Thur. Mar. 12, 2020 – for some people, sh!t just got real…

Warm and damp.

Yesterday stayed overcast most of the day but then did have a bit of sunshine later.

I spent the am getting blood drawn and ‘wasting time on the internet with my friends’ and the pm running errands. I dropped off some respirators for an auction, went by my rent house and blocked up some holes where the possum was getting in, and went by my secondary location and brought some TP home. Also hid the paper products still there, and covered up some of the food and materiel as well. I don’t want it all here right now. It’s far enough away that if there were severe travel restrictions locally, I might be blocked from getting to it. That’s balanced by its purpose as a backup and offsite storage. Always tradeoffs.

Between the Houston Rodeo cancellation, Trump’s travel restrictions, and the WHO finally declaring the pandemic, some people got a very rude shock today. Add in the later celebrity and sports stars that declared they have WuFlu, and you’ve got a very upset and angry populace.

I’m thinking 5 stages of Grief for some of them.

Some of us think it’s too little too late.

Today I’m taking the kids to get swabbed for ordinary flu, just in case. I don’t usually take them to the Dr, but it’s early enough that the Tamiflu might work. School sent the oldest home with a fever, the youngest came home too. The fever is worrying. Without it, no wuflu. With it, and the cough, and the other symptoms, there’s a possibility. Neither had fever when I sent them yesterday morning. So I’ve got them at home today. I’ve got lots of groceries to put away and stuff to do. I’m going to hunker down if I can. With the kids still in school, there wasn’t a benefit to me isolating, now there is. I’ll try to keep them home Friday too, and then for Spring Break. I just hope I didn’t pick it up somewhere.

Keep stacking. Start your isolation if you think it’s time. I think it’s past time, but we finally hit my trigger- confirmed person to person in town.

nick

(oh and for anyone crying about the Rodeo, the stupid F’ers were using VINEGAR to disinfect because they were told it does a better job on BACTERIA than bleach. I almost don’t believe it, but then the whole place is staffed with third worlders with no germ theory experience. So much fail in one place.)

93 thoughts on “Thur. Mar. 12, 2020 – for some people, sh!t just got real…”


  1. Forbidding travel is a reasonable move, but why Europe?

    Yet leave the border to Mexico wide open. A third world shirt(-r)hole country with sanitation methods on the lower end of a pig farm. I guess the politicians need HoseA to mow their yards this spring. And I in a terrible mood this morning.

  2. Austin VA will start screening everyone coming through the door today.

    Still no word on what happened with Col. Bat Guano on Friday.

  3. @Paul, that is a great summary with good graphs. He doesn’t consider deliberate lying, but a quick skim thru shows me it doesn’t really matter. In general, I think he’s spot on, even if his specifics might be subject to question or revision.

    n


  4. And I in a terrible mood this morning.

    Serious case of not-suffering-fools-gladly-itis.

  5. @ Ray, he’s tried to close the southern border, he’s closed down travel from asia, now EU, he’s trying. What we need is to close the inter-state borders and seriously restrict movement. Ground the planes. Cancel spring break. STOP moving this into areas that don’t already have it.

    n

  6. Funny, WHY would the EU complain about the US travel ban, besides knee jerk “why’s he picking on us” reactions?* The individual countries are closing their own borders (or soon will too.)

    Maybe they were looking to flee to the US when their own tiny little countries** went t!ts up?

    n

    *sorry Brad!

    **yes tiny, both in size and population, see also Peking, Shanghai, Mexico City DF three cities that are bigger than some countries, and taken together are bigger than MOST.

  7. @Nick: No apology needed. Shutting down travel is right. Trump’s wording was irritating. I take it as trying to find an external scapegoat, to distract from the fact that his travel ban is too little, too late. If only people will be mad at the damn furriners, instead of the guvmint…

    In the southern part of the country here, they have now forced all cinemas, fitness centers, etc.. to shut down. The rest of the country will follow shortly. I’ve been preparing to teach remotely, starting with the lecture in three weeks, but I expect I’ll have to start sooner than that. Exponential growth is a bitch, even when you’re trying to squash the exponent.

    At present, we are at +25% per day. If things continue at that rate, today’s 800+ cases will be 4000 next week, 20,000 the week after, and 100,000 the week after that. Closing businesses may dampen the growth rate a bit. The good news, I suppose, is that the number of cases will flatten out in 4-5 weeks (assuming a 20% infection rate), and things should improve thereafter.

    Re the stock market: we have also done nothing in that regard. We’ll just ride it out, because – as others have said – trying to time the market rarely works. We may move up some planned investments, we’ll see, but we haven’t divested of anything.

  8. Never seen Costco this crowded. Every buggy with two bundles of TP, two cases of water, and two cases of paper towels. the limit. Idiot people. The media panic is real.

  9. Maybe they were looking to flee to the US when their own tiny little countries** went t!ts up?

    That was exactly the plan. Americans have a general tendency towards compassion and politeness which is viewed by many, even among first generation immigrants living here, as a weakness.

  10. Our CEO just sent out an email proclaiming a new sustainability effort. Among other things, they will be removing trash cans from all offices. We will only have centralized trash receptacles. Also no more plastic utensils in the break rooms or cups for the water bottle.

    I am seriously considering starting a black market business. Come over here little worker, I have plastic forks…and trash bags! Real cheap!

  11. Never seen Costco this crowded. Every buggy with two bundles of TP, two cases of water, and two cases of paper towels. the limit. Idiot people. The media panic is real.

    At the vet’s office this morning, the non-stop chatter among the staff was their home stock of TP and paper towels.

  12. I’m shocked they have stock.

    Costco’s rate of replenishing stock is limited by their cash flow, but cash flow is way up.

    Still, JIT has its limits. When this is over, as a country, we will have to reevaluate that approach. Can we afford to wait for energy costs to crush the Brown Truck Store? With Sears gone and Penny’s on the ropes, about a century of retailing expertise will have to be relearned with the possible exception of grocery stores, and those are in trouble.

    Where we are is the end of a 35-40 year process I call “How can I buy $20 Reeboks too?”.

  13. Our CEO just sent out an email proclaiming a new sustainability effort. Among other things, they will be removing trash cans from all offices. We will only have centralized trash receptacles. Also no more plastic utensils in the break rooms or cups for the water bottle.

    Our company was bringing in catered lunches twice a week to be “hip” and “Austin” as well as smooth over our move to the middle of what will soon be a massive homeless services complex near the airport.

    Those lunches are starting to get tapered off, and the snowflakes aren’t sure what to do.

    My thoughts on the subject are not popular because my attitude is “We’re not a hip company. Roll in the vending machines and be done with all the interim steps.”


  14. Our CEO just sent out an email proclaiming a new sustainability effort. Among other things, they will be removing trash cans from all offices.

    Well, thank God you have management that concentrates on the important stuff.

  15. Kids tested positive for normal flu. I gotta admit that it is a relief. And we should be able to get preventative tamiflu for my wife and I, since we jumped on it.

    Dr’s office admitted they are almost out of hand sanitizer and can’t find any anywhere.

    I did not volunteer.

    Speaking of volunteering, our school district is keeping everyone but students, teachers, and staff out of the schools. Don’t know why they think their teachers are less likely to bring covid in than me as a volunteer, but limiting the absolute number of possible carriers is a good idea. And I won’t have to feel guilty about missing my volunteer days.

    My kids are home and not going back for a day before break. I’ve said before, I expect the schools to extend their breaks until this burns out. The math insists on it.

    n

  16. https://www.endcoronavirus.org/guidelines

    This site from a friend who knows something about one of its principals. I have just glanced, but looks good. Some of the data seems to have come from sources related to PaultheManc’s linked article above. What resonated with me is the notion that we can do things on our own in advance of government’s prodding. Liberty!


  17. Well, thank God you have management that concentrates on the important stuff

    Heh, my words exactly.


  18. Re the stock market: we have also done nothing in that regard. We’ll just ride it out

    I just met with my adviser and he was all smiles. Said I am in really good shape. I have some money in accounts that will grow with the stock market but will not fall below my investment. Thus the initial amount is safe. He also explained that in about five years I will have a couple of accounts that will provide me with tens of thousand per year for the rest of my life if I don’t take out any additional money. He said he wishes the rest of his clients were in as good a shape as I.

    I have lost a big chunk of my growth over the last years but am, surprisingly, still up about 4% for the year. That may change after today. I am in very conservative mutual funds.

    I’m shocked they have stock.

    They made an announcement that they have run out of toilet paper while I was in the place. I just wanted some rolls, tomatoes, and a hot dog for lunch. The line for checkout ran all the way to the back of the store. I used self checkout which still had a long line. Some snowflake decided it was OK to use self checkout with three buggies full of stuff. The buggies blocked the area and of course it probably took her 30 minutes to check out. Used self to save time when using a staffed register would had already been out of the store.

  19. Be careful about virus maps. From Krebs on Security: https://krebsonsecurity.com/2020/03/live-coronavirus-map-used-to-spread-malware/

    In one scheme, an interactive dashboard of Coronavirus infections and deaths produced by John Hopkins University is being used in malicious Web sites (and possibly spam emails) to spread password-stealing malware.

    Late last month, a member of several Russian language cybercrime forums began selling a digital Coronavirus infection kit that uses the Hopkins interactive map as part of a Java-based malware deployment scheme. The kit costs $200 if the buyer already has a Java code signing certificate, and $700 if the buyer wishes to just use the seller’s certificate.

    “It loads [a] fully working online map of Corona Virus infected areas and other data,” the seller explains. “Map is resizable, interactive, and has real time data from World Health Organization and other sources. Users will think that PreLoader is actually a map, so they will open it and will spread it to their friends and it goes viral!”

  20. We have canceled our movie day today and are carrying alchohol wipes. The wife wants us to wear gloves and masks when we go out but I had to point out that besides being ineffective, my store N95 masks isn’t unlimited

  21. I saw Senator Graham on Fox News last night (BTW, Fox News is free on my Roku, with commercials):

    “Graham: Dems Seizing on Coronavirus to Grow Government; Trump Wants to ‘Help the Economy'”
    https://www.cnsnews.com/article/washington/susan-jones/graham-dems-seizing-coronavirus-grow-government-trump-wants-help

    “In his appearance on Fox News Wednesday night, Sen. Graham said coronavirus cases are “like an airplane crash,” while the flu is like a “car wreck.””

    “”We have a lot of car wrecks. People die in car wrecks but it doesn’t get much coverage. Every time somebody gets infected with the coronavirus, it’s like an airplane crash. That’s just the way the media has treated this. They treat the coronavirus like a series of airplane crashes.””

    We lose 20,000 to 50,000 people a year in the USA to the flu. It is a tragedy but we do not shut down the country like we are in the process of doing now.

  22. My kids are home and not going back for a day before break. I’ve said before, I expect the schools to extend their breaks until this burns out. The math insists on it.

    Our spring break in Fort Bend County is this week. I suspect that the schools are not going to reopen on Monday.

  23. We’re not worried about losing 20K, we’re worried about losing 1 Million… 1% of 100 million according to the Surgeon General.

    n

    Which btw, Sarah just shrugs off….

    https://accordingtohoyt.com/2020/03/12/unintended-consequences/

    I think she’s on the wrong side of this, as you guys know, and I sincerely hope she’s right. When she says “we’re not Italy” and our health system will be capable, she’s going in the face of people that work there and did the math, including the CDC.

    At this point, almost all the cards have been dealt, and all that’s left is playing out the hand. I guess we’ll know soon enough.

  24. I suspect that the schools are not going to reopen on Monday

    University of TN will only have online classes after classes resume from spring break this coming week. I see a lot of students goofing off the next few weeks. There are no cases of KungFlu on campus. UT is just being politically correct, following the herd, being manipulated by the media. I also think lawyers are involved. If a student or staff member were to succumb to the affliction (unlikely) the lawyers would swarm on the university like soccer moms on the toilet paper shelf at Walmart.

  25. We’re not worried about losing 20K, we’re worried about losing 1 Million… 1% of 100 million according to the Surgeon General.

    Yeah, I know. I’m not buying it. Yet.

    I think that if one is 70+ or immune system compromised, one should probably self isolate.

    Wait, I am immune system compromised. I keep on going in and out of remission every six months, depending on my stress level. And my stress level is very high right now.

    I am really wondering about my father-in-law, six years in a nursing home this month. And my parents, 78 and 81.

  26. We lose 20,000 to 50,000 people a year in the USA to the flu. It is a tragedy but we do not shut down the country like we are in the process of doing now.

    Never let a crisis go to waste. The mortality statistics frighten a lot of people, and everyone knows at least one a**hat who doesn’t let rules or even laws get in their way of getting something they want, especially among the snowflake generation. Most people try to be good citizens, but, in this case, an a**hat quotient in the population of 1 in 1000 is enough — I believe it is much higher in general in the US currently.

    I caught Glen Beck driving in to work late today. He’s decided to stir hysteria for ratings.

  27. ASU is also going to full online next week. They’re on SB this week. They specifically cite “students returning from areas of the country and world where CV is present”.

    n

  28. “‘If I’m Going To Get Sick and Die, I Might as Well Do It At Disney World’”

    — that woman clearly did not consider what would happen to her kids if she and hubby were hospitalized while there. THAT’s my nightmare. Dumping my kids into CPS? No F’ing way.

    n

    She also didn’t consider how to get home if they are positive. Not gonna fly, that’s for sure.

  29. Sales rep at my wife’s company is stuck in Chicago. Fever scanner stopped her in Ohare airport. TSA says “no flight for you.” She insists she’s fine, always runs hot…. not gonna cut it in this instance.

    n

    Shockingly, wife got approved to work from home due to her exposure to our kids, who are verified flu (ordinary) carriers.


  30. I used self checkout which still had a long line. Some snowflake decided it was OK to use self checkout with three buggies full of stuff.

    Didn’t know some Costcos have self-checkout (presuming that’s where you were at given the clues).
    My question to the woman would be “Ma’am, which is it? You can’t read or you can’t count?” (Also presuming there’s an item limit posted.)

  31. In my experience, costco self check was slower than the normal lanes if you have 10 or more items. They took out the lanes at our store after they were clearly a bottleneck.

    our normal lanes use two people, and encourage you to leave as much as possible in, on, and under the cart. They want to be able to laser it without moving anything.

    n

  32. Some commentary on the woman who wouldn’t mind dying at Disneyworld.

    Watch infected NBA player Rudy Gobert mock coronavirus precautions by touching a bunch of stuff before he realized he was sick

    But others have decided that their plans can’t wait, even if those plans involving visiting a giant international petri dish and then bringing the virus back home with them to their far-flung communities.

    The one and only weapon in our arsenal against an epidemic that will infect millions within a few months if the spread isn’t reduced is “social distancing.” And these people are milling about in giant crowds to ride Space Mountain because “If I’m going to get sick and die, I might as well do it at Disney World.”

    How about all the 70- and 80-year-olds who are going to die because they end up infected by people like this who couldn’t bear to put off their vacations? Do they get to ride the teacups at least before having to go to the ER and be told by doctors there that there’s no room?

  33. Yup, if they allow spring break to continue mixing and blending and spreading this thing across the nation, there won’t be any turning back or control. EVERYONE will be sick 5-10 days after the kids get home.

    I see NYFC banned gatherings, and closed Broadway.

    n

  34. Also, WRT WDW, DISNEY is not gonna let you ride until you die. You look sick, I bet you are ejected immediately.

    n

  35. Didn’t know some Costcos have self-checkout (presuming that’s where you were at given the clues). My question to the woman would be “Ma’am, which is it? You can’t read or you can’t count?” (Also presuming there’s an item limit posted.)

    Yeah, try enforcing that item count limit in an area with a large population who No Habla English like Florida or Texas.

    I was surprised when Costco put in the self checkouts. They are much more dependent on getting the premium membership upgrades than Sam’s Club, and 2-3 times a year they’ll put on the hard sell push, putting shark salespeople on duty at the register as the “You want a box?” assistant.

  36. Also, WRT WDW, DISNEY is not gonna let you ride until you die. You look sick, I bet you are ejected immediately.

    They have thermal cameras aimed at every guest at the turnstiles going back to at least H1N1, and another system for facial recognition of “banned” guests.

    Florida has a special governing district covering the property so a guest prohibited from entering the park in FL may or may not be prohibited in Anaheim due to city/state laws and the 9th circuit court. If you’re going to be an a**hat at a Disney park, try CA first.

  37. I’m trying to avoid schadenfreude but it is hard. At my last job whenever I touched on the subject of prepping it was treated as a joke and I was told “that sort of thing can’t happen here.”

    Whether it’s prudence or panic doesn’t matter, it is happening. The store shelves are emptying, schools are shutting down, people are not going to public places, and travel is being restricted. What will happen if there is only a skeleton staff at the electric company?

    This will eventually be over. A month, a year, or more, I don’t know. Who will learn from this? Preppers will just smile and begin restocking. Will any of those people who struggled without their necessities see the light?

  38. Sales rep at my wife’s company is stuck in Chicago. Fever scanner stopped her in Ohare airport. TSA says “no flight for you.” She insists she’s fine, always runs hot…. not gonna cut it in this instance.

    A surprising number of people run a slight fever. My daughter runs a slight fever always due to the Lyme disease that she has had for 17 years now. But she leaves the house very rarely.

    BTW, she told me last night that she expects me or the wife to bring back coronavirus and infect her with it. I asked her to hold her breath for ten seconds. I counted to 1,001, 1,002, 1,003 … 1,013 out loud before I ran out of breath. She started breathing then also and asked why. I said if you can hold your breath for ten seconds without distress then your lungs are not compromised.

  39. Sales rep at my wife’s company is stuck in Chicago. Fever scanner stopped her in Ohare airport. TSA says “no flight for you.” She insists she’s fine, always runs hot…. not gonna cut it in this instance.

    BTW, how long until the intracity flights in the USA are shut down ?

  40. Just in:

    Disneyland (CA) closing starting 14 March through the end of the month, because the CA Governer said to stop all ‘gatherings’ of more than 250 people.

    Will there next be mandatory ‘fever screenings’ at the CA agricultural border checks?

  41. ““Pandemonium”: Last-Minute Preppers Raid Texas’ Largest Grocery Chain Over Coronavirus Fears”
    https://www.infowars.com/pandemonium-last-minute-preppers-raid-texas-largest-grocery-chain-over-coronavirus-fears/

    “Empty shelves as panic buys strike Texas”

    “day 1 of the Apocalypse: i’ve just been run over by an electric scooter in the milk aisle at HEB. stay tuned for updates.”

    “Bad news: Frozen veggies are sold out. Good news: There’s one package of lavender-scented TP left, if that’s your thing. #groceryapocalypse #Austin #HEB”

    I am thinking about locking up my TP in the safe.

  42. “Pandemonium”: Last-Minute Preppers Raid Texas’ Largest Grocery Chain Over Coronavirus Fears”

    I call BS. Because today is Thursday. And the article starts with

    Last-minute shoppers in Texas raided the largest grocery chain in the state Friday,

    And….

    The panic buys follow an Oval Office address from President Trump Wednesday night where he announced new travel restrictions lasting 30 days affecting travelers from Europe.

    Yeah, let’s just spew stuff for ratings.

    Anyway. I’ll see how it is at the Marble Falls store tomorrow. I need a few things like half and half. And string cheese. Heck, cheese. Taco shells. Jewish hotdogs. Er, Kosher, they don’t make me queasy. Maybe a brisket.
    I’m good on the TP supply for about 4.5 years based on what was used in one bathroom last year. Hall bath not included but I have a 30 pack of the “nice stuff” I bought for Mom.
    Might get some more canned potatoes. And pasta. And tomatoes.

  43. BTW, how long until the intracity flights in the USA are shut down ?

    If that happens, he airline industry will need a bailout like after 9/11.

    Frontier is offering 90% off certain flights for now.

    I’d be more concerned about the TSA screening areas and wait times in some airports, most notably OIA, than I would about whether the plane would be crowded.

  44. Just filled my 30 gallon gasoline storage. Gas prices have been in free fall. Last week unleaded was $2.12. Today I got it for $1.69. I expect to see $1.50 soon.
    Have to decide what to do with the great granddaughter who has been staying with us on her spring break week.
    Not excited to take her back to the other custodians in Memphis where they have 6 confirmed cases. We are prepared to shelter in place for extended time and have done home schooling. Hope to convince the other grandparents she is safer here for the time being.

  45. That was an interesting rant by Sarah.
    https://accordingtohoyt.com/2020/03/12/unintended-consequences/

    Other unintended consequences MIGHT come from the virus itself, including the fact that, apparently, there’s far, far fewer drugs coming in, which is having an interesting effect in our urban fauna. And who’ll know what the unintended consequences of THAT will be.

    Well, I had not thought of that.

  46. If there is a sign stating a limit to the number of items and a fool that doesn’t care I point that out in a VERY LOUD VOICE. Loud enough that the whole store hears me. “Look – an idiot that either can’t count or that can’t read. [Assume he of she is wearing a hat identifies them as a member of some group.] I didn’t know they let idiots like you in that group. I bet your parked in Handicapped Parking BECAUSE YOU CAN’T read. Hell, I bet you cheat on your wife/hushand. [If they have their kids wtih them.] Your setting a fine example for your children – cheat when ever you want, nobody will stop you. Well I’m not stopping you but I am calling you an ass. A great big assed embarrASSment to your group.

    I keep this up until they are starting to leave the store. And then remind them that their car is probably in handicapped parking.

    One time in the Fort Bragg Army commissary I called out a Black Army Warrant Officer and his wife. When I said, ” Your kind of people always cheat. ” They got really upset with me for using the phrase “Your kind of people”. After some more loud remarks by me the Commissary Manager threatened to call the Military Police on me. I said, “Yes,please do. This fool’s Commanding Officer should know what his people do off duty.” The couple abandoned their items and fled.
    LOL
    My wife always warned me that some day I would be attacked outside the store but it hasn’t happened- yet.

  47. Other unintended consequences MIGHT come from the virus itself, including the fact that, apparently, there’s far, far fewer drugs coming in, which is having an interesting effect in our urban fauna. And who’ll know what the unintended consequences of THAT will be.

    Well, I had not thought of that.

    I got my 90 day doxycycline refilled on Monday at Walgreens. They would not refill my metaprolol since I had over a month left. Jerks at BCBS making rules for the rest of us.

  48. “Pandemonium”: Last-Minute Preppers Raid Texas’ Largest Grocery Chain Over Coronavirus Fears”

    I call BS. Because today is Thursday. And the article starts with

    Last-minute shoppers in Texas raided the largest grocery chain in the state Friday,

    And….

    The panic buys follow an Oval Office address from President Trump Wednesday night where he announced new travel restrictions lasting 30 days affecting travelers from Europe.

    Yeah, let’s just spew stuff for ratings.

    Anyway. I’ll see how it is at the Marble Falls store tomorrow. I need a few things like half and half. And string cheese. Heck, cheese. Taco shells. Jewish hotdogs. Er, Kosher, they don’t make me queasy.

    I call incompetence of the article writer. My Riverpark HEB in Sugar Land looks like that. No water, no TP, etc.

    Our Costco had a line wrapped around it at lunch time of people trying to get in. I thought about going to Sams Club but chickened out.

  49. BTW, how long until the intracity flights in the USA are shut down ?

    If that happens, he airline industry will need a bailout like after 9/11.

    I am beginning to think that every industry in the USA will need a bailout. I am wondering how we are going to stay in business in two months.

  50. BTW, USPS is up to its usual incompetent self at my office. We did not get mail picked up yesterday or today. Nor was any mail dropped off.

  51. Current news reports:

    “___________ is cancelled.” Fill in the blanks….any public gathering place or meeting or entertainment event or …. anything ….

  52. The wife and I went to our local Costco this morning for normal replenishment. Before the store opened the crowd waiting to get in was over 30 feet deep and 100 feet wide and people were nut-to-butt. Pandamonium when the door rolled up, push shove gouge. There was a triple-wide line from the front to the back of the store. They received 8 pallets of toilet paper. Six employees were trying to manage the riot and were shouting “only 2 bales of toilet paper per family” which was being ignored at the back end but enforced with vigor at the checkout. All 20 checkout lines were running as well as 10 self-checkout stations (what a joke, installed 2-weeks ago and the employees hate them). All aisles from the back to the front of the store were double and triple-wide jammed with people queue for check-out. We were checked out by the front-end manager who has been there since Costco first opened here (1983). We talked a bit and she said she has never seen it this bad and it is getting worse every day.

    This is going to be an election year like none before. There will be no rallies so the media will have a bigger influence than ever. The Dumbocrats will be promising free health care and a guaranteed wage that you will not have to work for. I don’t have any idea how Trump is going to handle this chaos short of Marshal Law and suspending the election.

    People are going to be pissed off. No sports ball of any sort, no vacations, and no toilet paper.

    It always looks bleakest just before it all goes totally dark.

    Each time I venture out I have less and less faith in the competence of the common (insert your preferred pronoun here).

  53. I am going to another engineering convention in New Orleans on April 19. I am leaning torwards backing out now. I have until March 19 to cancel my ticket for a $100 fee (out of $795 I already paid). There will be somewhere between 2,000 and 3,000 people there at the Hilton New Orleans Riverside (not my favorite hotel !). I am still recovering from my cold that I got from the engineering convention in February in Oklahoma.

  54. “LDS Church suspends all worship services worldwide due to coronavirus”
    https://www.sltrib.com/religion/2020/03/12/lds-church-suspends-all/

    “To help combat the coronavirus pandemic, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is suspending public gatherings of church members worldwide “until further notice,” the Utah-based faith said in a statement Thursday.”

    “That includes canceling Sunday services and midweek activities for more than 30,000 congregations across the globe, not just in the faith’s Beehive State headquarters.”

    No freaking way !

  55. I am going to another engineering convention in New Orleans on April 19. I am leaning torwards backing out now. I have until March 19 to cancel my ticket for a $100 fee (out of $795 I already paid). There will be somewhere between 2,000 and 3,000 people there at the Hilton New Orleans Riverside (not my favorite hotel !). I am still recovering from my cold that I got from the engineering convention in February in Oklahoma.

    We are in New Orleans for a medical conference next week. I doubt the doctors want to cancel at this point because the alternative is staying wherever they live and seeing mass hysteria walk through the doors.

  56. Kansas, where tornadoes kill more people each year than will ever die from KungFlu.

    Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly announced the state’s first death from coronavirus today.

    The patient is a male in his 70s who lived in a long-term care facility in Wyandotte County, Kelly said.

    According to the governor, the man had other underlying health conditions and was receiving care at a local hospital before he passed away.

    The man was not mobile, so the state is treating this as a case of community spread and health officials are now conducting public health contact tracing.

    Some context: Kelly said this situation demanded that she declare an emergency, which will grant her administration the ability to activate state resources and mobilize personnel to assist where needed.

    Yep, declare a state of emergency over someone dying, probably close to 80, with other health issues, in a nursing facility, the last stop before the grave, that would have died from a mosquito bite. Don’t rule the death due to the underlying health issues. Make it a KungFlu death, declare a state of emergency, and now the state will get federal funds. It is indeed all about money.

    I have not seen one death reported where the person was a healthy individual with no underlying health issues.

  57. Our local school district, Lamar Consolidated, just announced that they are going to remain closed next week. They are closed this week for spring break.

    HISD, the quarter million kid school district for Houston, Texas, just announced that they are going to be closed March 12 until March 30.
    https://www.click2houston.com/news/local/2020/03/12/here-are-all-of-the-schools-and-major-events-to-cancel-in-houston-because-of-the-coronavirus/

    This is getting more real by the minute.


  58. Kansas average under four fatalities from tornadoes per year:

    And I still say that is true. The people that have died had other health issues that are more likely the cause than KungFlu. KungFlu may have aggravated the other issues, but was not the cause. KungFlu is more dramatic, gets more media attention, feeds the frenzy, and most importantly gets access to federal dollars.

  59. This WuFlu mania is just that, a mania. Compare to tulip bulb mania, the Mississippi bubble, etc., only in reverse. The only thing those N95 masks will be good for is keeping the egg off your face when you are eating humble pie.

    Do I exaggerate? Maybe. I’ve been watching markets for well over 40 years and I’ve never seen anything quite like this. The .com bubble is an interesting comparison, back before information was widely, globally disseminated at an instantaneous rate. I think that’s why the herd mentality is reacting so quickly.

    Just my 2 ¢


  60. Have to decide what to do with the great granddaughter who has been staying with us on her spring break week.

    If the question is how to fill the time for the next week,
    – simple science: spin a raw egg and observe how it doesn’t work so well, then hard boil it and try again.
    – If you have an iPad, get the app Operation Math for drilling +-*/ . It works on phones, too, but is too small to be used conveniently.
    – Cooking is almost always a hit, whether mixing brownies from a box or really helping with cooking supper. It can lead to a huge number of scientific and mathematical explorations, such as how adding salt to water changes the boiling point, oil and water don’t mix, doubling a recipe by doubling all the amounts, and so on.
    – Turn over a rock or log and see what’s moving underneath it. (If it’s warm enough there.)
    – Take pictures from the same place during the day to make a time-lapse series of how shadows move.
    – Take pictures at the same time every day to show how that’s changing.
    – Show how to find North based on tracing shadows, moss on trees, big and small dipper.

    A lot of those are age-dependent, of course. Except making brownies. I haven’t found anyone, from age 2 through late teens, who wasn’t enthusiastic about it even if they didn’t want to show it for fear of being uncool.

  61. If there is a sign stating a limit….

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t Harlan Ellison pass away? (Grin)

  62. Do I exaggerate? Maybe. I’ve been watching markets for well over 40 years and I’ve never seen anything quite like this. The .com bubble is an interesting comparison, back before information was widely, globally disseminated at an instantaneous rate. I think that’s why the herd mentality is reacting so quickly.

    I’ve never seen gold prices move like this. Someone is actively working to keep a lid on things using a *lot* of money.

    I almost scored on a Limit Order for a particular stock I placed this morning, but the Specialist was on the ball. Win some, lose some.

  63. This afternoon it was announced that Anchorage public school district is closed next week to make plans for how to handle a longer closure. Our first official coronavirus case was announced this afternoon also.

    Glad we have our kiddo in a tiny private school. No word yet from kiddo’s school on their plans. I half guess they haven’t thought much about it or intend to soldier on. Whole school is only 24 kids, with additional 10 in preschool. Don’t have much heart burn either way.
    We are ready to hunker down.

  64. Someone mentioned the weirdness with gold to me today. I had just assumed it moved opposite the market, particularly when it’s crashing.

    Apparently not, despite every office I’ve ever worked in having a “gold bug” that told me so…

  65. I’ve never seen gold prices move like this.

    Yeah. Weird. Can’t figure that one (Gold vs. safe haven) out either. I have gold stowed away in India but how the hell do I get there? They suspended tourist visas until April 15. A symbolic date, no doubt.

  66. Well, that’s interesting. In filling a small prep hole, I ordered 3 packs of paper plates from the COSTCO website. Seemed simpler and quicker than driving the 5 or 6 miles over to the store. Nothing about the webpage suggested a supply problem and the usual make payment, thanks for the order page with confirmation email was normal.

    Hour or so later comes a new email cancelling. The justification is “Unable to Process Your Order xxxx”.

    Odd.

  67. I’ve never seen gold prices move like this.

    State actors, or near state-sized actors?

  68. I’m in San Antone. Moved a load into the new/old house. Will stay there for a while.

    Clients are cancelling on us left and right. A friend had a cancellation on him mid flight! Got a text. Southwest flew him home for free.

    Showed the Atoz family in Vegas my one month supply of dehydrated food for five.

    Twins got word not to return to UNLV after SB. Online only.

    Told the family as long as there is running water, use a hose to rinse your butt. Don’t get in a fight over the last roll on the shelf.

    Read an article about a family who ordered a “years supply” of TP. Filled a whole room . Said it was a mistake, but sure looked like YAGNI* from their faces.

    *You Ain’t Got…

  69. Hooray, now there won’t be any second guessing of my desire to NOT GO to WDW.

    Our district closed school tomorrow, a day early from spring break. All outsiders are banned until the end of march. No mention of a restart date. SAT testing canceled.

    I hit the HEB to pick up our prescriptions. The lot was FULL. EVERY spot occupied. I’ve never seen that. It was light at 3 when I dropped off the ‘scrip. Every lane was 5 deep, every lane was open. This is our “small” HEB in our neighborhood. Baskets were either full or over, or just had a couple of little bags. All the full ones had 2 cases bottled water (limit) and most of the water was gone. Also most eggs, bread, beans and rice, canned goods, cereal were decimated but still had stock. ALL the taters and onions were gone and had been long enough for them to flip over the trays. Still had fruit and veg, which was what I wanted. And some seafood for my birthday dinner…

    I don’t buy meat at this store but they had most stuff except chicken, that was gone.

    Pharma tech said they were short HHHC? high blood pressure meds, but nothing else at the moment.

    I’ve heard from several people in the neighborhood and around that there are more presumptive cases than are being reported in Houston. Look for a big jump now that the rodeo isn’t at risk.

    My immediate neighbor was up on the real numbers and said she was good to shelter in place for a couple of weeks. I hinted at being slightly better than good, if needs became evident. They’ve got two little kids.

    The blended family that moved in on our other side, with the dog that will bark for hours if left alone kept a package of ours that was delivered there by mistake. The seller replaced the item, and I learned a vital fact about the guy and his family. Not who I want next door if things get sporty.

    The mom’s group is already planning play dates and group child care. This isn’t a vacation, it’s a quarantine to control spread of a virulent disease FFS.

    @lynn, DON’T GO. Most airlines are now offering no fee cancel or rebooks. They just aren’t all advertising it. you can’t afford to bring this home. Also, close early and save what you can, or try to keep everyone there and lose it all. That is my hard advice. Or call an all hands and discuss it. You might be surprised. They may want the company to be there after more than they want to suck it dry in the meantime.

    @ray, I always appreciate your contrarian view on this. It keeps us intellectually honest to have alternative ideas presented. I’m surprised you didn’t at least move your shopping up though.

    The math is very bad. So many people in need of advanced medical support at the same time will kill more than the wuflu alone. This is just one of the concerns. Most people will by definition make it thru this. That doesn’t mean they and the world around them won’t be changed forever.

    nick

  70. Plugs made a speech saying the only cure for corona virus is: Plugs! Please there is no President or Admin that could do better. The only thing left to do is declare Martial Law and deploy a Corps to NYC, ChiCongo and LA. Lock and load one 30-round magazine.

    Way to politicize every thing, Plugs. The MSM and Dumbocrats are ruining our lives. Plugs’ underlying dementia is really showing.

  71. The mom’s group is already planning play dates and group child care. This isn’t a vacation, it’s a quarantine to control spread of a virulent disease FFS.
    @Nick
    I had a friend call within half an hour of the school district closure announcement to set up play dates. I tried to be nice but she was a bit offended when I declined. I probably let some of my FFS into my voice. I’m sure she heard my wildly rolling eyes.

  72. A friend of mine got a free rebook on a trip, and vouchers for 50% of the cost of the flights!

    Meanwhile, it’s a bloodbath in Bitcoin and a buying opportunity.

  73. it’s a bloodbath in Bitcoin and a buying opportunity.

    I’d buy BA at the open tomorrow.
    Oct 19, 1987 was a bottom. I remember it well.

    Oil is weird, can’t deny it. But honestly, is anyone really going to buy into the Paris accords? Ergo…

    Greta, hold another rally and shake hands, please!

  74. Florida listed 15 new cases tonight, almost doubling ahead of schedule. Note the links to Texas (Nile river cruise provided many of our cases too, and the 20 yo female…)

    The new cases are:

    A 73-year old male in Palm Beach County. This is a travel-related case and is associated with a Nile River Cruise/Tour in Egypt.
    A 74-year old male in Palm Beach County, this is a travel-related case and is associated with travel to Europe.
    A 50-year old male New York resident who is currently in Sarasota County. It is unclear whether this was a travel-related case.
    A 70-year old male Massachusetts resident in Sarasota County. It is unclear whether this was a travel-related case.
    A 24-year old female in Alachua County. This is a travel related case and is associated with travel to Europe.
    A 70-year old male in Volusia County. This is a travel related case and is associated with a Nile River Cruise/Tour in Egypt.
    A 83-year old male in Duval County. It’s not clear whether this was a travel-related case.
    A 57-year old male in Clay County. It’s unclear whether this was a travel-related case.
    A 28-year old female in Broward County. It is unclear whether this was a travel-related case.
    A 25-year old female in Broward County. This is a travel related case.
    A 20-year old female Texas resident in Broward County. This is a travel related case and is associated with travel to Europe.

    A 68-year old female in Broward County. This case is associated with Port Everglades.
    A 36-year old male in Broward County. This is a travel-related case.

    A 49-year old female Hillsborough County. This is a travel-related case and is associated with travel to Europe.
    A 77-year old male in Lee County. It is unclear whether this was a travel-related case.

    –that’s a bunch of younger and female victims.

    n

  75. I’d buy BA at the open tomorrow.

    Someone tried really hard to support that mess, but management there has serious problems. 737 MAX. Starliner. SLS. Plus they have nothing in the pipeline to replace the 757 as Delta’s are beginning to reach the end of their operational lives, and Airbus is expanding A220 production at Mobile, a plant which would have been busy with tankers if Boeing hadn’t been obsessed with keeping the 767 line running.

    BA needs some new management infusion ASAP.

  76. Florida listed 15 new cases tonight, almost doubling ahead of schedule. Note the links to Texas (Nile river cruise provided many of our cases too, and the 20 yo female…)

    The Nile group was Taiwanese according to the Houston transplant in our group at work. His family has some kind of connection to a few of the members.

    Lee County is concerning if it isn’t travel related. Doubly so if it the patient is from the mainland and not a resident of Sanibel/Captiva. Pence is fond of the islands, vacationing there at least twice a year.

    Doctors in Lee County were already unhappy with the dominant hospital system, and the mainland was still pretty ripped up when we were there in July 2018, nearly a year after the last big hurricane.

  77. @lynn, DON’T GO. Most airlines are now offering no fee cancel or rebooks. They just aren’t all advertising it. you can’t afford to bring this home.

    No airline tickets, I drive if less than 12 hours driving time. NOLA is just 4 to 5 hours away. I usually take 50 to 75 lbs of brochures which is not conducive to flying.

    No hotel booking YET because there are FOUR conventions going on in NOLA the same week. My only expense to date is the convention fee. Which is refundable minus $100.

    Also, close early and save what you can, or try to keep everyone there and lose it all. That is my hard advice. Or call an all hands and discuss it. You might be surprised. They may want the company to be there after more than they want to suck it dry in the meantime.

    Life has been tough around here for a while. Cutbacks are plenty, excesses are none. I do have three months CASH in the bank.

    My people have worked for me for a long time. Only one less than ten years. One for 24+ years.

    If I shut it down then I doubt that it will start back up. We will never get the capital.

    And health insurance is the biggie.

  78. BA needs some new management infusion ASAP.

    If Boeing does not hire some pilots at the senior management level then they are a bunch of tools.

  79. Some cantons here (think: states) have now closed all but essential businesses. The remaining cantons are expected to follow suit in the next couple of days. Two major universities have cancelled all in-person lectures and exercises. I expect my school to follow suit this week.

    I’m driving up to pick several things up from our old house – the new owners let us keep a basement room over the winter. I plan to come back with enough electronics to set up my office here for video work (i.e., remote lectures). I’m new to recording videos, but so far it’s not difficult, only time consuming as I learn the tools. Took me 3 days to records half of one lecture, but that’s only because I threw everything away and started over several times. The second half of that lecture should go in a day.

    After that, I hope to do a full lecture each day, or at most two days. We’re talking a four-hour class, so that’s not as inefficient as it may sound. I’ll actually feel a lot better once the school does cancel in-person lectures, not so much because of the lectures, but because of the train trips. Trains are still very full, and that’s a great environment for disease transmission.

    My wife still isn’t taking this very seriously. Normally we would have a lot of food, but we’re living in this tiny provisional place while the house is being built. I suggest that she stock up anyway, and she says something like “oh, we have a pound of rice and some pasta”. Um…let’s say that I may just accidentally bring a box of staples back along with my office electronics.


  80. Oil is weird, can’t deny it. But honestly, is anyone really going to buy into the Paris accords? Ergo…

    California.

  81. @brad, bring it all. Once movement restrictions are in place, you’ll lose access to it.

    n

    Oh, and for staged events we counted on one hour of production for every MINUTE of performance, and that was once we moved into the space. LOTS of pre-production happened first.

    For video, (pro) think 4 hours / minute.

    To do effective lectures, I offer the example of Louis Rossman on youtube. He just talks to the audience and shares his work. He has increased the tech and the video tools he uses and he’s got a LOT of practice, but it’s basically him just talking.

    You’ll spend far too much time on it if you do much more than just sitting in front of your cam and talking. Small whiteboard in your hands might help if you have decent handwriting.

    n

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