Friday, December 20, 2019

Weekend Reading: The Mostly not about Impeachment Edition

First, the most important news of the week: I finally got to go out for a rollerblade! OK, this is not really the most important news of the week, except for me. It is important for me because it made me feel so much better and less draggy. I need to make sure I get exercise more regularly even when my Friday afternoon rollerblade can't happen.

The actual most important news of the week is probably the impeachment vote and the political wrangling about the trial in the Senate. But I'm only going to share one things about that: Jennifer Rubin's opinion piece about how Pelosi might play her hand next.

The rest of this post is going to be about other things.

First, I finally wrote up the story of our first Tesla road trip and the lessons it contained. It has a happy ending but waaay more time in Yuma than we would have liked! There is a lesson for us as individual electric car owners, but also a lesson for a society that really, really needs more people to choose electric cars and is not doing what it needs to do to encourage that.

Next, my "if you only read/listen to one thing this week" pick is Ezra Klein's interview with Saul Griffith, appropriately titled "How to solve climate change and make life more awesome." This was a really inspiring podcast, with useful advice about how to act individually (make the best decisions you can on the big energy usage pieces of your life: where to live relative to work, what kind of car to buy, how to heat your home) and don't sweat the small stuff. Instead, push for more visionary infrastructure decisions by society as a whole.

We need to replace our heater and that podcast finished convincing me that we need to replace it with an electric heat pump even if that is more expensive. Because we can afford it and that's the right thing to do. So, guess who's about to learn a lot about electric heat pumps? Feel free to drop relevant links in the comments!

This book sounds interesting!

I found this article about the vaping lung disease informative - it turns out there may have been cases as early as 2017.

I think this is an insightful tweet:

At the time I saw this, my YA title would have been "A Lego set of groceries and exhaustion" which is honestly felt about right.


That's all I have this week. It is still the busy holiday season, after all. Have a good weekend everyone!


  1. I'm ready to replace our gas furnace with an electric heat pump, too. It will keep our house cooler in the summer. Bonus! A friend a mile away did it and I think I will just take a shortcut and use her competent and considerate contractor. It's not worth my time any more to try to find the cheapest price.

    I'm also going to take advantage of SoCal Gas' subsidy to put up a solar thermal water heater on the roof. This will preheat the water going into my gas water heater and use up to 70% less gas.

    I did the math and it makes more sense for our family to have a share a versatile hybrid car and ride bikes/transit as much as possible.

    My Ebike and I travel 50-100 miles on one 500 watt charge that would take a Tesla X only 1 mile. I charge my Ebike weekly on sunny days and it costs 10 cents. This works bc LA has viable public transport in my area. We choose this area bc it is close to work and has easy bike and transit options.

    We can't do it alone, so I am volunteering with LWV and pushing elected officials to make community-wide changes (like bike lanes and building housing) so that more of us can get out of cars.

    1. Let me know what brand/model heat pump you get! I know absolutely nothing about heat pumps and our usual heating service company doesn't sell them... so I will be starting from scratch.

      Once our new trolley line is done, my husband will be able to take the trolley to work. I work in a public transit empty zone, unfortunately.


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