Ultras and Derby Dolls

Any ultra marathoner and any woman that has competed as a “Derby Doll” have my highest praise. For those of you not in “the know”, Derby Dolls are those fabulous women that battle for points in a roller skating rink. Ultras, short for ultra marathons, are any marathon above 26.2 miles, i.e., 50 or 100 milers.

derby

The fierceness of the Derby Doll league thrills spectators; and while many of the ladies have attained local celebrity status, they are badly beaten in the rink. At a recent event, the count of injuries after the first half was eight, Dr. Michael, one of their many on-staff doctors confirmed. If you are a Derby Doll, you are physically pounded, but, from event-goers receive nothing short of admiration.

The non-runners strange fear of running long distances is fascinating. A non-runners reaction to an ultra is akin to having told them you plan to take a nap on top of railroad tracks, immediately followed by voice over health concerns. It is amazing that this concern exists in the country with the highest rate of obesity. A significantly greater amount of people in the U.S. have more back, knee, and ankle problems due to lack of exercise and obesity, than due to running. This makes sense, the extra weight stresses and injures the joints.

lariver

Non-runners most often recall Pheidippides, an injured Greek soldier who ran 25 miles to tell the people of Marathon the news of the defeat of the Persians, and to warn of a surprise attack. It is said that Pheidippides collapsed and died immediately after delivering the information. Many forget that Pheidippides was injured from the battle before he ran the long distance, which could explain his death.

So apparently, the non-runners fear of running is grounded in the stories of marathoners that have suddenly dropped dead during or after a marathon. Research suggests the reason people suddenly die during athletic events is attributed to a genetic disease, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy or HCOM, which can be detected by an echocardiogram. All serious runners should also screen for Phidippides cardiomyopathy, a non-genetic disorder that has been attributed to endurance training andcan be detected by a cardiac MRI. More information can be found in the following link: http://www.forbes.com/sites/davidkroll/2014/04/15/why-do-healthy-people-die-running-marathons/.

jpl

To all athletes, get proper heart screenings, so you may continue to inspire us to stretch the limits. My favorite marathon story is that of Amber Miller; about 7 hours after completing the 2011 Chicago marathon, she delivered a healthy baby girl; she ran at 38 weeks pregnant. Amber had signed up for the marathon before she knew of her pregnancy; a veteran runner, she had prior clearance from her Dr. to run the marathon. http://www.suntimes.com/news/metro/8136835-418/woman-gives-birth-after-running-chicago-marathon.html#.VCx6Svk7uSo.

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The One With The Snake

Angelenos flocking to the Coachella Valley have a mind to bask by the pool, and when doing nothing is exhausted,

Palm Springs Rededicated Marilyn Monroe's Star for her 86th Birthday

sightseeing includes looking up giant Marilyn Monroe’s dress in Palm Springs (excellent idea Seward Johnson).

For the active insider, hiking trails are the real treasures of the Valley.  Indian Canyon, Tahquitz, and other canyons, are beautiful escapes to the 100+ degree heat into lush and rocky revenes carrying streams of crisp mountain water powering into gorgeous waterfalls.  The Oasis, is flat, sandy, with streams running through to the Chocolate Mountains and leads to a mirage that becomes a reality where towering palms overhead create a shady haven for large ponds teeming with flora and wildlife.

My running problem recently took me to a hiking trail known as “the one with the snake”; as my friends’ who introduced the trail to me explained, the name came about after they saw a rattlesnake there on one of their early morning hikes, how clever.

The one with the snake trail begins right off of Hwy 111 behind the Vons in Palm Springs, how’s that for keeping a theme for precision?  The hike is an immediate steep incline, persisting for just under a mile, great for practicing running toe first and with rewarding dramatic views of the valley and into the pass brimming with windmills.

Bob's House
Runners should be cautious of mountain bikers on their downward ascent, I would have died to have seen one of them riding up.  For hikers, it seemed a requirement to bring your dog, often times leashless, and I observed an almost 1/1 ratio of dogs and humans, however, my little maltese, not climatized to the desert heat, and to the satisfaction of my running partner, insisted we walk most of this one, and take plenty of water breaks.

Bob is Dead

An unusual side tour is on a road, seemingly leading to Bob Hope’s house, but, as the sign educates, actually does not, and sadly reminds us, that Bob Hope is dead anyway.

No Trespassing

And because our terror of extreme nasal hair outweighed our spirit for discovering new hiking trails, or, seeing Bob Hope’s house up close, we abandoned our attempts and contemplated whether we had actually discovered the road leading to the “tiny town” that is rumored to exist “behind Bob Hope’s house”.

I am a runner and trademark and copyright attorney.  I volunteer with my best friend and running partner, Monty (a Maltese) at Huntington Memorial Hospital’s Pet Assisted Therapy program and am a co-chair of the Technology Section of the Pasadena Bar Association and a board member of the San Gabriel Valley Bar Association.  If you have trademark, or copyright questions, or know someone that does, please contact me for a free 30 minute consultation.  Email or phone at 626.831.8077.

Astronomy and Law

NASA has announced a new service to help people see the International Space Station (ISS) when it passes overhead. “Spot the Station” will send an email or text message to anyone that signs up for the service.  A message will be sent a few hours before the space station is visible.

When the space station is visible — typically at dawn and dusk — it is the brightest object in the night sky, other than the moon. On a clear night, the station is visible as a fast moving point of light, similar in size and brightness to the planet Venus. “Spot the Station” users will have the options to receive alerts about morning, evening or both types of sightings.

Sometimes, however, the ISS passes overhead during the day.

 

The International Space Station’s trajectory passes over more than 90 percent of Earth’s population. The service is designed to only…

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In Avondale, AZ, All Trails Lead To Sonic

Avondale

My running problem resurfaced in Avondale, Arizona, over the New Year long weekend.  The morning after a late night playing darts in my cousin’s man cave, the bright desert sun shone through my bedroom window and I jumped out of bed, grabbed my running shoes, leashed my dog, Monty, and set off on an exploratory run.  Irrigation canals criss-crossed through the field adjacent to the neighborhood, which was still in transition from rural to urban.  Running a dirt trail alongside the larger of the canals, Monty noticed the goats and chickens corralled in people’s one-acre yards; I don’t think Monty had ever before seen either, and I marveled at the idea of hurrying home from working in a skyscraper in downtown Phoenix to milk your cow.  A large fish in the canal hurriedly swam away; and I later learned it was an algae-eater, farmed there to keep the canals free of algae.  When we cut through a dirt trail smack dab in the middle of the field, Monty took off at full speed and I completely understood why, the desert seemed endless there with field surrounding, no mountains, no clouds just this long eternal trail, and vast empty, gorgeous space, what else was there to do but run?  It was strange to come to the edge of the field and see a Sonic burger sitting there on a four-lane street.  After cutting through the cemetery, we discovered a great neighborhood that integrated the canals into the planning, each home had a small bridge constructed over the irrigation canal, allowing access to the home. I showed Monty the ducks that swam in those canals, he had never before seen a duck either, and quickly learned how exciting it was to make them fly, we chased them for blocks.  We ran six miles  and lamentably missed out on the morning preparations for supper; this year there was no meat-centered meal for New Year’s, instead, we decided to make Vietnamese Pho, a health-conscious choice for those relatives with diabetes and/or high-cholesterol.  Like Chinese food, Pho fills you up, but, the hunger sets in again in no time, so it wasn’t long after supper when we ended up at the Sonic across from the field ordering fried fat.

Space Tourism Soon To Be A Reality?

Astronomy and Law

A British space-exploration company has revealed its aim to fly the public to the moon from 2015 – providing you have £100m for a ticket.Isle of Man-based Excalibur Almaz owns a fleet of six proven aircraft that it wishes to use for crewed space missions to the moon and beyond.

In an address at the Royal Aeronautical Society in London, Excalibur Almaz’s founder and chief executive officer, Art Dula, outlined the business case that underpins the project, which is based on independent research by the Futron Corporation on the economics of commercial space voyages and lunar missions.

“The lunar mission costs about $150m (£96m) a seat for the first mission”, Dula told The Engineer. “I expect prices will decline after this”.

The company intends to use a combined spacecraft – comprising an “Almaz” capsule and a “Salyut-class” spacecraft — as a transportation system to the moon, asteroids and deep space.

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Astronomy and Law

Unless there is a written agreement to the contrary, signed by both parties, a copyrighted work is owned by the author.  If the employer or the person the work was made is deemed the owner of the copyright, then it is considered a work made for hire.  It is EXTRMEMLY important for employees and consultants to understand the meaning of a “work for hire.”

Section 101 of the copyright law defines a “work made for hire” as:

  • A work prepared by an employee within the scope of his or her employment; or
  • A work specially ordered or commissioned for use as a contribution to a collective work, as a part of a motion picture or other audiovisual work, as
a translation, as a supplementary work, as a compilation, as an instructional text, as a test, as answer material for a test, or as an atlas, if the parties expressly agree in…

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Calls for a Narrative – Secret Weapon for a Runner

“Objection! Calls for a narrative!” During normal business hours, that is, during deposition, or, trial, that is how an attorney would normally respond to a question tailored to elicit an answer that narrates a series of occurrences, or, as we refer to it in plain English, a story. That is not the case for me on my long runs. In fact, on my long runs, especially those that take you up a ridiculously steep hill, like the one in Griffith Park that we call, “trash truck”, my secret weapon is that question that calls for a narrative. It is not uncommon that I can’t catch my breath and am struggling to keep up with the running veteran beside me, so, to avoid the feeling I hate the most, the one I get when I am holding someone up, I ask my running partner a question that calls for a narrative, and it sends them on a story, always a fascinating one, such as travelling to all forty-eight states in the U.S. on a motorcycle in a month. And what happens? My mind wanders away from those miserable blisters and aching muscles and I imagine myself riding carefree on a motorcycle. But, more importantly, my partners breathing pattern is affected, and I catch up (because they slow down); sneaky to you, but, to me, it is a symbiotic running relationship.