Mar 31 2020

longest month

justin scawful • 31 march 2020

march has seemed to have dragged on forever with my extended spring break. we're finally starting online courses as of yesterday. so far i've done a bit of biology work from before the break, an exam for speech, and started my calculus homework. we went over the chain rule before the break and now we're doing implicit differentiation. so far it's pretty interesting although i'm starting to see how complicated derivatives can get. before this point the basic rules for products, sums, quotients, and powers were relatively simple and compounded maybe once or twice in a problem but with the chain rule there's a lot to keep in mind. it's also a bit harder to memorize all the rules with the different notations available for derivatives. i prefer the d/dx just from an aesthetic perspective but the prime notation is much faster.

i've got to try and find a way to get back into my projects with school going on. it's going to be harder to motivate myself to be consistent when i also want to give myself some time to relax and enjoy life instead of always working towards something. i've been playing morrowind a bit again recently, working through the fourth and fifth trials of the nerevarine. i was doing a lot of tamriel rebuilt content to gain levels but now i'm strong enough that i can handle the difficulty curve that comes with the main quest. i'm trying not to play too much though cause it's easy to get sucked into that game. i've also put 45 hours in animal crossing new horizons since it came out. i've played with nicole and that is a lot of fun.

the quarantine

justin scawful • 25 march 2020

been awhile since i posted for the month. a lot has changed in the world since then. of course we were already seeing shutdowns of schools across the country but now america is #3 in the world in terms of infections and the state of illinois essentially shutdown all non-essential business and issued a stay at home order. so now in an attempt to flatten the curve and not overwhelm the health care system we are isolating ourselves and limiting exposure to others. my job at the paint store is still open but as of saturday we stopped letting people into the lobby and are only doing over the phone pickup orders. this was a bit overwhelming but offered some much needed peace of mind in these trying times.

it's looking a lot like an economic downturn is in our future. we've seen a lot of fluctuation in the markets recently. just today the united states senate finally manage to agree on a stimulus plan for the economy. it's quite meaty but most important stuff is money for hospitals, small businesses, corporate bailouts, and a one time payout of $1200 for americans. this would be the largest economic stimulus in american history. it's honestly insane living in such an unprecedented period in american/world history. you hear about major events in the history books and we lived through the great recession but this just feels different somehow. like maybe, after this the american working class will realize how bad we really have it and there will be a major rise in populist energy demanding change for the people and not the power.

vibing inside

justin scawful • 16 march 2020

so it's only been three days since my last post and i have another week off of school. now we will be off through march. i honestly have no idea how this semester is supposed to continue after this. my college used pretty vague language in the email about considering options on how to move forward with classes. i don't like the idea of online classes but considering it's the direction so many other colleges have gone i would not be shocked if that happened. it would certainly give me more time to myself and save me gas not having to go back and forth from school but i also would need to self motivate a lot. considering i've done summer classes online twice before i'm not too worried about that it's only about two months again anyway but it's still something you have to push yourself to do properly.

i've gotta find the inspiration in me to work on some projects. lately i haven't made any huge progress with anything. i was kind of steamrolling my brain forward for so many months that i'm beginning to get exhausted and overwhelmed. i've got multiple programming projects, the zelda hack, the creative end of the zeniea website, and just managing my own life all floating around. on top of that i've grown obsessive of american politics and i find that i waste a lot of time on it. it's good to be involved and informed but sometimes i think i overdo it with how involved i am on twitter and being glued to the election. i just want to avoid becoming apathetic like i did in 2016. now i've just got to vote tomorrow despite the odds being stacked against my preferred candidate in this. i'm hoping for the best.

one good sign that i may be heading back into my productive groove is that i've been using my computer a lot more in the last 24 hours. performing some updates, cleaning things up, organizing files. i've been a little distant from my shit lately with me house sitting for someone last week and not having my computer desk to sit up straight at. now that i've got new glasses i don't have to worry about my contacts drying out from prolonged time staring at the screen. obviously i should still care for my eyes and rest them every hour or so but now i'm not like struggling at the end of the day.

spring break 3

justin scawful • 13 march 2020

so we got an extra week of spring break because of the coronavirus. that's why i titled this post as i did. it's honestly pretty crazy to think we are not only in a viral pandemic but also descending into a potential economic recession. the federal reserve has pumped like $1.5 trillion dollars into the banks to try and avoid a huge crash. it kinda bummed me out a bit since i won't be able to see people i've made friends with at school but it's also nice since i spent most of my first spring break watching someone else's house which was nice but i also had to make sure i was there more often to take care of his dog/cat whereas i can just leave my house whenever since there are other people here. this will definitely be a year to remember with all the crazy shit that has happened in the world and to me.

it's surprising though, i'm not as anxious or worried as i probably would be usually. i've done a lot of maturing emotionally in the last 5 months since i started going to counseling and being even more proactive about my mental health and anxiety. this has helped me manage my sense of perspective and reality in the dystopian world we are living in. i was going to canvas again for the bernie sanders campaign but all those events were cancelled out of precaution for the virus as well.

spring break 2

justin scawful • 10 march 2020

it's finally beginning to feel like spring. i'm making a lot strides forward with my ability to interact with others and my anxiety lately. i can see it having a direct impact on my mental state as well. i've been talking to people more, taking more pictures of myself, getting out to do errands, and i even canvassed for the bernie sanders campaign on sunday. i'm really surprised i was able to do it without giving up. things aren't looking great in the race right now but i want to hold steadfast in my beliefs and work for something i believe in until the very end. knocking on random strangers doors to talk about politics is probably the last thing i would have imagined myself doing a few months ago but here we are.

it was raining yesterday on the first real day of my spring break. since i worked full shifts over the weekend i didn't really consider that to be apart of my break. i wanted to go skateboard but it was too wet outside. i have been skateboarding a lot more lately and improving my tricks as well. i landed my first fakie three shuv in the parking lot before school one morning and i've become incredible efficient with my kickflips, which leads to an easier time catching the varial kickflips. i bought some new clothes to skate in that are lot more comfortable and breathable than the collection of graphic tees i've amassed over the years. i like everything i got a lot despite feeling very cynical about consumer goods that are made in other countries lately.

i've also been listening to a lot of different music lately. it started with me listening to lift your skinny fists like antennas to heaven again and having like a realization about how amazing the album was. i had always liked it but it was really speaking to me this time around and i knew i had to find more music like it. i've listened to a couple other godspeed you! black emperor albums now as well as gone through a post rock apple music playlist for other stuff to listen to. i like the longer form movements of this genre and it's nice not being distracted by lyrics while i'm trying to write or code.