temperature today never got above 30°F which meant there would be no melting. i was hoping to move the motorcycle to belmont but the bike cover was coated in a layer of ice and there was still a lot of slippery snow clumps on the road. so instead i rode the bicycle, which in hindsight was actually more dangerous, since most bike lanes are covered in snow and ice, meaning i end up riding further out in the street. i did make the switch to my cargo bike, which has a lower center of gravity and bigger wheels.

every ride to belmont is an opportunity to experiment with yet another new way to mount my SJ4000 action camera. today, i fastened the mounting clip attachment onto my backpack strap. the result was okay, but even attached to the torso there's slightly more shaking than i'd like filming at 1 sec timelapse interval, the fastest setting on the SJ4000; i think if it had 0.5 sec internal that would be best. when i arrived in belmont, i spent some time shoveling the front of the driveway which had a pile of frozen snow blocking it (my parents weren't home yesterday to shovel before everything froze solid). not only did the extra exertion leave me feeling a little light-headed, but the timelapse footage i shot was a shaky mess. the golden rule seems to be never shoot timelapse mounted on something that moves around too much.

i was hoping to see some birds at the suet feeder but the feeder was empty, that last piece of suet finally eaten, either yesterday (during the storm) or earlier today. i climbed down the icy steps and put in a new suet block, "woodpecker treat." i heard birds chirping overhead but couldn't see them. later from inside i saw some sparrows coming to the feeder, which i promptly scared away. i didn't see any other birds after that.

i actually thought about not returning to belmont today, but only later did i realize what day it was today: my mother's birthday. i thought when we had that celebration last saturday that was the end of it, but apparently that wasn't her plan. she wanted to get persian takeout for dinner. we waited until evening then ordered at 5:30pm. my father and i went to go pick it up (4 kubideh, my sister was joining us as well, in a rare display of family solidarity). when the waiter asked if i wanted plastic utensils, i answered no, but then he also promptly forgot the sumac powder, which we only discovered once back at home. the first time i had sumac i wasn't particularly a fan, but after having had persian food a few things, i associate it with that distinctive persian flavor and was disappointed that it wasn't included. i probably want to buy some of my own in case this happens again next time, or if i want more than the small portion they normally provide.

i rode home with the action camera attached to my backpack strap again. the SJ4000 pretty much can't shoot in the dark. there's an option to tweak the ISO value but the maximum is 400. lights show up as squiggles and maybe once in a while i might get a clear frame of footage. the day i graduate to a gopro, i think i'll still use the SJ4000 but as a version of a cycling dash camera (recording at 30fps instead of timelapse).

i seem to have established a new winter heating routine: turn up the heat when i get up in the morning, turn it down once it reaches my desired temperature setting (68°). the house insulation is enough that the inside stays warm long enough until the evening, when i fire back up the furnace around 8pm, shutting it down again at midnight. i cleaned up the master bedroom a little bit, putting some china pants away into the dressers (they'd been just sitting outside for more than a year). i also replaced the button-cell battery on my wall-mounted temperature sensor light switch. now that the walls are insulated, this bedroom isn't a bad place to be. it used to get so cold, but now it's the second warming spot in the house, after the guest bedroom and the bathroom. it certainly gets the most light out of all the rooms (southern facing) and the desk makes working a lot easier and more civilized (working from the living room couch is killing my back).

i've been "playing" around with the resistance bands that arrived recently (doing these punching exercises which i invented) and now my triceps are sore. the pain is a good thing though, my triceps haven't been exercised in years. the only thing i'm afraid of is i have the resistance band mounted to the doorframe, and i'm terrified that it will come loose and slap me like the world's deadliest rubberband.

i finished watching the first season of the wire, cozying up the evening with a tumbler of hot tea, a cold can of pomegranate seltzer, and a plate of sweet california orange slices. at least rate i'm pretty sure i'm not going to make it through my marathon before the year is through.