#HealthBlog, Version 2021

April 7, 2021 12:30pm
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For about the last week and a half, I’ve been trying to be more conscious about my health – specifically around what I’m eating and the amount of sleep that I’m getting at night. And some parts have been easier than others…

Sleep has always been a real struggle for me, even after I wrote about it a couple of months ago.

Ironically, last week I got several good nights of sleep in a row namely because our week got turned on end thanks to Sara having a multi-day training class at work and our other car not starting, resulting in me having to get up super early to drive her back and forth. There were days that I was in bed before 11pm, which sounds nuts but apparently that’s what it takes for me to get the 7-8 hours of sleep that I need when I have to get up before 8am the next day.

Regarding food, I’ve made some admittedly pretty big changes:

  • Swapped out soda for my Diet Snapple, which still has caffeine but is only 5 calories a glass.
  • Started actively tracking my water intake on my Fitbit, which has drastically increased the amount of water I’m drinking.
  • Avoiding pretty much all junk food … no chips, crackers, candy, etc…
  • No fast food. Sadly, this had gotten to be a big one and is probably, along with the soda, the driving factor in why I’ve gained weight lately.
  • Eating more fruits and vegetables, and having them readily available for snacks.
  • Making lighter meals like quesadillas, eggs, and rice-based dishes.
  • Trying to avoid bread … mostly in the form of oversized sub sandwiches that fit a day’s worth of calories into one meal…

It was very noticeable the other night when David and I went out in search of a dinosaur toy that he’s been longing for because while I grabbed food at Target for him to eat, I kept passing more and more things that normally I would’ve grabbed to snack on along the way but now I’m actively trying to avoid!

Chips, a candy bar, a slushy, or maybe something quick from the drive-thru – I guess I could’ve grabbed some fruit or carrot sticks or something, but instead I just waited and made up a plate of rice once I got home.

In the mornings, instead of grabbing a breakfast sandwich or a couple of donuts, I’ve been having a banana and some other fruit, or maybe a little yogurt … although I’m not crazy about yogurt.

The other day I actually took an extra ten minutes and cooked up a chicken breast to have over some rice for my lunch where normally I would’ve made a run to Wawa or ordered pizza instead!

I don’t want to muse about the past and future too much because I’ve already done that before, but so far it’s seeming to go pretty ok. I’ve had a couple of days that really hit me with grogginess mid-afternoon – I think on the nights when I got less sleep – but I had a cup of tea and the caffeine boost helped push me through.

As an aside, unlike how I was binging on soda, I’m not drinking nearly the equivalent of tea, so at least for now I think that’s a worthy substitute.

My goal for the next three months is to lose a meager 10 pounds, which I figure should be reasonable without putting too much stress on myself. I haven’t really thought about “cheat days” yet because I don’t want to tempt my susceptible tastebuds this early in the game, but I think instead of using them to binge on my old habits I’d like to explore some new things – maybe making pizzas at home or even more complex recipes.

I watched a video the other day for someone making keto-friendly peanut butter cups that didn’t look too hard, so we’ll see.

Will share some updates as things worthwhile present themselves, but right now I’m just content with the changes I’m making and I think that’s good enough for me.

Throughout this whole pandemic, I think one of the biggest things that we as a nation have fumbled on has been political cohesion between our various levels of government. Whether it was Trump shrugging the virus off and thinking it would just “magically go away when it got warmer – around Easter!” or local governments dueling over safety precautions, we’ve never really had the whole lot of them on one unified place to confront this thing together, and at least for me that’s been incredibly frustrating.

Case in point – kids wearing masks in school.

Right now they’re a requirement for all kids in public schools in my community, however soon they might not be…

This is because yesterday my county rescinded their local mask mandate, leaving it up to local businesses to require masks on their own whim.

Today our Superintendent of schools reported that masks could be made optional in schools by the end of April. He later clarified that although he thought they should remain in place for the rest of the school year, because we no longer have a local mask ordinance in place, the school district is relying on our governor’s emergency order for the State of Florida to require masks in our schools.

That order, unless the governor chooses to extend it, expires at the end of April.

…the same governor who’s been on a tirade for the last week about how vaccine passports will never happen in Florida, despite support of the cruise industry who he’s also desperate to see re-open again…

It’s just scary because all across our country, we’re seeing safety procedures entirely played out along partisan lines – red governments at all levels think COVID is a bunch of baloney and want to see “everything back to normal” while blue governments are trying to keep restrictions in place. And as a result, instead of coming together and agreeing on how to address the pandemic, we’re left fighting among ourselves – people who want mask rules in place vs those who don’t, vaccine supporters vs anti-vaxxers, etc, etc…

From day to day, everything swings very delicately in this balance and it’s incredibly frustrating both waiting to see where the next card falls and also trying to figure out what we’ll do if the next changes aren’t along the lines that we’re hoping for.

Dream Journal : Address Unknown

April 4, 2021 2:02pm
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Riding around town with some people, I randomly had the memory of a place where I used to live, but – for some reason – I just didn’t anymore.

Whether I had left abruptly or never finished moving in was unclear, but I remembered enough to drive us to the other side of town where this random apartment complex was found. I couldn’t remember the address itself, but I had what turned out to be a mailbox number, which surprisingly matched one of the keys on my keyring. When I opened it, the box was packed with mail – mostly junk mail – but a couple of pieces had my actual address including the apartment number, so we drove around until we located which of the two large buildings the unit was allegedly in…

Walking through the building was immediately impressive because it was as if the holiday season was in full swing, with decorations and performers everywhere! I’m talking dancers roaming the halls, a fancy lounge with a guy singing at a piano, lots of lights and trees and snow … the works. 

The apartments were intermixed within these public areas, and eventually we found an elegant flight of stairs which we took because I had remembered it being the first time that I’d lived on the second floor (which wasn’t actually true).

At one point I remarked to a friend who was with me that if I actually did live here, I’d better work from home because I’d never want to leave again!

Upstairs was even more extravagant – there was an ice skating rink and snowmen, elves and a place to meet Santa. I wandered away from the group I was with and started looking for Apartment #12 which was supposed to be mine, but when I got to those numbers the range skipped and there wasn’t a door marked with my number.

Instead, I saw a couple of random signs that everything I was seeing around me wasn’t quite real and that if I wanted to find #12, I had to go home.

Walking back to where all of the holiday action was, I knelt down and talked to some kids who gave me the impression that for some reason they saw me as part of the scene rather than myself. Soon someone in charge came by and ushered the group I was with “back to work” making toys, thinking that everyone was elves, however I was able to slip away to continue on with my search.

When I finally got back to my car, which was now more like a bus and much larger than when we had arrived, we counted up and realized that two people were still missing.

Those people were Barack Obama and George W. Bush.

I looked around and frantically searched for Obama while the area started looking more like a theme park than an apartment complex, but I had no luck. Eventually I went back to the car and waited as we saw streams of people suddenly leaving.

Suddenly someone opened the door to the car and ducked inside. It wasn’t either of the former presidents, however she said that she’d located Obama and I quickly followed her to his location where I found him hiding in a corner acting like a poor person – tin cup and all – which was apparently Presidential Protocol to keep people from mobbing him if he got separated from his group.

As I helped him back to the car, he immediately told me that he was fine and then I begrudgingly informed him that I had lost George, too.

Back in the car, everyone scrambled for a phone number either for him or someone who would be able to help, but the dream then faded away before I was able to find the other president or my mystery apartment.

There’s been a lot of talk lately about vaccine passports – namely the ethicality of requiring people to be vaccinated to enter a place of business. And admittedly I was on the fence about them for a while, however the more I think about it and the more I read the comments from people who are so vehemently opposing of them … ironically I think that’s swayed me to want to support them after all.

As a side note, our idiot used car salesman/governor here in Florida just recently declared that vaccine passports wouldn’t be allowed in our state, however the same people who support his Executive Order for this were against local ordinances putting the other COVID restrictions into place, so…

Anyways, here’s my thought process with these things:

  • We’re not talking about requiring proof of vaccination to go to the grocery store or the mall, or probably not even to eat in restaurants, although increasing the current limits and reducing social distancing concerns me.
  • Vaccine passports would be most effective for large gatherings like events, theme parks, cruise ships, etc…
  • Speaking of cruise ships, Royal Caribbean has stated that they will require all crew and passengers to be vaccinated once they resume sailing, while Disney Cruise Line has stated they will not.
  • As far as vaccine distribution is concerned, right now we’re doing great here in the United States – in fact, we just celebrated a record day of 4 million doses given, which is awesome! I believe the goal I saw was 90% of adults vaccinated by this summer if we keep up this rate, however that’s only doable as long as you’ve still got people who are willing to get vaccinated.

And frankly what scares me is that polls have shown a not insignificant number of people who don’t want to get vaccinated, most of whom I’ve got to assume are the ones who are most against vaccine passports to resume their normal lives, too.

Right now it’s not a huge problem for me personally because we only go to the store and take the kids to school, both of which are still requiring masks. But you won’t catch me going to a theme park, or on a cruise ship, or even attending large family gatherings at this point because there’s no guarantee that the adults have been vaccinated and at this point there’s no protection for our kids whatsoever.

It would be one thing if vaccination numbers were surging and COVID cases were WAY down, but so far that’s not exactly the case. The numbers are looking better, but when you consider the massive surge that we had around the winter holidays, we’re still in the neighborhood of what we saw last summer and that’s with 18% of our population fully vaccinated…

So ultimately my take is this – I’m ok with standing in a room, without masks and without knowing that everyone is vaccinated, once the numbers drop so dramatically that it’s clear we’re finally on the other side of this pandemic. That doesn’t necessarily mean no new cases, but I would expect very, very low.

Until then, I’m going to expect the places where I go to have adequate protections in place to make me and my family feel safe.

  • For basic stores, that’s requiring masks and social distancing.
  • For restaurants, I’m honestly not there yet with the kids so we’ll continue to stick to takeout, but part of that is just because kids are horrible in restaurants in general! 😉
  • For larger gatherings, I want to know that everyone present has been vaccinated. End of story.

A few weeks ago when we went on vacation, you might recall that we didn’t actually visit any of Disney’s theme parks and instead stuck to our resort. Last year Sara and I were supposed to go on a cruise for our anniversary and we agreed (until it got canceled) that because it was just the two of us, we would still go as long as masks were required and worst case scenario we’d lounge on our balcony the entire trip.

Again, I think a bigger part of what continues to make me nervous about all of it is that while I’d be ok to go on a vacation right now where everyone is taking precautions, what I’m not eager to do is get on a cruise ship filled with COVID deniers who think this is all “the government trying to control everybody” and who will be the first to shirk off any possible precaution whenever anybody’s not looking.

It’s the same reason why whenever I do finally travel back to my hometown in Michigan again, I won’t be visiting the new barbecue place downtown that’s been fighting the health department over COVID rules this whole time … if I can’t trust you to follow basic guidelines for the general health of your community during a global emergency, how do I know that you’re following other health standards in your day to day operations?

So that’s it. If the numbers prove that we don’t need precautions anymore, then I’m good. Otherwise I’d like some proof that you’re actually taking this thing seriously. Because I certainly am.

So this week we took our family on vacation for the first time in probably a year and a half, but not like those pictures we’re seeing of packed beaches and bars and alcohol and germs flowing freely.

The kids probably wouldn’t have enjoyed that very much anyways…

We ended up taking everyone over to Disney for a few days at Animal Kingdom Lodge, a personal favorite where the rooms have giraffes and zebras and all sorts of fun animals grazing around outside that the kids got a real kick out of, too. We didn’t go to the parks at all, or Disney Springs … we pretty much stuck to the two Lodge buildings and just spent our time playing in the pool and laying around the room and watching all of the animals and generally just relaxing.

For Disney’s part, I think they did a pretty good job of putting safety precautions in place – masks were required basically everywhere except if you were sitting down and eating, or in the pool, and I only saw a couple of random people not wearing them. Places where crowds would gather like gift shops and the restaurant and the pool bars had markers on the ground to help people socially distance, and even the elevators were limited to one party at a time.

The resort didn’t really seem all that crowded, though we admittedly went out of our way to avoid people by eating most meals in our room and trying to keep our distance in the pools while a handful of other guests seemed to push our comfort levels, particularly after having a few drinks from the nearby bar. 🙁

All in all, we really had a fun trip and it was nice to get everyone out of the house for a few days. By the end, it had me wondering what this “return to normal” will even look like and what it will take for our family to be comfortable going to a crowded theme park or eating lunch at a busy restaurant with everyone unencumbered by masks in close proximity.

Frankly, there are parts of that normal that I’m not sure I even want to see return, but I’ll save those thoughts for a separate post!

Random February Thoughts…

February 25, 2021 6:07pm
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I feel like it hasn’t been a very productive month, but I’m not entirely sure if that’s true.

I know that I haven’t written very much this month.

Sleep-wise has been about the same – I’ve been averaging 5.5 hours of sleep a night whereas January was closer to 6 hours a night, though admittedly I’ve been much more aware of my lack of sleep than I think I’ve been in the past.

Add in a week of the kids all being home from school because they were sick which felt like a month by itself and I suppose this kind of stuff all manages to compound into a bleh that leaves me feeling like February was mostly a waste of calendar space.

That said, I know that there were some things that I accomplished…

  • helped Christopher beat Super Mario Odyssey
  • got Christmas decorations taken down
  • sent out most of our debt consolidation money that we got from refinancing our mortgage (instead of spending it!)
  • also spent a lot of time working out our new budget

Still, I’d like March to be better. I’ve got a lot of goals lined up for this year and there’s a lot of work to put in to make ’em happen.

…which is why I really think I need to get this whole sleep schedule thing worked out before I try to tackle anything else… 😛

Back in December, we decided to refinance our home to take advantage of low interest rates, but more so to consolidate debt and better utilize the equity our house has gained since we bought it in 2012 after the housing bubble burst.

Actually, I first started researching this back in May, however the big banks including ours had all put a halt on cash-out refinances to help manage their risk and we had wanted to stay where the rest of our accounts were, so we opted to wait it out. Well, after eight months I got tired of waiting – particularly after calculating just how much we could save in debt payments by rolling it all into the mortgage instead.

We ended up reaching out to the same mortgage broker that helped us buy the house because he was a lot easier to work with than the scads of other lenders who all had kind of terrible offers anyways. I highly recommend finding a broker who you can contact directly instead of working with a call center who has you talking to a different agent every time you call in…

Ultimately it took us 52 days from the day we chose our lender to when we had cash in hand after closing, compared to 55 days when we bought our house from offer to keys in hand, which in hindsight is still pretty impressive!

Granted, we already live in the house that we refinanced, however in turn they also gave us a fat check, so…

Also, there’s been this pandemic going on, if you hadn’t heard. Plus there were a couple of major holidays in the mix, which I’m sure slowed us down a bit.

Nonetheless, I know that during all of my waiting that I would’ve loved to see something about how people in a similar situation were progressing, so I thought it might be useful to share my own timeline after the fact in case anyone wants to compare how their own refinance is moving along… (or not!)

12/8 – Began soliciting loan offers.

12/11 – First contact with lender we actually chose.

12/15 – Selected lender.

12/15 – Completed loan application and submitted supporting documents.

12/20 – Provided more documentation for underwriter.

12/30 – Loan approved by underwriter.

1/9 – Lender realized that we needed an appraisal after all and ordered one.

1/11 – Contacted by title company for paperwork.

1/15 – Received closing disclosure (#1).

1/15 – Appraiser came to review house.

1/18 – Appraisal amount was confirmed.

1/20 – Received closing disclosure (#2) after results of appraisal.

1/25 – Loan was cleared to close.

1/27 – Closing date – some documents signed online, notary came to our house for others.

2/1 – Loan funded after waiting period, cash out received!

If you stumble across this and find yourself staring down the barrel of a refinancing offer while this crazy pandemic is still going on, just know that there is a light at the end of the tunnel, so get that paperwork submitted and then go find something productive to do while you wait! 😛

Focus on Sleep

January 19, 2021 2:19pm
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I have a longstanding issue with sleep – namely, I don’t get it nearly as consistently as I think that I should.

Along with a handful of other habits, sleep is one that I’ve targeted to improve on in 2021, so for the last couple of weeks I’ve been keeping track of how much I get each night and … it ain’t pretty!

As you can see, I’m writing this after my worst night of sleep of the year.

For quick reference – red is anything less than 6 hours of sleep and green is anything 7 or greater.

And there is way too much red in the last 18 days, that’s for sure!

One of the best articles that I’ve read about sleep and its importance lately is this piece by James Clear, the author of Atomic Habits (which I loved!)…

How to Get Better Sleep: The Beginner’s Guide to Overcoming Sleep Deprivation

There’s a lot of stuff to digest in that article, but I think this is the line that sticks with me the most – “After two weeks, the six-hour group had performance deficits that were the same as if they had stayed up for two days straight.”

I say this because for most of my adult life, I’ve always just kind of figured that less sleep is what adults do and that six hours a night was a pretty good compromise. And that’s without even knowing how much I was actually averaging on a given night, particularly when I would stay up late crunching on a deadline for the next morning or more typically just screwing around on the computer.

And what’s interesting is that now that I’m tracking my sleep alongside other habits I’m trying to build like drinking more water and reading and especially writing more consistently, I can already see that there’s a direct correlation with having what I consider to be a productive day filled with these other things that I’m trying to improve and simply starting my day with having gotten a good night’s sleep in the first place…

…to the point where about a week ago I actually moved the column where I track sleep from the end of my spreadsheet to the beginning because it seemed like a symbolic move to help remind myself that sleep isn’t how I end my day, it’s what’s at the start of a good one.

Unfortunately, the only tried and true method for getting good sleep – at least for me – means getting to bed earlier because during the week I have to get up at a set time every day to get the kids off to school, so it’s not like I have a lot of opportunities to just sleep in to make up for a particularly late night. Which sucks because I’m very much a night owl and a lot of times I’ll find myself faced with a sudden bout of creativity at 12:30am when otherwise I should be calling it a night!

Luckily, I can say that falling asleep itself has gotten easier for me. Another habit I’ve been trying to form is including meditation into my day, so I’ll try to do five minutes of that before I head off to bed and between the sounds of waves or rain falling in the app that I use and making a conscious effort to clear my mind, I think it really does help. That and I’ve started dimming the lights in my office in the late hours, even if I’m still up writing or watching videos or whatever, because it seems to help set the mood that it’s time to start unwinding.

I’ve told myself many times that ultimately what I need to do is take a good two or three week period and just make good sleep my #1 priority – meaning that no matter what’s going on, at 11:30pm or whatever makes sense, I go to bed so that I can really aim for that 7-8 hours of sleep that my body needs. It’ll be a rough adjustment and I’m sure I’ll feel like I’m sacrificing other things I need to do for sleep, but pretty much all of the evidence shows that eventually I’ll be far more productive (and happier, too!) by allowing myself that time to recharge instead of perpetually trying to burn the candle at both ends until I eventually crash and lose a few days to complete and total burn out while I’m finally forced to recover!

How Many Raspberry Pis is Too Many???

January 12, 2021 1:50am
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Tonight I setup the new Raspberry Pi 4b that I picked up last week, namely because it has two outputs and I saw an opportunity to further consolidate some of the crap taking up space on my desk, and overall I was really impressed with how easy this one was to use!

Like, it seriously took me longer to pull the new HDMI cables underneath my desk than it did to get the OS installed, mostly thanks to actually buying a kit with a pre-loaded SD card this time, but even configuring the dual monitors ended up being super easy because apparently it’s a function built into the OS these days. One of the two monitors that I wanted to connect this to is vertical, and yet it only took a second to rearrange the displays and then correct the orientation for the second monitor.

A couple of URLs later, I was driving two DAKboards from one Raspberry Pi… 🙂

I think the only other thing they could do to make it even easier would be to let you choose which software you do and don’t want during the install because it takes a while to remove all of the games and programming tools and LibreOffice afterwards. One of these days I need to just make a list of them and write my own script to streamline it for the future, seeing as mostly I just need a browser installed (Chromium) to pull up my DAKboards, which as you can see above is the reason for this particular box.

…in fact, if they ever happen to make a version with three HDMI ports, well, let’s just say that I’ve already got the use case sitting in front of me because in total my desk is currently surrounded by three DAKboard displays … a to-do list that pulls in my daily tasks from Todoist with a few other things, my newest board showing my goals and habits I’m trying to work towards this year, and lastly my digital calendar which was actually the first one that I put together over two years ago at this point!

Ultimately I do think that eventually I want to check out DAKboard’s retail version of a display + CPU because I can see when we build our next house much more heavily incorporating digital displays throughout the rooms between smart home controls and calendar/temp/clock displays and even simply more interactive digital photo frames. It’s super hard for me to pick what photos are worthy of framing to go on the wall because we’re constantly getting new ones to share, but having a gallery of connected displays throughout the house to all rotate through family photos seems like it would be a neat application.

And not having to buy a separate Raspberry Pi to drive every last one of them would be a nice perk… 😉

What Do You Do During a Coup in the Digital Age?

January 7, 2021 12:12pm
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Yesterday while the terror was unfolding in DC, I stumbled across a tweet that jokingly asked something like – “Are we still supposed to work during the coup?”

It reminded me of watching 9/11 unfold twenty years ago and how disconnected we were at the time in comparison. When the first plane struck the World Trade Center that day, I was putting away auto parts at the warehouse where I’d been since about 5am that morning. We’d only heard about it on the radio and I think most of the morning everyone assumed it had only been a small propeller plane because we didn’t have a TV to see the reality of the situation.

It wasn’t until I went home for lunch that I saw the vivid imagery on every single channel and realized what had happened, yet yesterday with the rise of social media, I pretty much watched it unfold in real-time.

I had been half-watching the electoral certification on C-SPAN just because I was curious about what it was all about, and honestly, the first couple of states were really boring. It’s easy to see how normally nobody cares about it because it was literally just procedural readings for every. single. state. … but then the objections started about Arizona and it became clear that it was just going to be hours of Congressmen reciting their same sad indignations, and once it became clear that the Vice President wasn’t going to attempt to override the votes themselves, ultimately the bickering didn’t matter because the Democratic House would never pass an objection to allow it to stand…

While this was going on, I wandered over to Twitter and saw comments about people leaving Trump’s rally to head towards the Capitol. Then a live chat by the New York Times mentioned that things were getting heated outside and some pictures were shared of protesters fighting with the police at the fence outside.

I didn’t think much of it until the next picture was of protesters banging at the doors, and it reminded me of that early scene from Argo when the Iranian protesters are beginning to storm the American embassy.

Congress kept with their procedures while I was yelling at the screen, “Don’t you know what’s going on outside?!” and then they started evacuating buildings around the complex.

From there it was honestly a blur of back and forth between my Twitter feed and trending posts and that same running chat from actual journalists. We watched video of people breaking through windows and storming into the Capitol, and one poor police officer getting backed up the stairs as he failed to contain the mob of people in front of him, eventually working their way all the way to the Senate floor where most but not everyone had been evacuated to a secure location.

More photos erupted, some shared by the rioters themselves, of “exploring the Capitol” while waving their flags and breaking things. One guy walked off with the House Speaker’s podium while others replaced one of the American flags with Trump’s campaign flag. Eventually pictures would show them leaving messages in Congressmen’s offices and sitting at desks with their feet up as if they’d claimed the building for their own.

It seemed to take a surprisingly long time for reinforcements to show up from the National Guard to actually remove them, and the kid glove handling compared to the brutal force seen at Black Lives Matters protests last year was nothing short of astounding. I actually saw videos of an officer holding the door for rioters and telling them to leave, along with a photo of one helping a rioter down the stairs on their way out, as opposed to the riot gear and rubber bullets and copious use of pepper spray and physical violence that was witnessed last year.

Through it all, Trump remained silent for quite a while, then posted a couple of random tweets that continued to stoke the “fraudulent election” lies before eventually posting a video that did the same and eventually got blocked by Twitter.

He literally ended the video by telling these domestic terrorists, “We love you. You’re very special.”

The family had a few failed attempts to calm the crowd as well … Ivanka posted a tweet in which she called them “American Patriots” which she later deleted. Tiffany posted a tweet wishing her brother a Happy Birthday.

Eventually Twitter grew half a spine and temporarily blocked his account for 12-hours, with Facebook and Instagram doing the same, although in light of everything that took place, it really felt like like too little, too late when his account should’ve been removed altogether years ago.

The night ended with Congress eventually reconvening to resume and complete the electoral certification, and talks were floated about a second impeachment or even the Vice President invoking the 25th Amendment to forcibly remove him from office as “unfit to serve,” however this morning that talk already seems to have disappeared from Congress’s agenda and it was reported that they wouldn’t even be meeting again until after Biden’s inauguration.

Trump released a statement this morning that there would be an orderly transition, but whether he even has control over his own mob anymore is anybody’s guess. It’s scary to think that last night he lost access to social media, but he still had access to the codes for our nuclear arsenal. I can only hope that yesterday was the worst of it, however I would be very surprised if we got to Inauguration Day without any further tragedies.

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