📚 The past two COVID-filled years have whistled by. And when I look back they are filled with events, or at least lots of news, sport etc., so I am not sure this passage from Steinbeck explains it. Perhaps it’s just what happens as you get older.

I remember playing this BBC Micro game in the mid-1980s, around the time I got my first home computer. Amazing that it is now available on a web page. You only have to use the left and right arrow keys on your keyboard to play. Surprisingly addictive and surprisingly difficult.

Got in last night and had a positive result from a lateral flow test. I requested an NHS home test kit around 7pm. Seriously impressed that it will be here today already.

📚 I hadn’t realised that Steinbeck’s East of Eden had wrestled with the concept of multi-factor authentication.

“Listen to this,” he said to the operator.
“I already read it.”
“You did?”
“It comes over the wire,” said the operator. “I wrote it down.”
“Oh! Yes, sure. ‘Urgent need you telegraph me one hundred dollars. Coming home. Adam.’ ”
“Came collect,” the operator said. “You owe me sixty cents.”
“Valdosta, Georgia—I never heard of it.”
“Neither’d I, but it’s there.”
“Say, Carlton, how do you go about telegraphing money?”
“Well, you bring me a hundred and two dollars and sixty cents and I send a wire telling the Valdosta operator to pay Adam one hundred dollars. You owe me sixty cents too.”
“I’ll pay—say, how do I know it’s Adam? What’s to stop anybody from collecting it?”
The operator permitted himself a smile of worldliness. “Way we go about it, you give me a question couldn’t nobody else know the answer. So I send both the question and the answer. Operator asks this fella the question, and if he can’t answer he don’t get the money.”
“Say, that’s pretty cute. I better think up a good one.”
“You better get the hundred dollars while Old Breen still got the window open.”
Charles was delighted with the game. He came back with the money in his hand. “I got the question,” he said.
“I hope it ain’t your mother’s middle name. Lot of people don’t remember.”
“No, nothing like that. It’s this. ‘What did you give father on his birthday just before you went in the army?’ ”
“It’s a good question but it’s long as hell. Can’t you cut it down to ten words?”

Got notified of the opportunity to go and see Magdalena Bay at their gig in London tonight. It was so tempting, but I couldn’t face being in a packed room with everyone singing along while the new COVID variant is out there. I really miss live music.

🎶 Just rediscovered this gem thirty years later. A perfect tune for Black Friday.

Here we go again
Here we go-go-go to the temple of consumption
Get your gear and start to spend
Here we go-go-go with a total dedication

Spotted in my town at lunchtime on Sunday. I feel as though this is asking to be a caption competition.

“Containers. Am I doing this right?”