Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Running on the beach

This morning we walked down the railway trail to BIOS. There was a free tour, and it was worth exactly what we paid. It started with a 45 minute PowerPoint presentation. I am sorry to say I'm not kidding. I can barely be convinced to sit through ppt presentations when I'm being paid, and was seriously considering leaving.

I haven't ranted for a bit, and I can't stand PowerPoint, so here goes. Almost all ppt presentations are dreadful at best. Especially work ones. People put in too many words, too many levels of indent, stupid graphics, and overdo the slide dress up options. Then they read them verbatim. I'm ready to slit my wrists at that point. That is probably the single fastest way to lose my respect. If there is one piece of software I'd like to see banished from the world it's ppt and all its ilk. This ppt was way too much history, maps that were mostly dots, and photos of people long dead.

The rest of the "tour" wasn't much better. There was only one scientist willing to talk to us, on what sea urchins can teach us about human mortality. This could be dynamite exciting, but it just died and lay there on the floor. I will be writing a long feedback note to them. The tour guide was nice, and enthusiastic, but I think he was following a script. Gah.

Shortly after I headed out for a run in perfect running weather. Warm and sunny. Love it. I ran past the beach and down to the tip of the island, then looped back to the beach. I took my shoes off and ran back and forth a few times. So nice. I let my feet dry, brushed off most of the sand, and ran some more, this time through the golf course and some ocean front properties.

I was reminded of my buddy Alan, of "I want to schedule my work the way most people schedule their vacations" fame. This when he was running, and I was not. Now I do, and he can't unless bears are chasing him. He was talking about how it was nice to run for a bit, walk to look at something, then run to the next thing to look at. That's exactly what I was doing, checking stuff out.

I was gone about an hour and a half, then fell into the pool when I got back. The rest of the day was sitting in the sun, reading, blogging, slowly drying off. That's sort of weird, here. In Calgary one dries off in a few minutes from being totally wet. An hour later I was still pretty damp and the sun was behind a big cloud.

Lamb burgers last night. Kebabs tonight, they were so yummy we had to do them again. With couscous, salad, and of course, wine. I could seriously get used to this.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad


  1. It sounds like you are having a great time - even with the pathetic power point presentation. I haven't had to endure too much powerpoint. It was only just starting to get big when I finished University, and then I worked in a career that was pretty free of it.

  2. I am guilty of using plenty of ppt (I use Keynote. You know I'm a Mac person), and I try my darndest to NOT do all of the things you mention. I don't read slides, I use minimal words, not odd graphics (except for effect, or jokes. I like bad jokes and cartoons. I am trying to entertain as well as teach). So I completely agree with you.

    Really? You ran on the beach? Where are you? No pix? You'd better not be in SoCal!

  3. Clearly you have not been to one of Kris' apparently exciting and riveting ppt presentations. ;) He claims that the only thing he does which you may not approve is the use of stupid graphics.

    Hearing you run on the beach sounds so awesome...I'm so gonna do it in Maui even tho one of my running buddies thinks I might twist and ankle. Thoughts? Tips on running on the beach?

  4. Unfortunately, I am in a career where it seems that people can't talk in front of a group without PowerPoint.
    We ARE having a great time, but have to pack today. Sigh.

  5. I did run on the beach, and I'm not on SoCal. It was wonderful. Glad to hear you are a responsible user of ppt and it's ilk.

  6. Oh, and some teaser pix are on Facebook, full set on blog when I get home.

  7. Yes it is, we have been happily surprised by food here. We had been led to believe that it was so expensive that you had to hock the education of your first born to buy a coffee. Not that bad.

  8. "He claims." that tells me everything I need to know. Sorry Kris, I admit the possibility that you are the most effective presenter in the world now that Steve Jobs is dead, but to put it tactfully, that's not the place to bet the farm.

    Running on the beach is amazing, particularly if you are hot and sweaty. If I hadn't had a camera in my pocket I'd have gone right into the water. Not sure what running in salty shorts would be like, but how bad could it be?

    Running on sand is a great way to make sure you are running right. You can calibrate the hardness do the surface be pending on how wet the sand is.

  9. You have no idea how jealous I am of your day. Sounds wonderful.

    And I have recently made peace with powerpoint. Mostly because I found this website called "bored at work" and it has great works of fiction (things like Animal Farm) set up to look like generic corporate powerpoint presentations, so if someone comes up to your desk while you are reading, it looks like you're working.

    Kind of cool.

  10. I wish I had known about that bored at work 2 months ago. Peace with PowerPoint? Sounds vaguely treasonous to me.

  11. At least you ended the awful pp presentation with a run on the beach. That was one of my favorite things to do in Hawaii...can't believe that was over a month ago. Sigh...

  12. I only wish that beach had been longer. I now remember the 3 K long beach in Nova Scotia with even more longing than before. First it's a great beach anyways, but 3 Kilometers long!!! ( 1.86 miles).


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