Welcome to the Wednesday Walk Around the Web, where we weave & wind through weblinks weekly. Hopefully you will find the links on offer amusing, interesting, or informative.
- This week is Pesach, among the most important holidays in the Jewish calendar. It’s bringing out one of my favorite things about Judaism: the malleability of specific traditions given higher principles. On the one hand, you’re not traditionally celebrating Passover if you’re not cleaning out your hametz and getting by on matzah for the duration. On the other hand, putting together as much sustenance as you can from what you have on hand while sheltering in place to avoid a plague is literally the best way to commemorate the exodus.
- The ongoing run on toilet paper is most easily blamed on panic-buyers, which is just one factor. A much more important factor is the fact that while everyone’s going to keep using the same amount of toilet paper, most people are going to be using a lot more of it at home than they did back when restaurants and movie theaters and bars and most workplaces were things that existed in our lives, and the commercial/residential split in toilet paper manufacturing isn’t easily bridged. You and I aren’t going to buy any of those three-foot-wide rolls of one-ply garbage until we’re truly desperate.
- Wisconsin Republicans has the blessing of the US Supreme Court to toss out absentee ballots that voters are not even going to receive before election day in a blatant exploitation of the COVID-19 pandemic to boost their ongoing vote-suppression campaign. People who wanted to exercise their right to vote in yesterday’s primary were forced to violate distancing and stay-at-home recommendations to travel to polling places that may have been moved or closed anyway. Maybe someone can invade the US and install a democracy; I’m sure they’ll be greeted as liberators.
- I’ll limit the rest of the Depressing/Outrageous Plague Topics section to a quicker roundup, so here goes. Private equity firms are cutting doctors’ pay to wring more profit out of the pandemic. Other health-care workers are being furloughed as non-pandemic-related medical services are crashing. One intrepid dude’s lockdown hobby is stripping naked and guessing remote-teaching meeting passwords to break in on children’s class sessions. Meanwhile, in a desperate scramble to make up for a woefully sluggish, denialist, and incompetent federal response to the crisis, the US has turned to international piracy.
- If you happen to be at home a lot these days (and not able/willing to get as fabulously blitzed as Ina Garten), there are many projects you can take on to keep yourself occupied. Why not use 1200 colored pencils to make a guitar, for instance? Expand your woodworking skills, and then start teleconferenced guitar lessons!
- If that’s not the sort of crafts that will keep your kids occupied during lockdown, museums are making all possible efforts to step up and help.
- If and when a total lockdown order comes in my region, I may be tempted to replace my daily walk/indulgence of my Pokemon Go obsession with another semiregular sweep of household clutter. Of course, arguments over whether decluttering is as life-changing as some think are ongoing. Your particular circumstances and personality are heavy influences, so y’know, do a deep check-in.
- The Wednesday Walk is here to assist you with the things you might find hard in life, as there are more how-to guides on the internet than you could possibly imagine. This week, let’s consider how to take off your pants.
- A Norwegian TV show compared stock picks by a couple of professional brokers to those of an astrologist, beauty bloggers, and a grid that some cows shat on. Congratulations go out to the most respectable pickers in the bunch, the bloggers and the cows.