Hard Times: Martin Hägglund’s “This Life” and the Pomodoro Technique - Los Angeles Review of Books:

If you approach each new interval with a question, not an answer, and god forbid certainly not a task…

A call to use the tools of productivity culture but to reject its logic.

Elite Capture and Epistemic Deference - Olúfẹ́mi O. Táíwò

A constructive approach would focus on the pursuit of specific goals or end results rather than avoiding “complicity” in injustice or adhering to moral principles.

The provisions outlined here are really quite good.

Captured! cat sticking head out of dresser drawer

One of the perks of living where we do is that Montreal is only an hour’s drive north. Unfortunately, the border has been closed since March and isn’t likely to open anytime soon.

For all that I would prefer to not have to wear a mask, it is at least going to keep my face much warmer this winter.

Next week is Thanksgiving in the US, and I have more vacation days than I can keep, so even though we’ll be sheltering in place I’m taking the whole week off. The past few days, then, have been a slow fade to black, returning emails and generally closing loops.

It’s possible I forgot today’s post until bedtime.

Caffeine dependence shows a dark side on evenings like this, when having only half as much as normal during the day leads to a collapse at night.

At 11 it might be a little late to train this guy.

From 2003, the earliest memory in my camera roll: the remains of the slave quarter living-history exhibit at Carter’s Grove, Williamsburg, VA. The exhibit was closed for good that year because anything other than patriotic white colonists made too many visitors uncomfortable.

King of the squirrels, for as far as his eye can see

The least spooky Halloween decorations I saw this year.

Every evening I wait and refresh for the college to announce the day’s Covid-19 positives. Students are supposed to leave the dorms after next Friday’s classes, but more positive tests means more must stay and quarantine. It’s anyone’s guess how many will actually get to leave.

A fashionable accessory to wear

poling gently upstream on the River Say

Our elderly Peanut

Back in August, our gym having announced it was closing for good, I began working out with kettlebells. It’s taken three months but I finally feel like my technique has improved enough that I’m not just heaving hard enough to force the weight through the lift.

One of the things I like best about GoodNotes is how it embraces the analog notebook metaphor while allowing for open-ended expansion. Today I realized I could bind together related articles with my handwritten notes in a single document, and give it a custom cover.

I’ve been disappointed with the past two Democratic administrations so hardly want to inflate my expectations for this one. Nevertheless I find myself sharing in the general sense of joy and relief!

A puzzling posture

Racing to paint the house before winter arrives. Scraping of the old paint has begun; flakes falling onto the front stoop.

Front view of a green two story house, paint flaking off, with a workmen's lift off to the right.

Yesterday brought the season’s first snowfall. It’s nearly melted and tomorrow begins a string of 60°F days. We’re going to try to paint the house during the brief window. It will be a near thing.

Our faculty senate, themselves strained by both today’s election and our ongoing public health and financial crises, have set their own fears aside for an hour or two to work to ease those stresses on our students. Shared governance still retains the capacity to astonish.

We can be hard on ourselves when unable to concentrate. But sometimes, it’s not willpower but a physical malady — in my case today, a sinus infection.

A dreary, rainy first day of November, long past time to take down the screen tent.