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As 2020 winds down...


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On 12/31/2020 at 12:32 AM, Lord Liaden said:

I wish I could feel some anticipation, but for me the year divisions are wholly artificial. All the complications we're living with don't magically disappear because a number on a calendar changes. But I do have hope that things will eventually get better -- just not all of a sudden on Jan. 1.

 

Thank you for doing what I could not do.

 

I have been trying for a decade to say that, but the best I have ever been abke to do is to very tihhtly compress my thoughts into a seven-hour rage-gueled tirade on the abject stupidity of vilifying the artificial constructs we use to track our wait dor death, and pining believing that these artificial segments alter our lives simply by existing or not existing.

 

Ten years, and I couldn't do it.  I couldnt separate the "the measuremnt of time doesn't work that way" from the "what kind of red-hat climate-change-denying flat-earth-believing crap logic is this idea, anyway?" 

 

Thank you again.

 

 

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I remember being in a monthly chairs & directors meeting with the dean back in December 1999.  The dean opened with, "Welcome to the last chairs and directors meeting of the 20th Century".

 

The chair of the math department protested, "2000 is part of the 20th Century."

 

I broke in, "No, Mike, he's saying this is the last of these meetings for thirteen months!"

 

My comment was much more popular.

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See?!

 

That's kind of my point, really.

 

An arbitrarily-assigned measurement of time is _meaningless_ in terms of deciding the goodness or the badness of something, or if it will start or begin-- or change in any way.  The only thing that arbitrarily-assigned unit of time is good for is record keeping: you have a nice shared-vocabulary handle that you can use to record what started when, and what ended when, allowing you to use those same or other arbitrarily-assigned measurements of time to assess and communicate in shared vocabulary how long "whatever-the-heck-it-was lasted.

 

 

PERIOD!

 

The internet habit of blaming the measurement of time itself is a insane a thing as I have ever seen, and I am alive today, in the United States, amidst some truly insane snickety-snit.  Yet blaming the year itself trumps _all_ of it, and always will.

 

 

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5 hours ago, archer said:

At midnight as the new year came in, some idiots here locally (within earshot) were out in barely above freezing weather, in a driving rainstorm, setting off fireworks.

Somewhat similar from my neighbors.

 

Though only a couple of fireworks.  I was hoping the ones that used to shoot off fireworks for Independence Week had moved.

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6 hours ago, archer said:

At midnight as the new year came in, some idiots here locally (within earshot) were out in barely above freezing weather, in a driving rainstorm, setting off fireworks.

 

1 hour ago, Badger said:

Somewhat similar from my neighbors.

 

Though only a couple of fireworks.  I was hoping the ones that used to shoot off fireworks for Independence Week had moved.

 

Amateurs.

 

 

Every firework you see here is 100% illegal, by the way.

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In normal years, the city's fireworks display is a fourth of a mile down the street in one direction.

 

In the other direction about 4 miles is a MLB field. Sometimes they do a New Years display. But they're known for Memorial Day and the 4th of July because that's during their normal season. 

 

If we had illegal fireworks going off some random night on the scale which Old Man is showing, it'd burn down half the city...if not more. Way too much dry vegetation almost all year long.

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Incidentally, this year's fireworks casualties include a 7-year-old with a serious hand injury, an 11-year-old with an eye injury, at least three other people with serious burns, and one fatality.  But only one house fire, probably due to intermittent rain.

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17 minutes ago, Old Man said:

Incidentally, this year's fireworks casualties include a 7-year-old with a serious hand injury, an 11-year-old with an eye injury, at least three other people with serious burns, and one fatality.  But only one house fire, probably due to intermittent rain.

 

Rain causes house fires in Hawaii???!!!

 

Damn, I thought we had it bad.

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