Week In Review – 29 Nov 2020

 

November is drawing to a close.  Same as the US presidential election although Mr. Trump still refuses to concede. The electors (of the electoral college) will meet per the US Constitution in 15 days (on December 14, 2020) to cast their votes for the next president.   

When that day happens, I sincerely hope the order & chaos of this historical election will be over and done.  But deep down, I think the radicalization of America has only just begun. It will be a long road to live up the name of United States of America again.

Before leaving November, I will be remiss without mentioning the  highly unusual Thanksgiving we had this year.  Thanks to the Coronavirus pandemic, fewer folks traveled and more turkeys got to live another day. 

Stay safe & have a nice week.

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Knowledge & Skills

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Knowledge and skills do not go hand-in-hand necessarily.  Knowledge can be acquired relatively easy now-a-day with the help of internet.  Skills on the other hand takes time, or more precisely experience, to hone.  Preferably the relevant experience.

The famed opera tenor Luciano Pavarotti once said, “learning music by reading about it is like making love by mail.”  The acquisition of skill requires direct contact to gain the  relevant experience.  This is true in everything, not just in music.

For instance, I have two children.  Before they were born, I had little knowledge about parenting.  Zero to be exact. And through hands-on experiences over time, I learned to change diapers in all kinds of places with great efficiency.

Moreover, my unit of concerns went from being a single adult to double in a relationship, then onto multiple units as a family.  No matter how many books or online advises I read, my parenting skills began in earnest when my children were born.

A knowledgeable person is well read and smart. But a skilled person not only has to be knowledgeable but also has to have the relevant experiences.  And a good way to distinguish the two is to ask for a demonstration.

How would you compare knowledge with skills?

 

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Between Order & Chaos

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Evolution happens in concert with the environment over time. The driving force behind our evolution is illustrated by Darwin’s survival of the fittest.  And it has governed the  human progress for more than 200,000 years. 

Getting to where we are today, the evolution process vacillates between order and chaos.  Most human achievements are made based on orderly developments of commerce, science and technology.  And significant progresses have been made in a relative short period.

In this short period, the argument for chaos (or disorder) has seldom been made. After all, who needs disorder when order meant progress? Furthermore, chaos is actually embedded in the Nature.  Together with order, they serve as the two sides of the same coin.  

While we don’t ask for chaos that does not negate its occurrence. The Cornavirus pandemic plaguing us right now is a chaos.  So are other natural disasters like hurricanes, typhoons, floods, wildfires, earthquakes, etc.  When we’re least prepared, the magnitude of the chaos hits the hardest.

Therefore, chaos is inevitable part of our life.  It tests our abilities to face challenges and overcome them.  Ignoring or neglecting the chaos is detriment to the order & stability we so crave and could result in serious consequences.  In essence, embrace chaos, because our survivals depend on it.

How would you embrace chaos?

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Happy Thanksgiving

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“What is to happy about?” Some grumbles.

Let me see:

  1. I am still running, blogging, and optimistic about the future
  2. Covid-19 case albeit on the rise, the vaccines are on the way
  3. Economy is hurting but eventually we will be back on our feet again
  4. Always something to be thankful for, if mindful.

Hope you and yours are safe and enjoying the holiday. 

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Thanksgiving Eve 2020

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Tomorrow is Thanksgiving. Gobble, gobble.  But like other trends this year, the Thanksgiving feels different.

Overriding factor is the rising cases of the Coronavirus pandemic.  Public health officials are urging people to stay put, forego family gathering and minimize travel to reduce the spread of the virus.  Nothing remotely resembles the traditional holiday.

It is unusual time. I get it.  There are more urgent things than stuffing my face, gorging on Thanksgiving feast, and figuring out what to buy at the Black Friday Sales.  Just want to recognize the Covid-19 has disrupted another ritual.

On a brighter note, hurrah for the turkeys.  More of them will be spared for the occasion (in addition to the one pardoned at the White House yesterday). At least someone is getting the windfall benefit.

How are you celebrating Thanksgiving this year?

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New Mask Rules

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Finally, I got a sport mask for running.  You see.  I have resisted wearing a mask while running for a while. Don’t get me wrong. I am not  anti-mask. Just when I run, I seldom come into contact with people within 6 feet.  Plus, mask inhibits airflow.

Today, in response to the rising Covid-19 cases,  my local government tightened its mask rules.  Specifically, it ordered that “face Coverings must be worn outdoors.”  [Prior, it was a guidance to wear mask if physical distancing not feasible.]  Further, “coverings must be worn unless a person is actively engaged in eating or drinking.”

So unless I am eating or drinking while running, wearing a mask is mandatory.  The “sport” mask, made by Under Armor, is spacious, 3-layers, and light weight. I must say, I still prefer no mask if given that choice.  But at least, I have a workable solution which allows me to run outdoor.

Is mask mandatory where you are?

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Radicalization Of America

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I used to think the term “radicalization” was referring to a small number of astray individuals who were influenced by extreme groups, such as the terrorists, in joining their causes.  I stand corrected. It is way more prevalent.

The radicalization of America en masse has happened already and is best exemplified by the election twenty days ago.  The election’s record turnout seemed a sign of participatory democracy at first is really motivated by something else – fear.

The Democrats fear for a Trump second term, and the Republicans fear for the Socialist agenda from the other side.  Little trust but plenty of hate. And the extreme social media are fueling the flame.  Now, this radicalization comes to a blow post-election.

70% of Republicans believe the election process was not fair.  Mr. Trump would not concede.  And the others are calling it a coup. The real problem is that even if Mr. Trump does concede, how would Mr. Biden, et al deal with a radicalized America?

What societal change happened that made the American people so radicalized?

 

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Week In Review – 22 Nov 2020

 

On the week before the Thanksgiving, to some it may seem there is little to be thankful for at this time in America. Coronavirus is raging with close to a quarter of the the US infections reported in this month alone. And thanks to Mr. Trump that 70% of Republicans do not think the recent election was free & fair.  

So what’s there to celebrate (personally, I am happy that the wind has subsided)?

Be that as it may, important to remember that human endeavors have long triumphed over adversity, again and again.  Look how much progresses we have accomplished in spite of perceived differences and adversities. History has shown we have been there before.  We can prevail if we keep the faith while plowing ahead.

The pandemic will pass. Mr. Trump will become a footnote in US history.  In fact, his legacy is in his hands and remain to be seen on how he uses his power to shape it. Meanwhile, important to find joy where you’re.

Thanksgiving is a time for family. Even if we are physically distanced, our connection should not.  Moreover, we may disagree on certain subjects but there are much more things that we can agree on.  Enjoy.

Stay safe & have a nice week.

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Finding Joy

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Finding joy shouldn’t be hard, if we know where to look. For me that is running. It is something I can easily do in just about anywhere. And after each run I am always glad of  my accomplishment. Of course, endorphin helps. So are good company and weather.

The thing is that we, and only we, know what brings us joy. Running works for me but may not necessarily be right for you. Listening to music, watching a movie, reading, eating good foods, playing games, or whatever. Key is to find it within.

Life is challenging as is (and always).  Keeping things balanced and in perspective  behooves us to find joy in everyday life events.  It will serve as lubricant helping us along. If the answer is a null, try something new.  Never know what you may find.  

What are the joys in your life?

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Better Than Reality Television

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Watching the events unfold,

as current administration denying its lost

of the election.

Could not help comparing to the drama that

Hollywood can conjure.

Mr. Trump gets the Oscar for best kingmaker.

Unreal and yet it’s real.

Can you really make this up?

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