I rewatched “Avengers: Age of Infinity” and my loved it. I actually liked it better the second time. If 20-year-old me knew that nearly-40-year-old me would prefer comic book movies to nearly everything else…I don’t think we would be friends.

Today is the big trip up north in the car. It’s a 5-hour trek that somehow takes my family 12 hours or so each year.

I’ve got only 5 days until vacation. Hopefully I can shift gears from programming and data work for my day job back to writing and coding for my hobbies.

After this today’s meeting, my database project has become 10 times larger but 25% simpler. I hope I can still meet my deadline.

My work day started off far more slowly than expected. Therefore, I’m coding—maybe all day—for my “number 3” project.

I took my (old) Sony RX 100 camera to the splash park to take pictures of the kids and got dozens of great shots. My wife and I looked back at our kids’ baby pictures a little, after looking through today’s photos, and had a great time doing so tonight.

I beat Bastion tonight. What a great ending. I may do the second playthrough, New Game+, though I may take a break beforehand.

I’m looking forward to a visit with the family to the county fair tonight. Last year’s fair was a lot of fun.

I have been seriously considering holding on to my iPhone 7 Plus for a third year. I just got a new screen and a new battery, It looks almost brand new, I still like the camera, I never complain about it being slow, and iOS 12 promises to improve performance when I upgrade to it. I feel the same way about my Series 1 Apple Watch, too, though my desire to upgrade it to whatever model Apple releases next is still a lot higher.

I spent most of the day coding an Access app for work. I’m coding VBA now almost like it’s a proper object-oriented language: lots of tiny classes that do one thing only, basically no repeated code segments, use of design patterns wherever possible, and so on.

Introducing my latest iOS app: Simple Call Blocker

Simple Call Blocker is a free app for blocking unwanted calls on iOS.

It provides a basic way to block lots of numbers via a CallKit directory extension–which is great for blocking neighbor spam.

Unlike almost every other call blocker out there, mine is completely free and doesn’t need access to your contacts to work.

Try it out. It’s free.

If you want to know more, there’s a website with screenshots and a FAQ. I wrote a blog post describing my motivation for writing it, too.

I replaced my old, crumbling, extra- extra large Grifiti wrist rest with a new one, suitably sized for my tenkeyless keyboard. It was a good move.

I left my iPhone at the Apple Store for a screen repair and a new battery. I’m using my Essential Phone as an actual phone for the first time this afternoon. I do not plan to write a “switching post” though—it’s just temporary. 😀

I find myself shifting my listening time away from podcasts and more toward music lately

I started listening to podcasts in 2008. I think, now, I am, for the first time, burnt out on the medium. I listen to a lot of podcasts while I work, but lately I’ve found I can barely remember what the episodes were about shortly after they finish. I think I am tuning them out.

I am paring back my subscriptions down—way down—to a few favorites and listening to more music instead. It’s symmetrical to how I got into podcast listening: I was burnt out on listening to music all day long, and became uninterested in music for several years.

🎵 I’m back to my wired OPPO PM-3 & HA-2 SE headphones stack today, listening to Foreverland, by The Divine Comedy. It’s an album that slipped by me in 2016. I used to love The Divine Comedy in the late 1990s, and still take Casanova for a spin every six months or so.

Trial runs for fascism are in full flow

This article by Fintan O’Toole in The Irish Times is a few weeks old now, but I keep thinking about it.

Fascism doesn’t arise suddenly in an existing democracy. It is not easy to get people to give up their ideas of freedom and civility. You have to do trial runs that, if they are done well, serve two purposes. They get people used to something they may initially recoil from; and they allow you to refine and calibrate. This is what is happening now and we would be fools not to see it.

Mr. O’Toole lays out a simple and convincing argument outlining ideas that I have been mulling over in my head, but not writing much about, since Trump’s election on November 8, 2016. What has happened—at an accelerating pace, I think, since last year—is that the bounds of what is considered normal have been stretched so far into what was previously outrageous that I fear there is no going back. If Trump and the Republican Party are proving that the U.S. president is above the law, and that much of what governed the government was merely tradition, which is disposable for political expediency, then what, if anything, will constrain the power and the actions of future U.S. presidents?

Oh! I’m getting a Microsoft Office update this morning. I wonder what office suites were like in the year 2016…