A productive pandemic

When I get overwhelmed or start wondering where the last year went, I remind myself that since March I have:

  • Co-authored a book that should be published later this year
  • Migrated one of the largest library digital collections in the state to a new content management platform (link later)
  • Participated in the salvation of American democracy
  • Added a bunch of new cities to Groceteria
  • Eighty-sixed Facebook
  • Rebuilt a friendship that had been dormant for almost thirty years
  • Watched at least a hundred vintage episodes of “What’s My Line?”
  • Become disturbingly conversant in the MODS metadata schema as well as several new XML tools
  • Supervised three student capstones and independent studies
  • Managed to avoid getting a COVID-related illness
  • Done a few pretty good media interviews (radio, national magazine, well-trafficked blog)
  • Read many good books (and bought way too many more)
  • Never hoarded toilet paper and also never run out of same
  • Managed three big grant projects simultaneously and remotely
  • Only gained about five pounds and actually ended up with better labs than last year
  • Stayed reasonably sane

Try it yourself. It helps!

Getting rid of business

The Triad is finally eliminating all its stupid green-signed “business” interstate highway routes, and idiocy like this will soon be a thing of the past:

These business loops may serve a useful purpose in some areas, where they designate a surface route leading back to the freeway that travelers can use for local services.

That’s not what they were used for here, however. They mainly served as a way to keep something that looked a little like an internet shield on decommissioned routes. In one particularly aggravating case, I-40 also served as Business I-85 for several miles. Apparently the road was good enough to be the primary route of one highway but not the other. The end result has been baffling signage that is getting even more baffling with all the three-digit loops and spurs (I-285, I-785, I-840, and soon I-274) that are sprouting in the area.

Things like this irritate me, and all of us who study highways and expect a little logic in our signage.

Now Business I-40/US 421 will just be US 421. Business I-85/US 29/US 70 will just be US 29. And I-40/Business I-85/US 29/US 70/US 421 will still be a clusterfuck, but slightly less of one.

This will be at least a little better, won’t it?

 

Twenty years of “that used to be a Safeway”

Twenty years ago today, this post laid the groundwork for this site, which has very dramatically surpassed Otherstream in traffic (really, does anyone even come around here anymore?) and also led to a whole new career for yer humble host.

Read the self-indulgent anniversary post here.