Tuesday, October 27 2020

the bears, rodneyisms, and kanye



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Dear Journal,

Good morning, everyone. If you cheer for the Bears and you happened to catch the last night's ludicrous display against the Rams, I offer you solidarity and condolences.

That was a rough one, wasn't it? Penalties everywhere. Starting almost every drive behind the ten yard line. No chemistry on defense or offense. The scene on Bears twitter right now is staunchly in the fire everyone stage of depression. Personally, I dealt with the disappointment by slugging a light beer while stress cleaning my kitchen, and then I turned to my dark master, the fun sized Butterfinger.

Normally, I wouldn't consider myself a sweet tooth. I have to be going through something really unnaturally painful before I turn to Halloween candy. Yesterday's football game would do it though, and this morning the stench of an embarrassing, gut wrenching loss is accompanied by a dull sugary stomach ache and a low grade headache.

There are a lot of bad things to say about last night's game, but we have some good things to focus on as well. For instance, our house is very clean now. Marissa and I stress cleaned almost everything in our house through the entire second half. Dishes. Garbage. The play corner. Everything perfectly in its place, and likewise a symbol of futility. It turns out that no matter how hard you clean your house, you can't clean up what's happening on the field of a bad game.

Another narrow benefit of last night's game: this week I'll probably avoid all NFL news, highlights, videos, and commentary, and with that distraction steamrolled away from my thoughts, just think of all the things that I'll get done.

Finally, to close out this subject, let it be known that I hate the Rams. I hate them, as well as their big dumb indoor LA stadium, and how it's named after one of the most obnoxious student loan brokerage companies to exist, and how it looks like a big ugly medical device right in the middle of the depressing sprawl of Hollywood.

Sip. I had a crazy day yesterday. Now that it's known at work, I think I can divulge that most of the craziness is due to switching teams. After this week, I'm getting moved to a new team with a new manager, and for the time being it feels like I'm temporarily on two teams with two managers. Two sets of meetings, two sets of goals, and even two different interns.

"So kind of a weird week for me," I wrote my intern over slack. "I'm actually in the middle of transitioning over to your team. We're both going to be the new guys."

Personally, a big shake-up in my day-to-day life, but I'm hopeful that things will level out and once again feel even keel. I've found the best way to survive at a big company like ours is to learn to go with the flow. I'm a coral gently swaying in the ocean current, much like the coral in our fish tank.

Speaking of which, our coral has a name now. It happened a few days ago over dinner.

"I like it when Rodney names things," I said. "He has a good track record. Both Flashla and Hauncy are so unique, and they're fun to say."

"What do you think we should name our coral, Rod?" asked Marissa.

Rodney, happy to set down his fork and indulge the distraction, relished in the spotlight. He took a moment to search his thoughts.

"Oh! It's name is... champion," He said.

"Champion!" I repeated. "Another winner."

And so our coral's name is champion.

Teaching him letters every day, Marissa is lucky enough to hear even more excellent Rodney-isms fresh from the source.

"We were practicing flash cards, where he had to say the thing and what letter it started with," said Marissa. "We got to N and there was a picture of a nest. Rodney said really loud, N! N is for... egg pile."

"Egg pile," I repeated, doubling over with laughter. Just imagine for a second if in your world, the first thing that came to mind when you saw a nest was egg pile. Imagine if we really called them egg piles.

As I worked upstairs, the phrase egg pile would pop into my thoughts and I'd start to chuckle by myself.

In other news, I finally got around to listening to Kanye's interview on Joe Rogan's podcast. Well, scratch that. I've listened to some of it. Per Joe Rogan's laid back podcasting M.O., the entire interview is over three hours, and I'm not even halfway through.

Here's my take. It's a great resource if you'd like to understand how Kanye thinks, so long as you can get past his fixation with running for President. With today's scene, that's a big annoyance to overcome, and part of understanding Kanye is understanding that he's only comfortable when he's mired in controversy. "I want all the smoke, because that's just opportunity" he tells Joe, paraphrasing his own lyrics.

Kanye's obsession with serving as President as of late feels a lot like his early obsession with Christianity. It was sudden, abrupt, and painfully clear that he hadn't fleshed out all the details with himself, and he leaves you questioning if this is just performance art, or if it's just a proxy for some other internal struggle happening inside him.

I'll say this though, though Kanye doesn't sound like a politician, he is starting to sound like a real Christian, and it's weird relating to him on that level. As long as he was steering away from his misplaced interest in politics, he was surprisingly relateable. He talked about how he didn't know how to rap as a Christian. He had to reinvent himself, and for an artist that consistently reinvents himself for just about every new project, I'm sure that's what drew him to a personal revival in the first place.

"You have some preachers who read from the Bible, then put down the book for forty-five minutes," he says. "I like expository sermons. There's enough sauce in my life - with all this sauce, I don't need sauce on the Word."

That's what I got today. Hope you have a wonderful day today.