Weeknotes #126

in weeknotes

  • Mum arrived. Contrary to what we’d found when we were researching things before she left, she wasn’t given a PCR test on arrival. Still, we were a bit self-conscious of her coming straight to the apartment from the airport so she stayed overnight in a hotel at Haneda. It felt both like a long time and a not long time since I’d seen her in person (it had in fact been more than two years). I suspect this is due to being accustomed to only seeing her a couple of times a year and regular calls on FaceTime.

  • Out of an abundance of caution we’ll keep the kids home from school on Monday. Neither Emma’s school nor John’s said that this was strictly necessary but Eri and I both feel like it’s the courteous thing to do if nothing else.

  • I fear the nice weather part of the year is over. There are still nice snatches of sunshine but it’s already started to look increasingly overcast as the rainy season starts. After that, I’m not especially looking forward to another hot and humid summer. The large park that’s closest to our place has excellent tree cover and hopefully we can still take the kids there and not have it be awful. The other thing I’ve got in mind is to take advantage of our not-mosquito-infested backyard to buy a little kiddie pool and have the kids splash around in that.

  • In one of those kick-yourself-for-not-acting-sooner moves, I discovered that the processing times for Australian passport renewals has blown out to two months. I actually had my renewal form ready to go in April but had been waiting for Rowan’s citizenship application (which was submitted at the beginning of May) to be granted so that I could lodge all the passport applications at the same time (Emma and John’s passports have already expired). I’m hopefully not in too much of a pickle because my passport expires in August. The expiration date is, as at the time of writing, more than two months away but the soonest I could make an appointment with the Australian Embassy was late July. I’ll call the Embassy next week and see if this is something I need to be concerned about. Hopefully not.

  • I finally wrote up my annual list of podcast subscriptions (I cheated and backdated it to May so that it would still technically be in ‘spring’). The way Overcast’s UI works now, I thought at first that I’d unsubscribed to a number of podcasts but as I wrote up the list, I realised that’s not really the case. What has definitely happened is that I’ve shifted away from ‘dudes talking’ to more ‘person presenting’ shows.

  • The other thing that’s caused me to have an inaccurate view of things has been the NBA Finals. The series has been excellent and I’ve found myself dipping into a number of the aforementioned ‘dudes talking’ shows as I watch another incredible performance by Stephen Curry and find myself desperate to listen to people tell me how much of an incredible performance it was.

  • I discovered the ‘Get Better Material’ meme via Scott Alexander’s write-up on the use of Silexan, a lavender extract, to treat anxiety disorder.

  • Star Trek: Strange New Worlds continues hitting it out of the park. After last week’s superb episode, this week was another ‘crew solves a problem’ story. Once again, the writers did a terrific job combining different characters together and ensuring each combination was meaningful. I know for anyone who hasn’t been watching Star Trek for the past few years, I sound like I’m grading on an incredible curve but this is where fans are at this point.

  • I watched Sarah Z’s video essay ‘No, Idiocracy Is Not a Documentary’. I’ve heard of Z but never watched any of her stuff up til now. I’ll probably give a few more a go but my initial impression is that they’d benefit from being about half the length.

  • I hadn’t forgotten that Jack Black was in a comedy rock duo called Tenacious D but I had completely forgotten that their break-out hit was ‘Tribute’ (Apple Music).

Michael Camilleri @pyrmont