John Scholvin

John Scholvin

still can’t fit a half-stack in the trunk

11 Nov 2022

friday five

hockey rink to be

soon, maybe: outdoor winter hockey

It wasn’t much of a plan. But it feels like less of one, now, maybe something more like an aspiration or pipe dream. The idea was that not long after Leah is done with high school, we’d downsize to another house somewhere in the area, maybe back in the city itself. We can’t go far since we have so many roots here, elders to attend to, etc. And then, maybe, with any money left over after the downsizing, we’d get a condo or townhouse in a warm place where I could escape what’s about to happen to my mental health for the next four months. My job is such that if I have internet and an airport, I can work just about anywhere. Of course, there were always a lot of assumptions baked into this plan, like continued health, stable income, etc., so it was always pretty loose. Now, though, the monstrous, America-hating Jerome Powell, along with the other turd-flinging apes at the Fed, have just about ended my dream. With demonic, maniacal intensity, they are focused on destroying the economy, the job market, the stock market, and the housing market all at once by aggressively and irresponsibly raising interest rates to the moon. They’ve done real damage to my retirement savings (such as they were) and they’re going to trash the equity I have in this house. Mortgage rates will soon be at a number that would make payday lenders blush. I’m not going to be moving anywhere, ever. Meanwhile, his investments did just fine. Criminals. Bastards. Dreamkillers.

It could be worse, though. At least I don’t work for Twitter. Feels like they’re going to be in bankruptcy proceedings any minute now. I haven’t really tweeted in years, but I set up shop on Mastodon just for grins. I don’t know if it’ll end up being a thing, but you can find me there if you wanna.1

Here’s a free screenplay idea: The US House is split 218-217 when a representative of the majority party dies unexpectedly, throwing the chamber into deadlock. An emergency election is scheduled in his home district, a fairly remote area in flyover country.2  Chaos ensues as the national parties, the media, some shady operatives of unknown origin, and tens of millions of dollars pour into their formerly sleepy, nondescript district. Some of the locals revel in the madness, while others are frustrated by the attention. Lots of ways you could go from there: rom-com (romance blooms between rivals), spy thriller (foreign agents try to put their thumb on the scale, while the feds race to stop them), comedy (endless possibilities as the local yokels encounter the big city elites). If you use this, just give me a cameo. Like Stan Lee.

I found a dead sparrow in the garage the other day. It was just flipped over on its side in the center of the floor. No obvious trauma. I assume it just got trapped in there and couldn’t get out, and without food or water, it wouldn’t have been too long. I felt pretty bad for the poor thing; that had to be a bad way to go. It felt somehow ominous, too.

When Bitcoin first went mainstream, I remember being asked by many of my non-fintech friends and family to explain it. I tried. Sometimes they got it, sometimes not, but underneath it all, what I really wanted to say was, “don’t worry too much about it, because it’s all bullshit and it’s going to go away someday.” Man, I wish I’d actually gotten that on the record so I could look super smart now. One by one these firms who’ve built skyscrapers of nonsense on foundations of swamp muck are going tits up, and many billions of (unfortunately real) dollars are vaporizing in the process. It was always a scam; it’s a scam today; it will be a scam when they repackage it some other way next month. Crypto is a solution without a problem, a Rube Goldberg contraption complicated enough to reel in credulous dopes with too much money who want to feel smart and hip for a few minutes, all with the added bonus of using more electricity than Argentina.3 Lotsa luck with all of that.

  1. Don’t ask me. Here’s a decent article on how Mastodon works. ↩︎

  2. It’d have to be a remote/rural yet still politically competitive district. Suspend your disbelief for this part. ↩︎

  3. Yes, I know only some coins use energy intensive proof-of-work schemes, but that includes the biggest one, and it’s plenty bad enough. Don’t argue with me until you’ve moved out of your mom’s basement, cryptobro. ↩︎