RIP 2020 (2020-2020)
I start the year just as I finished the last one: exhausted and burned out. I leave Automattic and decide to take three weeks off before looking for something new. This will later turn out to be a spectacularly bad piece of timing.
I attend RubyConf AU and spend time hanging out with many friends and excellent humans, and many hugs are exchanged. Little do any of us know that these hugs will have to sustain us for the foreseeable future.
Later in the month, I get taken to the hospital in an ambulance with some chest pain. (Turns out to be nothing.) Unrelatedly, we find and adopt a lost cat.
Horror stories about COVID-19 start to emerge from Italy. Friends start losing their jobs. A few weeks later, Australia starts social distancing. TV shows from the Before Times start looking weird almost immediately. What seems like several decades later, March finally ends.
At this point, I am still optimistic that I’ll manage to find a new job within the next couple of months. Oh, my sweet summer child.
Remote schooling starts. This begins three weeks of utter frustration and rapidly degrading mental health on all our parts, until we abandon the attempt completely.
The kids and I discover Stardew Valley and lose most of the month to it.
Over the preceding few months, a small bump has appeared next to my nose, and my wife finally convinces me that I need to get it checked out. I’m told it’s cancer of some kind and it has to be biopsied immediately to determine a course of action. Somewhat luckily, it turns out to be a basal cell carcinoma, which at least is better than some of the other possibilities. I get it cut out about a week later, leaving me with a pretty decent scar. Histology suggests the doctor got all of it out, but I’ll have to keep an eye on it for the rest of my life.
Kids return to school! Thank fuck. Then our small concerns are put into perspective when the police murder a man in Minneapolis.
My wife has some minor (but painful) surgery. Three weeks after going back to school, kids go on school holidays. Due to a resurgence in COVID-19 cases locally, holidays are extended a week, and then…
Melbourne goes back into lockdown. This time, one person can leave the house once, only within a 5km radius, and only for one of four approved purposes. We’re initially told it will be six weeks. (Spoiler: it is much, much longer.)
On the first day of lockdown, my wife starts having stomach pains. By two days later, they are bad enough that I have to drop her off at the emergency room (I’m not allowed in). After four days of bad hospital food, not much information, and a bunch of pain meds, her gallbladder is removed via keyhole surgery. Weeks later, she’s still unable to bend over, reach up, or lift heavy things - but overall, she’s okay.
School goes back to remote learning. This time around, we have learned our lesson and we basically give our kids very extended school holidays. Dan Andrews dunks on the sentient potato who thinks he’s Heinrich Himmler, and I am 100% here for it.
Lockdown continues. Streaming media, iOS games, and random serendipitous discoveries are the only distractions from the unrelenting grimness. Example: Longcat’s human confirms Longcat (Nobiko) still lives, despite being one of the earliest memes I can remember.
I discover non-alcoholic beer has come a long, long way from the Clausthaler days. This proves to be one of the best developments of 2020.
I turn 46 but feel 92. We discover my wife’s surgeon has fucked something up, so she has to go back under the knife to fix it. Two months of progress towards being able to move around without pain is all wiped out and reset to zero. RIP RGB 😭
Restrictions start to loosen - the radius is lifted to 25km, and some services are allowed to reopen. On day one, there are lines out the door at every barbershop in town. (No exaggeration.)
I start a two-month contract with A Cloud Guru (via Crew Talent Advisory) recruiting for some engineering, content, product, and design roles. Thanks Simon ❤️
RIP Sean Connery 😭 America gets it right, eventually and mostly. The Four Seasons thing once again proves that you should never attribute to malice (and greed, and outright evil) that which can adequately be explained by stupidity.
Potentially headed back into lockdown. To which I can only say:
2021, when we say that there is no possible way that you could be worse than 2020, that is not a challenge. Just… please give us a break. We’re all exhausted.
- Countries visited: 0 (⬇️ 100%)
- Flights: 0 (⬇️ 100%)
- Distance flown: 0 km (⬇️ 100%)
- Time in the air: 0 hours (⬇️ 100%)
- Swarm checkins: 418 (⬇️ 70%)
- Swarm mayorships: 48 (⬇️ 20%)
- Status: Retained Premier Platinum with United through Jan 2022 🎉
- Minutes: 4,260 (⬇️ 64%)
- Top artists: Beastie Boys, Taylor Swift, Hamilton Cast 🆕, Pink Floyd 🆕, Fall Out Boy.
You have read 55 of 100 books in 2020. – goodreads.com
I wasn’t particularly strict about logging to Goodreads, and it’s shutting down anyway. I’ve defected to The StoryGraph, because it’s excellent (and was created by Nadia Odunayo, a kick-ass engineer and speaker).
The best thing I read all year was either The City We Became, or Far Sector - both by N.K Jemisin.
2021’s goal is again 100 books.
- Steps: 823,500 (⬇️ 40% because lockdown)
- Weight: no change 😡
- Sleep: stats very inconsistently tracked, but new Apple Watch will fix that
- Days unemployed: 230 🆕
- Days in contract work: 86 🆕
- Days in permanent employment: 50 🆕
This post was made possible by Google Timeline, Google Photos, Swarm and (what remains of) my Twitter history compensating for my woeful memory.