook. Spend some time in the kitchen and bake some cookies. If you are more adventuresome, try a new recipe. This can be a wonderful way to do something enjoyable and have some fun too.
  4. Clean house. Every Sunday would be a great time to get your weekly cleaning done. Dust off the furniture, clean the light fixtures, then get out your vacuum cleaner and clean the carpets. It is good for a carpet to be vacuumed often. Next you may want to give your kitchen a clean over. Wash and dry all dishes and utensils in the sink, clean the sink, clean the counters, spot clean the top of the stove, mop the floor, organize the refrigerator, dust off the top of the refrigerator. There are all kinds of things to clean in a kitchen, and in a home in general.
  5. Just relax and spend your time doing something you enjoy. Reading magazines or a good book, taking a nap, spending quality time with your spouse or loved one. Utilize the telephone to call someone in your family, near or far.
  6. Get interested in another sport. Fall is for baseball. MLB has it’s play-offs and World Series in September and October. Maybe your area has a pro baseball team you can follow. Baseball is not all that boring. There is a lot going on during a game. The pitching and batting are the focus of a game. The pitcher throws the ball, tries to get the batter to strike out. He may throw a fastball, curve ball, splitter, slider, or a knuckle ball. The batter has practiced hitting these kinds of pitches. His goal is to get a base hit and get on base. Anything more is icing on the cake. There is the occasional home run, home run with runners on base, and once in a great while a grand slam – a home run with the bases loaded.
  7. Follow college football. This can be more exciting than the pro-football season. College fans are very loyal and get real excited about their team. The plays are just as exciting as pro ball. There are the awesome catches, fabulous runs, and great tackles. There is also the Heisman trophy that is awarded to the most outstanding college football player. Some people argue that college football should have a play-off system like it’s pro counterpart. I think the bowl games and voting system is just fine for college football and nothing should change.

What ever you decide to do instead of follow pro football this year, enjoy yourself and stay safe in all that you do.

Loss of a great One

May the Lord God be with the Cincinnati Bengals today. He was much too young to leave us. The NFL seems to have quite an incidence of mishaps. My motto is ‘Moderation’.