Hurricane Ida, and Labor Day weekend stuff

It’s been a rough week here in Somerset County. Hurricane Ida hit us pretty hard. A house exploded just a few blocks from here, and a building collapsed right here on Main St. I’m fine. My apartment building is fine. (I suspect we had some flooding in the basement, based on the smell coming from down there, but that’s the landlord’s problem.) Peters Brook overflowed, so that caused a bunch of damage to homes near it. I walk along the Peters Brook Greenway quite often; I walked along it yesterday, and saw a lot of downed trees and other damage.

It’s Labor Day weekend. In a “normal” year, I might go into NYC today, but the Raritan Valley line is still shut down due to the storm. And, even if it was running, the Delta variant has dimmed my enthusiasm for NYC trips this summer. So I guess I’ll be spending the day relaxing at home. I’d like to go out and see Shang-Chi, but, again, my enthusiasm for sitting in an enclosed space for two hours with a bunch of strangers ain’t what it used to be.

The Tour of Somerville, which is usually held on Memorial Day, was moved to Labor Day this year due to the pandemic. I guess the original thought was that the pandemic would be over by Labor Day. Of course, that’s not the case. It might actually have been safer on Memorial Day. Despite the Delta variant, and the flood damage, they’re still carrying on with the race tomorrow. I’m not sure how great an idea that is, but there’s not much I can do about it. I’ll likely hole up in my apartment all day and watch from my window. I wonder what the crowd will be like this year. It’s hard to imagine it being anywhere near what it usually is, but it could still be pretty big.

On an unrelated note, I got an email recently detailing some changes coming to ComiXology. In a nutshell, it sounds like they’re basically going to be shutting down the ComiXology web store and integrating it into the regular Amazon site. That makes sense, and I’m surprised that it took them so long to get around to doing it. Amazon bought them in 2014, but they’ve continued running their own site, separate from Amazon. I merged my old ComiXology account with my Amazon account a long time ago, whenever they first enabled that, but it’s still been possible for people to use a separate ComiXology login. I think that’s going to stop being an option, at least if you want to purchase new books. There’s some coverage of this announcement at The Beat and Bleeding Cool. Also, there’s some discussion on reddit, including responses from official ComiXology support.

I may be spending some money at ComiXology this weekend. There’s a big DC Labor Day sale going on, with a bunch of graphic novels at $2.99. That includes all of the Sandman collections, which I’ve been thinking about buying. I’ve read the whole series, of course, but I don’t have all the original issues anymore, and I’ve been thinking about re-reading the series. (Oh, and the first part of the Sandman Audible adaptation is still free, for a while longer. The second part is coming out later this month. I bought the first part on MP3 CD some time ago, but I snagged the free Audible version too, since it’s convenient to have a copy in my Audible library.)

And as long as I’m talking about Neil Gaiman, I might as well mention that I started reading The Ocean at the End of the Lane yesterday. It’s good! I guess I’ll keep reading that today, as there doesn’t seem to be much else to do.

Temptation

I’ve now been in “fully-vaccinated” status for a few days. I still haven’t managed to talk myself into going out without a mask though. I almost tried doing my laundry today without a mask, but, well, I guess I’m not ready.

I’ve been seeing a lot of posts on social media for a lot of upcoming in-person events, and I’m starting to get kind of tempted. I haven’t committed to anything, but there’s a lot going on. Here’s a few examples:

  • Duke Farms is running a farmers market every Sunday through the summer. There’s a fair chance that I’ll head over there tomorrow. An outdoor farmers market isn’t much of a risk, of course. I went to the Bridgewater farmers market a few times last summer, but that’s been discontinued. And I don’t think they’re doing one here in Somerville this summer either.
  • There’s a walking tour tomorrow at Wallace House & Old Dutch Parsonage. I’ve managed to live in Somerville for around 25 years now, without ever actually visiting Wallace House. I should really go.
  • A friend texted me about the Immersive van Gogh thing that just started up in NYC. I guess there’s actually two of these things going on in NYC now, but I think the one I linked to is the better one. Both of these seem like they could be major tourist draws. I’d kind of like to go and see one. And since they have timed tickets, I guess I could see it without having to worry about too large a crowd. (I guess it depends on how many people the organizer chooses to try to cram in at once, and how well they manage entry and exit.)
  • Garden State Comic Fest is taking place this weekend, at the Jersey Gardens Mall in Elizabeth. I’ve gone to this in previous years, when it was held in Morristown. I’d be tempted to go this year, but I don’t really want to drive to Elizabeth. And I’m not really interested in any of their guests this year. Nor am I that interested in buying any comics or toys right now. But it’s worth noting that this is (as far as I can tell) the first (relatively) big comic con to be held in NJ since the start of the pandemic. When they first announced it, a few months back, I was really skeptical about it. But I guess it’s safe enough to go ahead with it now.
  • On a related note, but on a much larger scale, I got an email about NYCC this week. They’re going to go ahead with the con this year, in October, at the Javits, as usual. I’m really hopeful that COVID will be entirely under control by October, but I’m still worried that it won’t be. Tickets are going on sale soon, and I’d like to buy one, but I haven’t entirely talked myself into it yet.
  • I also just noticed that the NYCC folks are doing an online Metaverse thing from June 7-13. I should take a look at the panel schedule for that and see if there’s anything I want to watch. And they’re also launching a Metaverse Membership program which probably isn’t worth the cost, but might be worth looking into.
  • I haven’t been to a Somerset Patriots game since 2019. They’re now affiliated with the NY Yankees, so a lot has changed since the last time I saw them. Looking at this page on their site, it appears that the stadium is now open at 100% capacity, with masks not required. I guess I wouldn’t be too worried about that, since it’s outdoors. There’s a double-header today, with fireworks afterwards. I’d be a little tempted to go to that, if it wasn’t going to be 90º out today.
  • Only semi-related to the rest of this stuff: The Centre Pompidou is going to open a satellite location in Jersey City, in 2024. That’s quite a ways off, but worth mentioning, I think. I saw the Centre Pompidou in Paris once, a long time ago, but only from the outside. I’d love to go back to Paris and actually see the inside of the museum. (We also missed out on the Louvre on that trip, due to a scheduling snafu, so that’s two Paris museums I need to go see someday.)

So that’s my list of tempting in-person events that are coming up in the near future. I’m still not committing to anything, but I’m starting to bookmark some interesting stuff and create some notes in Evernote. So, who knows, maybe there will be a few weekends this summer where I don’t spend the whole weekend in my apartment reading comics and watching TV.

Memorial Day 2021

It’s been a quiet Memorial Day weekend so far. It rained all day Saturday and Sunday, and Friday night, so that kept most people away from downtown. It’s looking nicer today, so maybe Main St will be a little busier. There’s no Tour of Somerville today, of course. It’s been rescheduled for Labor Day. Hopefully, that’ll work out OK. The race attracts people from all over the US, and even some international racers, and I’d hate to see it turn into a super-spreader event for whatever variants are floating around in September.

Downtown Somerville is planning on returning to a somewhat “normal” schedule of events for this summer. I’m not too enthusiastic about that, since I’ve been finding them more of an inconvenience/annoyance over the last few years. But hopefully this summer will be a little more subdued than recent pre-COVID summers.

As I mentioned in my last post, the NJ mask mandate is now (mostly) gone. I haven’t gotten much of a feel for how that’s working yet, since I stayed in almost all day Saturday and Sunday, due to the rain. I did go out to my local coffee shop, and found that they were about 50/50 on masks now, among both staff and patrons. I also went on a quick trip to ShopRite this morning, and found that nearly all patrons and employees were wearing masks. I still haven’t gone out without a mask, but I may try skipping it for my morning walk tomorrow and see how it feels. Tomorrow will be exactly two weeks since my second vaccine shot, so I’ll be officially fully vaccinated then.

Apple TV

Since it’s been raining all weekend, I’ve spent a lot of time in front of the TV. (I guess I could have been reading books or comics, but I didn’t really have the energy for that.) So I have a few more thoughts on my new Apple TV box.

First, I had some trouble figuring out how to deal with HDR. My TV uses a different set of video settings for HDR vs regular HD, and I found that stuff that displayed in HDR looked way too dark. The first issue is that the Apple TV, by default, is always in HDR mode, regardless of whether or not the content you’re showing is HDR. As mentioned in this article, you can fix that by going to Settings > Video and Audio > Match Content, and turning on Match Dynamic Range and Match Frame Rate. That keeps the TV in regular HD mode for regular HD content, so that fixes the problem for most content.

But for actual HDR content, I had to keep messing around. This article from Wired addresses the specific issue of HDR content looking too dark, and was helpful. In the end, the solution was to turn off the “energy saver” mode. I’d really been resisting making that change, because, well… I don’t want to waste energy. But it seems to be the only way to get a bright enough picture.

On the subject of the new Apple TV remote: I like it, but I had a little trouble figuring out some stuff. Here’s an article that explains some of the less obvious commands. Initially, I couldn’t figure out how to do the “rewind or fast forward 10 seconds” thing or the new “scrub” thing. The official Apple doc on this stuff is here.

There’s a fairly long review of the new Apple TV here. It’s worth reading (or at least skimming) if you’re thinking about buying one.

WordPress

I was going to add another section to this post, talking about some troubleshooting I had to do with WordPress on Saturday, but this thing has gone on long enough, so maybe that’ll be a subject for another day.

no more masks

As expected, NJ will pretty much drop its mask mandate this week, on Friday. (See here for an NJ.com article and here for one from the NY Times.) As I mentioned in my last post, I have some trepidation about this. But I guess I’m going to have to get used it and hope for the best.

I see that Stephen Colbert is going to start doing shows in front of a live audience again, starting June 14. NYC, in general, is opening back up again pretty quickly. I haven’t really kept up with what’s going on with the museums though. As far as I can tell, the Met and MoMA both still require masks and timed entry tickets, and haven’t announced plans to change that.

I’m still trying to manage my anxiety around all of this reopening. I bought a box of Chipwiches at the grocery store last week, and those are helping.

trepidation

This post is going to be a bit of a follow-up to my previous post, from Thursday.

To recap my vaccine timeline: NJ opened up vaccine registration to everyone on April 19, I got my first shot on April 20, my second on May 18, and I should be at full immunity in two weeks, on June 1.

So, basically, for anyone in NJ who waited for general availability of the vaccine, and got a two-dose vaccine, the earliest they could possibly be at full immunity is right around June 1.

NJ still has a mask mandate right now, which is good, but it looks like we’ll be dropping it on Friday, just in time for Memorial Day weekend. I know that, technically, people who are not fully vaccinated are still supposed to wear masks, but that’s not going to be checked or enforced, and I’m sure a lot of unvaccinated people are going to stop wearing masks. NJ currently has around 55% of adults fully vaccinated, which is great, but I’d really like to see that number closer to 75% before we get too enthusiastic about reopening. (But of course nobody’s asking me for my opinion.)

I’m seeing a lot of other signs that people and organizations are rushing to open things back up. The Catholic Bishops of NJ are lifting the dispensation on the Sunday mass obligation, effective Sunday June 6. That doesn’t really matter to me, since I stopped attending mass regularly at some point in the 90s. But a lot of Catholics take that stuff seriously.  (Hopefully, good Catholics might also be the kind of people who care enough to get vaccinated and/or to wear a mask to mass.)

We got an email at work this week saying that there would be an announcement next week about returning to work. I’m not sure what they’re going to announce. I’m sure it won’t be anything crazy, like “we’re reopening the office on June 7 and everyone needs to come back full-time.” But I’m a little worried about what it might be, and I’m finding myself not at all enthusiastic about returning to the office. (And I’m not the only one.) I’d love to see the company require vaccination for all employees, but I doubt they’d do that. The original, pre-vaccine, plan was to have people come in two days a week, in two groups, so the office would basically be half-full Monday through Thursday, and (mostly) empty on Friday. Post-vaccine, they may decide that’s not necessary, but I’d like to see something like that to start. I don’t necessarily mind going back to the office at this point, but I really hope they’ll let us continue to have some flexibility regarding remote work.

I saw a quote on Twitter today that said “No amount of guilt can solve the past, and no amount of anxiety can change the future.” (I’m not sure where that came from originally. It seems to circulate in various forms, usually with an “unknown” attribution.) So I guess I should just relax and enjoy the weekend, and stop worrying about returning to work, at least until I know more about my company’s plans.

Meanwhile, on the topic of distractions, which I touched upon in the previous post: I am now binge-watching the old Clone Wars cartoon on Disney+. This seems like a perfect thing to do at this stage of the pandemic. There are seven seasons to get through. It’s got some complexity to it, which keeps me engaged, but it’s all just nonsense, really. Basically, it’s a perfect distraction from my anxiety.

On a related note, my Apple TV showed up yesterday, and I’ve got it hooked up and working. I can’t see much of a difference between the old, non-4K, box and this new fancy 4K version. But I’ve mostly been watching stuff where I wouldn’t expect to see a difference, like Clone Wars and old episodes of New Tricks. (By the way, New Tricks is another good series if you’re looking for pointless distraction.) I tried the new color calibration stuff on it, but it didn’t work. I may try it again at some point, but it sounds like it might not be worth doing, so I’m not in a hurry on that. The main selling point of the new Apple TV is of course the new remote. I’ll just say that I’m liking it so far, but I’d gotten so used to the old remote that I’m still getting used to the new one. Once my brain starts remembering where the buttons are, I’m sure this new remote will be much less frustrating than the old one was.

scheduling my vaccine shots

Today was the first day of universal eligibility for the COVID-19 vaccine here in NJ. So I finally got my chance to register for it. I went online at 6:30 AM, while I was eating breakfast, and managed to secure an appointment for tomorrow, at a CVS in Union. It’s about a 30-45 minute drive from my home, so that’s not perfect, but it’s not bad either. And it’s tomorrow! The second shot will be in mid-May, so I guess I’ll have a reasonably degree of immunity in… early June?

It would be nice to be able to make a few trips into NYC over the summer, to visit the Met and MoMA, stroll through Central Park, and other stuff like that. I don’t know what the overall situation will be, though, so maybe that’ll be something I feel comfortable doing, or maybe it won’t.

I took a full day off from work tomorrow for the shot. It’s scheduled for 11:45 AM. If it was closer to home, I could have just done it on my lunch break. But with the drive there and back, plus whatever waiting I’ll have to do, and taking into account the possibility of post-shot side-effects, I figured it would be safest to just take the whole day off. Plus, I think I need a day off anyway. I’ve been tired and distracted at work a lot lately.

I read a NY Times article on languishing this morning, and I think I see myself in the description of that condition. Successfully registering for the vaccine actually brought me a lot more joy that I thought it would. I was pretty happy for a few hours there. Things started settling back towards my “new normal” around lunch time, but I gave myself an afternoon boost with a cappuccino and got through the rest of the work day. (I’ve been spending way too much money on afternoon cappuccinos at my local coffee shop lately, but I guess it’s not the worst thing I could be spending money on right now.)

So the plan for tomorrow is to maybe sleep a little late, have a leisurely breakfast, maybe read some comics, then go get my shot. The CVS I’m going to is near Galloping Hill Inn, so I can stop for a hot dog on the way back, maybe. I haven’t been there in years. And maybe I can get home in time to watch the Apple event at 1 PM. I don’t think they’re going to be announcing anything I’ll be interested in, but you never know. Then, maybe more comics, then dinner. Unless the vaccine shot throws me for a loop, in which case: nap, then dinner. That should be a nice day off either way.

Apple stuff, vaccine stuff, and more

I’ve got a few things to blog about, and I think I’m just going to write a hodge-podge post with a random selection of subjects. I guess that’s a reasonable thing to do on a cold and dreary Saturday morning.

Apple stuff

I noticed in my “On This Day” widget that I bought my current iPad two years ago today, and my first Apple Watch five years ago today. The iPad is still in pretty good shape, though the battery life isn’t what it used to be. Next week’s Apple event will probably include an announcement about new iPads, but I think I’ll stick with my current one for a while longer. I primarily use it to read comics and browse Twitter and Facebook, and it’s fine for all that.

As for the Apple Watch, I’m quite surprised to realize that I’ve been wearing one for five years now. I’ve got to say, Apple really got it right with the Watch. I was leery about a few things when I first bought one, but it’s been great. I got used to the Sport band pretty quickly, and haven’t ever bothered to try a different style. I don’t want to give the Watch all the credit for the fact that I’ve kept my weight down and my fitness level up over the last five years, but honestly it probably deserves a lot of credit. It’s dumb, but closing my rings does motivate me to get out and exercise more often than I would otherwise.

Vaccine stuff

I’ll finally be eligible to get the COVID vaccine, starting Monday. I’m registered with the state of NJ, so we’ll see if anything comes of that. I’m also getting myself ready to try other avenues, including RWJ, CVS, and Walgreens. This (subscriber-only) NJ.com article has a good round-up of vaccine resources. The suspension of the J&J vaccine and the opening up of eligibility on Monday may mean that I won’t have much of a chance of getting vaccinated any time soon, but I’ll give it the old college try, and maybe I’ll get lucky. In general, availability seems to be better in south Jersey than around here, but I hope I can find an option that’s relatively local. I really don’t want to have to drive down to Atlantic City.

Apparently, more than a third of adults in NJ are now fully vaccinated, and more than half have received at least one dose. So that’s good news. Meanwhile, the global death toll has passed three million. So we still need to take this thing seriously.

Reading, Watching, Listening

I dropped my cable subscription down to Broadcast Basic this week, and I’m doing fine with that so far. I miss TCM a bit, but I still have eight or nine TCM movies on my TiVo that I haven’t watched yet, so that’s no big deal. And I miss The Daily Show, but I can always watch bits of that on YouTube.

I’ve had Apple One for about a week now, but I haven’t watched anything on Apple TV+ or played any Apple Arcade games yet. I did get all my photos up to iCloud though, and did a bunch of organizing there.

My two favorite TV shows right now are probably Falcon and the Winter Soldier on Disney+ and Invincible on Amazon. Both, coincidentally, have related podcasts from Comic Book Club. There’s a whole mini-industry going right now around podcasts and web site articles recapping and discussing various nerdy TV shows. Sometimes, I think there’s a bit too much of that. Even the NY Times does recap articles now. But, hey, it doesn’t do any harm, and sometimes the discussion is interesting and fun. I’ve been watching/listening to the Comic Book Club guys on and off for more than ten years, so they seem kind of like old friends. (You can read a bit about their history here.) I never made it to any of their live shows in NYC, and now I kind of regret that, since they never be able to start those back up again.

The Invincible show has gotten me interested in the Invincible comic book again. I bought and read the first four volumes some years ago. I enjoyed them, but didn’t get around to buying any more, until 2016, when I bought volumes 5-13 from Comixology during a sale. There are 25 volumes, so I need to pick up 14-25 to get the whole run. There’s another sale going on at Comixology, so I can get them for half-price right now, but that’s still enough money that it’s not an easy impulse buy for me. I haven’t actually read those volumes that I bought back in 2016 yet either, so I don’t think I need to be in a hurry to complete the set. But, of course, the collector’s mentality has kicked in, so now I’m probably just going to go ahead and get them.

I’m somewhat tempted to buy physical copies rather than digital, but I know that’s a bad idea. I have way too many books in my apartment now, and I haven’t been able to get rid of them via library sales like I used to, since my local library system suspended their book sales when the virus hit. As I mentioned recently, I’ve stopped ordering comics from Westfield, so hopefully I can start putting a dent in my backlog of physical books (both comic and otherwise) and then find something useful to do with the ones I’ve read. Maybe the library can start up their book sales again over the summer. Maybe they can do them outdoors in the parking lot or something like that. That would be cool.

too much snow

Fair warning: this is going to be a rambling post, mostly complaining about the weather, and about how crappy I’ve been feeling. You’ve been warned.

We started off February here in NJ with a huge snowstorm on Monday. According to NJ.com, we got 23 inches here in Somerville. I’m pretty sure it’s the worst snowstorm we’ve had since the big one in January 2016. I’m very glad that I can work from home right now. That wasn’t the case in 2016, and dealing with driving and parking turned out to be quite a big problem. This time, I just left my car alone on Monday and Tuesday, and stayed indoors. (I did knock a little snow off it on Tuesday, but not much.) On Wednesday, I made a concerted effort to dig it out of the snow. Over the course of three 30-minute sessions, I managed to get about halfway there. But then, Wednesday night, I felt horrible. Lots of pain, sore throat, headache. I guess I’m just too old and broken to do manual labor anymore. I left it alone again on Thursday, and tried to heal up. I felt a little better today, but still not great. I did a little more digging, but maybe just 15 minutes, total. At this point, between the digging and some melting, I could probably move the car if I had to. But I’m still feeling pretty bad.

What’s left of the snow (and there’s a lot) isn’t likely to melt anytime soon. And now we’ve got another storm coming in this weekend, bringing maybe another eight inches. I’m really glad that I don’t need the car right now. I’ve been ordering my groceries from Whole Foods for the last few months, and getting them delivered. And I have ShopRite in walking distance too. And it looks like my company won’t be asking us to get back into the office for quite some time. So I may just leave the car where it is for the rest of the month. I should probably try to drive it around a little at some point this month, if I can, but I don’t think it’ll be a huge problem if I let it sit for the next few weeks, if I have to.

Now it’s Friday night, and I still have some pain in various parts of my body, plus a bit of a headache, and still kind of a sore throat. I plan on getting up early tomorrow and doing my laundry. After that, I think I’ll just be resting up for the remainder of the weekend. The Super Bowl is Sunday, but I have to admit that I don’t much care about it. I didn’t pay any attention to football this year.

I have a bunch of other stuff I want to blog about, some of which might actually be useful or entertaining. But I sure don’t have the energy for it right now. Maybe if I feel better on Saturday afternoon or Sunday, I’ll try to write something useful. For now, this is all I got.

what a week

In my last post, on New Year’s Day, I said “I’m expecting the first couple of months of 2021 to be pretty rough.” It turns out, the first couple of weeks of 2021 have been pretty rough. So one week ago, we had an angry mob storm the Capitol building, and today, we saw Trump get impeached for the second time, at record speed.

I wanted to write a post about the whole insurrection thing over the weekend, but I just couldn’t get my thoughts together in any coherent way. I still probably can’t, but I feel like I need to get some stuff out of my head, regardless. It might not be that organized or coherent, so I apologize if it isn’t.

It’s been interesting to follow the reaction of some of our local NJ politicians to the Capitol incident. Here are a few links.

  • Andy Kim got some attention for picking up trash in the Capitol building after the incident. Here’s an article from the Post, and here’s one from NJ.com. It’s a small thing, but it was one of the only positive stories to come out of this, and really reflects the kind of values I want to see in my elected representatives.
  • Meanwhile, Bonnie Watson Coleman, another NJ rep, has now tested positive for COVID-19. Here’s an article on that from NJ Spotlight. While of course there’s no way to tell for sure, there’s a good chance she was exposed while locked up in the Capitol building with a bunch of other lawmakers, many of whom refused to put on a mask. So that’s infuriating. Here’s a Post opinion piece she wrote. (She’s not happy.)
  • Mikie Sherrill is alleging that some members of Congress led “reconnaissance” tours of the Capitol a day before the insurrection. If true, that’s… horrible. (But she could be wrong on that.)
  • Jeff Van Drew continues to disappoint, being the only NJ rep to vote against certifying Biden’s win. Here’s a USA Today article on that. A lot of people aren’t happy with Van Drew, but I’m not sure he cares. Here’s an NJ.com article about protests calling for him to resign.
  • Van Drew also, for some reason, decided to wear an extremely weird suit to work today. People have been making fun of him for it on Twitter. Here’s one from Sam Bee. And another from Matt Platkin. Not really a big deal, but I guess it’s yet another example of his generally poor judgement. (And it gave me a laugh today, which I sorely needed.)
  • Chris Smith, meanwhile, is keeping a low profile. Both he and Van Drew are quoted in this NJ.com article about today’s impeachment.
  • My own rep, Tom Malinowski, has been setting a good example. Today, he hosted two online meetings, one on vaccine distribution and one on the insurrection. I watched parts of each. He always comes across as calm, reasonable, and thoughtful in these things. I’m leery about putting too much faith in a politician, but he genuinely seems like a hard worker and good guy.

I’ve definitely been experiencing some information overload over this past week. I feel like I need to keep up with the news, but so much of it is just crazy. I want to talk to somebody about it, but I’ve hardly got anyone to talk to. (Hence this long, rambling, blog post, I guess.)

My Twitter feed often becomes quite surreal these days. I keep stumbling across stuff, and thinking it’s from The Onion, but it’s not. Or thinking that I must have misread something, but… nope. Here are a few examples:

  • Trump really was planning to give the Medal of Freedom to Bill Belichick. That was not an Onion article. (He declined, though I actually did first read about that in The Onion.)
  • Someone Wrote “Trump” on a Florida Manatee, from the NY Times.
  • From NPR: “Joint Chiefs Remind U.S. Forces That They Defend The Constitution” — because apparently that’s something we can’t take for granted anymore?
  • And I could probably add a few more links, related to some of the characters who romped around the Capitol building last week, from the weird guy with the viking hat to the scary guy with the zip ties. I’ll just add one: “Jamiroquai Singer Says Capitol Rioter In The Viking Helmet Isn’t Him.”

I had a few serious, high-level, articles about the insurrection that I wanted to link to, but I’m too tired to do that, and I’m not sure they’re necessarily the best ones to reference. Maybe I’ll revisit that later. For now, just one more link: I Recommend Eating Chips, from the NY Times. This is a pretty dumb article, but it does kinda sum up how I’m feeling lately. I’m trying very hard not to stress-eat, and I’m definitely not eating Doritos, but I’ll admit I had a small bag of potato chips with my lunch on Sunday, and it felt pretty good.

 

The Morning After

I tried to be careful about how I was following election news last night. I watched the regular NJ Spotlight newscast at 5:30 PM, then some of their later election coverage, from about 9 to 9:30 PM. And I listened to a bit of WNYC, and checked Twitter a few times. I check Twitter only via Twitterrific, and I’m careful about who I follow, so my Twitter feed is relatively sane. So I managed to get a pretty good night’s sleep last night. (A little Yo-Yo Ma helped out too.)

This morning’s news is… pretty much what I expected. No conclusive winner in the presidential race. Cory Booker reelected to the Senate, and Tom Malinowski reelected to the House. The legal weed question passed, by a 2 to 1 margin. Overall, the Democrats will likely keep their House majority and probably won’t win a Senate majority.

The mainstream media (at least the sources I follow) seem to be dealing well with Trump’s FUD. The Washington Post has a headline that reads “Trump falsely asserts election fraud, claims a victory” and the NY Times has one that says “As America Awaits a Winner, Trump Falsely Claims He Prevailed.” So we’re getting that word “false” in there, at least.

I haven’t looked at Twitter or Facebook yet this morning, but I inevitably will at some point. I’m sure that a lot of people will have opinions about all this. Either way, I need to try to get through the rest of the work week without getting distracted by all this stuff too much. Hopefully, I can find some interesting work to occupy my mind.