November 2020

Well November has been a challenge. As I wrote at the end of October I got myself into an altercation with a car at a pedestrian crossing. I did not walk away.

I had the operation to repair my foot on the 2nd of November. It turned out to be quite a bit more involved than I was expecting – 2+ hours (I have big feet but come on – there can’t be that much to work with in there!) and I came away with a gnarly wound, a metal plate, a bunch of fused bones and instructions to put zero weight through my foot for six weeks. Which is hard work.

The initial pain was tears inducing and I nodded out on codeine for a day or two but for the most part have stuck to paracetamol and ibuprofen since – I just don’t like the experience as much as I appreciate the break from the searing pain.

I have basically ended up confined to my flat apart from hospital visits and my armchair has become a nest as the effort to get anything from A to B is rarely paired with the energy to return items back from B to A. Even in my tiny flat corners are just out of reach so my world has really shrunk in a year when it was already minuscule.

I’ve been back to work the last couple of weeks – which has been a welcome distraction. It wasn’t without its own drama though as I had spent the three weeks I was off work developing a convoluted conspiracy theory in my head that saw me pushed out of the company and unemployed on the run in to Christmas whilst on one leg! It didn’t take much to confirm this was all in my head but the adrenaline was pumping.

Actually work has been good – albeit my ongoing transformation into some kind of hybrid product manager/recruiter continues as I spent much of the last two weeks talking about product stuff but actually doing recruitment adjacent activities. I don’t not enjoy it. Writing job descriptions is fun and I enjoy chatting to people about the work but it isn’t a direction I really expected.

Thankfully I do have a couple of pieces of product/delivery work coming up – in South Wales and the North East of England but these days it is all just the ‘Republic of Microsoft Teams’ isn’t it. I’m determined that no matter how much I end up doing other things that are useful for the company the most important thing I do is working with product teams to get stuff done.

I wrote a couple of posts – the ‘cultural cheat codes’ one was a lot of fun to write and has been popular plus I did a day job post about the State of DevOps report which went out today. Lucy in our team wrote a fab post about product thinking – where she included Paul’s phrase ‘agile ceiling’ which I’ve already nicked once.

Like most of the Western world I watched and. enjoyed ‘Queen’s Gambit’.

‘Dash and Lily’ is light, fun and festive without too much schmaltz.

‘Arkansas’ is a great crime movie. It is quiet and mannered…until it isn’t. Then it is shocking and violent.

‘Hillbilly Elegy’ was fine. Nothing to write home about but watchable.

‘Happiest Season’ was lovely with a cast full of my favourites. The interesting thing about it was just what a traditional Hollywood Christmas movie it is apart from the fact it revolves around a lesbian couple.

‘Brothers and Sisters’ appeared on Amazon Prime and I binged all five seasons. At its best (seasons 1-3) it is like a hybrid soap opera/Hollywood blockbuster. It was addictive as anything even if it does all fall apart in season five.

I’ve read too many comics to rate them – I’ll save that for a focused post.

God I want to put 2020 behind me. I’m exhausted from being exhausted.

Take care out there folks – whatever tier you are in 😉