Week 51/2023: ‘Twas the week before christmas

The last week of work for 2023

Week of 18 December 2023

The 21st of December

Gravy Day.

Barb is wearing a dark blue t-shirt with the words "GIVE MY LOVE TO ANGUS" o the front. She has long blonde hair and pink glasses
Give my love to Angus

What started as a greeting on December 21 in the official Paul Kelly email group (this is how long it’s been going) is now kind of a mainstream(ish) Thing.

Someone else at work had the same shirt. We are kin.

No boosters for you

I had a few things to do including the very important task of getting my covid booster. There’s a new variant spreading round and numbers of people catching it are increasing. And while I could get it, Kramstable, as an under-18 couldn’t because the government guidelines don’t recommend it and the pharmacy wouldn’t go against the guidelines.

It seems to defy logic that there’s a new vaccine targeting a new variant at the end of 2023 and yet my young adult, who had his most recent vaccination (which targets variants that are no longer around) in 2022, is considered “fully boosted” and unable to access it.

I don’t know what to do.

I moved desks at work

It’s no secret that I hate the open plan office space I work in. It makes me uncomfortable, sometimes to the point of not physically being able to be in there. Working from home has been life changing.

But a free desk opened up and I took the opportunity to move. While it doesn’t address the noise and bright lights that affect me a lot of the time, it does get me away from foot traffic, which I think will help me to stay calmer.

I took the opportunity to throw out a lot of stuff I’d accumulated since I’d started this job (six years ago, right?) and am hopeful I might take some new cleaner desk habits into next year. (I give myself a week.)

At the very least, getting rid of a stack of papers means that my desk is no longer so weighed down that the sit-stand mechanism keeps stalling. That might be enough incentive to keep it clutter-free!

Week 51 summary

What was the best thing about this week?

Moving desks.

What did I notice this week?

I was talking to my neighbour during the week and they mentioned they regularly saw an echidna in their yard. I’d heard other people in my street talk about seeing one but had never seen one myself. Until the next day when I looked out my kitchen window and there it was.

back view of an echidna in a garden. It is a small brown mammal with spikes all over its body and a long nose
The only photo I managed before it stuck its head in the ground

The chickens weren’t impressed.

Unrelated, there’s a flock of birds that hang out in the tree outside my room making a very loud but lovely song, and I never know what they are because they move so quickly. Because I could see flashes of yellow, I had thought they were goldfinches. I see them a lot out the kitchen window so I thought they’d relocated.

A small black and white bird with yellow on its wings and a very long black beak and white eye perched in a tree
Not a goldfinch!

My camera strategy was to point, snap and hope, and I discovered that they were in fact New Holland Honeyeaters.

A small black and white bird with yellow on its wings, perched on a tree. Its long beak is open as it sings
New Holland Honeyeater mid-song

What did I learn this week?

Smashing a shopping trolley into your shin really hurts.

Also, grabbing the handle of a pan that you’ve just taken out of the oven is a Bad Idea.

A photo of a left hand with a large burn blister underneath the pointer finger
I burned my hand . . .

I also learned, thanks to the “This Day” section of the local paper, that on 21 December 1913, The New York World newspaper published a “Word-Cross” puzzle by Arthur Wynne, a British journalist working in the USA. This was the first crossword puzzle (a name which stuck after “word-cross” was mis-typeset as “cross-word”).

What I’m reading this week

  • The Confidence Gap by Russ Harris
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