Bye-Bye October

It’s been an exhausting few weeks and I’ll be glad to see the back of October.

Work

I am not a morning person, nor will I ever be. This was proved true once again by the intense course I took, held over four days from 7:45 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Who thinks up these times?? Especially difficult was the day I had meetings going right through to 8:30 p.m. I find the long days more and more difficult the older I get.

Then this last week, I had a lot of deadline-driven work, where all the due dates converged… how is this even possible to manage? With some reshuffling and some late nights, I pretty much managed, but I was close to looking for a bridge at some points… if I had only had the time! What saved my sanity one night was finding The Music Man on TV. Such a happy movie, with happy memories of watching it with my mother and performing as Zaneeta in my youth.

Family

Into the middle of all this came yet another stressful issue at my son’s college. One of the things that he deals with is impaired executive functioning, which means, for example, that he will completely forget to hand in an assignment! The administrator at least checked in this semester and let me know that a major assignment was missing. He had put lots of hours into it, working beside me, and completed it nine days before it was due, but due to changes in the routine by the instructor, he somehow thought everything was done and forgot to submit it. Once we were alerted to this, he submitted the project immediately. The administrator then emailed me to let me know that his work earned him a 97%… but because it was 18 days late, they gave him 0%. Cue a ramping up of the stress-mode for me, after which I donned my student advocate cape and wrote a compelling case for medical accommodation. They have now agreed to give him a grade. (I think the administrator was hoping that I could give her a reason to do so.)

Politics

We also had a provincial election here, called at one-month’s notice. In addition to mail-in options, there were ample opportunities for advance polls, with 3 or 4 in my immediate neighbourhood running for 5 consecutive days from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. We took advantage of those and found the process quick, sanitary, and with limited numbers of people in the facility.

The ruling party was NDP, which is essentially very left-leaning (much farther left than the US Democrats) and/but has been doing a great job at pandemic management. They had a minority government, meaning that they could not always get policies through because they needed the environmental Green Party to support them. In calling the election, the premier said that he wanted to get an election out of the way now, so that the winner would have a clear majority mandate to continue fighting the pandemic without distractions. Not everyone was thrilled that he did this “power grab”, but I actually think it was quite brilliant — he has now succeeded in solidifying a majority government going forward.

The televised debate, unlike certain others that shall remain nameless, was a very polite (boring) affair, where the leaders (mostly) discussed policy, were courteous, and followed the moderator’s instructions. The incumbent’s performance was excellent, as was that of the Green Party leader, but the Liberal leader’s was quite lackluster and seemed to show that he didn’t have a complete grasp of the issues. (The Liberal party in British Columbia is farther right than the Canadian federal Liberal party, and is quite fiscally conservative.) Given that the Green Party would never be able to get enough seats to govern, to me there was only one choice, even though my limited political leanings are actually more centrist with fiscal constraint.

Hallowe’en

Hallowe’en is today, but for the first time ever, we are turning off our lights and not giving out candy. I just don’t feel comfortable with it in these pandemic times. I did, however, play around with Photo Lab, resulting in this really creepy Richard as vampire GIF….

Politics… Again

Here’s hoping that November will be better. I’m keeping my fingers crossed for a good US election result and leaving you with a PSA which the participants are hoping will help to get young people out to vote. Here is Keke Palmer (Berlin Station) singing the very catchy “Actually Vote”, written by Finneas (Billie Eilish’s brother), Benj Pasek, Justin Paul, Kaleena Zanders.

20 thoughts on “Bye-Bye October

  1. Keke Palmer is so talented — feel like I’m seeing her everywhere lately (happily). She was probably my best collateral attraction from Berlin Station.

    Love hearing about a sane election process. I’ve almost forgotten what that’s like. re: fiscal restraint — I think we are in the kind of situation right now that Keynes was writing about. My issue is usually that the US leadership doesn’t seem to understand that after spending for emergencies, we have to go back to normal or less than normal for a while to make up for it. (I’m still annoyed about the GOP tax cuts of 2017 here — they will make it impossible for us to deal with our deficit even once the economy is working again.)

    re: educators — my experience is that we usually want to find a way to justify people passing, esp if they have mastered the task. (My approach in that situation is to give the highest failing grade — so that it impacts the final average but doesn’t make it impossible to pass. Unless I have a “disability letter” from the appropriate office that forces me to deal with it in other ways.)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah, I like Keke. Catchy tune, too.

      NDP governments are notorious for spending. A lot of the promises are things like $10 per day daycare, combined with higher wages for frontline workers. All well and good, but how do you pay for it? I’m not sure how or when we can go back to normal, or even what normal is anymore. We’re still in spending for those people who have lost jobs. Interest rates are low, so it seems like government debt can increase, but there has to be a limit. Not sure when we all will hit it.

      I think the school administrator does genuinely want to help my son to succeed, but she’s not quite sure how. We have of course given her the assessment letter from the psychologist, which seems to be what she needs to be able to make accommodations. (It’s a private college and small, so she effectively is the appropriate office within the college.) There just doesn’t seem to be a consistent approach from her end. (We actually have federal government acknowledgement of his disabilities, as well.) I will be so glad when school is done, in theory in December, so we can take a breath and then embark on whatever the next phase holds.

      Like

      • I feel like the last week more or less didn’t happen. What a huge time suck.

        re: what’s normal: part of our problem is that we were still borrowing (via subsidizing low interest rates) at the end of the Obama administration. The Fed was trying to raise interest rates, but it almost didn’t matter what they tried to do because between the 2017 tax cut and DJT’s constant attacks on the Fed Chair, and then his inadvertent deflation of the economy with a virus, it seems like we will never get back to a situation where the conditions to borrow money are anything like even somewhat demanding. I heard something a few months ago about how this situation is affecting borrowing, in the sense that it is much easier to declare bankruptcy now because it is so easy to borrow. Constant moral hazard.

        Liked by 1 person

        • I suppose that’s true. And with people’s income being affected by COVID, there is more need potentially to borrow, in addition to the ease of borrowing. Interest rates are just crazy low though. I had a small retirement investment come up for renewal last week. 0.8% for 1 year. Almost as well to just hide it under the matress.

          Like

          • low interest rates: indeed. It’s been that way awhile but it’s extreme. So it pushes all kinds of people and money into the equities market that shouldn’t be there, which means in turn the equities market becomes “too big to fail.’ Adam Smith is turning in his grave.

            Liked by 1 person

  2. Why do the dark and cold autumn months also come with extra work and other difficulties that no one wants or needs? Here’s hoping that November will be better for you! Hope it’s not too cold with you in Canada yet? I was watching one of my favourite YT channels today, about a young couple’s van life. They recently bought a wood cabin to do up, and today’s episode featured the first dusting of snow. I was horrified for them 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  3. That election process sounds way more sane, thank goodness! Hope the pandemic stays well under control and that other issues will also be handled well. Over here I think even our right wing (far right excepted) is more left than the US’s left wing.

    That sucks about your son’s grade, good for you for fighting for it!

    RA gif – I barely recognize him. What’s the original photo?

    Keke Palmer – I like her!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Pingback: Autumn | I'm Feeling This

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.