- I once again Got Covid. Monday (and Tuesday!) I was meant to be in London but I felt a bit ropey Monday morning so thought I'd test before leaving and hey it's those familiar old two lines. By Monday evening I was really starting to feel pretty bad, Tuesday worse, but Wednesday picked up a bit and by Thursday I still didn't feel 100% but multiple tests came back negative, which at least meant I could leave my room again. Friday I was mostly back to normal. Less severe and less lengthy than last time, and for both those I'm profoundly grateful.
- It wasn't even bad enough to stop me working—and actually it was very instructive for me to be completely confined to quarters, not able to do my usual chores or cook or go anywhere in the evening. I discovered that (in an admittedly quiet-ish work week) I did have a surprising amount of free time, and it's all the "life maintenance" stuff I view as background which really does take it out of me.
- Having my evenings totally clear (CM obviously didn't want to get Covid but for various reasons particularly didn't this week, so we were pretty strict about our isolation from each other) and quite often getting through all the tasks on my list was also quite an... uncomfortable experience? I'm reminded of a passage from Oliver Burkeman's Four Thousand Weeks "The other important thing we can do as individuals, in order to enter the experience of genuine rest, is to simply stop expecting it to feel good, at least in the first instance."
- I finally did something that I've been putting off since before Christmas: migrated this site to a new server and rejigged the look a bit. There's still a number of tweaks I want to make, but I like it. I also want to start sending things out by email again; I'm thinking I just send out the weeknotes post, like a 'digest' kinda thing maybe.
- Some Good Work Stuff happened which I can't really go into in too much detail but I feel like I can be a bit negative about work on here so I just want to note that several particularly good things happened this week.
- Seagull subscriber numbers continue to rise and we're getting loads of pitches, which is wonderful—some genuinely exciting stuff coming in, from names I recognise(?!)
- I passed my driving theory test, and I'm one step closer to becoming a car.
- We went to a farm to see some highland cows, which we did, and they were lovely. We also met some friendly goats, some alpacas, and a pig who plays D&D.
Bit of a thin week, I wrote this about my desire to block or allow notifications in a more contextual way. It also occurred to me this evening that I really used to like the thing that Boomerang does that allowed you to pause your inbox (which the lovely people at Spark told me is on their roadmap) but what I'd like even more is the ability to do that for Slack and Teams as well.
Nearly done with The Odyssey, which I've been on and off with for months; preparatory reading for our next D&D campaign which is set in ~the world of Greek myth~. Also:
- I love accounts of alternative educational institutions like this one about Goddard College. Whether it's this or Black Mountain or that place that's a bit like this but seems to be a bit more conservative and is in Montana or whatever, they all seem to engender a really attractive degree of engagement from their students.
- Sam Freedman here making an argument for Thatcherism failing in terms of Thatcher's ultimate objective of changing people's 'heart and soul'. It occurred to me reading this that despite being notionally opposed to state provision, the Thatcher project was an insanely large programme of one-off state provision.
- Sasha Chapin talking about how to encourage others. Love a list like this, love Sasha, love encouraging others. Great stuff.
- A friend of mine had their first pint of Guiness the other day (their verdict: "It's beer") and I must admit I have no great love for the stuff, feeling catfished by it ever since someone told me I'd like it because it was "like Marmite". It is very aesthetically pleasing, though, and this by Ana Kinsella starts with that and goes to some fun places.
- I think I'd like to read the full autobiography of IRL pen tester Jenny Radcliffe.
- I only really know Jacob Bacharach for his Chapo guest appearances but this poem (via Tom) is next-level
The version of the Revolutionary Etude on this absolutely slaps. Whenever I listen to stuff like this I get the very strong feeling of "man I probably could've played that when I was 18". Knowing you probably peaked at something nearly a decade ago is a bit sad but I'm pretty resigned to it at this point. Might give it a go regardless—there's some fine-grain control I'm probably not getting back but my hands can still move pretty fast if they need to.
My pal Shona did a video on gender and heavy metal. I'm not really much of a metal guy, but I enjoyed it and you probably will too :)
Keep it real, gang. Over and out.