I’m writing this from a house that is feeling very sorry for itself.
As I type, Eve’s into day two of tonsillitis. I have bit of a cold and scratchy throat but – touch wood – don’t seem to be suffering from the worst of it.
PLUS on top of all this about 10 days ago I had an allergic reaction out of the blue. I’ve been covered in an itchy rash since.
The pharmacist took one look at it on Monday and said it’s a dust mite allergy.
He then asked if I’d had Covid, I said yes. Anecdotally he said he’s seen a number of people experiencing the same thing. Dust mite allergy out of the blue this winter as soon as their central heating came on. Anyways, as you can imagine lots of dusting, hovering, washing is going on here. Luckily, we have a new mattress on order and I think I’m going to replace all our bedding when it arrives. And maybe we’ll get allergy pillows or whatever too. Despite being on strong Piriton I’m still itchy AF – fuck this!
Speaking of health related things, I rang my local doctors who I’ve been with since 2007 earlier this week to book my regular blood test and B12 injection. They told me that there’s no non-essential appointments until late Jan! 2.5 months!! WTF. The new health bill aside, the Tories have already fucked up the NHS. Anyways, I’m heading up to the hospital to get my blood test done next week, and had my injection on Friday after they double booked me over the beginning of someone else’s appointment. Crazy.
Since I’m ranting my 60w Macbook pro charger finally gave up the ghost yesterday. Apple cables are so fricking shoddy it makes me angry. Feeling under the weather yesterday I ended up spending 80(!) quid on a new charger online with the last of my laptop battery and went into town to pick it up from the Apple store 2 hours later at the allotted time.
Apple stores have the worst customer service on the high street.
If you have been to an Apple store recently, you’ll know the indignity of which I speak.
There’s no till or area of the store where you are supposed to go to get one of the red shirts attention.
Instead you have to stand around like a lemon trying to get someones attention. When I finally did, I explained that I had an order to pick up and a time slot etc. That person can’t help of course, I need to speak to some other red shirt with an IPad (but of course). 4 people later I’m standing at a table giving my details, order number, QR code etc to someone for the second time. Oh, and they need my email address/AppleID to send me my receipt – despite the fact I’d already paid for it online ?????
Argos have better customer service design flows than the Apple store. I try to avoid it as much as possible. Awful place.
I rage bought a coffee at my favourite stop and then went to the local Games Workshop just to experience some decent customer service.
In other technology related news I bought a vertical mouse.
If you even have the merest hint of wrist pain from using a laptop / standard mouse go and buy yourself one immediately. Stop reading this and go order one right now.
Total game changer. Its only been half a week and my wrist pain is already fading away. Some of the tightness in my right shoulder is also beginning to recede too.
Should have bought one of these years ago.
Dealing With Procrastination
The horror as my depression lifted at the beginning of the UK lockdown. It wasn’t depression stopping me from doing things. It was something far worse… Me.
The Ministry Of My Own Labour
- If I don’t say it every year, I certainly think it. NaNoWriMo is always a mistake. A colossal effort. Anyways after I post this I’m going to push though and get it out of the way. 50k words in November across 28 days.
- I have a bunch of emails I need to reply too. Fell off the wagon with my 48h personal SLA for replying to shit. Must do better!
- I have an essay I need to finish that i’ve been stuck staring at for a few days and its coming down to crunch time for it.
- Attended a super interesting call on the trust discord.
- Loads of other bits and bobs I don’t remember right now.
Dipping the Stacks
Close Reading of the QAnon Shaman’s Conspiracy Manifesto ‹ Literary Hub
How RFK Jr., Naomi Wolf, and an NYU Professor Ended Up on the Same Page as QAnon Cultist Jacob Chansley
Unity, Weta, and Faceless Platforms – Stratechery by Ben Thompson
It is striking how the fundamental strengths and weaknesses of Weta and Unity are mirror images of each other: Weta has cutting edge technology, but it’s only available to Weta; Unity’s technology, meanwhile, continues to improve, but its biggest asset is the number of developers on its platform and integration with all of the other components a developer needs to build a business.
UK tourism is crashing. Here’s why | CNN Travel
So who would want to go on vacation in the UK at the moment?
Not many, the figures show.
Hope | The official Derrick Jensen site
Hope is, in fact, a curse, a bane.
Nadia Eghbal | The creator economy
Creators-as-entertainment doesn’t feel so different from the world of record labels and talent agencies that we’re leaving behind. Maybe creators have more agency now, but they’re using that platform to transmit the same messages as before. I
Busy week so little time for reading. But I have managed to plough through the majority of ‘The Empire of Tea: The Remarkable History of the Plant That Took Over the World’. It’s a fascinating book. The first 3rd looks at the effects of Tea on China; its social, cultural and biological effects and teas foundational role as an Empire builder. It moves on to Japan and discusses the same thing, with a heavy focus on the ritualisation of Tea. The rest of the book concerns the British empire and spends quite some time focused on Assam region of India.
The whole section with its primary sources, diary entries, facts and figures in documents from dispassionate administrators is shocking. Conditions for people working on plantations were horrendous right the way up until the outbreak of WW2. Made me so mad.
I’d really like to read an animist version of this book. Tea’s complicity in empire etc.
thejaymo.net Spotify Playlist
30 by Adele
Adeles new album is a bit good isn’t it? I saw a lot of commentators asking why it blew though the charts, but none of the articles touched on the fact that she can sing? There’s no auto tune anywhere, and having listened to it over and over the production decisions are very human. I’m pretty sure the 808 kick on the single ‘Easy On Me’ is played live tapped out from a drum machine and not quantised for example.
Just as 25 had the disco anthem Water Under the Bridge, 30 contains ‘Oh My God’. My fav track on the album by a long way. It honestly has Jamie Lidell vibes for some reason.
30 is an incredible album. Some reviews think that she’s wallowing in her divorce but thats BS. As with all of her albums it’s an uncompromising ‘Total Polaroid’ of her life. I love it.
Planes Mistaken For Stars
I found out this week that Gared O’Donnell from PMFS died of esophageal cancer. He was 44. Tragic.
The Planes song Copper and Stars is still one of the most important rock songs in my life. When I was a teenager it change my world. It still rocks now.
My favourite Planes Track is Leaning The Room on the DimMak records Ep Knifeinthemarathon. Everything that we’ve come to expect/want from a post hardcore song. Crazy it came out 21 years ago. Genre defining. Still sounds fresh now.
I met and spoke with Gared a number of times, over the years interviewing PMFS for various zines etc. The later encounters rolled into beers and hanging out as we first met when I was 17. Last time I saw the lads IRL I was in my 30’s.
When I was 16 my band was booked to support them back in 2001ish? But the tour got cancelled.
Lovely guy. The man changed/touched my life. RIP.