1. You never think about how nice it is to breathe until it you can’t do it anymore. I may be coming down with my first winter crud of the season, which if precedent holds will last until April or so in varying degrees.
2. If you want to know what Donald Trump and his GOP are like, all you have to do is look at what they accuse others of doing and being. It’s a pretty infallible guide.
3. Kim and I went to a bookstore that was having an “Everything In The Store For $1” sale yesterday and cleaned the place out. Seriously – I came home with more than two dozen books for less than the price of a new hardback. My to-read pile is now verging on “Excessive” and I have no problem with that. In dark times one must find what light is available.
4. I’ve been at my new job for about a year now. I may be getting the hang of it, finally. Academic advising in a transfer institution is a continual exercise in figuring out how to get the specific case in front of you to fit into the general rules you’re supposed to use, and if you can make that happen on a consistent basis without frying your neurons, delaying someone’s graduation, or earning a well-deserved reputation for email snark, you’re doing okay. So far I’m managing, though I will admit to going through multiple drafts of certain emails.
5. When we were driving home from NYC on New Year’s Day we naturally had to tune into the Green Bay Packers game on the radio. Because we live in Wisconsin, and there’s a law about that. So we traveled down the highway, switching from one AM station to another as they faded in and out and occasionally landing on an FM station carrying the game – which is nicer sound but shorter range, usually. And then it was halftime and they threw the broadcast back to the central studio somewhere, and I thought to myself, “I know that voice!” Sure enough, it was a guy I used to hang out with back in college. He was part of the Late Night Lobby Club, an informal group in my dorm that met from midnight to 4am nightly because that’s when the fun happened. Apparently he has done well for himself in his chosen field, and good for him – but it was strange to listen to him being all Adult and Authoritative while memories of the kinds of things we did in college played across my brain.
6. Santana died this week. She was one of our hens – the Sultan, which is quite possibly the single dimmest breed of chicken on earth. She wasn’t much of a layer either, but she was the most sociable of the hens and the one who would let Lauren carry her around like a football. She was a sweetly dim bird, and we’ll miss her.
7. The four of us went over to visit friends on Friday and had a good time eating dinner and playing Cards Against Humanity. One of the signal victories of parenting is when your children can sit in a room full of adults and participate as equals in the conversation. I am very proud of my daughters.
8. I still haven’t cleared my desk from last semester’s debris, and this semester is rapidly bearing down. This needs to change.
9. Word to the wise: if you see a machine screw on the road, try not to run it over. We ignored this advice on Friday, and ended up with a flat tire. I really did not want to spend the morning digging around in the undercarriage for the spare and then figuring out when to get over to a place that would resolve the whole issue for real. Fortunately AAA covers this sort of thing, even in your own garage. The guy came out, identified the problem, and fixed it right there – no further appointments necessary.
10. You can get into some fascinating conversations by bringing up the phase “reverse Polish notation” even when it is warranted and factually accurate.