It’s time for another edition of Friday Notes, my chance to whittle away a bit more at my collection of half-baked notions and blog post ideas. I recently noticed yet another notebook I’d forgotten about, so the pile actually got bigger this week rather than smaller. I’m starting to feel like Sisyphus.
The real problem is that, when you come down to it, it’s hopeless. I’m always going to be coming up with more ideas than I can write about, so the pile is always going to grow. What I need is the AI technology to clone my brain so I could delegate and distribute. Write in parallel!
But for now, all I can do is whittle away.
So this is my nine-hundred-and-ninety-ninth post here on Logos con Carne (which turns nine tomorrow). I’ll talk more about that when I do the anniversary (or perhaps more accurately, the birthday) post. What I’ve been struggling with for days is what this post should be.
The celebration post, as usual, will look back at the past year (as well as the past nine), which leaves this post wanting a topic. Yesterday I was looking at some old photos and got the idea of looking back at my own (much longer) past.
I figure it’s gotta be an easier post to write than trying to explain a tesseract.
So it’s June 2020 in America and the level of surrealism, against all sane odds, has risen to new heights. The surrealism of Pumpkin King World these last four years turned out to be just the foothills. Then came the COVID-19 mountains and toilet paper and face-masks and social distancing, and it got more surreal. The air was getting thin, and it was hard to catch one’s breath.
Now a Minneapolis cop has murdered George Floyd, a 46-year-old black man. Justified rage has erupted, and the city is in rebellion. Protests have spread nationwide. The local counties have imposed curfews for the weekend. (Friday night, unsure how real it was, I left a friend’s house later than I should have and was technically in violation of the 8:00 PM curfew before I got home. The bright daylight of summer, the streets all but empty, it was eerie.)
The surreal mountains grew to a surreal Olympus, and there is no air left at all.
I had a series of posts set up to publish this week. Then I thought to push them off to write about this insanity. But I found myself stuck, unable to find the words. (What does an old white guy have to say that’s relevant?) So I’m letting the series publish while I watch and think. (As you’ll see, it’s a series you can easily ignore while you do your own watching and thinking.)
Stay safe and thoughtful, my friends.
Black Lives Matter!
We’ve been having a good old-fashioned Minnesota February this year: bitter cold and lots of snow. It harkens back to the days of yore. (Of your what? Of your yore lore, of course.)
You know you’re a True Minnesotan when you wake up, realize that while it’s 19 out, it’s also a clear blue sky because the storm passed during the night, so you hurry through breakfast so you can go out and play in the snow.
By which I mean shovel your sidewalk and driveway before the condo crew show up and spoil the fun.
If they completely collapsed right now, fans of the Minnesota Twins would still have seen a better season than they have since 2010. If they could somehow continue playing at their current level, they could win 90+ games rather than losing that many as they have every season since then.
If they just win every other game (playing .500 ball), they’ll win 83 games and still end up with a much better record than they’ve seen in four years. They’re currently four games above the .500 mark — something fans haven’t seen since the end of 2010!
Whatever the case, the last few weeks have us jumping for joy!
The end of the calendar year: a time for a rambling look back at what was and wiping the blackboard clean for the scribbles of a new year. It’s been thirty years (and some change) since I moved from Los Angeles to Minnesota. That was roughly half my life ago.
I realize the former is a city while the latter is an entire state, but L.A. is so much a place unto itself (call it a state of mind) that I really do think of the move that way. It took years to shed my West Coast cloak — that Los Angeles state of mind — but now I’m a full-on Minnesotan.
Looking back, those three decades form three distinct acts.
Dateline: Monday. The little-known eclectic blogger, Wyrd Smythe, had no idea that his blogging provider, a mysterious global enterprise known as “Word Press” (a possible anagram for “Sword Reps”), had granted him extreme power over the weather. At this time, we cannot report whether this was a deliberate seasonal gift, or if the power somehow escaped the control of its owners. Neither can we report on how many this may affect.
What we do know is this: On Monday, when the unsuspecting blogger clicked the “Let It Snow” checkbox on his settings page, sure enough, a gentle snow fall began on his posts. That was the desired and expected effect. What happened next, however, was a surprise.
It also began to snow outside for the first time this season!