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This Week's Stuff 
Last Sunday, I couldn't decide whether I wanted to spend the day biking or finishing some work at the office, so I chose both. I biked the 20-mile round trip to work, with a quick stop to Blockbuster on the way.

Getting there, I didn't know about the bike route I took along the beach on the way home, so I took a route I typically take driving. This was incredibly dangerous, as many of the roads were 55 mph with a lot of traffic and no shoulder. I had to weave in and out of cars at some points, and I guarantee I'm not doing THAT route again on a bike. After working for a few hours, I biked back on a beach bike path, which actually takes you on a special bridge across Ballona Creek. The route is neat because for about half a mile you have Ballona Creek directly to your right, and the Marina directly to your left, and the path is paved over the rocks (about 25-30 feet between each body of water).

On the way home I discovered the Dockweiler Beach bonfire tradition: if you don't mind hearing low-flying planes overhead every few minutes, any group can come down to this beach and setup a bonfire on a first-come first-serve basis. In fact, I joined a Boeing group who did this on Tuesday.

Also on Tuesday, I volunteered at a local middle school for the entire morning to demonstrate how planes and gliders fly. Manhattan Beach Middle School was hosting Space Day for their students, and I was asked to lead one of 12 "stations" about space and flight. This was actually a lot of fun -- after teaching what I know about aerodynamics (and handing out prize gliders to everyone who got answers to my questions correct), I demonstrated a radio control aircraft, and allowed the kids to use kites, gliders, frisbees, and "flying gyroscopes" at my station. Afterwards, I began a frisbee throwing competition, the winner prized with a small kite. I was told they thought my station was the most fun, but I also had a lot of fun working with the middle schoolers and teaching about flight. The middle school itself was very impressive -- the cafeteria was actually outdoors (since it never rains here), and they amazingly still had recess where they could play paddleball and basketball (we didn't have recess in middle school!!) And I also didn't remember how little of an attention span middle schoolers have, it's incredible how difficult it is to control a class of 30 kids by myself (most of the teachers who escorted them basically sat down and tuned out, except for one who seemed very teacherish and controlling, it was actually pretty funny).

The rest of the week has mostly been work, but tomorrow I will be heading down to San Diego for an overnight surfing trip, camping out on the beach and such. Will have photos.



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