November 2020 recap

Just another typical month in 2020…

By Morf Morford

Tacoma Daily Index

Week 1 – The People Have Spoken

November 2020 began the way virtually all of us thought it would; election day and fears and fantasies and projections around it dominated the news cycle – throughout the entire month.

“Trump train” has taken on a whole new meaning as Trump supporters have created car and truck caravans used to block interstates (New York City and New Jersey) or even ram and drive Biden buses off the road (Austin, Texas) inspired by the Mad Max movies.

Most of Europe, Germany, Italy, Greece, France and the United Kingdom in the throes of yet another COVID surge went into yet another lockdown.

Federal authorities rushed to put up an “unscalable wall” around The White House before election day.

To put it diplomatically, no other US president has approved or desired such a thing.

The state of Washington and Pierce County announced their highest COVID infection rate ever on Wednesday, the day after the national election. No connection, I am sure.

On Thursday, two days after Election Day, “Trump Operatives” (you have to love the names these groups use for themselves) stormed the voter centers in swing states where they demand that ballot counting stop (in Pennsylvania) or that they count every last vote (in Arizona). I’m not certain that they are working from the same script.

For the record, counting every legitimate vote is standard procedure, if not the law, in every state. In other words, all votes matter.

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, with no evidence, called on Attorney General Bill Barr to send federal agents to arrest poll workers in Pennsylvania.

And in Arizona, a scandal arose because poll workers correcting voters’ ballots used Sharpie pens. They dry quickly and do not smear on other ballots like normal ink. For the Twitter-verse, this is “proof” of fraud.

Various news services confirm Joe Biden winning electoral numbers Saturday morning.

Spontaneous dancing in the street erupted, church bells rang and fireworks lit up the sky in many European capitals. It was not entirely clear what they were celebrating.

We all know Donald J. Trump well enough to know that he will not take this development “gracefully”.

Biden/Harris became the first presidential ticket in history to surpass 80 million votes… Biden 80,033,996 (51.0%) Trump 73,878,907 (47.1%). The USA had record voter turn-out. Biden acquired the highest number of voters ever, Trump the second most.

At one hearing Trump campaign staff made this statement about the number of GOP election observers who were present for the tabulation: “There was a non zero number of people in the room.”

In 2020 it almost made sense. You had to be there.

Week 2 – COVID and Cocomelon

Who is Alex Trebek? Long time host of “Jeopardy,” Alex Trebek, died on Sunday at the age of 80.

World COVID cases passed 50 million on November 8, 2020. For a little reference, that is more than the population of Spain or Canada.

10 million cases have been confirmed in the USA. That’s more than the entire population of Georgia, North Carolina or Michigan.

And in Pop Culture news, Cocomelon recently broke a record by remaining in Netflix’s top 10 most-watched shows for 62 days. That’s longer than Avatar: The Last Airbender. It’s longer than Ozark. It’s longer than Tiger King, The Umbrella Academy and Love is Blind.

And if you are feeling left out because you have missed it so far, the Cocomelon that can be seen on Netflix is actually an edited highlights reel of its YouTube channel; the second most viewed channel on Earth, with 82 billion views and a $120,000,000 annual ad revenue.

It’s for kids – little kids. But maybe it’s what the world needs about now.

And if you are of a certain age, or any age in America pretty much, you’d be forgiven for not knowing that the biggest pop band in the world is BlackPink.

The second work week of November ended with Friday the 13th – the second one of the year. The first was in March, and we all know how that month went.

The earth came within 250 miles of a collision with an asteroid on Friday the 13th.

Just another day in 2020.

Week 3 – Lawsuits, vaccines and hot-spots

The third week of November brought no resolution, but plenty of controversy, to the presidential election.

Election appeals (more than 30) were filed, rejected or dismissed and re-filed in other jurisdictions.

Daily American COVID deaths surpassed 2,000 on Thursday of this week, the highest number since May. In the USA we’ve passed 250,000 deaths so far in 2020. That’s more than the population of Tacoma.

COVID expanded dramatically across Europe, reaching, or even surpassing, the first surge.

Medical experts used the term “hot-spots” almost nostalgically as cases grew exponentially.

Week 4 – Desert monoliths and COVID mink zombies

Several states certified their election results on Monday. The GSA authorized “transitional protocols” for the Biden administration.

Three COVID vaccines are rapidly progressing and are expected to be available soon.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average broke the 30,000 point mark for the first time ever.

The programs related to eviction moratoriums end soon. More than 51 million people are food insecure across America over the holidays. Many renters are paying their rent by credit cards –

The bifurcating economy continues, with record numbers in both directions.

A 12 foot high monolith was discovered deep in an isolated area of the Utah desert. After buzzing the interwebs for several days, it suddenly disappeared and was replaced by a pyramid. No one is claiming or accepting responsibility. Aliens are as reasonable an explanation as anything else.

And in late breaking news, a similar monolith, from a parallel reality apparently, appeared just as mysteriously in Romania.

I keep thinking that we’ve had the craziest news story possible, and then I hear about something like minks seeming to rise from the dead:

For those with 2020 event Bingo-cards, if you had COVID infested Danish mink zombies, you should get several bonus points.

Just another typical day in 2020.

This week also held Thanksgiving. Traditionally the busiest travel weekend, most medical exerts pleaded with Americans not to travel or gather.

Millions of us did anyway, and as Dr. Fauci put it, we can expect “surge upon surge” of cases of COVID in the next few weeks. Just in time for Christmas.

Week 5 A bite-sized week

November of 2020 held five Sundays and five Mondays.

The USA passed 13,500,000 COVID cases.

And just as the COVID vaccine is being prepared for distribution, China reports a case of highly contagious Bubonic Plague.

Seattle hit 41 murders as of the last day of November. There were 28 in all of 2019.

Something unidentified is heading for earth, and experts don’t know what it is –

In sports, Sarah Fuller, soccer player-turned kicker, became the first woman to play in a Power Five conference football game, Fuller said she wants to remain a member of the team.

December, of course, is the final month of the year. As you might expect in 2020, this December is the finale of an unpredictable year, so stay tuned for the last, action-packed episode of a memorable year.

I am sure any plot twists or surprise endings will have a 2020-style flair.

I don’t know about you, but I look forward to a boring 2021.