Thursday night. Another day, another loonie, eh?

I’m trying not to be a full-on consumer with all the upcoming (and early) Black Friday sales, especially since I still haven’t quite unpacked all of my purchases from Prime Day six weeks ago. That said, the selection of heavily discounted e-books on Amazon is downright amazing, and I might have bought about a dozen. Some people have a huge collection of Steam games that they’ll never fully get through. I have a bunch of e-books that I might get around to reading someday in my early retirement.

Did you know you can beat caffeine headaches by adding more caffeine into your life? Stay tuned for this and more exciting nuggets of wisdom! A cup of black tea with breakfast did the trick: the headaches are gone, and I still moderately tired toward the end of the day. That really, really makes me wonder just how battered my nervous system was from all the coffee I’d been drinking… Ho hum.

It’s Thanksgiving in the US today. Some projections say that almost 47.8 million of them have traveled for this occasion. That’s a lot of new clusters… My hat goes off to everyone who sat this one out.

Playing Red Dead Redemption for the third night in a row has me quite nostalgic about the scenery (but not much else) of Fort Worth, Texas, where I spent a year of my life about seven years ago. Their downtown still has genuine old-timey buildings, there’s all sorts of folksy Wild West stuff in the tiny thrift stores, and there isn’t a single coffeeshop open after 3pm within 10-mile radius. (Or at least there wasn’t back in 2013.) The game is honest enough to show some of the racism, intolerance, and strange religion in that region – all among the reasons I left. (When I first moved there, there was an outbreak of measles at an anti-vaxx megachurch just a few miles away. Heh.)

In covid news, the US Supreme Court ruled that capacity restrictions on churches, temples, etc violate their First Amendment rights. It’s interesting that the deciding vote belonged to Justice Barrett, who got the job in the middle of the pandemic from the same senators who refused to pass a covid relief bill. (And who subsequently took a break for Thanksgiving.) I suppose the freedom of religion outweighs the freedom not to get infected by the religious in the US. One final ironic note: the Supreme Court meets remotely. They teleconference and avoid in-person gatherings because of the pandemic, all the while fighting local restrictions on public gatherings. Heh.

Here in Toronto, the BBQ saga continues. The diner’s owner got arrested earlier today. That was after the police locked the diner’s doors but let him get in through the back “in good faith,” which ended with him smashing through the internal partition and getting into the establishment. A pretty large crowd of protesters and counter-protesters yelled things like “Shame! Shame!” and “This is Canada, not North Korea!” thus confirming that we do, in fact, live in a South Park episode. The guy shouting about North Korea has no idea how good and privileged his life is: a month-long break from consumerism (while drivethroughs and take-out are available) is not quite the same as living in a shitty communist dictatorship. (Pardon the triple redundancy.)

To make things even more entertaining: a crowd of over 100 protesters marched to Doug Ford’s (the Ontario premier) home to express their displeasure with the state of things. There are lots of videos showing them in a big group, maskless, spreading their spit and possible viral loads all over the place, while the police stand by and do not give out the $750 CAD fines that are supposed to be part and parcel of the whole lockdown business. And this is only the first week… Things will get pretty fun – even more fun than Ford’s own former supporters turning on him.

Oh, and there were some irregularities in the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine, so they’re embarking on a new global trial. It’s not very good optics when an Oxford professor has to state “We weren’t cooking this up as we went along” for the record. This will probably diminish the recent wave of optimism, both in the news and in the stock market, and will give anti-vaxxers more ammo.

Crazy world out there. Stay safe, folks.