Hiking Late in the Day

We didn’t get out until around 4pm yesterday. That meant the sun was going down and the snow melt in the paths was starting to freeze. But we persevered.

We did find a snowman, so at least someone else had fun.

We walked along dirt roads and golf paths, and it was not bad. We were rewarded with some beautiful views!

Close as we can get to a sunset view, since we were on the east side of the mountain.

I’ve noticed my breathing is getting better and better, so I must be getting used to the altitude. I’m still enjoying how much exercise I’m getting and know it’s helping me deal with challenges that pop up.

Waiting for spring

Anita and I really enjoyed our day of indulgence, though. Usually I want to go and go during vacation, but we decided to just rest and indulge. We watched two movies (the new Borat movie and Knives Out, both funny).

Nice colors.

I even made all the food yesterday. There was a great chef salad for lunch and soup and biscuits for dinner. With all the COVID cases rising, I’m probably not going to eat out much more.

There’s the sun. I could not get the snow to look white in this light.

We spent all night, and I mean all night, binge watching the television series Schitt’s Creek, which I’d been wanting to see for a long time. Anything with Eugene Levy and Catherine O’Hara in it must be seen by me. I am also quite a fan of Chris Elliott, so I just sat there and laughed for hours. Why not? We can get all serious again in a few days.

Icicles amuse me, too.

Today I have a couple phone calls, but I predict more hiking in peace and television fun. Safety first.

News Consumption Blues

Wishing for a source of news that is unbiased and accurate.

Recently I was talking to a coworker about how we consume news. We both feel like we should at least have a clue what is going on at a local, state, national, and international level. Ignorance is not bliss for most of the people I associate with. I guess it’s culturally ingrained, not that there’s anything wrong with being from another subculture within the US that isn’t as concerned with knowing true from false, news from propaganda, etc. There have always been folks who are just fine in a local/family bubble; it’s sort of understandable, especially lately.

So many of us just want to know what’s happening beyond our doorstep. Photo by @madelinerosephoto via Twenty20

Anyway, my coworker and I found we were in really strong agreement about how we liked to get information, and agreed that things we see on social media platforms take too much energy to figure out whether to believe or not. We both just skip that stuff and are members of the “don’t make or read any comments” group.

A good local newspaper!

I have a source for international news that I like, and I am aware of the biases of the US-centric sources I use and that they play into my confirmation bias. I am able to weed out obvious slant-y things, but it gets tiresome! Surprisingly, I find have found local Austin and Cameron news sources (radio and newspaper) that are quite helpful and not too hard to get factual information from. I guess that’s what helps keep my head from exploding. That and NOT reading their Facebook pages.

Honestly, though, I miss being able to read a news source or watch the local news and just get a summary of things that have been happening, with no hidden commercials, obvious slants, and repetitive hype. I can’t stand the local news channels (all over the US, not just where I live) that repeat the same hyped-up snippet of a news piece repeatedly to get your attention, then present something totally bland. I’m smart enough to take information and run it through my own biases and interpret it myself. I don’t need help. Thus, I can’t make myself sit through any television news.

I don’t know how anyone manages to figure this stuff out, no matter what your biases are. Photo by @andreyyalansky19 via Twenty20

I’m aware that anything written by a person has biases, but I do remember when I was a kid we were trained to try to eliminate that as much as we could, and to clearly label opinion pieces. I wish ratings and ad revenue weren’t the actual reason for news content these days. But, it sure looks that way to me. The more incendiary content is, the more it sells.

Incendiary news sells, if you can read it before it goes POOF! Photo by @foto.privet via Twenty20

I’m wary of cutting myself off from all news sources, because so much affects me directly. Where can I find some simple statements of facts to learn from? Tell me! I’d buy some crap from a company or organization that sponsored accurate, unvarnished, information.

As always, I’d love your feedback and ideas.