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w/e 2020-11-08

Phew. It says something that so many can feel so enthusiastically relieved about the success of such a middle-of-the-centrist-road presidential candidate. Just to go back to someone who seems human and non-psychotic, enacting the usual compromised and slightly disappointing policies, will be such a massive relief. 🇺🇸

§ I liked the song, from 2018, already, but this lovely music video, made of clips from The Sims, is new and it’s much more touching than I imagined any tale of love between a pixel human and a plant-based humanoid could be. 👩🏻❤️🌱

Remember Sports – No Going Back, on YouTube

§ After we swapped offices last week, this is now my view, on a good day:

Panoramic photo of fields and autumn trees, looking down into a gentle valley where there's a red brick farmhouse

I still have a pile of stuff to sort out and organise but I’ve been unusually busy (five days a week, imagine!) with work. This month I’ll have worked on five different projects which I guess keeps things interesting. 🌳👨🏼‍💻

§ The past couple of years I’ve enjoyed the BBC’s coverage of NFL football. They had a couple of shows a week including highlights of games and analysis. This year they’ve reduced it to a single show on Saturday night. Which is annoying timing given that most games happen on a Sunday, six days earlier. I know nothing about Match of the Day but I assume it’d be like moving that to a Friday evening.

I used to enjoy watching highlights of maybe three good games a week so I’ve been trying to find alternative sources that can be watched closer to when the games were played. If I only watch the BBC show it’s very hard to get a feel for the weekly rhythm given it feels so out of sync. So far I’ve found:

  • NFL Game Pass has, after you’ve signed up for free, five minute packages of highlights or all the games in one 60-ish minute show. These feel extremely hasty – commentary’s repeatedly cut off or begun mid-sentence, there are no replays, and it’s hard to get a feel for the flow of a game. It’s hard to even comprehend “OK, Ravens have the ball on their 40-yard line, it’s 2nd down and 8 and they’re trailing 21 to 14,” before a play’s half over and time jumps ahead to a new one.

  • The NFL’s YouTube has 10-15 minutes highlight packages of each game (here are all of last week’s) which are better. They can still be a bit abrupt but are obviously less rushed. The one awkward bit is that you often see the scores from other games that were happening at the same time scrolling up at the bottom of the screen, which makes it hard to avoid spoilers.

  • NFL Game Pass also has 40 minute packages for each game, if you pay, which I haven’t. And that’d add up to more time than I’m prepared to watch football for.

So I’m currently going with the second option although, given I’m not interested enough to watch all the games, I have to guess which ones will be most interesting. Or use my usual made-up reasons to care about different team’s fortunes.

I sometimes wonder why I bother given that, by the time the weekend’s BBC show rolls around, I can barely remember which games I’ve already watched. They all blur together. But I do enjoy watching. Oddly, I’m reminded of a piece I read this morning, Joe Biden talking about his dogs, describing how they make you live in the present. It’s the only sport I watch, but watching football feels very much about briefly living in the “now”, forgetting everything else.

Anyway, it sounds like a good justification for why I quickly forget everything I’ve seen. 🏈📺🧠

§ This week we finished watching season one of Gomorrah which we really enjoyed. Obviously it’s a bit grim but given the Neapolitan drug-dealing underworld is so far from our own experience it almost seems more bearable than, say, a show about a serial killer in middle-class northern Europe. I was ready to get into a lengthy TV drama and with 48 episodes available so far (one more season to come) I’m looking forward to the rest. 🇮🇹🔫💊

§ Well done everyone. March 2020 isn’t over yet but it’s almost possible to believe it might end one day!

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