I am not making good progress on my annual Chanukah poem, but the Holiday Challenge proceeds apace. I’m at 93,000m, just a bit short of halfway; that’s behind last year’s pace, but still on track to finish well ahead of Christmas Eve (if I don’t skimp any qorkouts, I should finish on December 18). That’s right where I want to be, or even a little ahead. Last year I think I overtrained; I could hardly persuade myself to work out at all in following weeks, got sick not long after, and was ill a total of three times in the first half of the year (starting at Intel and being around a lot more people may also have contributed).

I’m also feeling productive at work, in a very busy period right now, which is probably also not good for the poem. But I’m hoping to have a very quiet week working from home (the one on the lake) for the week before Christmas, and then I’m off through New Year’s, yay.

Knitting is also proceeding; I finished the lap blanket for my SIL and two kippot for my mom and nephew; I plan to make one more for my brother, and I expect to finish a cowl for me in the next day or so. Pictures … sometime.

I’ve been thinking over 2017; it feels to me that the year has been both worse for my country than I expected and better for me personally than expected. I was expecting Trump to foster a climate of xenophobia, to insist on that ridiculous wall, to posture and to lie and I even expected him to get in a pissing match with other nations. I was expecting Congress to try to shaft the poor and try to kill off Obamacare – not a great program but at least the closest approach we’ve had yet to the healthcare the rest of the world enjoys. I expected Trump to renege on his promise to support LGBTQ rights and I knew that the dominant party in Congress never did. What I wasn’t expecting was for Trump to try to kill everything Obama did for no other reason than that Obama did it – I hadn’t realized he harbored that much personal malice toward him.

On the other hand I wasn’t expecting to change jobs this year, and I wasn’t expecting the stock market to keep booming as it had, so that every time I check my accounts I’ve made more money by doing nothing. I feel good about the job going into 2018; at this point 9 months in, my scope is continuing to grow, where I think in my last job it had started to constrict and it was becoming plain that some of the future growth I hoped for (and had been hinted to) wouldn’t happen. I don’t have nearly as good a feeling about the stock market; it feels like the bubble before a bust to me. I’m leaving my money in there because it’s mostly in index funds and I do trust the market to recuperate in the long run, but even if Mueller has the effect so many of us hope for, it’s likely t trash the market in the short run. (But I’m cheering him on nonetheless.)