Friday evening. Yaaaaaay.

This is the Halloween weekend. If not for the virus, I probably would’ve been out there – walking around in some self-assembled costume, celebrating, people-watching… This year, I imagine there are still some house parties, but the most relevant official event I heard of was a haunted drivethrough. (I literally laughed out loud when I heard about it.) I like to think that once this pandemic ends, I’ll never miss another opportunity to go out ever again. Then again, everyone returns to their baseline, so that self-promise probably wouldn’t last. On the other hand, you only get so many healthy years, and this damn pandemic has devoured one of them… Gonna have to be fractionally more festive and party-going from now on, eh?

Today was, for once, a bit different. Some good news at last: Service Canada called and set up my long-awaited biometrics appointment. (A very fancy way of saying they’ll take my picture and take my fingerprints. Heh.) The big day is just 13 days away. My company’s lawyers said the permanent residency application is still on track, and they’re still expecting me to get it by early February. Just three more months, just 14 more weeks, only 14 more blinks that take me straight to Friday night as I fast-forward through yet another grey and uneventful workweek… Hope is a dangerous thing. I want to be all cute and clever and say “I’m contemplating allowing myself to begin considering cautious optimism” but no, I really do hope, sincerely and fervently, that everything will work out just fine and right on schedule.

As one of my all-time favourite quotes goes, “Hope… Do not look down, my friend. Even in the darkest of times, there is always hope. Hope for a better day, hope for a new dawn. Or just hope for a good breakfast. You start small, then see what you can get.” Something I always try to keep in mind.

In covid news, the US has set yet another record, this time with 98,000 new cases in one day. Simultaneously, here is what the President of the United States of America said at yet another rally earlier today: “You know, our doctors get more money if somebody dies from COVID. You know that, right? I mean our doctors are very smart people. With us when in doubt, choose COVID. It’s true, no, it’s true. No, they’ll say, ‘Oh, it’s terrible what he said,’ but that’s true. It’s like $2,000 more, so you get more money. This could only happen to us”

…I’m glad I left. It’s interesting, in a rather macabre way. I used to think that just ahead of the election (which is four days away), Trump’s administration would introduce some fake or untested covid vaccines, and fool people just long enough to get their votes. (In this scenario, they wouldn’t care about any side effects, since they would have won the election by then.) In reality, though, they’ve ended up downplaying the pandemic, essentially calling it fake news, and celebrating some imaginary victory. A news release from the White House Office of Science and Technology claimed “ending the covid-19 pandemic” as one of the administration biggest scientific triumphs. It’s really beginning to sound like 40% of Americans live in some alternate reality, where covid is fake, the pandemic is over, and there aren’t 1,000 Americans dying every day.

Oh, and Idaho Lieutenant Governor Janice McGeachin just recorded an anti-lockdown video of herself sitting in a car, holding a gun and a Bible, and talking about inalienable rights. This whole thing is too absurd to be real, too stupid to be funny, too believable to be shocking. There are four days left until the election: if one of those idiots decides to orchestrate a covid-related October surprise, it’ll likely happen this weekend – assuming it happens at all.

Stay safe out there, folks, and especially you, my American amigos.