Extreme Adventure Travel: Cancun to Machu Picchu


Just about the time I think I’ve heard all the extremes when it comes to adventure travel, along came Teresa and John.

They were guests of Wally and Carol at Frank and Delores Christmas Day get together at their house in the mountains overlooking Atenas.

John and Teresa are spending two weeks here as part of their trip from Cancun to Machu Picchu.

By bus.

John says they have traveled on everything from “chicken” buses to luxury tourist coaches.

2,500 miles.

To look at them, they seem sane.

It boggles the mind.


Podcast Milestone Passed: Over 4000 Hours of Listening. Here’s My Playlist.

Stitcher4003hours StitcherTopShows

I listen to podcasts… a lot apparently.

The podcatcher I use most often is Stitcher and they track me – duh!  I passed 4,000 hours of Stitcher use recently. 644 days in a row, I’ve logged onto Stitcher to listen to at least one podcast.

Usually the first podcast I listen to is This Morning With Gordon Deal. Then I tend to wander all over the radio spectrum… I listen to No Agenda usually on Mondays and Fridays (the show airs live on Sundays and Thursdays.) I listen to The Tech Guy with Leo LaPorte randomly. After going to bed I’ll listen to Rachel Maddow and Anderson Cooper.

When it’s time to sleep, I’ll download The Dan Patrick Show from iTunes and let it run while we fall asleep. I’m lucky that Nancy loves the “white noise” and doesn’t complain while the three forty minute segments of Dan Patrick plays. As a matter of fact, if she wakes up before she’s ready to start the day and wants some extra snooze time, I’ll play The Dan Patrick Show again!

Here’s my playlist from Sticher.


  • My Brother, My Brother and Me
  • MSNBC Morning Joe
  • No Agenda
  • Here’s the Thing
  • The Dinner Party Download
  • This Morning With Gordon Deal
  • MSNBC Rachel Maddow Show
  • Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me
  • Freakonomics Radio
  • Ask Me Another
  • This American Life


  • ABC News Nightline
  • The Diane Rehm Show
  • NBC Meet the Press
  • ABC News: This Week With George
  • Face the Nation
  • CBS Evening News
  • ABC World News Tonight
  • DH Unplugged
  • PBS NewsHour
  • On The Media
  • NBC Nightly News
  • Anderson Cooper 360
  • 60 Minutes

Pop Culture

  • TBTL
  • Throwing Shade
  • WTF with Marc Maron
  • BuzzFeed’s Internet Explorer
  • Welcome to Night Vale
  • Stuff Mom Never Told You
  • Best of the Left
  • Sawbones
  • Judge John Hodgman

Story Telling

  • Story Worthy
  • Selected Shorts
  • Real Time with Bill Maher
  • Third Coast International
  • TED Radio Hour

Tech (all part of the TWiT network – This Week In Tech)

  • The New Screen Savers
  • Triangulation
  • The Tech Guy
  • This Week in Tech
  • This Week in Google
  • Windows Weekly

Dealing with moles

European Mole (Talpa europaea), Schwaz, Tyrol, Austria, Europe

Not these kind of moles…

You missed Mole Day. It was October 23.

And it’s not a day to celebrate the in-ground moles or the on skin moles… it’s a nerd term for Avogadro’s Number (6.02 x 1023)

Nancy was sure I was covered in skin cancer moles. Being a fair haired boy, I have had more than my share of sunburns. As a matter of fact, Nancy was the cause of a few of the second degree sunburns I got as a young man.

One was senior skip day – the day when seniors were allowed to miss a day of classes and teachers and administrators overlooked the policy violation. (Those were the days: 1. Some students actually cared about attendance and 2. some administrators had common sense to let kids be kids. )

Nancy and I and a few others headed to a Lake Michigan beach near Holland. We spread out the blanket and one thing led to another and… do I have to draw you a picture? We didn’t spend the day building sand castles.

And then there was the time Nancy’s family invited me to go camping with them near Cedar Point, Ohio. Same result except we were lying on a blanket in the grass.

Just to be perfectly clear… we were kissing. Just kissing.

Needless to say, I had plenty of opportunities to develop cancer moles. I had a basil cell carcinoma taken off my arm a few years ago.

But after a lot of encouragement, Nancy convinced me that I needed to get all the moles on my body checked out. I had a wide variety – including many that looked like the cancer moles I found on the internet.

Our local Dr. Salazar has a dermatologist come from San Jose to his office so Nancy made the appointment. Turns out he also scheduled three other people for the exact same time, but we worked it out.

I peeled off my shirt gave a big sigh and headed for the exam table. I asked him for Xanax. We all had a good chuckle after I explained that the day before I had Xanax for a dentist appointment. Dr. Salazar said “Si, si!” as if to say “me too.”

I am happy to report that my moles are all benign. I had a couple frozen off because they were where my shirt collar rubs – and a few more tiny spots on my arm.

Holy moley, things are good for another six months on the skin front.


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