Wednesday night. It has occurred to me that saying “happy hump day” miiiight be able-ist. A lot of bad karma to make up for if that’s the case.

Things turned out suspiciously auspicious today, and I did not in face pull a work-related all-nighter. Well, at least this week is mildly more memorable and eventful than usual.

I’m starting to live vicariously through my landlords: they’ve made up with their son and got him a guitar tutor. (This is the part where I side-eye my own guitar, which I bought a couple of years ago and never even tuned.) Sometimes, the landlords’ daughter and her boyfriend come over and bring their cute little corgi, Royce. He hates my smoothie blender with passion. (The corgi, not the boyfriend – as far as I know, he’s indifferent to blenders.) That always makes for a fun 30-second pantomime.

Sounds like I didn’t miss much by skipping the big debate last night. The president of the United States of America refused to denounce white supremacist groups, and instead told a particularly goofy (but violent) group called the Proud Boys to “stand by and stand back.” That made them very excited because, hey, the president himself gave you a shoutout in front of the entire country. Trump apparently tried to walk that back today, but that’s too little, too late. One of my old college friends asked me earlier today, unprompted and out of the blue, if I can provide any advice on moving to Canada…

In covid news, there’s something interesting going on with cruise ships. The original CDC guidance called for all cruise ships to cease from April through this today, 9/30. The guidance was expected to get extended through February, but the White House has just blocked it. Now, under the administration’s plan, cruises can resume right after Halloween. (This NYT article has more details.) This is a completely political maneuver because a) cruise companies have some good lobbyists, b) if you let cruise ships sail again just three days before the election, you can use that for self-promotion, and c) a lot of money in Florida is made off cruises, and that’s a big part of the puzzle.

Like I said before, I have a fair bit of money invested in cruise companies: at the time, I’d naively assumed that the US would get everything under control. That turned out to be a bad and naive assumption. I guess a cynical part of me might have suspected that cruise companies would get preferential treatment. This will almost certainly be a disaster, since in addition to passengers, there are also hundreds (thousands?) of crew members, and if a single person is contagious… Well, I’m just glad I’m not in that line of work. Interestingly, this goes entirely against the recommendations of Robert Redfield, the CDC’s director. He’s a complicated figure since sometimes he acts like Trump’s sockpupper, but other times he actually stands up for himself. He got overruled on the cruise issue. I wonder if he’ll get fired and replaced with someone more compliant and less ethical.

I’m genuinely curious how the cruise resumption will play out. Kudos to all those who aren’t that stir-crazy yet. Keep it up, eh.