Five Things Friday Vol. 96

Five Things Friday: just five things I’m thinking about, or things that made my week, or things that I otherwise feel like sharing.

Happy belated 4th of July (to those who celebrated). After the Supreme Court decision earlier this week that grants presidents immunity from prosecution for official actions they took as president (What in the freakin’ world?), I’ve been wondering if we should celebrate this holiday as long as it still has any meaning. How “independent” of a monarchy are we going to be in a few months?

However, Jon and I kept the day low-key (because it was too hot to really do anything and you might have noticed that I used my time to catch up on your blogs). We did go outside for a bit in the evening because we could hear the fireworks go off. I am not really a fan of fireworks, I would never buy any myself. Despite the fact that fireworks are a waste of money, terrible for pets, and mind you, illegal in California, we’re in a freakin’ extended heatwave. Jon commented on how smokey the air was. Well yeah, turns out there was a brush fire not too far away (and they said on the local news that the Fire Department had a very busy night). What is wrong with people? Why do they feel entitled to do this when they could have just watched the city-sanctioned fireworks over the ballpark? (Does not compute.)

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Germany lost to Spain in the UEFA Euro 2024 quarter finals today. I am so sad. After a little bit of a slow start, it was a really good game and both teams had a few chances. Spain scored in the 61st minute, Germany got the equalizer in the 89th minute, and even though I felt that Germany really had the edge in overtime, they lost 1:2 shortly before the final whistle. It was a really nerve-racking game and such a disappointment in the end. Sigh.

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Remember Elisabeth’s car incident last winter where she couldn’t turn off her running car? Well, the same thing happened to me today. I came back from my Costco trip, pulled into the drive-way, put the car in park, and the key would not turn. WTH? I wiggled it, I also did the steering-wheel spinning, and desperate gear shifting. Nothing. Jon came outside and tried. To no avail. I eventually called the service department of the car dealership where we bought the car to ask for help. The friendly mechanic told me I could try to “turn the key as if I was “starting” the car and then quickly release it”. This would sometime gets the key unstuck. He said I might have to try a few times, and of course, it didn’t work while I had him on the phone. He told me the only other thing I could do was to disconnect the battery and that I would probably have to have the ignition module replaced, with a waiting period of about 15 days because the part would have to be ordered in Germany (we have a VW Jetta). Ugh!

Luckily, I am not one to give up and so I tried a few more time and alas, the ‘trick’ finally worked. The car turned off. Phew. I really did NOT want to disconnect the battery on a running car. I also was brave and turned on the car again, and off again, and then drove to Trader Joe’s for the second part of my shopping trip, and everything was fine. We’ll see if it happens again.

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After telling you recently that I am not watching a lot of movies right now, I did see a movie with my friend Susi last weekend, and I have to share it with you because it was laugh-out-loud funny. We watched “The Lost City” with Sandra Bullock and Channing Tatum. I think I had heard the movie title before but it didn’t know much about it and the title didn’t scream “comedy”, so I never inquired further. But, if you’re up for some belly laughs and if you like Sandra Bullock (my initials twin) as much as I do, I recommend you put this on your to-watch list.

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I had another mentorship meeting earlier this week. I really enjoy talking to my mentor and the 90-minute sessions always fly by. We talked a bit about the different personality tests that I mentioned last week and I also shared some of my work with him. It was good practice for me to present a project (and technology) to someone who is not familiar with it.

He also recommended that I attend a “leadership class” that is offered to employees of all grade levels through our agency. I suggested this to my supervisor and already got approval from him to attend. (I guess, sometimes all you have to do is ask! Surprise, surprise!). I am currently on the waitlist for the one happening in the fall and if that falls through, there will be more opportunities early next year. I am excited.



  1. Lost City is a fun movie. The hubs and I saw it a while back after Suzanne recommended it.

    1. Ah cool, I am glad you enjoyed it too :)

  2. Good job you on the leadership class! That’s awesome, San.
    Ugh, car stuff just makes me so anxious. I have never before heard of not being able to turn the car OFF, and now it’s happened to both you and Elisabeth! How strange.

    1. Car stuff makes me anxious too. I hope it won’t become a big issue.

  3. The car thing!!! It was so unsettling. I’m glad you got it working – so stressful, right. And gas ain’t cheap!
    We fixed the issue and then promptly sold that car!

    1. Ha, you fixed the issue and promptly sold the car. Maybe it’s a sign for us, too.

  4. Ack! (the car) What a relief that you were able to resolve it.
    The official fireworks in our neighboring town (Concord) have started grass fires in 3 of the last 4 years. There were a ton of small fires from unofficial fires as well. WHY??? We live across the street from a BART station that has an 8 story garage, which is the perfect spot to go watch fireworks. We could see 3 towns worth, plus some occasionally popping up over the hills (Richmond maybe?) Very cool. You know, except for the fires.

    1. I agree fireworks can be pretty – but why do people have to set them off themselves? Why not let the professionals do it?

  5. Oh, no! I have a VW and now I’m scared it won’t turn off someday. But now I’ll just search for this post and hopefully I can solve the problem because I do not want to disconnect any wires from a running car!

    1. Honestly, I wouldn’t worry. I had never heard of this before. It was a fluke ;)

  6. Oh my gosh! Car issue is scary and I also would not want to unplug a running car battery— yikes!!

    1. Yeah, I don’t like dealing with car issues. :(

  7. The car issue sounds so freaky! I hope it never happens again!
    The movie sounds good – I just rented it from Amazon!
    I’m with you on fireworks. A city fireworks show is wonderful, but personal ones are just stupid. It seems like there’s a fire or some other catastrophe every year.

    1. Right? Something catches fire every year… when will people learn? I heard there were giving out citations in our city for the illegal fireworks (not enough, if you ask me, but it’s a start).

  8. It’s so great to talk to your mentor who’s not involved in your current work to get new perspective from someone who cares about you. I wish I live closer to my mentors.

    1. Do you have multiple mentors, Coco?

  9. I’m so glad the mentorship is working so well for you!

    The car situation is frustrating! I am glad you got it to turn off and were able to continue about your day without further issues but that would bug me knowing it could happen again at any time! Gah!

  10. Wow, that car situation sounds really scary! I can’t believe it happened to both you AND Elisabeth. Crazy!
    Independence Day was hard for me to celebrate, too.

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