BRO: What are your favorite places to hike? Upton: My favorite areas to hike are the Black Mountains, Middle Prong Wilderness, and Linville Gorge Wilderness — all located within Pisgah National Forest.* What advice to you have for others who may want to follow in your footsteps? Do your research. Respect nature. Care for it. Always bring extra socks. Photography isn’t something I know too much about—I’m a hiker with a camera—but I simply try to capture what I see and tell a story. I write as a means of decompression after a good hike, and as a means of conveying information that is hopefully educational and inspires you to get out there. The ancient rock formations of Linville Gorge never cease to incite awe. This photogenic area along the Mountains To Sea Trail is known as The Chimneys. Catching sunsets along the Blue Ridge Parkway is one of my favorite things to do. Seeing how the dimming rays of the sun mixes with shadows to create explosions of color upon the layers of the Blue Ridge is awe-inspiring, if not breathtaking. A perfect day to me is hiking somewhere off the Parkway, grabbing a pizza, and watching the light show at Cowee Mountain Overlook with faves. Heaven. Sun rays cuts through the dissipating morning fog along the Black Mountain Crest Trail. The Crest Trail is my favorite hike in WNC. It’s the highest alpine trail on the east coast, boasting almost a dozen 6,000’ peaks along its 12-mile route — and while the hike is a challenge, the countless mountain vistas and moss-covered cloud forests are unparalleled. What lessons or insights have you discovered on the trail?Be prepared. Nature provides, but nature can also be deadly. Respect it. I’ve found that nature is as spiritual as church, and climbing over rocks, up hills, and through thorns is as relaxing as any vacation. Everyone should try it. Roger Upton has hiked in every national park and national forest in the Southeast, and for the past several years, he’s shared his journeys as the Carolina Trekker. The South Carolina native explored the outdoors from an early age, and today, he continues to wander deep into the wilds of Appalachia. We asked Upton to offer his insights from his years of hiking in these hills. He’s also shared his five favorite photos and the stories behind them.This was a quiet moment in the Joyce Kilmer-Slickrock Wilderness as my hiking companion, Matthew, stopped to rest and double check his map. It’s always refreshing to hike with those who “get” you and whom you trust and respect out on the trail. This peaceful moment would soon be forgotten as we began the near-vertical push through thorns, blowdown, mud, and rocks to the Naked Ground terminus of Slickrock Creek Trail #42. What have the toughest, scariest, or most memorable moments from the trail? All those can be answered in one hike: Slickrock Creek Trail in Joyce Kilmer-Slickrock Creek Wilderness, located in Nantahala National Forest. It’s revered in the hiking community as one of the ten or so toughest hikes in the country. Aside from the endless creek crossings, insane heat (we hiked it in mid-July), climbing over downed house-sized trees, keeping the faint trail among overgrown thorns, picking ticks and dodging snakes — the final straight up ascent is enough to break most hikers — if they even make it that far. I’ve never left a hike so bloodied, bruised, and battered physically and mentally. But was it worth it? Hell yeah! Anyone who knows me knows I am most at home among the mountains and streams and trees. Nature both rejuvenates and humbles me. It’s the one place where I feel truly connected to something far greater than myself. I am a guest of the wilderness, if not a welcomed outsider. For whatever hours and miles I hike, it’s here that I am truly free and without care. I might not be lost, but it’s here that I lose myself. How far along are you on your South Beyond 6,000 attempt?The SB6K is a challenge of bagging 40 peaks in the Southern Appalachians that are at least 6,000’ in height. I like to climb, I like a challenge, and I like solitude. These peaks and their trails meet all those criteria for the most part. I’m about halfway through the challenge.
Chelsea hero Didier Drogba was overcome with joy after helping the Blues become European champions in Munich.Drogba’s late equaliser rescued them before his decisive kick in a penalty shoot-out cliched an incredible victory.Drogba declared: “It was fate. I believe a lot in destiny. I pray a lot.“It was written a long time ago. God is wonderful. This team is amazing. I’m very happy. Life is fantastic.”Stand-in skipper Frank Lampard added: “I can’t believe it. The season we have had, the determination and spirit we have shown.“Our main man Didier Drogba has dug us out there. He is a hero. Without him we are not here. He scores the goals in the big games. This is the one we really wanted.”More reaction to follow later.Who was your Chelsea man of the match? Click here to voteFollow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebook
The Trail Blazers have struggled recently, losing their last two. But, with the Warriors coming to town on the second night of a back to back, Portland hopes home cooking makes the difference.When/Where: Moda Center, 7:30 p.m. (NBCSBA)Blazers projected starting lineup: Al-Farouq Aminu, Maurice Harkless, Jusuf Nurkic, Damian Lillard, CJ McCollumBlazers Stock Report: Since the last matchup between these two teams, Portland has maintained its standing as one of the five best teams in the …
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A Web-Based Information Resource From the DOEEnergy Modeling Isn’t Very AccurateWUFI Is Driving Me CrazyA Brief Introduction to WUFI, in 5 Easy PiecesEnergy Modeling Has a Very Fast Payback Why Don’t Green Buildings Live Up to Hype on Energy Efficiency?Measuring Passive House Energy Performance RELATED ARTICLES By this time next year, if all goes well, builders will be able to tap into a unique source of online advice for designing exterior walls that deliver high energy efficiency with minimal risk.Building Science Advisor, already in the works for a year and a half, is still at least six months away from completion. But when it’s up and running, the interactive website will blend real-world advice with computer simulations to help builders choose the least risky path to high-performance.Spearheading the project is André Desjarlais, the program manager for Building Envelope and Urban Systems Research at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory. The target audience, he says, are builders who are nervous about the risks associated with building tighter, better insulated houses. He heard plenty of those misgivings through Building America, the Department of Energy program that addresses building science questions for residential construction.“Through the grapevine, we got a lot of feedback,” Desjarlais said by phone. “Builders were saying, ‘I’m really nervous about the changing of the building codes. You’re adding insulation; you’re making the wall systems more airtight. You’re forcing me out of my comfort zone. How do I know this is going to work? How do I know I’m not going to get into problems.’”In a survey conducted by the Home Innovation Research Labs, the research arm of the National Association of Home Builders, builders were asked what kept them up at night. “Moisture in walls, moisture in attics, were one and two,” Desjarlais said. “The survey agreed with our casual observation of what people were telling us.” Computer simulations weren’t enoughAt first, Desjarlais and his colleagues thought they could build a huge database of wall systems using computer simulations alone. The Building Envelopes Program at Oak Ridge already had loads of data on various wall systems. Why not turn that into an online library accessible to builders?Because, they realized, lots of builders don’t trust computer simulations. One reason is what’s politely called the “garbage in, garbage out” effect: however good the computers and software may be, loading information into a modeling program improperly will never produce anything but inaccurate results. Computer modeling is especially contentious among builders when it comes to predicting how high-efficiency buildings, such as those built to the Passive House standard, will actually perform.“There are some people out there who go out of their way to bad-mouth computer simulations,” he said. “What I think what they’re really bad-mouthing is there are a lot of people out there who are not skilled enough to do that sort of exercise, who don’t have the knowledge to appreciate the outcomes of the selections they make to run the computer simulations.“The tools are correct from a physics perspective,” he continued. “We’ve validated the tools so many different times, whether they be on masonry systems or stick-built systems. We’re confident that if you do it right it works. But a couple of people who yell louder than most have gotten it into the builders’ minds that these computer models just don’t work.”Developers thought the solution was to anchor the program in the expert opinions of builders in the field and fill in the gaps with computer simulations when the information was incomplete or contradictory. Builders, it seemed, wanted more than an online library of research papers or a stack of magazine articles before diving into the world of energy-efficient construction. Getting advice from buildersDesjarlais and his group began looking for builders who could contribute information based on their experience. Over the course of a year, they solicited builders at conferences and trade shows, giving them a “teaser” of what they hoped the tool would do and eventually collecting the names of some 200 builders who said they were willing to help.These builders became the beta testers for the Building Science Advisor. This past August, Oak Ridge sent a link for the in-development web tool and asked for comments. The comment period ended in early October, with about half of the original list of builders taking the time to go over the site and sending in their comments.“We got everything from ‘This is the best thing that ever happened,’ to ‘You guys are stupid, this has already been done,’ and everything in between,” Desjarlais said.Developers are still going over the comments with the goal of creating some general rules that would be useful to other builders. “What we want,” he said, “is a good a compilation of expert advice as we possibly can put together.”Desjarlais said there are at least two other web-based tools designed to give builders similar insights. One, created by a company called IBACOS, is called Perform. It offers an online library to its client base of mostly production builders. The other online tool is the Wall Thermal Design Calculator developed by the Canadian Wood Council.Desjarlais said one important distinction is that Building Science Advisor rules will be created with the help of dynamic rather than steady-state calculations. Dynamic calculations, he said, take into account the constantly changing conditions that affect buildings rather than relying on brief snapshots of climate and performance. The Canadian design tool, he said, doesn’t include very challenging building scenarios. Although it uses WUFI simulations, it’s focused on wood construction with low energy loads.“You can’t find anything that doesn’t pass there,” Desjarlais said of the Wall Thermal Design Calculator. “Everything passes. If I use very low moisture loads, I can make anything pass. What good is that?”(A spokeswoman said the Perform library has information on more than just wall systems, but access to the library isn’t free.) How the tool will workBuilding Science Advisor will include recommendations for between 80 and 90 cities around the country, spread out geographically and climatically as best its developers could manage. Although the number of data sets is low, Desjarlais said the hope is that builders who can’t find the city where they plan to build will be able to find a city with a similar climate — in a neighboring state, say.Desjarlais said developers want to put their money into describing the maximum number of potential wall systems rather than a long list of building locations.A builder planning a house in Maine, for example, could choose one of two cities as a starting point. After logging on, the builder would begin specifying building components — framing, insulation, and cladding, for example — and get an idea of how risky the wall might be. In the end, Desjarlais says the tool will treat systems “probabilistically” to give builders the odds on whether a particular wall system will result in moisture or other problems.“No one else has done that in the past,” he said. “Instead of saying, ‘This wall passes and this wall fails,’ you say, ‘Eighty-seven percent of the time this wall is OK, and 92% of the time this wall is OK,’ and so you can give people a better indication of what how close you are to getting into trouble.“Then, this is André’s vision, you can start playing some ‘what ifs,’ ” Desjarlais continued. “What if I get rid of this component and put a cheaper component in? My risk goes up by 5% but I just saved a dollar a square foot. It gives builders some useful information they can work with and make their own decisions. They can make the decision based on data as opposed to whim, or whatever.”Computer modeling still plays a role, but mostly when there isn’t enough information coming in from builders, or the information is contradictory or unclear. “One of the interesting things about getting information from so-called experts is how frequently the experts disagree,” Desjarlais said. “We can use computer modeling to get to solutions where we have a disagreement of opinions, or for a family of systems where there isn’t enough wisdom.“Hopefully the tool will tell them the same thing that their own experience tells them. If we can do that in 90% of the cases I think we’ll be in good shape.”The website will not make an attempt to predict the costs of various wall systems, Desjarlais said — at least that’s the case at the moment. Material and labor costs associated with different wall types is out of date as soon as it’s published, he said, and individual builders will be far better suited to collecting that information.Desjarlais said that he hopes the website will go live by next August. It probably will be hosted at the Building America Solution Center. Access will be free. (To read a GBA review of the Building America Solution Center web site, see A Web-Based Information Resource From the DOE.)
El Nido residents told to vacate beach homes FEU Auditorium’s 70th year celebrated with FEU Theater Guild’s ‘The Dreamweavers’ The Red Lions still had chances to close in on the Pirates, but AC Soberano and Robert Bolick botched point-blank shots in the final 20 seconds.It was Lyceum’s first win over San Beda since NCAA Season 89, still under coach Bonnie Tan.Robert Bolick paced San Beda with 21 points, eight rebounds, and six assists, while Clint Doliguez added 19 markers and seven boards.The Scores:LYCEUM 96 – Perez 24, Nzeusseu 18, Caduyac 16, Jc. Marcelino 14, Baltazar 9, Jv. Marcelino 7, Ayaay 4, Tansingco 2, Liwag 2, Santos 0, Ibanez 0, Pretta 0, Cinco 0.SAN BEDA 91 – Bolick 21, Doliguez 19, Soberano 12, Mocon 10, Noah 9, Presbitero 8, Potts 4, Bahio 4, Adamos 2, Tankoua 2, Carino 0, Tongco 0, Abuda 0.ADVERTISEMENT View comments Trump strips away truth with hunky topless photo tweet For the complete collegiate sports coverage including scores, schedules and stories, visit Inquirer Varsity. Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ Reymar Caduyac also fired 16 markers, five of which coming in the last 1:48 to hold off the Red Lions. He also netted seven assists and three boards in the win.“To play against San Beda, it’s gonna take a lot of grit, a lot of perseverance, and never giving up,” said coach Topex Robinson. “But it’s not about me, but it’s about the players. We just kept on playing and we just kept on grinding.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSWin or don’t eat: the Philippines’ poverty-driven, world-beating pool starsMike Nzeusseu chipped in a double-double with his 18 points and 13 rebounds, while rookie Jaycee Marcelino nabbed 14 markers, six boards, two dimes, and two steals.Lyceum’s defensive stance in the end game did the trick as it held San Beda without a field goal for the last 2:47 to break off from an 89-all deadlock before Javee Mocon drilled two freebies with 56.7 seconds remaining. Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ National Coffee Research Development and Extension Center brews the 2nd National Coffee Education Congress LATEST STORIES Photo by Tristan Tamayo/ INQUIRER.netLyceum welcomed the challenge and proved the hype was real, toppling San Beda, 96-91, in the NCAA Season 93 men’s basketball tournament Friday at Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan.CJ Perez steered early season shocker, dropping seven of his 24 points in the fourth quarter while registering four rebounds, one assist, one steal, and one block.ADVERTISEMENT Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games Church, environmentalists ask DENR to revoke ECC of Quezon province coal plant Teodoro rises to Meneses challenge after disappointing opener MOST READ Quarters: 24-18, 50-46, 73-75, 96-91.
Preeja Sreedharan and Sudha Singh made it a golden evening for India as the track and field athletics programme got off to a roaring start at the Aoti arena on Sunday. Riled and ridiculed in the last edition of the Asian Games in Doha and a flop show at the Beijing Olympics, Indian athletics is beginning to show guts and glory. If the Commonwealth Games was a big surprise, Day One at athletics was truly sensational as Preeja and Nashik-born Kavita Raut clinched gold and silver respectively in the 10,000 metres in a classy field where the Chinese and Japanese runners were supposed to dominate. Even before the euphoria of the 10,000m could sink in, unassuming Railways girl Sudha Singh won a sensational 3,000 steeplechase final with China’s Jin Yuan at her heels. She clocked 9 minutes 55.67 seconds. Back to the first surprise of the day, the way Preeja and Kavita ran the 25-lap event in front of a packed stadium was remarkable.Not having won a medal in the Commonwealth Games, rankled Preeja. As one who has also been battling asthma, the Kerala girl’s hunger for success was magnified. Yet, what made the two Indians look so good on Sunday was the final stage of the race when Preeja came into her own and outkicked the field after the final bend to seal gold in a personal best 31:50.47. Her winning margin was almost a second and Kavita came second in 31:51.44. Both of them clocked their personal best timings. In a race where saw seven of the 11 runners registered their personal best timings, another Ethiopian-born Bahrain athlete Shitay Habtegebrel claimed bronze. In the history of the 10,000m which was introduced at the Seoul Asiad in 1986, this is the first time a Chinese or a Japanese runner did not win a medal.advertisementAt 28, Preeja is one of the most accomplished 5,000 and 10,000 metres runner. An Asian Games gold was very special as she did an emo- tional victory lap with Kavita as fans cheered them. “Our coach Nikolai (Snesarev) had told us to run a tactical race. His advice was that if Kavita and I could run together, there was a medal chance. And that’s what we did as the last lap turned out be decisive. Our coach has been truly inspirational,” said Preeja. “I ran my own style and my own pace and I won. I didn’t think about the other competitors,” she said. The uniqueness about the 10,000m event was that till the last 100 metres, neither Preeja nor Kavita led the field.Japan’s Kayoko Fukushi, who had the fastest personal best in the field at 30:51.81, led for the first 2,000 metres. After that, Shitaya Habtegebrel of Bahrain took the lead for a couple of laps after which the lead kept changing between Fukushi, her teammate Hikari Yoshimoto and Habtegebrel. As the runners approached the last two laps, it was Habtegebrel who took the bell first and even on the back straight of the final lap, she looked in control. Into the final bend, the Indians made their decisive move and raced home. The 3,000m steeplechase turned out to be even more dramatic as the Mumbai-based Sudha held off a strong late challenge from China’s Jin Yuan, with close to 55,000 fanatic fans cheering, to win by four one-hundredths of a second.The sparse Indian fan base had their jaws gaping as in the final moments of the race Jin increased her stride length rapidly. Had the race been a metre longer, she may have won. Sudha had finished fifth at the Commonwealth Games in October and was very keen to do well here. However, it is on nights like these that a star is born and Sudha made a sudden burst for home. Minori Hayakari of Japan won the bronze medal. “I have won at the same venue before at the Asian championship when I broke the national record. “I knew I had to win at any cost as I lost a medal at the CWG. This is a very big day as I had not dreamt of winning gold,” said the ultra-thin Sudha.
Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard looks to pass against Sacramento Kings’ Marvin Bagley III and De’Aaron Fox, (5) during the first quarter of an NBA basketball game Monday, Jan. 14, 2019, in Sacramento, Calif. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)SACRAMENTO, Calif. — It hasn’t taken long for Marvin Bagley III to regain his rhythm in Sacramento’s offense after missing 11 games with an injured left knee.The second overall pick in the draft still needs to improve his free throw shooting in the fourth quarter, but Bagley is definitely giving the Kings’ second unit quite a lift.ADVERTISEMENT LOOK: Joyce Pring goes public with engagement to Juancho Triviño “He’s a walking double-double,” said Justin Jackson, who had nine points on three 3-pointers. “You add that back to our team, it adds even more versatility. It allows us to do so many more things within our offense whenever he’s out there on the court.”Fox also had nine assists, Buddy Hield scored 19 points and Bogdan Bogdanovic added 18 on 8-of-10 shooting off the bench. Sacramento has won three straight and four of five.“We’re playing hard, we’re defending, making extra efforts,” Kings coach Dave Joerger said. “We’re a team where everybody needs to contribute.”Damian Lillard scored 35 points to become the fastest player in Portland history to reach 12,000 for his career. Jusuf Nurkic had six points and 11 rebounds, and CJ McCollum scored six on 2-of-14 shooting.The Trail Blazers, playing the second half of a back-to-back, have lost two straight since winning four in a row.ADVERTISEMENT Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next LATEST STORIES PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games PLAY LIST 02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss Tony Parker in triumphant San Antonio return as Hornets down Spurs SEA Games hosting troubles anger Duterte SEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completion Is Luis Manzano planning to propose to Jessy Mendiola? “We knew coming in that they love to play in transition and we kind of played into their hands,” Lillard said. “We turned the ball over and allowed them to get out in transition. They play the fastest pace in the league, so we made it harder on ourselves than it had to be.”Sacramento got out to an early lead, held Portland to 17 points in the second quarter and then held off the Trail Blazers down the stretch.After Lillard’s 17-foot jumper cut the Kings’ lead to 109-103 with 1:47 remaining, Fox came back down the court and calmly drained his only 3 of the night.Bagley made a free throw and Willie Cauley-Stein added an emphatic dunk that brought the crowd to its feet.Portland struggled offensively across the board, particularly McCollum, who didn’t make a shot after halftime.Lillard reached 12,000 points in the third quarter of his 514th game. Hall of Famer Clyde Drexler had been the fastest Trail Blazers player to reach the mark, in his 587th game.“A lot of guys who come into the league who are capable of doing the same thing don’t get the opportunity, the trust or the freedom,” Lillard said. “I’m really thankful for the coaching staff that I play for and the teammates that I’ve been fortunate enough to play with.”TIP-INSTrail Blazers: Lillard has scored in double figures in 184 consecutive games, breaking a tie with Drexler for the franchise record. . Collins made a tremendous defensive play to block a layup attempt by Yogi Ferrell in the first quarter. . Portland coach Terry Stotts was called for a technical while talking with officials after a foul.Kings: Fox has made at least one steal in 14 straight games, the longest active streak in the NBA. . Iman Shumpert was called for a technical foul in the third quarter. Shumpert later had to be walked to the bench by a teammate after arguing with someone on Portland’s bench. Shumpert’s three technicals are tied for second-most on the Kings behind Fox, who has four. LOOK: Joyce Pring goes public with engagement to Juancho Triviño TS Kammuri to enter PAR possibly a day after SEA Games opening MOST READ SEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completion Bagley had 13 points and 11 rebounds for his fifth double-double, De’Aaron Fox scored 16 points and made a key 3-pointer with 1:30 remaining, and Sacramento beat the Portland Trail Blazers 115-107 on Monday night.“I feel like I was before I got hurt,” Bagley said after his fourth game back. “When I was out, I still was around. I was still shooting, still was doing stuff. I wasn’t just sitting out. I was getting in shape, still making sure that I was ready. It wasn’t hard to get back into the swing of things.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSUrgent reply from Philippine football chiefSPORTSWin or don’t eat: the Philippines’ poverty-driven, world-beating pool starsBagley made a pivotal 14-foot turnaround jumper early in the fourth quarter, then went over the back of Zach Collins and tipped in an offensive rebound to put the Kings up 100-88.That anchored a big night from Sacramento’s bench, which outscored Portland’s reserves 58-34. Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting TEMPERS FLAREShumpert had to be stopped by arena and Trail Blazers security from going into Portland’s locker room after the game. Shumpert was apparently angry at Nurkic, who set a hard screen in the second half.“Some stuff needed to be between me and him, a conversation between two men,” Shumpert said. “Some stuff happened out there that we needed to have a conversation about. That’s it.”Nurkic shrugged it off.“I’m not going to worry about it,” Nurkic said. “He’s going into retirement soon. I’m not going to worry about a guy who’s going into retirement soon.”NOT THIS TIMEWhen the Blazers beat the Kings two weeks ago, Nurkic became the first player in modern NBA history to have at least 20 points, 20 rebounds, five assists, five steals and five blocks. It was a much different story for Nurkic on Monday. Portland’s big man had five assists and one block but took only seven shots and did not make a steal.UP NEXTTrail Blazers: Host the Cleveland Cavaliers on Wednesday.Kings: At the Charlotte Hornets on Thursday. Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. View comments
Sixty-five-year-old crime and thriller author James Patterson has sold more novels than Stephen King, John Grisham and Dan Brown combined by creating unforgettable characters like psychologist Alex Cross, NYPD detective Michael Bennett and homicide inspector Lindsey Boxer.Now, Patterson is teaming up with the National Kidney Foundation and global charity auction site Charitybuzz.com to auction the chance for one lucky bidder to have a character named after them, or someone they choose, in an upcoming book. Villain, hero or victim – the choice is Patterson’s, and the winner will have to read the book to find out!Bidding is open today through Monday, February 11th, at charitybuzz.com/catalog_items/334730. Closing just in time for Valentine’s Day, this Patterson-fan-dream-gift is valued at $15,000. Bidding is currently at $6,010.Patterson has written 107 books, sold more than 275 million copies and boasts 83 bestsellers, a Guinness World Record.Proceeds of the auction benefit the National Kidney Foundation, the leading health organization dedicated to fighting kidney disease. Currently, 73 million people in the United States are at risk for developing Chronic Kidney Disease, the 9th leading cause of death in the U.S. NKF is dedicated to the awareness, prevention and treatment of kidney disease for hundreds of thousands of healthcare professionals, millions of patients and tens of millions of Americans at risk.