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May 13th, 2019

The Lucky Golden Cricket

Thursday and Friday's rowing attempts failed, but I at least got in some good quality time with teammates over breakfast on Friday. There are unstable weather patterns at the moment, so the combination of wind and the fisherpeople kept us off the water.

The fisherpeople are all apparently after striped bass, which migrate up the Hudson River to spawn. The tricky part is that they all want to launch their powerboats at the public boat ramp that's adjacent to our rowing docks. So we have to try and be good neighbors while on land and while they temporarily use our docks, and then try and be good neighbors while on the water, even though half of the fisherpeople like to fly up the river at high speed and create terrible wakes.

Saturday morning, weather conditions were good enough that we could go out on the water, except there were SO MANY fishing boats that a huge line had formed at the boat launch and we were constantly dodging boats on the water and stopping because the wakes were so big they posed a serious capsize risk.

To top it off, we had six rowers show up for Saturday morning, but no doubles because the doubles were off at a regatta for the juniors. So H and I went out in singles and tried to keep up with a 4x.

A hard thing for me is that when conditions are unsteady and I'm in the 1x, I tend to tense up even more, and that just makes everything worse. Over the course of practice we were able to get in a small handful of adequate strokes, but in general it was not a practice to try and remember. At least we survived.

From there, I swung by the donut shop to pick up a treat for my teammate L, swung by home for a shower and quick breakfast, returned to the boathouse to drop off L's donut, then headed up to Washington Park for a big annual event known as Tulip Fest.

As the name implies, this festival is a celebration of spring and the collection of beautiful tulips that Albany gets from its sister city in the Netherlands. A club member has been instrumental in getting a table for the rowing club, but needed people to staff it, so I volunteered.

Saturday's tabling was fun. The weather was nice, so there were lots of people out and about, and many of them responded positively when I asked, "Hey, would you like to learn how to row?" Also, there was plenty of high-quality people-watching, which is always great.

Sunday morning, I made pancakes and then headed off to our college's graduation. We're a small enough college that we just have a single graduation each year. However, we're a large enough college that graduation took f.o.r.e.v.e.r. So many names, so much "Magna Cum Laude." A highlight for me was when the professor who won a teaching award talked about working to change Computer Science from a field dominated by white men. When she uttered the phrase, "white men," there was an audible reaction noise from the audience, which I thought was interesting to note. I'm learning things about the demographics out here, some of which are unsettling.

In contrast, when a politician got up to say some words, I found his words worse than useless. He was clearly an old-guard Democrat who either didn't care about his young graduating audience or was just utterly oblivious about how to talk to them. Maybe both. As I posted on other social media platforms, he basically made some mouth noises about trying to help out students with their student debt via a paltry tax deduction, but if anything I think he just dug himself more deeply into a hole illustrating his cluelessness. This group of students wants a stronger message of support for higher ed, not some weaksauce lip service that puts the burden on the shoulders of the students.

Then I went back over to Tulip Fest for another shift. It was cold and rainy on Sunday, however, so only the most stalwart were out to see the tulips. Most of the other nonprofit organizations packed up early, so I decided to follow suit and headed home.

In the evening, it was my turn to do grocery duty, so I headed to the grocery store, where I encountered a shelf of golden crickets for sale. I can ill afford such a ridiculous item, but it came home with me anyway. It will look good in my office, sitting next to the ant sculptures.

This entry was originally posted at https://rebeccmeister.dreamwidth.org/1293970.html. Please comment there using OpenID.

Also, recent internet memes

I was just highly amused by all three of these, so I stuck them together to share.

Recent Internet Memes


This entry was originally posted at https://rebeccmeister.dreamwidth.org/1294151.html. Please comment there using OpenID.

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