Month: November 2020

Learning French

Earlier this year, Havana started learning French using DuoLingo. When the pandemic started, we all decided we’d follow her lead and learn a language too. I chose French because I took it in high school but never learned as much as I would have liked, plus I thought I could practice with Havana. Hudson, Eva and Gay chose Spanish.

Months later, I’m the only one who still does it regularly. In fact, I never missed a day. Today is my 150th consecutive day! I’ve slowed down a lot since the early days when I would aim for 500 XP points a day and to be #1 in each week’s league competition. That would take me 2-3 hours a day which became too much to commit each day. These days, I’m happy with 100 points per day and to just not get demoted to the league below.

Right now, I have 31,091 XP points am almost at the end of Castle 3 (of 8 Castles), so maybe 35% complete with the entire course. I am far from fluent but much better than I was at French in both reading, writing and listening than I was in high school.

Biden is President-Elect

It took several days since November 3rd of vote-counting for Joe Biden to reach a lead of 0.5% in Pennsylvania when it was called for him which put him over 270 Electoral Votes. The election had the largest turnout in American history and Democrats once again won the popular vote as they have in 7 of the last 8 elections, proving once again that America is more progressive than it is conservative. It’s also more proof that the Electoral College is broken given that it’s not obvious who won when one candidate gets over 4 million votes more than the other candidate.

Our pandemic pod partners, the Silks, came over to celebrate and watch the victory speeches. Congratulations to a long-deserving Joe Biden and to history-making Kamala Harris!

Joe Biden making his best speech ever
Kamala in suffragette white
Bowie, Hudson, Zach, Eli, Fiona, Edie, Eva, Gay, Havana and me toasting champagne (and kids’ champagne)

Good riddance to Trump. What a jackass. True to his character, he’s a sore loser and, despite zero evidence, is pushing conspiracy theories that the Democrats stole the election from him and refuses to concede. Trump and his lemmings believe the Democrats stole the Presidency but no Senate seats. Trump lost because most Americans don’t like him. It’s that simple. The claims of fraud are just a ruse to continue Republican voter suppression tactics to keep voting difficult and to prevent low-income and minorities from voting in future elections. I hope he really does refuse to leave the White House and is hauled out in handcuffs on January 20, 2021. But he’s also a coward, so I predict he’ll leave in the middle of the night so no one can watch.

Patrick’s bumper sticker

51st birthday

It’s a pretty great birthday: an early Daylight Savings Time change gave me an extra hour of sleep, for lunch I had a Katz’s Deli pastrami sandwich direct from NYC, my dad is making good progress in the hospital, the Steelers beat the Ravens and remain undefeated, Jon & Megan got me a a cool Filson waterproof backpack and a case of sour beers and the Seahawks beat the 49ers.

Birthday lunch

For the first time in years, I didn’t have steak for dinner or my traditional German Chocolate Cake. Instead, dinner was takeout from Omega Ouzeri and the cake was from Deep Sea Sugar & Salt.

When Gay and Havana celebrated their birthdays during the pandemic lockdown in March and April, I did not expect Hudson’s or mine would be too. But here we are. Eva’s birthday will be too.