The Coffee Underachiever Newsletter 2020

January


05 Jan: Castles Burning[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 2,500 words • Topics: I’m not Jewish, alas • America assaults Iran • we’re sick • Godzilla (2014 film) • Until the End of the World (2019 Criterion edition) • Frank Herbert’s Dune (Sci-Fi Channel miniseries) • a break from screens


12 Jan: Coughcophany[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 5,100 words • Topics: strange weather • this week • Economic Science Fictions edited by William Davies • the weekend • Doctor Who Series 12


19 Jan: The Endless Pennsylvania of the Soul[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 11,600 words • Topics: Grace is traveling • implementing Base64 • stuck in the snow • the disease of images: Until the End of the World revisited


26 Jan: Down Time[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 2,400 words • Topics: sick and stuck • my eyes • broken code • working with a team in China • Elanor’s third birthday • Shin Godzilla (2016 film)


February


09 Feb: Eternal Caucus of the Democratic Mind[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 9,100 words • Topics: the music in my head • TinyLetter • still sick • the temperature anomaly • Weathering with You (2019 film) • Porgy and Bess (Metropolitan Opera live stream) • anniversaries • last week • Evangelion: 1.0 You Are (Not) Alone (2007 film) • Becoming Superman by J. Michael Straczynski (unabridged audiobook) • the Iowa Caucuses • electronic voting


16 Feb: Carving Notches in Dixville[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 2,900 words • Topics: reader feedback • Joseph Shabalala • the Iowa caucus • Tom Perez • the New Hampshire primary • lockdowns in China • work • weight and diet


23 Feb: Sin City Has Spoken[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 1,800 words • Topics: work • Sonic the Hedgehog (2020 film) • the Iowa recanvas • the Iowa recount • the Nevada Caucus


March


01 Mar: Biden Can Have a Little South Carolina, as a Treat[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 3,000 words • Topics: pączki • sick babies • Ultra Q (1966 Japanese TV show) • bookshelf ideas • programming books • taxes • electoral politics • Iowa Caucuses • Biden • Warren • Super Tuesday


08 Mar: The Empire Never Ended[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 4,900 words • Topics: work • tachycardia • our COVID-19 lockdown preparations • Aggripina (Metropolitan Opera live stream) • the Sanders rally • thoughts on the election


13 Mar: Sargeant Potts’s Lonely Face Club Band[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 1,900 words • work update • more election thoughts • COVID-19 news and advice


22 Mar: Year One, Week Two[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 1,500 words • my live streams • the Metropolitan Opera free streams • our lockdown • the bonfire


30 Mar: In Virus Veritas[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 2,900 words • Topics: furlough • the pandemic response • Michigan unemployment • budgeting • shortfalls • podcasts • Wagner week


April


05 Apr: The Thirty-Second Day of March[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 3,400 words • Topics: The Barber of Seville (Metropolitan Opera stream) • Nixon in China (Metropolitan Opera stream) • current affairs • life during COVID time • mujaddara


07 Apr: Yea Though I Shop Through the Valley of the Shadow of Death[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 3,500 words • Topics: grocery shopping during the pandemic • The Ypsilanti Food Co-op • Trader Joe’s • Costco • Gordon Food Service • the mechanics of shopping • Tractor Supply • Fresh Thyme • Home Depot • Joy’s shopping protocol


12 Apr: The Bread Also Rises[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 6,200 words • Topics: Passover • Don Pasquale (Metropolitan Opera stream) • Easter • unemployment • our mortgage • Bernie dropping out • pandemic progress report • hard thinking • family updates • the benefits of a large family


19 Apr: Remembering Matthew Seligman[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 3,900 words • Topics: feedback • just trying to raise some dough • unemployment • stimulus • unemployment • Furies of Calderon by Jim Butcher • biscuits — again • remembering Matthew Seligman


26 Apr: Fold All the Proteins[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 4,500 words • Topics: the fifth time’s the charm • Feldman, barfing babies, Marco Polo, Target, WIC, and habañero cheese • Folding at Home


May


02 May: Appendix A[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 5,100 words • Topics: birthday debrief • Columbo • music • the recording side • the performance side • Appendix A


10 May: Cold Spring Arbor[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 2,500 words • Topics: footnote to Appendix A • food benefits • arrivals • music • opening up?


18 May: Sunburn, Dirt, Bug Bites, and Gratitude[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 2,200 words • Topics: music • gardening • bugs


26 May: Too Many Fish[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 3,100 words • Topics: a week and then some • gardening • no fish, five fish, twenty-one fish, way too many fish


31 May: Met and Meta[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 7,300 words • Topics: tips! • the quarantine bubble, popped • back to work • relationships with my children • algebra camp • La Sonnabula, or, the Met Gets meta • in the news • the SSL SiX


June


07 June: The Police Take Off Their Masks[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 4,100 words • Topics: the air conditioning works! • slings, arrows, bites, and stings • “can you hear me?” • mortgage update • the microphone • garden update • our weight problem • the police take off their masks


13 June: The Big Chill[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 5,300 words • Topics: the big chill • mortgage news • infrastructure • gardens • a fight at the opera — a food fight! • Tron (1982 Film) and Tron: Legacy (2010 Film) • back to work • readings


21 June: The Longest Day[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 4,500 words • Topics: back in the saddle • about last night • Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman (Criterion Collection boxed set) • IKEA • the longest day


28 June: With Trembling Hands[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 4,300 words • Topics: a nation of psychopaths • with trembling hands


July


05 Jul: Short Attention Span Theater of the Absurd[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 5,500 words • Topics: garden snapshot • visits and errands • Independence Day dinner • assorted notes • epazote • plastic in the soil • Satan’s own caterpillar • can we shoot the rabbits? • winding up


12 Jul: Dog Days[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 6,000 words • Topics: mad hatterpillar • boundary issues • the Rode VideoMic NTG • IKEA and the lunch meeting • shelving our books •


19 Jul: A Life in the Day[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 3,200 words • Topics: the MixPre 6 II • time and the ’rona


26 Jul: Boiling Hot Hose Water and the Basil Explosion[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 4,200 words • Topics: Grace and Paul get tested • garlic soup • boiling hot hose water and the basil explosion • tomatoes • cucumbers • assorted garden gossip


August


03 Aug: A Heaping Helping of Nonsense[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 4,200 words • Topics: our lavender problem • The Education of a Gardener by Russell Page • The Complete Book of Nonsense by Edward Lear (Folio Press) • Police Story (1985 Film) • podcast news • Wayne’s World (1992 Film) • The Blues Brothers (1980 Film) • it’s raining basil • wrapping up


09 Aug: Going to Seed[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 9,900 words • Topics: the long Tuesday • annual science fiction anthologies • how not to eBay • garden update • sweet and savory • the thirty second problem • the modern web is full of it


18 Aug: If I Could Save Thyme in a Baggie[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 7,000 words • Topics: Python 2020: lots of movement, little improvement • IKEA, again • ergonomics • my Orwellian bookshelf • Drunken Master (1978 Film) • garden update • if I could save thyme in a baggie • crashing the art scene • scotch bonnet time • mosquito assault


24 Aug: Summer Gets Spicy[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 2,400 words • Topics: Jacob Blake • California on fire • hurricane season • “It’s a Good Life” • gardening news


September


06 Sep: Banishing the Hungry Ghosts[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 7,900 words • Topics: The ErgoDox EZ Keyboard • the programmable keyboard • the frustration curve, and how a steep learning curve is good, actually • the actual review part of the review • gardening update • mint, herbs, and peppers, oh my • Star Trek: Lower Decks


15 Sep: We Scorched the Sky[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 3,500 words • Topics: local currency • newsletterversary • we scorched the sky • political Paul


21 Sep: The Cold Came Early[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 5,500 words • Topics: I dissent • justice Ginsburg, institutionalist • stolen valor • mourn, then organize • assorted news


October


06 Oct: Doomscrolling[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 2,700 words • Topics: dear mom,


25 Oct: What Comes Next[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 6,400 • Topics: struggling • an owl in daylight • feeling S.A.D. • 2001: a Grace odyssey • garden news • taters for tots • what comes next • COVID-19 • the 2020 election


November


10 Nov: A Slight Loss of Executive Function[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 5,200 words • Topics: Yes (the band, not the affirmative expression) • The Yes Album (Steven Wilson remix) • more recent entertainment • Blinded By the Light (2019 film) • Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988 film) • Star Trek Beyond (2016 film) • Venom (2018 film) • Over the Garden Wall (2014 animated miniseries) (spoiler warning) • The Pink Panther (1964 film), A Shot in the Dark (1964 film), The Return of the Pink Panther (1975 film), and The Pink Panther Strikes Again (1976 film) • a new Pottscast • a slight loss of executive function


18 Nov: Snacks for the Ears and Feasts for the Eyes[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 6,400 words • Topics: Gounod’s Faust (Metropolitan Opera stream) • more Yes: Fragile and Close to the Edge (Steven Wilson remixes) • Ant-Man and the Wasp (2018 film) • X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009 film) • Mad Max: Fury Road (2015 film) • Big Night (1996 film) (spoiler warning) • that famous timpano


December


06 Dec: The Nightmares After Thanksgiving[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 4,100 words • Topics: keep Neera Tanden far-a from power • what to expect (when we’re expecting a new president) • the nightmares after Thanksgiving • Dead Lies Dreaming by Charles Stross • the Costco wine Advent calendar


19 Dec: July in Christmas[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 4,500 words • Topics: American carnage • under siege • Captain America: The First Avenger (2011 film) • July in Christmas: XTC’s Skylarking (2016 Surround Sound Series reissue) • lines to code before I sleep


26 Dec: Stimulus Ham[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 3,300 words • Topics: stimulus ham • Christmas 2020 • Marvel’s The Avengers (2012 film) • Guardians of the Galaxy (2014 film) • Captain America: Winter Soldier (2014 film) • Thor: Raganarok (2017 film) • The Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015 film) • the day after


31 Dec: Wringing Out the Year[PDF] Word Cloud

Approximately 4,100 words • Topics: endlessday, Ohnober 366th, 2020 • the Nashville suicide bombing • the vaccines • on to less grim subjects • wringing out the year • better homes and gardens • Columbo • Steven Wilson’s remixes • Star Trek: Lower DecksOver the Garden Wall • films • operas • books • wring in the new • infrastructure • miscellany