Eight Square Feet of Endorphins

A complete gym in one tidy corner: Kettlebells. One is enough, but in a happy home they multiply. Somebody to swing them. Note the bare feet--that's how you should do it too. Rucksack and boots. Insert kettlebells and start walking. Pavel Tsatouline's classic Russian Kettlebell Challenge (1999), still the best book there is on this stuff.  Sledgehammer... Continue Reading →

Torpid Taper

By the week before a competition, you’ve accumulated fatigue and it’s time to refill your tank with a week’s layoff. That means going easy and limiting yourself to foam rolling and active recovery (spelled “yoga”). Everyone I know tries to screw this up. You’re resting and supercompensating from training stress and your body is gathering... Continue Reading →

Happy Birthday to Snoot

A lion-dog in winter. My supremely beloved little Snoot was born 14 years ago today outside Cambridge, Mass., and I became his babysitter the very next day. Even after years of callous parenting mistakes--like the dinner party where I ignored his meek "Help me!" looks all night as mere attention-seeking when in fact he had a... Continue Reading →


My first "waterborne rescue" of a non-insect! I was kayaking near my house and chanced upon upon a little white terrier standing stoically on a log. He had his face caught a foot from the surface by his leash, which was lashed to a nub at the waterline. He’d gotten away from his owner, an... Continue Reading →

Disaster Averted

Thank you, Nature, for paternal instincts. From a deep sleep, I was rocked awake by the certain knowledge that in nine seconds, Snoot would vomit yesterday's grass cuttings onto my mattress.

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