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I’ve been hoping to do some on-foot neighborhood explorations with friends for quite some time. The pandemic put that somewhat on hold (although as a mostly outdoor activity, we managed it a bit). Previous outings focused on pastries, but we decided to go for a bit more balance on this most recent outing, and it was a lot of fun! We actually walked around basically in my own neighborhood, but a part of it I haven’t explored much on my own. We started with a ton of pastries, then stopped by one of my favorite local nurseries, explored the whole of Solano Ave, and ended up on local lookout point Indian Rock. It was a pretty great day! Pictured: pastries and the photographers who love them.
I finished listening to Bill Bryson’s “The Body: A Guide for Occupants” and thoroughly enjoyed it, as I have most of his work that I’ve sampled. Obviously if you’re deeply passionate or otherwise interested in the details of a specific subject, there are better authors for the job, but I personally find his overviews and little amusing bits of trivia along the way to be just a delight to listen to. A real balm for the curious but over-stimulated mind. Mary Roche has a similar-ish approach, but I’ve so far found a notable preference for Bryson, for whatever reason.
I got my second vaccine shot, wooo! I’ll be “fully” vaccinated around June 1st. I had the shot around 11AM and felt normal throughout the day. But as I went to bed I started to get a bit of a chill, and couldn’t get warm for hours. Around the middle of the night I then was too hot for the rest of my attempted sleeping hours, and I woke up with head and body aches. I took some ibuprofen around when I’d normally get up at 7:30 then slept a couple more hours and by the time I woke up I felt fine. In fact I almost felt better than normal the rest of that day!
The hummingbird eggs hatched! They look bizarre and adorable, like little half-completed Muppets (see below). I am documenting as they grow, which is quite quickly, and I’m hoping to see them open their eyes soon. I feel so fortunate to have this happening right in my back yard.
I got into a somewhat challenging (but good) political discussion with a friend who has a lot of more conservative friends than I do. He’s more of a liberal himself, in fact something of a Bernie supporter, but he also feels like we’re going about the process of trying to convince conservatives (or argue with them) in the wrong ways to actually be successful. And… I basically agree with him, at least on that. But as far as how to actually do it “right”, it’s more of a complex conversation. Anyway, this connects with some ideas I’ve had in the past about working to “communicate progressive ideas with conservative language and values”. I hope to write more on that some day, but what’s notable here is I realized he might be a really valuable sort of “barometer” for the effectiveness of anything created with that approach, because he maintains an interesting open-mindedness to conservative ideas and concerns…
Man, so, I’ve been single basically for years now. I’ve had a few short little flings here and there, and they’ve been fun - explorations and feeling out new relationships with interesting people I enjoy and respect, and I’ve remained friends with them all. But in theory I’ve been trying to date more seriously for ages, and the truth is I don’t put a lot of effort and energy into it. Honestly I find it super draining. So I haven’t updated some of my dating profiles - OK Cupid in particular, because it was the longest (because they let me ) - for a long damn time, basically since the pandemic began. Also, of course, the pandemic. Anyway, I finally did it! OK Cupid in particular I got reasonably up to date, with current photos and everything. So that feels pretty good. No major results from it so far, but hey, at least I did it. Let’s see how it goes.
I visited my mom again this past week, and was able to bring her a butterfly chrysalis that I knew was about to emerge. It came out the very next day, and she got to enjoy about a half hour watching it get ready to fly, with it on her hand. It was just very sweet to be able to bring that kind of experience to her.
After watching a video testing a supposedly innovative and wildly popular new Kickstarter-funded “cobbler” shaker design, and seeing at least one miserable flaw (jump to about 9 minutes in that video to see what I mean), I got inspired to come up with my own design. I don’t think I’ll ever actually do anything with it, but it’s fun to play with. I actually got a bit distracted putting time into refining the design and procrastinated some other, arguably more important things, but it was good exercise for the mind, so…