Tuesday night. It’s been nine months now.

Another day filled with a whole lot of nothing. (Are you seeing a trend here?) Not for the first time, I wish I could get a finder’s fee for all the savings I drive at work. A one-page proposal I created today will save $25 million CAD over the next five years. Oh well.

Somewhat related to that, I did some reading in the “Real Life” section of the Awesomeness by Analysis page on TVtropes. (Fair warning: this site is extremely addictive.) I already use my math skills outside of work to help with investing, saving, finding great travel deals, as well as a few fun hobbies which will remain unsaid. But then there are those who take their knowledge of mathematics to a whole new level: hacking game shows, finding flaws in casino games, occasionally finding a lottery that cannot be lost… So many possibilities, but only after a lot of serious study and preparation. Still, that’s one stylish shortcut. Not that it can replace dumb luck and/or insider information, such as when Kodak’s stock went up by 2,717% over the course of two days in late July, when it suddenly decided to become a pharmaceutical company and got a government loan.

Dreams and aspirations, eh?

In covid news… There’s a lot of covid news. The UK started its vaccination campaign today. The second old-timer to get vaccinated was none other than William Shakespeare. The bloke waited a bloody long time. Other countries are on standby, awaiting their own emergency approvals. Russia said it’s best to avoid smoking and drinking for six weeks while getting ready for the Sputnik V vaccine and the follow-up shot three weeks later. As someone who grew up in Russia, I find that absolutely hilarious, as well as their suggestion that people will stop at just one glass of champagne. (All of Russia goes on a binge-drinking spree between Christmas and January 14th, aka Gregorian – no relation – New Year.)

In Florida, the patron saint of data scientists, Rebekah Jones, had several cops barge into her home and point guns at her while they confiscated every hard drive, flash drive, computer, and her phone. Jones is a former data scientist for the state of Florida. She left earlier this year after allegedly being asked to fudge the covid numbers. Since then, she created her own unofficial dashboard. The search warrant was allegedly because someone hacked the state’s messaging system to send a message encouraging the state employees to release the real numbers. (Florida has been awfully shady with the veracity of their covid data.) Realistically, it’s likely that this was a retaliation attempt – and if so, it’s not impossible that Florida’s governor, Ron DeSantis, knew about this or was involved. A homegrown tyrant…

And apparently the White House declined to purchase additional Pfizer vaccines last summer, which means there won’t be enough for all Americans. Because of the FIFO system, any orders placed now won’t be fulfilled till maybe May-June. Given the logistics of mass vaccination campaigns and the three-week delay between the shots, this means a lot of Americans might not get vaccinated until well into 2021. Some dealmaker, eh?

There’s so much more going on, but so little time to document it all. I hate that I live in this bizarre soap opera, where petty villains and Peter Principle avatars wreck things left and right, and all the rest of us must trust our luck or keep a damn close eye to see which way to dodge when things start crashing. Someday, there will come a time when I’ll be able to go for weeks or even months without checking the news. I look forward to it…

Stay safe, friends, and stay the hell away from Florida just on general principle if you can help it.