Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Random Notes, February 2020

Goodness, is February almost over?

+ The decision to acquit President Trump was not surprising, but disappointing regardless. The trial was a slapdash mess, a rushed effort by Democratic congressman in a feeble attempt to persuade Republican senators that weren't going to listen. You could even argue that it was complete cowardice, of self-protection in a contested election year, disguised as a moment of party solidarity. More evidence of Trump's wrongdoings with Ukraine is bound to surface, and the GOP took the fast way out.

+ I make no illusion of my misgivings about Bernie Sanders. However, if he does become the Democratic nominee for president, so be it. Even though the logjam has subsided, the primary race is still very contested. Sanders is the front-runner for now, though one wonders if he'll stick to his agenda, swerve further left, or make any sort of appeal to moderates.

+ I'm heading back to Austin! For the third time in 23 months, I'm flying to central Texas for some "Bob Zula" related business. My friend Brandon's indie bildungsroman made it into two film festivals, both in state. I will keep you all posted when the film is available for wider release.


Monday, February 3, 2020

Random Notes, January 2020

January 2020 was an eventful for a lot of bad reasons. Let me attempt to break it down:

+ I grew up a Monty Python fan, and it's one of the few things I've enjoyed that I've carried into adulthood. (I even wrote about the second series as one of the seasons of any TV show ever.) I was saddened to hear that Terry Jones had been diagnosed with a rare form of dementia in 2015, and even more so that he succumbed to it last week. It wasn't that long ago we lost Python-adjacent singer-songwriter Neil Innes, who appeared on Python and co-created the underappreciated Rutland Weekend Television. Rest easy, you wacky Britons.

+ Speaking of blog subjects, I always found the Kobe Bryant sexual assault case rather suspicious. Now the two main conspirators of the case, Bryant and then-NBA commissioner David Stern, are both gone, 25 days apart. There was an intense debate on social media about Bryant's culpability in the wake of the helicopter crash. In the era of #MeToo I'm marginally more willing to forgive someone who tried to rectify and learn from his misdeeds. Kobe became a mentor and philanthropist, but what transpired in Summer 2003 leaves his legacy more of a mixed bag than most people will admit.

+ A distant third on my RIP list: academic and "disruptive innovation" theorist Clayton Christensen.

+ The impeachment trial has been such a mess that I'm both exasperated and still collecting my thoughts. Expect me to elaborate on a future post.

+ On a positive note, I was legitimately looking forward to this Sunday's Super Bowl. It's not just the history: the Chiefs haven't been (or won) in 50 years, the Niners are making only their second appearance since 1994. It was a good game with a spectacular fourth quarter. Congrats again to Kansas City, my ancestral homeland, the one and true Emerald City.