A Zoox autonomous vehicle waits to make a right turn from Dore Street onto Brannan Street, underneath a Central Freeway on-ramp to southbound Highway 101

Back at it again, through heavy morning rain and light email responses, siding headlines and staving off headaches, beating back cravings and not getting up often enough for sunshine or a walk. My rhythm is better when the week is longer, when there’s more bodies in the room. That’s what tomorrow’s for, so let’s see!

A wall mounted sign welcomes visitors to the De Young Open, with a listing in several small print columns of artists’ names

I sat on a bench and talked to a nice photographer from Pacifica. As others milled around us, craning their necks and trying to take in all the beauty on the walls around us, he mentioned that one thing some of the art made him feel was depressed. I asked if he found it sobering instead, and he seemed to concur. A few minutes before I noticed a sign identifying the exhibition as a triennial, I said something about how it’s been a tough last three years. Oof!

About a half inch worth of sparkling non-alcoholic cider in a copper plated metal cup, viewed from above as it rests on a wooden plank picnic table in a regional park.

Good conversation all day, excellent food at home, a drive out to a great park to see trees and dodge crowds and mark a pal’s birthday, and even a quick blitz to get in karaoke (David Bowie’s “Time,” for his upcoming birthday, and Neil Diamond’s “Heartlight” for another singer’s belated birthday last week). The highlight may have been prying a bottle capped bottle with a nail clipper and some persistence.

An exit sign, a wall mounted clock and several flyers just inside the front door of a community acupuncture clinic in Oakland, California’s Laurel District

It rained a little today, but not like last year’s last day. Both days, I got in a grocery store run for organic collard greens, then got in a walk. Last year, we hit the local greenway; today’s was along Grand Avenue in Oakland before the box office opened for a movie. It looks like gas is 30 cents more this year at my local station. At this hour, we’re waiting for the fireworks to start before cracking open a bottle and toasting our exit.

Fluffy scattered pink clouds float in a blue western sky above a sunset skyline made up of a fence, a tree, parking lot light poles and low buildings

We made the most of a quiet day at home, only leaving to pick up a takeaway, putting our heads together briefly on a Thing and companionably focused elsewhere on Other Things, some involving about a dozen Web-ish tabs and some FTP tinkering.

Things can’t go on the way they have, not with rejection of outside choices and rejection of inside values leading to all-too-obvious tragic consequences. I’d had something like it on my mind since noticing a certain anniversary on Christmas Eve, and here it came today, for all of us.