Bag of Randomness for Wednesday, February 5, 2020

I suspect an Asian student in WifeGeeding’s class is getting picked on. For no reason that she or her fellow teachers can think of, they received an email from the mother of the child explaining that no one in her family has been ill, that they haven’t visited China anywhere near the time of the coronavirus outbreak, and have not interacted with anyone who has recently traveled from China.

This Italian volunteer fire station, which is actually carved into the mountain, looks like an evil lair. Since the town is in the Alps and farmland is scarce, they thought this was the best option.

Elon Musk promotes Texas ‘career day’ as SpaceX files paperwork for Starship flight as early as March

Musk tweeted early Tuesday morning that SpaceX would be hosting a “Starship career day” at the company’s Stargate building in Boca Chica, Texas, where it’s currently working on producing the next Starship testing prototype.

Musk added that the purpose of the hiring fair would be specifically to bring on new people to staff four full production shifts to allow production around the clock for “24/7 operations” at the Texas facility. He did add that SpaceX would also be looking for “engineers, supervisors & support personnel,” but it’s clear the call is primarily to build out the production crews that assemble the Starship prototypes, which likely includes welders and others with experience in fabrication.

This idea isn’t as great as combining Fiber One and Fireball whiskey to make Fiberball, but this modified Jenga game, in which 15 of the 54 blocks have indentations for one-ounce jello shots has potential.

Smithsonian Magazine – A New Book About George Washington Breaks All the Rules on How to Write About George Washington

Starting with its cover illustration, a playful Washington grinning at the reader, You Never Forget Your First is a wink of sorts, at Washington biography and at the ways that Americans have very consistently misremembered the first president.

President Donald Trump’s job approval rating has risen to 49%, his highest in Gallup polling since he took office in 2017.

I’m guessing the president prefers American’s like Rush Limbaugh than John McCain. But I’ll give him this, he knows what makes good television. I expect some sort of tweet this morning about how the ratings were through the roof.  Stephen Miller’s fingerprints were all over that speech last night.

Buttigieg supporter asks to take back vote after learning he’s gay

The Mandalorian season 2 arrives this October

Tiny Fate, Texas Wants to Solve All Our Infrastructure WoesThe tiny suburb is trying to show its larger neighbors that highways aren’t the answer. Will it work?

I didn’t know Wendy’s sold breakfast, but about 300 of them do. Come this March, all of them will.

Wendy’s is serving a mix of new items and twists on its customer favorites, including the Breakfast Baconater and a Frosty-ccino. The full menu consists of nine sandwiches. Three are on croissants, including two options with eggs (sausage, egg and Swiss cheese or a bacon, egg and Swiss cheese) and a maple bacon chicken croissant. Similar egg sandwiches will also be sold on biscuits and classic buns. It’s also selling new side dishes, like potato wedges and replacing its coffee blend.

It’s been around a while, but I had no idea there was such a thing as inflatable concrete. You basically just roll it out and add water. I actually disagree with their descriptor of “inflatable” as structures are inflated and wrapped in the concrete canvas, no concrete is inflated.

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Bag of Randomness for Tuesday, February 4, 2020

WifeGeeding had a more than typical case of the Mondays yesterday. After dinner, she asked if I’d grab a Sprite out of the refrigerator and I replied with a wryly “How about some Fireball (cinnamon whiskey)”.  She gave me a strange look so I repeated myself and then she burst into laughter stating, “I thought you asked me if I wanted some Fiberball.” I also started to crack up because I immediately had the mental image of an SNL parody commercial along the likes of Colon Blow. It would play off the idea of combining Fiber One with Fireball to make FiberBall – the cinnamon-flavored whiskey – a shot of mouth-burning whiskey and half your daily fiber regiment.

Speaking of whiskey, have you ever heard of Whisky Rebellion? It was the first and only time a sitting American president ever led troops into battle. Whatever you do, don’t let President Trump know about this, upon doing so, he’s going to tell his chief of staff, “Mick, hold my beer.”

Note: Yes, I know the president doesn’t drink. He doesn’t because his older brother died from alcoholism.

There’s a very grainy video, maybe even worse than the Zapruder film, making the rounds yesterday of President Trump at a Super Bowl party acting disrespectful while the national anthem was being played. It had all the markings of a deep fake and I tweeted as much. Some person running for another state’s congressional seat liked my tweet, but minutes later I saw the same account retweet the video and commenting how disrespectful the president was. It appears two interns managing the Twitter account weren’t on the same page or someone is an idiot.

Not that I’m into weather prognostication (you can get that at another regional blog), but it looks like it’s going to be cold and wet with below freezing temperature Wednesday evening, so I’m guessing there’s gonna be icy roads on Thursday morning, which means there’s a chance for school closing, which means there’s a chance for the fake Michael Irving to make an appearance on The TICKET to close down some schools.

One thing I really wanted to do in high school was to go to Texas Boys State, but I wasn’t selected and majorly bummed. I thought about that disappointment yesterday when I saw this headline – Apple, A24 Nab Hot Doc ‘Boys State’ for Record-Breaking $12M

Apple and A24 have acquired worldwide rights to the documentaryBoys State, a political coming-of-age story which examines the health of American democracy. A source pegged the deal at $12 million, which marks the largest sale for a documentary ever at a festival. A24 will release the film theatrically.

The previous record for the largest documentary sale at Sundance was 2019’s Knock Down the House, which sold for $10 million. Sources say Netflix and Hulu were also bidding at $12 million.

Variety already has a review and I can see why Apple thinks it will get some traction.

‘Boys State’: Film ReviewThis deep dive into the mock-government conference for Texas teens offers an alternately encouraging and terrifying look at tomorrow’s politicians.

Every summer, more than 1,000 teens swarm the Texas State Capitol to attend Boys State, the annual American Legion-sponsored leadership conference where these incipient politicians divide into rival parties, the Nationalists and the Federalists, and attempt to build a mock government from the ground up. In 2017, the program attracted attention for all the wrong reasons (the attendees voted for Texas to secede from the United States), which gave filmmakers Amanda McBaine and Jesse Moss an idea: What would it take to orchestrate a deep dive into the subsequent next session? Is there a right way to cover the testosterone- and Ritalin-fueled event?

China Pledged to Build a New Hospital in 10 Days. It’s Close.State news outlets reported that the 1,000-bed facility would accept patients from Monday even as construction workers raced to complete it.

In a ceremony on Sunday, Zhou Xianwang, the mayor of Wuhan, officially handed the new hospital over to the military, which will be in charge of operations. Boxes containing ventilators and medical equipment lay piled on a sidewalk on Monday. Trees sat in large trucks, ready to be unloaded.

By Monday evening, Chinese state media were reporting that ambulances had begun transporting patients to the new hospital.

Xue Ying, a resident of Wuhan, had driven to the new hospital hoping to find help for his increasingly unwell cousin. But city officials and signs on checkpoints have said the hospital would not accept walk-ins. Admission was only for patients with officially confirmed coronavirus infections who were transferred from other facilities.

So much for bipartisanship – Virginia GOP delegate tries to kill own bill to remove Democratic segregationist statue

A guy carted 99 phones around to create traffic jams on Google Maps

For his experiment, Weckert loaded 99 smartphones running Google Maps into a cart. He then had someone wheel that cart around various streets in Berlin, including outside the Google office.

The phones apparently fooled Google Maps into thinking that there was a high concentration of users on those streets. Because the phones were in a cart, Maps was further tricked into believing that the traffic was slow-moving.

As a result, the navigation app started showing virtual traffic jams by turning green streets to red.

I’m Upset: Give me back my SundaysThe Oscars, the Grammys, and the Super Bowl all happen this year on consecutive Sundays. It’s too much.

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Bag of Randomness for Monday, February 3, 2020

Two years ago, DaughterGeeding’s teacher assigned her to do a research project, paper, and presentation on a family member who immigrated to the United States. She chose to do it over my mother. This year, it was BoyGeeding’s turn and he followed in his sister’s footsteps.

Students were asked to dress in the native attire of their homeland. For Vietnamese women, they traditionally wear an áo dài, but DaughterGeeding decided to wear her grandmother’s clothes since she used to sew or make her own clothing. There’s a male version of the áo dài, but they are harder to find, so we had to be imaginative and were lucky to find this shirt.

“Just A Little Vietnamese”, y’all get it? He’s a quarter-Vietnamese, so he’s just “a little Vietnamese.” It was the best we could do on short notice. Thank you, Amazon Prime. I had some reservation because the shirt has the current communist flag of Vietnam, a lot of us folks are sensitive towards that kind of stuff, but at least his project displayed the South Vietnamese flag. He hat came from a local Vietnamese grocery store.

It turns out the new student in the class who just started a few weeks ago was Vietnamese-American, his grandparents were two of the Vietnamese boat people. His mother was on hand for her son’s presentation and he was wearing a boys version of the áo dài which they had brought her from Vietnam. She highly completed me on getting a South Vietnamese flag for BoyGeeding’s project and stated it was heartbreaking for her to help her son draw and color the current flag for her son’s project. She also joked with me when she first saw BoyGeeding and his shirt, she highly doubted he had any Vietnamese in him. I showed her a picture of DaughterGeeding, who has darker skin, and she thought she looked slightly more Asian. We were both happily surprised to find out her older child was in DaughterGeeding’s class.

After BoyGeeding’s presentation, his teacher asked a few questions. BoyGeeding’s posterboard displayed his grandmother’s actual marriage certificate (in both English and Vietnamese), her Vietnamese ID card, her marriage certificate, South Vietnamese currency, and a few other things. His teacher asked where did he get all those items, and he answered, “Uhhhhh, my sister’s project.” She had a good laugh and told Walter she will give him an extra point for his honesty. Just to be clear, BoyGeeding wrote his own paper and made his own project, but plucked those unique items from DaughterGeeding’s project from two years ago.

Oh, BoyGeeding was also required to bring traditional food, so he brought dragon fruit, which displayed an “Imported from Vietnam” sticker and served bitter melon tea. My mother used to grow bitter melons in the backyard. It would grow as a vine and covered our chain-linked fence plentily.

To my surprise, four of his classmates did their project over a Greek immigrant family member. One of them ended his presentation with, “Fun fact! The Germans invaded Greece in 1942, those horrible people!”

I liked seeing kids running onto the field and presenting the Super Bowl game ball to the referee. It reminds me of how soccer pregame with players walking onto the field accompanied by a child.

When it comes to Super Bowl halftime performances, I only have one benchmark. I simply ask myself, was it better than Coldplay’s? If yes, it was a success. Also, if it doesn’t involve a shirtless Adam Devine or whatever his name is, that’s also a success.

DaughterGeeding asked if she could watch the Super Bowl with me. I said, “Sure” and said, “Good, because I need to watch it so I can write an article for my class newspaper.”

WifeGeeding was surprised there wasn’t Budweiser Clydesdales commercial. If there was one, we didn’t notice it.

It’s hard to root for a team when their head coach wears a flat-brimmed cap.

Norma Hunt, widow of Kansas City Chiefs founder Lamar Hunt, has been to every Super Bowl ever played.

West Virginia will allow people with disabilities to vote by smartphoneIt’ll be the first state to offer this for 2020, but security issues loom.

While the details have yet to be established, Secretary of State Mac Warner said it would most likely offer the mobile app Voatz, just like it did when it allowed online voting for overseas troops.

He was the same guy who thought San Antonio was a border city.

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Bag of Randomness for Friday, January 31, 2020

I often use the YouTube app on my Amazon Fire TV device. Most of the time, I will simply press the “Skip Ad” button, but I started a video as I walked to the refrigerator. To my surprise, the ad was about 44-minutes long, it was the premiere episode of NBC’s new show, Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist. I had no idea YouTube ads were so long or were complete episodes of a show on network television.

A win for capitalism – Iranian factory makes U.S. and Israeli flags to burn

KHOMEIN, Iran (Reuters) – Business is booming at Iran’s largest flag factory which makes U.S., British and Israeli flags for Iranian protesters to burn.

At the factory in the town of Khomein, southwest of the capital Tehran, young men and women print the flags by hand then hang them up to dry. The factory produces about 2,000 U.S. and Israeli flags a month in its busiest periods, and more than 1.5 million square feet of flags a year.

GMC is going to bring back the HUMMER but it’s going to be electric and have some intriguing specs according to a press release. It will have 1,000 horsepower, 11,500 lb-ft of torque and will be able to do zero to 60 mph in three seconds. GM has created a website for it but it’s all teaser stuff for a Super Bowl commercial with the reveal coming on May 20, 2020.

Watch the first episode of Picard for free on YouTubeThe pilot episode of the new series from CBS All Access is available without a subscription for a limited time

Most Texans think the country is headed in the wrong direction, new poll shows

The Texas Lyceum poll found that 59% of Texans surveyed say the U.S. is headed in the wrong direction, with 41% saying the country is on the right track.

In addition, 11% of Texans say health care is the most important issue facing the country, followed by 10% who say immigration and 9% who say President Donald Trump is.

Meanwhile, a plurality of respondents, 19%, say immigration is the most important issue facing Texas today.

When it comes to President Trump, 36% of those polled say he is doing a “very poor job.”

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Bag of Randomness for Thursday, January 30, 2020

I saw the Geico lumberyard commercial for the first time yesterday and I bellied laughed even though it’s not that funny. It looks like it’s been out for over a month but it’s new to me.

While I like magic tricks I’ve never been much for card tricks. I have such a short attention span that I can’t focus and lose my mind trying to remember what rank and suit of each card.

John Bolton Likes Tweet Saying Trump Should ‘Fire the Moron Who Hired John Bolton’

Female Firefighter Fired Over Instagram Posts

Many of the firefighters at Kalispell, Montana’s Evergreen Fire Rescue have personal Instagram accounts where they share photos related to their work. The men are sometimes shirtless, posing proudly in their turndowns (the heavy gear traditionally associated with firefighting) and in front of firetrucks, trumpeting their pride at their profession in between posts relating to their hobbies, friends, and families. Presley Pritchard, a 27-year-old firefighter paramedic, was no different, including photos of herself in uniform mixed in among posts about fitness and workouts she created as a personal trainer.

Pritchard’s content was (and is), for the most part, the straightforward stuff fitness influencer accounts are made of, with a gentle Great Plains twist. Her personal posts were mixed in with published sponsored posts in partnership with wellness brands, but the latter never overlapped with her work as a firefighter. In most of the photos and videos she shares with her 87,000 followers (as of January 2020), she wears tank tops, sports bras, and leggings, usually while at the gym, and a pair of wireless, rose gold Beats headphones. In a few posts, she totes a gun or poses in snowboarding gear. In her captions, she espouses perseverance, positivity, and the power of Jesus.

Scientists tried to recreate a mummy’s voice with an electronic larynx

Robots learn to sweat to stop overheating

Hollow, pressurized reservoirs inside the fingers are filled with water and connected to the surface via ducts made of heat-reactive plastic. When the plastic hits a certain temperature, the pores open and water is pushed to the surface. There, it evaporates with a cooling effect more than twice as effective as those of the sweatiest beasts in the animal kingdom.

But why sweat? Aren’t there easier ways to cool robots? Well, that depends.

Most robots are made from metal, which is an excellent conductor and therefore good at dispersing heat by itself. But soft robots, which are designed for delicate tasks like medical procedures and packing fruit, are made from rubber, a good insulator. If and when soft robots become commonplace, they’ll need their own ways to stay cool.

There are other advantages to sweating, too. By building sweat glands into a machine, you can cool it below the temperature of its surroundings, something you can’t achieve with environmental cooling like fans.

Belk, one of the anchor stores at the Dallas Galleria mall will be closing, but the mall is about to get a major makeover. I think in the next ten years there will basically only be two Dallas malls, the Galleria and Northpark. Of course, some of the burbs will still exist, I can’t picture Stonebriar in Frisco closing any time soon. But good gracious, please put Music City Mall (formally Vista Ridge) out of its misery.

News Corp Unveils Its News Aggregator Knewz, And Oh Man Is It Ugly

Knewz is a website of aggregated news with no verticals, no images, no editorializing, no filtering — in other words, no governing principles of organization or curation. It is, if nothing else, a very confusing visual experience.

Tennessee Rep. Van Huss files bill to recognize CNN, Washington Post as ‘fake news’

“The older I get, the better I used to be.” – Lee Trevino

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Bag of Randomness for Wednesday, January 29, 2020

DaughterGeeding decided to start a newspaper for her classroom. The first edition has articles about current school events, the former headmaster visiting the campus, and comics. She had WifeGeeding print enough copies for everyone in her class.

I miss Andy Rooney complaining about random things.

I bought these at the grocery store yesterday and now I’m diabetic. I didn’t even take a bite, it happened by osmosis.

I have Kobe fatigue and his and his daughter’s funeral haven’t been planned yet.

West Virginia governor urges unhappy Virginia counties to secede and join his state

West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice (R) encouraged Virginia counties unhappy with the Democratic-controlled government in Richmond to secede from the state and join his.

“If you’re not happy where you’re at, come on down,” Justice said reportedly said at a Tuesday press conference with Liberty University President Jerry Falwell Jr. “If you’re not truly happy where you are, we stand with open arms to take you from Virginia or anywhere you may be. We stand strongly behind the Second Amendment, and we stand strongly for the unborn.”

I had no idea BYU has its own creamery or that it was famous.

Romney busted for bringing ‘contraband’ BYU chocolate milk bottle to impeachment trial

There are two beverages senators are allowed to bring onto the Senate floor — water and milk.

Utah Sen. Mitt Romney was busted by a colleague for bringing his own bottle of chocolate milk. Bottles are not allowed.

That chocolate milk comes from Brigham Young University’s Creamery, which is famous for its ice cream and milk products. BYU is Romney’s alma mater.

Romney left to the Republican cloakroom and returned with the chocolate milk in a glass, the Wall Street Journal reported.

She says, we’ve got to hold on to what we’ve got
It doesn’t make a difference if we make it or not
We’ve got each other and that’s a lot for love
We’ll give it a shot

DOJ Assistant AG Apologizes to Judge After Illegally Practicing Law for a Couple of Months

Assistant Attorney General Jeffrey B. Clark stopped paying his dues to remain in good standing with the federal bar in October of last year—an oversight he discovered on December 9, 2019, according to a two-page letter submitted with the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

US colleges are trying to install location tracking apps on students’ phonesSupposedly an easier way to track attendance

Barely over a year ago, we pointed out how dystopian it seemed when Chinese schools added “smart uniforms” to track their students’ attendance. But US colleges are already testing out a similar tactic with a location tracking app, which students are now apparently expected to install on their phones.

I say “apparently” because there’s some confusion over whether the schools are actually forcing this on their students. The Kansas City Star reported that at the University of Missouri, new students “won’t be given a choice” of whether to install the SpotterEDU app, which uses Apple’s iBeacons to broadcast a Bluetooth signal that can help the phone figure out whether a student is actually in a room.

I think Tim Tebow would make a good coach on The Biggest Loser.

We Owe Food Regulation to a 19th-Century Chemist Who Poisoned His Colleagues
The Poison Squad, as they became known, was a group of men who willingly consumed dangerous substances to force the government into consumer protections

Impeachment came up frequently when talking to Texas voters. Most were fatigued by it all, but those paying close attention defied party stereotypes. For our Three Meals series, Major Garrett traveled across the Lone Star state to speak with voters about the president and the 2020 election.

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Bag of Randomness for Tuesday, January 28, 2020

There’s going to be a generation of folks who will grow up thinking the ABC News show 20/20 has something to do with this calendar year.

I’ve seen a lot of folks on social media mention the coronavirus is nothing to worry about and the coverage is overblown. But the one thing which makes me think it must be a big deal is that China is so concerned about it that they decided to build a 1,000-bed hospital in a mere 10 days. Ten days! Popular Mechanics states they are doing it in just six days.

If you’re wondering just how this is possible, Chinese officials have taken on such projects before, like when they built a similar temporary facility in Beijing during the 2003 SARS outbreak. Officials completed that hospital, which also held 1,000 beds, in just a week, by a workforce of over 7,000. Over the course of two months, the hospital staff treated nearly 15 percent of SARS patients there, according to the Post.

Not that I’m complaining, but I’m really surprised that Sarah Palin isn’t working for the Trump administration in some capacity. The same goes for Michele Bachmann and to a lesser extent, Rick Santorum. If Palin were president, I think she’d be more incompetent than the current president but in much less legal trouble.

Frank Sinatra’s Italian marble and gold-seated Las Vegas toilets are up for auction. Rumor has it the golden toilet seats were made out of Sammy Davis Jr.’s jewelry he lost in a bet to the Chairman of the Board. Yes, I totally fabricated that story.

This Russian missile looks like something straight out of an action flick. – YouTube

She’s 75, And a Step Ahead of Her CompetitionA Texas stair climber trains with a high school track team to prep for a race up the Eiffel Tower

An Irish Castle in Texas Full of Llamas

The castle, appropriately dubbed ShangriLlama, is a replica of Waterford Castle, situated near the south coast of Ireland.

The ShangriLlama replica is located about 40 minutes outside Dallas and is an ideal interactive experience for anyone who likes the South American animals or Irish castles.

  • Last I checked, the Abilene area wasn’t considered North Texas.
  • A hundred-and-fifty pounds didn’t sound like much to me, but actually seeing a picture of it frightens me.

Mountain lion weighing in at 150 pounds shot in North Texas

Oscar Mayer Wienermobile pulled over in Waukesha County

The Waukesha County Sheriff’s Department pulled over the Wienermobile for not following the Move Over Law. The driver of the Weinermobile was given a verbal warning.

Snake bath

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Bag of Randomness for Monday, January 27, 2020

I binge-watched the highly acclaimed Fleabag and thoroughly enjoyed it, I enjoyed her unrestrained smutty humor. Phoebe Waller-Bridge charms me like a Syren with her bewitching smirk.

SNL sure did take some major shots at Jeffrey Epstein in their opening skit.

I also watched The Irishman which I thought was very good but not great. However, it was great seeing Joe Pesci back in action. The technology which makes the actors younger threw me off a bit, there’s just something slightly off about it which makes it unnatural and distracting. De Niro is an “old” man and has a particular walk, and I thought it showed in his younger scenes. Samuel L. Jackson had the same problem with some action scenes in Captain Marvel.

I so want to see a new Jack Nicholson film. There were talks of him returning to the screen alongside Will Ferrell and Kristen Wiig, but he’s no longer attached to the film.

Huey Lewis and the News was featured on CBS Sunday Morning because of an upcoming new album with only seven songs. It’s only seven songs because Lewis has suffered from hearing loss, which he said he first noticed before going on stage in Dallas. Dang it, first our city is stigmatized with the killing of a president and it will forever be linked to Lewis’ loss of hearing. I got a kick out of the title of the upcoming album though I didn’t initially catch on.

So, where did the title “Weather” come from?

Lewis explained, “Do you get it? Huey Lewis and the News, ‘Sports,’ then ‘Weather.’ And it’s kind of appropriate, ’cause we’ve had some weather.”

Somehow during lunch with the family yesterday, DaughterGeeding brought up the subject of the STAAR test she took last year and one of the reading comprehension stories. In great detail, she described Big Tex’s fiery demise. It gave me a good laugh for two reasons. One, it painted us Texans in a that all too familiar stereotype, it was like something you’d see in a King of the Hill episode. Second, it reminded me of a comment I read on some website when it first happened, “You people don’t understand, this is our 9/11.” Sure, in the grand schemes of things that’s insensitive, but it still gave me a good laugh.

In 2019, more Americans went to the library than to the movies. Yes, really.

Yes, according to a recent Gallup poll (the first such survey since 2001), visiting the local library remains by far the most common cultural activity Americans engage in. As reported earlier today by Justin McCarthy:

“Visiting the library remains the most common cultural activity Americans engage in, by far. The average 10.5 trips to the library U.S. adults report taking in 2019 exceeds their participation in eight other common leisure activities. Americans attend live music or theatrical events and visit national or historic parks roughly four times a year on average and visit museums and gambling casinos 2.5 times annually. Trips to amusement or theme parks (1.5) and zoos (.9) are the least common activities among this list.”

I watched an old episode of Breaking Bad yesterday, I guess AMC was having a marathon. For the first time, I think I was able to make out that Walter White, while he was on chemotherapy, didn’t have any hair on his arms. That sort of detail wouldn’t surprise me with how great that show and Bryan Cranston is. It’s my understanding that even arm hair will fall out during chemotherapy.

Wheels stolen off Corvette Stingray test vehicle in Detroit

While on a recent conference call at work, someone was requesting a particular feature on a product and I genuinely didn’t understand how it was feasible and more importantly if the security team would give it their blessing. I thought I was being very diplomatic and politely inquisitive and was in a good mood. In a way, I was proud of myself for taking ownership and trying to please the person requesting the feature. But one person I report to send me an instant message, which is common and something no one else would be able to detect during the call. To my surprise, he said I was being “argumentative” and sounding like I was “arguing for the sake of arguing.” That really, really surprised me, and bothered me through the weekend. There have been times I’ve argued for the sake of arguing, but it’s never been with anything related to work. It certainly wasn’t my intention to come across like that, and this person I report to has complicated me in the past on my demeanor when others seem to be emotional. It was one of those instances in which I felt like I couldn’t retort, otherwise I’d be labeled not being able to accept criticism or feedback. That has happened to me before at a previous job. So, I just tried to be a good soldier and take my medicine, thank him for the feedback and appreciate his willingness to have a coachable moment with me. Yup, I resorted to “company speak” you’d hear on Office Space. I certainly didn’t want to, but I’m playing the long game, which isn’t always easy to do. I guess what bothered me the most was that I was doing my best to do one thing and the person in charge interpreted it as the complete opposite.

Wrong salute.

Today is the 75th anniversary of the Soviet Army’s liberation of Auschwitz.

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