Five Things: July 16, 2020
Hey, what’s up? I got these five things in my brain right now:
Twitter fucks up real bad: As in, letting hackers through the gates to take over some of their most prominent accounts for a bit of Bitcoin con artistry. This caused the service to lock down all their verified accounts (including mine) for a couple of hours. I had fun with it, via a secondary account:
But joking aside there are very real questions of who got access and what they got access to, in terms of those accounts. If there’s a data leak in a month of every verified members’ DMs, that’s possibly going to be awkward for a lot of people. The current line is that the way the hackers got in was through “social engineering,” which is a fancy way of saying they scammed an employee in some manner. I believe it; the weakest part of any system is the fact that there’s usually a human involved in it, and people are, well. You know. It’ll be interesting to see how this plays out over time. Honestly the least sinister aspect of this would be for to be what it looked like — an attempt to scam some dimwitted people out of money.
Brian Kemp to Georgians: Drop Dead: The Governor of Georgia is overriding local ordinances requiring mask wearing in his state because, why? A head full of termites? In the pay of a sentient, human sized covid virus? Because he’s hopelessly incompetent? I assume some mixture of the three, but “incompetent” will cover it. If Dragon Con hadn’t sensibly gone online with its programming this year, today might have been the day I sent them a very concerned email about showing up to their state in September.
(To be fair, Ohio’s governor can’t manage to bring himself to make a statewide order about mask wearing either, which is bad, but at least he’s not overriding the cities and counties that have those orders in place.)
The “good” news here is that Walmart and Kroger, two of the largest retailers in the US, will start mandating mask use beginning next week, stepping in to do what governments actually won’t. But I’m not going to lie, I expect enforcement of that to be spotty; I was in Kroger yesterday and it had a sign at the front saying mask wearing was required in that location, and maybe 20% of the store patrons were wearing masks. Yeah, we’re not gonna be out of this anytime soon, y’all.
Okay, now for something nice: Chris Evans sending a Captain America shield to a six-year-old kid who saved his little sister from a dog attack and got mauled in the process. Obviously the nice part is the kid getting a Captain America shield, not the precipitating incident. I so very much want no part of this to go Milkshake Duck on us. Also, writer Adam-Troy Castro wrote something about the people who will inevitably go “where were the parents?”, pointing out (basically) that kids are chaos agents and parents can’t insulate them from everything, which is both accurate, speaking as a parent, and I guarantee you will unsatisfying for anyone who wants to wring their hands on this matter. But yeah, kids. Can’t protect them 24/7. Fortunately in this case there was a big brother around.
How are my teeth? I had two fillings and a temp crown put in yesterday, which seems like a lot because it is, but in my defense, I had delayed getting those teeth dealt with for a while, and then the whole quarantine thing happened and no one was going to the dentist, least of all me. So after putting it all off for all this time, and because all these teeth were in a row in my mouth, it made sense to get to all dealt with at once. We might be going back into quarantine at any moment and I’d rather have it dealt with. The temp crown is in for a couple of weeks and in the interim I can’t floss around that particular tooth, so I bought some gum picks, which I hate, but hate less than particles of food at my gumline, so there’s that. Also no excessively crunchy things on that temp crown, so I guess my tradition of chewing on walnut shells is out for a while (note: I don’t actually do that. Probably).
And now to exit, “Intro”: Author Nick Mamatas linked to an extended version of this instrumental yesterday, and I was both reminded how much I like this bit of music from The XX, and that there was actually a ten hour version of it out on the Internet. I’m going to embed the original here, but here’s the extended version, and also the ten hour version, if you really want to get into it. Enjoy.