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· 5 min read

[1420 Feb]

We don't believe in Valentine's Day here. But just in case, on the 14th I bought a Häagen-Dazs, Belgian chocolate flavour. Think Pascal's wager! It lasted a few days (we love chocolate, but we never eat a lot of anything like that).

On Tuesday evening I rode my motorbike to Avenida de la Ilustración to meet someone who stumbled upon my post about “Mein Kampf” and had the kindness to write me an e-mail. He's D., a fellow admirer of many of my own intellectual heroes (Sam Harris, Steven Pinker, Richard Dawkins, Jonathan Haidt, Christopher Hitchens, etc). We had a coffee/tea, got to know each other a little bit, and found a lot of common interests. I think we were both excited to discover another human being who had listened to the same podcast interviews, watched the same debates on YouTube, read the same blog posts, and fallen in love with the same ideas, in Spain. Later I introduced him (virtually) to my rationalist and EA circles in Madrid. So, a new friend. In that way, this new old blog has served some purpose already!

· 2 min read

[713 Feb]

Stuff that broke last week: the washing machine. Moderate consternation ensued  we use it more than once every other day, because we're four at home and it's not one of those machines with large capacity. Fortunately we managed to get it working again on the same day by cleaning a water filter that was easy to remove without taking the whole thing apart.

Wife and I went to yet another car dealer to see the electric Volkswagen ID.4. It's kinda what we need in size, cargo volume, and range. But we still have to polish our spreadsheets to see if the gains in the long term are worth the 100% electric price tag. (Spoiler alert: at the time of writing this, we've made some progress with those estimates, and it looks as if a ~13,000 gap between the prices of an EV and the equivalent internal combustion car would cancel itself out after seven years of usage or so, given our consumption patterns, etc.)

· 3 min read

[31 Jan 6 Feb]

Last week we had a couple of appointments to go and see apartments for sale in a town nearby. We had to cancel the first one in the last minute because my wife was too busy with work to jump in the car, drive there and do the visit (not that it's too far from where we live now). The day after I went to see the other one, only with Breaker of Horses this time. I liked the quality of the construction materials and the finish, and the residential area was very pleasant and well equipped (every corner was spotless). But when I told my wife about all the pros and cons, we agreed that it was too small for us: with two little kids growing up, and both of us working from home most of the time, we really need some room.

· 15 min read

The problem with the ubiquitous five-star rating system is that you cannot assign negative value to things. (What would the opposite of a star be? A black hole? Something that sucks light instead of emitting it)

I mean a negative rating as in this entirely fictional customer review:

My rating: minus-⭐!
I bought this power drill back in August and I was so excited to use it.
Well, it drilled
backwards and it trepanned my skull!
Very painful. Avoid this product.

Or this one:

My experience at the première:
The film was so disgusting that it made me dizzy first, then gave me seizures, and finally a voice in my head somehow convinced me to devote the rest of my life to gently tapping with a teaspoon the forehead of every person around me, incessantly.
That was six years ago.
Writing this from the madhouse now. Not too bad in here, actually.
(I still give the film five black holes for the damage caused! Four black holes, tops.)

· 4 min read

[1723 Jan]

The highlight of last week was my wife's birthday. She became a round number above 37 and below 41. Child-rearing, The Unspeakable and this 110% WFH have conspired to serve us two very humdrum years, with very little in the way of travel, social gatherings, cultural events, and the other serendipitous offerings that life usually has in store. All that is to say that this birthday deserved some fanfare.

We got to celebrate thrice over the weekend: with my family, with her family, and with a couple of friends; and so she got to blow three sets of candles, and received birthday gifts in all three occasions. Family and friends rock; table talk and home-made biscuits and hugs and friends' news and fabada and roscón de reyes for twenty people are A Good Thing. It's too easy to forget that.

· 3 min read

[1016 Jan]

The week started with Miss Entropy recovering from a mild fever (she skipped school on Monday, out of precaution), and finished with her little brother having a couple of peaks of temperature himself for a day or two. Nothing serious; mostly one tiring night for him and for us two. Thank Paracetamol.

It is exhausting to spend so much time with two small kids  at least for me. There are tantrums sometimes, and moments during the day when the two of them are crying at the same time, or simply demanding your attention insistently. In so many situations, kids are amazingly incapable of understanding opportunity, proportion, or balance.

Still, almost every day presents one or more opportunities to discover something new with them, make them laugh, enjoy their crazy words and associations of ideas, squeeze them, dance with them, and take cute photos and videos There are also the diaries my wife and I are writing for each of them (for when they're adults), and even these public weeknotes for posterity.

· 5 min read

Inspired by Paul Battley (whom in turn was inspired by Tom and Nat and Chris) I’ve decided to start writing weeknotes. Specifically, around the end of last year I decided that I would write brief weekly notes and share them online.

To make that easier, and because I stumbled upon a nice 2022 calendar-diary template on Reddit (and because I'm usually eager to find new use cases for my loyal reMarkable 2) I would also start writing a page about my day, every day.

Unrelated to all that, I had been meaning for a long time to have a blog again (I have been blogging and microblogging on third-party platforms, but I always missed owning my content and being part of the IndieWeb like in the good old days).

Last month it all came together, and eight days ago, on January first, I finally managed to (re)launch this blog. (I started doing other new things, but those aren't relevant now, or I won't share with the world.)

So here go my first weeknotes for week 1, 2022 (plus a few more days, for context):