Picking Running Back Up

For the first time in a few years, I went running again yesterday. There was a time when I ran relatively regularly, because I wanted to be in shape. Usually, I end up slipping out of those habits—it’ll be rainy, so “it’s not a good day to run”, or I’ll have had a tough day at work, or I have the sniffles. There’s always some excuse that ends up with me skipping “just this once”, which leads to “I’ll start fresh next week”, and ends up right in “I should start running again someday”. So, I started running again that day.

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Moving Apartments

About a month ago, Tracy and I moved from our apartment in Groningen to Leeuwarden. I’ve lived in Groningen for about fifteen years, and have been working in Leeuwarden for about eight of those. That’s involved three to four hours of commute every workday for so long. Working from home for a few months due to COVID-19 had really shown me how much time I’d been spending in buses and trains, and how much time of the day I was losing. So, after a while of browsing apartments, we made the jump.

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Ever since Tracy came back from the US in late-March, she and I have been just mildly sick. Not significantly sick, not even like a flu, but we’ve felt like you sometimes feel after a flu, if you know what I mean: languid, listless, drained, and achy. A sore throat coupled with low energy has us mostly binge-watch shows or playing games. This, of course, is coupled with the obvious question: is this COVID-19? We don’t know. Is it worth testing? Well, we don’t feel sick enough to be worried, so maybe not? That seems to be so much of our lives today: a big old questionmark.

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Burning Wheel: Demoing Twilight in Verdorben Duchy

Last Friday, I ran the first session of the Twilight in Verdorben Duchy demo game of Burning Wheel for my wife and two of our friends. Since it was the first time I GMed anything in years, I wanted to keep it small and relatively simple. Burning Wheel has long-since been my absolute favorite RPG, and I was very excited to be running it again (though I also absolutely love being a player).

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Torchbearer, 2nd Ed Kickstarter

I’ve been a fan of tabletop roleplaying games for ages. Starting out (like most) with Dungeons & Dragons, through podcasts I discovered quite a few others. Among my all-time favorites are Burning Wheel and Torchbearer. Torchbearer is having a kickstarter for the second edition right now! If you’re interested in tabletop RPG gaming, I recommend you go have a look. You won’t regret it.

Electronics: Pomodoro Timer

Now that my law degree is taking a bit of a backseat (a lot has been delayed because of the COVID-19 pandemic), I’ve dipped back into my electronics hobby. I’d basically put that on a backburner to favor the law degree. So what am I to do with so much time? Well, use my very basic electronics skills to make something to manage time!

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Two-Tiered System

While I’ve been reading about the immigration process, I’ve come to understand that Express Entry is not a single process, but actually the first post of the system. Express Entry might essentially qualify you for getting into the country, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you can get in. For that, there’s a separate process.

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Working From Home and Privacy

My organization is fairly new to working from home as a structural situation. Usually, fulltime employees can get one day per week working from home as a standard benefit, if possible, but with the COVID-19 pandemic, everybody is working from home all at once. So, many of us are figuring out a new way of working, using more of the tools that we’ve always had but never used. However, I’m also noticing colleagues suddenly going overboard with it.

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Social Distancing

I’ve known for a long time that I’m a bit of a curious person. Back when I first started uni, I studied Psychology for a few years (never did finish, though—that’s still something of a regret). One of the things that we were required to do was to be test subjects for other students’ research project. It was a way to both familiarize students with psychological testing and its methods, to create understanding of test subjects, as well as to just create a standard population for the upper years’ to do their research projects (don’t get me started on the selection bias there and the influences on their conclusions). It also gave you a wealth of information about yourself, as you could usually request your own data.

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Well. That’s a big hurdle.

Back in November, we got the news that Tracy’s father was diagnosed with terminal liver cancer. Already in January 2019 he was diagnosed and beat asophageal cancer, but in November, he had a new tumor in his liver. Thanks to the help of a friend, we managed to visit Tracy’s family in December, to make sure we got to see him. A few weeks ago, we were told it wouldn’t be too long. A few days ago, he passed away.

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