Am I Sure?

Fun workout this morning, climb far above Boulder, turn out my headlamp and chill. Venus to the East, Mars to the West and twinkling lights below. ~2,500 feet of predawn vertical and I was home in time to make pancakes.

I happen to live in a city that’s so blue it’s indigo.

Each time we have an election, I tend to “lose” on most the ballot measures I support. I put “lose” in quotations because we’re fine either way.

We’re fine because I spent my life making it difficult for any government to have an impact on me. From an early age, I tracked “total taxes as a percentage of net worth” and worked it downwards.

They could conscript my kids (for an unjust war of choice), they could irritate (or inspire) my fellow citizens into armed rebellion or I could get shot up in the random shootings that are part of our culture.

Scoring the current administration, they’ve done a good job on 1, lousy on 2 and the same as all prior regimes on 3.

Most everything else is noise.

Have you noticed that our President is still alive?

He’s not only alive, he’s doing campaign events. Now, for all I know, he’s been shot up with horse steroids. Still, he’s still out there.

His survival, the survival of an overweight 74-year old with a fondness for fast food, is an interesting data point – if we can get past our personal biases to see it.

His recovery reminded of the importance of “will” in getting things done.

He didn’t have to take the stairs when he returned from Walter Reed.

Another data point, one that I posted over the weekend, is 1,000+ of my neighbors caught COVID in September and our hospital admissions barely budged.

The chart below is Boulder County hospitalizations April to now.

There’s some uptick but not what I would have predicted given the confirmed positives in our community.

We had a lot of September positives.

The chart below is August to now.

For me, this shows the benefit of living in a healthy community, having fellow citizens who protect the most vulnerable and our imperfect mitigation measures.

The larger lesson is a clear case study for the danger of applying global averages to niche samples.

Seven months ago, I took actions based on the projections of smart, qualified people. Our current reality is far from those predictions.

Data, no opinion required.

It is near impossible for anyone to see, consider and modify an opinion based on information that doesn’t fit with prior held beliefs.

Don’t spend any energy trying to convince others => rather, build systems to help yourself think better.

Here’s mine…

I try to make mental notes when I’m surprised.

It is far easier to notice a surprise than to change my mind.

The President being ambulatory and our hospitals being empty of COVID patients was very surprising.

What do my surprises say to me?

Don’t be sure.

Keep watching, iterate towards better.