# Weeknotes 208

## Occult arithmetic

• A new unnecessary problem I’ve invented for myself: do weeknotes or yearnotes come first when the week and the year finish on the same day?

Weeknotes first makes sense, I think. The week is contained within the year and we can all agree it’s important to close the parentheses in the correct order.

• This is also the first time I’ve had to write 53 weeknotes in the same year.

There are usually 365 days in a year, and 365 modulo 7 is 1, which means a year usually begins and ends on the same weekday. This year happened to begin on a Sunday and so here we are.

• Still, it’ll take seven years for that nightmare to come around again, right? lol no, 2024 is a leap year so it’ll start on a Monday and end on a Tuesday, then we get Wednesday Thursday Friday for 2025–2027 respectively, and then because 2028 is another leap year it’ll start on a Saturday and end on a Sunday. So I only get five fleeting years of respite between now and weeknotes 469.

This is, at least, as bad as it gets; after 2028 I’ll be safe until 2034, at which point weeknotes 782 will be a killer.

• As you can see, the main challenge of writing weeknotes is that the occult arithmetic of meaningless numerical coincidences is more interesting than the events of my life.

• I’m back in London. Several of us fell ill over Christmas so I cut my plans short and drove home early while I still could. I’ve spent the last couple of days in bed drinking Lemsip and I’m nearly back to normal. 🤧

• Lateral flow test says no.

• It’s nice seeing my family at this time of year but I do find the logistics really draining. Just like last year, the most relaxing moment was returning the rental car and being told I wasn’t going to be charged the £2000 (!) deductible for any imagined damage.

• The EV worked out well. I hadn’t thought about how to refuel it but it turns out my parents have a Type 2 charger on their outside wall so I could plug it in overnight to fill the battery (“on the house — literally, as it were”, © my dad 2023) and got back to London with enough left over to return it without having to top it up first.

• There’s no congestion charge between Christmas and New Year, mercifully, so I didn’t have to pay that twice.

• Illness aside, I don’t need to tell you that I overindulged and feel pretty grotty. I’m looking forward to getting back to a more normal food and exercise routine.

• I watched most of Slow Horses. Season one was fun and simple and I enjoyed pointing at the screen and saying “I live near there!”. Season two became too overwrought and implausible, which made me lose interest, but the first two episodes of season three have calmed down a bit and I’m enjoying it again.

Overall it does a good job of avoiding the cheap Holby City look, and the performances are good enough to overcome the weakness of its comic writing, which is mainly of the sub-Blackadder “about as welcome as a fart in a phone box” variety.

• I played — and finished! — Chants of Sennaar. It’s a really interesting and beautiful game, with a delightful Obra Dinn × Monument Valley aesthetic. It’s occasionally undermined by weird unfocused design decisions but overall it’s very good. I found it challenging enough to be satisfying without being frustrating and I enjoyed the ending a lot.

When I finished it I realised I’d been so focused on the linguistic details that I’d understood all of the individual words but none of the story. Oh well, that’s what Wikipedia’s for.

• Then I tried Tunic since it appeared to incorporate a similar “decode an alien language” theme. But thanks to the power of Bad Level Design it took hours of aimless, repetitive wandering to get out of the introductory East Forest area and back to the overworld, so that doesn’t bode well for the rest of the game.

• Well, see you later.