Fri. Mar. 13, 2020 – Friday the Thirteenth falls on a Friday this month….

Warm and damp.

Yesterday was too. Sunny and hot even. None of the threatened rain showed. Which is good. I can water the garden. I’d prefer a bit less rain so I can work outside. I’ve got a ton of stuff to reorganize and put away.

I think we’re in for the duration. Gasoline, potting soil, and some lumber are about all that is left on my list. Hitting up my secondary for more stuff might happen, but I’ll try mightily to avoid any interaction with people. I don’t think they’ll impose local lockdown or curfew for another week at least.

Speaking of which… This is not a vacation. The whole purpose of these economy destroying measures is to stop or slow the spread of the virus. It won’t do that if people keep getting together. This is the time to bunker up. Shelter in place. Hunker down. However you say it, pick a spot and go to ground.

Those soon to be 20000 cases in Italy are just ordinary folks. Community transmission is just plain folks, going about their business and then getting sick. Some desperately sick. You are ordinary folks. STOP GOING ABOUT YOUR BUSINESS. Stop exposing yourself to other people. (He says, but see below.)

It will be very hard. I’ve already listed the things I’d still like to pick up, and didn’t mention the AC coil froze over again. Wife is not excited to have that keep happening while we’re locked down for weeks. So she wants to rip and replace it NOW. FFS. I’m trying to keep that from happening. SHOULD have addressed it immediately after the last problem. SHOULD HAVE. Didn’t. I would like to get the big gennie turned on and connected. STILL haven’t done that. I think maybe one more day or two max with any outside contact, and anything after that is foolhardy. It’s already later than I’d like.

Speaking of too late, I’m pretty sure both of my local auctions will be a bust. Too bad, but timing is everything. We didn’t get the week I was hoping for.

FWIW, kids are feeling better, and we’ve all started the Tamiflu. Daughter doesn’t like the taste and doesn’t want to continue. Too bad. We really don’t want to be sick or weakened now.

I hope you have all completed your preparations. We’re all about to be tested. I’m hoping we all pass… (the test, not “on”).

nick

67 thoughts on “Fri. Mar. 13, 2020 – Friday the Thirteenth falls on a Friday this month….”

  1. Interesting briefing from UK Prime Minister yesterday (accompanied by Chief Medical Officer and Chief Scientific Officer). Summary, as I take it… We can’t stop Covid-19. Many people, particularly elderly, will die. We can minimise death rate by minimising the peak by elongating it. We will only stabilise the situation when ‘herd immunity’ is reached, over 60% of the population having caught the virus. Likely maximum around 80% of population catching it.
    My thoughts … UK not closing schools for various societal reasons, and kids don’t seem to suffer anyway. Key focus should be on isolating the elderly and at risk (other conditions) not so much everyone else – because if everyone else gets it, and we achieve over 60% immunity, then we should likely reduce the risk to those most at risk. So … as you are very likely to catch this … maybe best to catch it early whilst the health service are able to respond if you react badly, but then you have immunity which allows you to get on with your life … just a thought?

  2. My wife’s conference in New Orleans next week was cancelled due to the emergence of six virus cases in the city yesterday. We’re still taking next week off since we both needed the break from our respective employers.

    IIRC, Louisiana had one case up until yesterday. More Nile cruise passengers?

  3. Get it now…

    Except that there is that small SDS contingent, and we do not yet know that recovery leads to immunity.

  4. @Jim I accept the possibility of SDS, but from what I have seen this is a hypothesis rather than fact, as apparently some testing is not accurate so could lead to wrong conclusions. Hopefully we can find out sooner than later to assist in our (and governmental) deliberations. Happy to have references if more is known than I am aware of.

  5. It will be very hard. I’ve already listed the things I’d still like to pick up, and didn’t mention the AC coil froze over again

    If you’re using the 3M Ultra Allergen filter that looks like folded paper, try stepping down to one of their mesh-looking filters or switching to another brand. The Ultra Allergen media does not play well with high belocity air handlers in humid environments.

  6. @paul, apparently there are people (in Cali and elsewhere) planning “CV parties” for their kids for the same reasons expressed.

    My wife was an early joker with the idea weeks ago.

    There is only just about everything wrong with the idea now.

    We still don’t know for certain that it will give you immunity. We haven’t had recovered people in big enough numbers or long enough time to be sure, because of the uncertainty with the Chinese reporting. SDDS (sudden drop dead syndrome) as I’ve been calling it, seems to be real. There are plenty of videos of it happening, but we don’t know the cause.

    Do the math, with the timeline.

    Cases are doubling worldwide every 4 days, in the US it’s every 3 and sometimes every 2 (depends on when numbers get updated and when you do the math.) UK looks to be every 4 to 5 days. Let’s use 3 as a worst case.

    Exposed today. UK 600 cases. (rounding/averaging)

    in 6 days you begin symptoms, there have been two doubles. 2400 cases.

    in 12 more days you get to the point where you either start to get better or worse. 4 more doubles. 38,400 cases, 15% needing acute care (ventilator, ICU) 5700 ICU patients.

    you know it’s busy, so you wait 3 days until you are in dire straights (or it takes EMS that long to get to you) 76800 cases, 11 THOUSAND patients needing ventilators and ICU….

    You dying at home or in a plague hospital hallway.

    You can fudge those numbers around a couple of doublings either way, IE you get sick sooner, get badly sick sooner, or you don’t get sick until 14 days and MORE doublings happen.

    The exponential math gets you. We are at the point where everyone who gets it today is at real risk of dying in a hallway, alone.

    Even if you get immunity, the time to ‘get it over with’ has passed.

    nick

  7. Went to Walmart Neighborhood Maket this morning at 5:15, they open at 5. Just to avoid the crowd. Maybe 20 customers in store, some employees stocking. No tp, ab soap or any ab wipes or liquids or sprays on the shelves. No problem as I have a supply and they were not the purpose of the trip. I probably would have bought some if there were any.
    Got the things I went for and a few extras to have on hand. Can’t run out of coffee. We’ve been adding to our extras for a month now.
    Nice time to go. Calm and quiet.

  8. The vast majority of you folks are too young to remember the Polio, Measles, Mumps, Scarlet Fever, Chicken Pox, etc. of the 1950s and then the gooberment came out with vaccines that rekindled all these diseases. The world gooberments are going to do the same thing today. (As I adjust my foil hat) This is part of the master plan.

    Locally, one of the three cities here in the Tri-Cities has a real problem with a massive outbreak of Hand-Foot-and-Mouth Disease. Take a look at the symptoms. See some common ones?

    I am not saying to not be prepared. I am saying to be vigilant and take what the gooberments and media are saying with less than a grain of salt. There is a bigger problem here than just some Covid-19. And this being an election year the politicians will be taking full advantage of every situation. This election will change the world forever and it will result in an End of the World As We Know It event. Our Republic will be gone as if it isn’t already.

    BTW, this past week ass-hole-people have dumped 6 adult cats and 4 adult dogs (3 little yippers and an over-weight Black Lab) in our neighborhood. All healthy and friendly. No chips except for one cat who had his chip cut out (not professionally done either). All the local animal rescues/shelters/societies are overflowing and kitten season is starting.

    People are losing it and their true fowl vile nature is coming out. I need more bullets.

    Happy Friday the 13th. BTW the number 13 is lucky in some Asian Cultures.

  9. Always worth remembering that the worst case is rarely the actual case, and that exponential growth never gets to its end state because the conditions that created it change. I hope we’ll change in time to slow the damn thing down, to get more people thru it.

    Wife wants to go to the library to get kids books. Jebus.

    n


  10. People are losing it and their true fowl vile nature is coming out. I need more bullets.

    Welcome, friend. We can always use more people with clear vision.

  11. And this being an election year the politicians will be taking full advantage of every situation.

    The real reason March Madness and the NBA were cancelled.


  12. Welcome, friend. We can always use more people with clear vision.

    And a steady hand and laser sights.

  13. Just look at the dems loading up CV relief bill with their standard wish list.

    That is the action of incredibly short-sighted and arrogant people.

    Seriously, no one is crashing the world’s economies because this is a nothing burger. To fight to get your abortion funding into a relief bill is just demented.

    n

  14. @paul, UK numbers for today are right on track. 3 days ago they were 383, today 798.

    Italy doesn’t seem to have updated. nor France.

    n

  15. Seriously, no one is crashing the world’s economies because this is a nothing burger. To fight to get your abortion funding into a relief bill is just demented.

    The stretch of road in front of Planned Parenthood in Austin is the one place the city works to keep free of urban outdoorsman camps. Well, besides the steps of City Hall and the APD HQ.

    And even though SXSW is cancelled, Austin PD is still deploying this weekend to close the streets downtown. The bacchanalia must go on — the real “culture” in the city.

  16. https://www.foxnews.com/politics/trump-national-emergency-on-coronavirus
    Locked and loaded.

    My wife ventured out this morning to just do some normal shopping. WOW, every parking space at our local WinCo was filled. She had to wait and joust for 15-minutes to get a spot. The store was solid people and from the contents of the carts, it was senseless panic buying. The controlled and monitored checkout line wound twice around the whole store. It took over an hour to check out. When she left she could hear someone being rather vocal and as she left the parking lot two police cars with lights and sirens pulled up to the front doors. Film at 11.


  17. … it was senseless panic buying….

    This. President tRump’s best advice: don’t panic. People are being ridiculous. I went to my new local HEB this morning. I got everything I wanted except:

    Hand sanitizer – completely out
    Anti-bacterial soap – completely out
    Bleach – completely out

    People were calm and mostly doing regular shopping. TP was low, but I got a 6-pack for the house in addition to what I brought. Shop like you regularly do. If quarantined, ask family, friends, neighbors to drop off what you need. You don’t need a years supply of everything *TODAY*. Don’t get greedy. Build up your supply so everyone can have stuff. I saw one old guy in a electric shopping scooter. I helped him get some TP. The only ones left were 6-packs on the top shelf. Stores will have to restrict the number of items you can buy because of greedy YAGNI douchebags.

  18. Jeez guys, I’m really surprised to hear that you are still in stores and need to buy stuff. If people here who are daily reminded of preparedness issues need TP, then where does that put Norm Normie?

    n

  19. Sarah’s post today demands responses on a bunch of stuff. If she was doing it on purpose, I’d bust her for a list of fallacies and argument tricks, starting with straw man and apples to oranges.

    https://accordingtohoyt.com/2020/03/13/a-state-of-madness/

    Instead I wrote this, which I hope is helpful rather than just contrary.

    ———

    Ok, well…

    I don’t watch or even see MSM much so maybe I’m missing something. In my circles, everyone is acting prudently and rationally, having topped up existing preps last week at the latest. The folks in the store yesterday were there after work and after the schools here closed. They also appeared to be folks who don’t have a lot of extra money to stock up routinely, and they now KNOW that they’ll be home with the kids for at least a week.

    People are acting like they’re getting ready for a storm because that’s what we’ve trained them to do. Want to talk irrational behavior? The same people who flatly state that most people only have 3 days worth of food at home are now complaining that people are trying to get enough food in to stay at home for a couple of weeks.

    More people than you might expect have seen the lockdown in China and decided that’s what’s coming here. they see how rapidly Italy went to restrictions. And surprise, we are well on our way. People don’t want to starve in their homes or have to venture out in the middle of an outbreak to find food. That is purely rational and self interested behaviour.

    WRT this stopping or not stopping the spread, watch the CDC briefings. Watch the WHO conferences. Read the transcripts of the CDC calls. Read the pandemic material on their website. They DON”T EXPECT this to stop anything. At best they are hoping to slow the spread, slow the doubling rate, to shift the bulk of cases out of flu season, and to flatten the curve so that some people have a chance to recover and leave the hospitals making room for more, instead of all the cases hitting at once.

    Epidemic and pandemic math is exponential. Humans have a hard time internalizing exponential growth. Italy went from NO cases to being swamped with 15 THOUSAND cases in about 3 weeks, going from 5000 cases to 10000 cases in 4 DAYS. They should be at 20K today, but haven’t reported yet. 5k to 20k in essentially one week. Humans don’t deal well with growth like that.

    With very few exceptions, once the virus is established in your country, it will go exponential and the doubling rate is currently 3-5 days. Everywhere I can see numbers, that has been the case. Right now, in the US, we are in the very small part of the curve. That isn’t going to be true in 2 weeks. Do the math yourself, starting from today’s numbers and doubling every 3 days (current US rate). You go from “this ain’t so bad” to “oh my f’ing diety” in ONE doubling, two MAX once you get to a certain number.

    WRT the awesome US medical system… others have addressed this from first hand experience and actual research, which I’m recounting here from memory. The US has about 190K hospital beds, about 93K iirc ICU beds. MOST OF THEM OCCUPIED RIGHT NOW. The number for ICU beds is that they are normally 75% occupied. The number of available ventilators is similar. The economics of the US system mean that all the excess capacity has been squeezed out of the system already. MOST weekends in our major cities and regional facilities, we completely fill up our available ICU and trauma beds. Hospitals routinely go on ‘diversion’ meaning no new patients. I’ve listened to the radio and heard it with my own ears as our EMS tries to find someplace to take the guy in the red bus…

    The upshot is, it doesn’t take many additional cases to overwhelm our system, just like Italy. They did the right thing. They set up surge tents. When your patient load doubles in 4 days, then doubles again, you end up where they are, stacking people in hallways and triaging older or comorbidity patients to “can’t help this one, they’ll have to die alone”.

    Further, no hospital in the US is “fully staffed”. Historically, we’ll lose some percentage (around 10%) to the disease or other factors which will further deplete staffing levels. Every time we roll on what turns into a CV call, we lose the EMS shift to quarantine. DiBlasio acknowledged this by ordering that EMS wouldn’t be supported by Fire on possible CV calls, in order to conserve trained firefighters. EMS is always understaffed.

    The short answer is, you have to do something to slow the spread. The only tools they have (without effective treatment or vaccine) are travel restrictions, social distancing, and quarantines. Spain is already seeing a higher than previous rate of infection in Madrid, and it’s being attributed to the woman’s march gatherings.

    Lastly, this is NOT just an issue for old people. Look at the cases reported in the Orlando Sentinel and you’ll see young women and men of all ages. (they actually report demographic info, so I’m pointing you there.) Even if it ONLY affected old people, how is that a comfort that your parents, the people who own and run your company, your kids’ grandparents, our most knowledgeable and experienced people, have a 5 to15% chance of dying from this? And we’re basing those numbers on China, which is unreliable at best, and skews older than our population so even if the numbers are true, if you have more old people, then more old people will get sick.

    This all _feels_ like over-reaction because of what we see RIGHT NOW. What we need to be worried about is what will be in 2 weeks, 4 weeks, etc if nothing is done, and because of the exponential nature of the spread, we don’t and probably can’t have a _feel_ for it. We have to trust the math and act on the math, not the _feels_.

    nick

  20. If it comes to shooting zombies, I want Kurt Russell’s revolver from Escape from New York, scoped and never runs out of ammo….

    n


  21. never runs out of ammo…

    I want one of the guns they used in the old wild west movies. One shot will terminate 23 indians and there are apparently 238 bullets in the one gun. Never run. At that rate I could take out a thousand zombies and never reload.

  22. Yep, all Swiss schools now closed, from kindergarten through university. As of Monday, I’ll be doing video lectures. Sure, kids don’t get very sick, but they do spread the virus to family members. Keeping kids home makes sense, except for working parents with kids too young to stay home alone. Given the number of businesses being closed, there aren’t too many of those.

    And as a side note: Who actually gives a fsck which celebreties have Corona? I’m more concerned about some random grandma in a nursing home. I really do not understand why we have to see headlines like “Tom Hanks reassures fans”. Seriously?

    It’s looking to be a serious pandemic, but it won’t be as bad as the worst-case views. There are still lots of lightly-ill people not included in the statistics. That’s how it has mostly spread, after all. My guestimate is that, when the stats hit 20% of the population (having been) ill, we will be past the worst of it, because that’s really closer to 60% of the population.

    “Italy doesn’t seem to have updated. nor France.”

    Italy has now updated: 16% more cases than yesterday, now at 17660. 250 more deaths. Switzerland has 24% more cases than yesterday. Not sure why the numbers are going up so fast here. People are taking it pretty seriously, so I hope it’s just an artifact of more testing.

    I’m in the city just now, packing things up. As of tomorrow, about 13:00, I’ll be back in our mountain town (population 440). I don’t plan to leave, except for necessities, until the worst is over.

    Ya know, there is a positive side to all this. I’m about as introverted as they come, and this means I don’t have to see many people 🙂

  23. I went to have lunch with my wife at the Austin VA today. Nothing new to report there, but a co-worker got word from her daughter that Facebook’s local office had to be evacuated this morning. The daughter is an employee.

    A**hat Quotient is high at that office. Employee flies back from Seattle last night and shows up in the office bright and early coughing on anything and anyone within range.

    Probably flew back to be here in time for the bacchanalia.

  24. “Facebook’s local offices had to be evacuated”

    And nothing of value was lost. Will anybody miss them?

    On a related note: Firefox is now pushing a plugin that quarantines Facebook cookies, to prevent Facebook tracking people all over the web, or at least anywher somebody was dumb enough to put one of those “share” buttons on their website.

  25. Speaking of which… This is not a vacation. The whole purpose of these economy destroying measures is to stop or slow the spread of the virus. It won’t do that if people keep getting together. This is the time to bunker up. Shelter in place. Hunker down. However you say it, pick a spot and go to ground.

    Oh, it is much worse than that. The blue collar and white collar people who keep our infrastructure going must go to work. Otherwise the electrical grids, natural gas grids, fresh water, sewer water, and the grocery stores will fail. It takes a lot of people to keep these items going, much more than you think, at least 10% of the jobs in the USA, maybe 20% I am not sure. If they stop going to work then the electrical grid will fail in less than a week, maybe 3 or 4 days. The others will follow quickly.

    And I forgot the Internet. It is much more fragile than people think. Constant maintenance is required. And all those people sitting at home watching Netflix will run the bandwidth requirements way up. I am not sure if AWS has any more dark fiber to activate but, they will be tested also.

  26. And nothing of value was lost. Will anybody miss them?

    Like many other tech and financial services companies, the local office probably has more to do with providing a write-off for execs’ binge drinking on 6th Street than any actual work.

    I’ll give Facebook credit for HHVM. We’ve reached an evolutionary dead-end in terms of performance with Rust, Go, and the other languages based on an LLVM back end, and, while dynamic run-time optimization may not be the answer, Zuckerberg’s brightest are trying something different.


  27. Not sure why the numbers are going up so fast here

    Because anyone that dies during this event will now be classed as dying from KungFlu. Even though the real cause was underlying health issues such that a mosquito byte would be fatal.

  28. Not sure why the numbers are going up so fast here

    Because anyone that dies during this event will now be classed as dying from KungFlu. Even though the real cause was underlying health issues such that a mosquito byte would be fatal.

    My 87 year old father-in-law in a nursing home is one of those bed-bound people just hanging on by a thread. I have no idea what we will do if he dies as he is 300 miles north of here. I suspect that they will dig a pit behind the nursing home and burn the bodies. They being somebody in hazmat suits, probably Guard soldiers.

  29. “Will coronavirus kill the New World Order?” by Pat Buchanan
    https://www.wnd.com/2020/03/will-coronavirus-kill-new-world-order/

    “Dr. Brian Monahan, attending physician of Congress, told a closed meeting of Senate staffers this week that 70 million to 150 million Americans – a third of the nation – could contract the coronavirus. Dr. Anthony Fauci testified that the mortality rate for COVID-19 will likely run near 1%.”

    “Translation: Between 750,000 and 1.1 million Americans may die of this disease before it runs its course. The latter figure is equal to all the U.S. dead in World War II and on both sides in the Civil War.”

    Hat tip to:
    http://drudgereport.com/


  30. The US has about 190K hospital beds, about 93K iirc ICU beds.

    792k community hospital beds in the US, 924k in total. (Community doesn’t include VA, prisons, etc.) 97.7k ICU beds, but 22.8k are neonatal ICU beds.


  31. FWIW, kids are feeling better, and we’ve all started the Tamiflu.

    You have flu now or have been exposed?

  32. kid one tested positive in the Drs office. Wife, and I are on prophylactic doses because we didn’t test. Child 2 tested negative but is on prophyactic dose.

    Patient zero was the kid child 1 spent the night and following day with while mom was at GS camp and I was at the Hamfest.

    What kind of parent asks a kid to a sleepover when her own kid is sick enough to need medication before bed?

    n

    (and thanks for the update on total beds. Looking at it should have told me it was low. Memory isn’t what it once was.)

  33. Wait. Wasn’t this the candidate for FL Governor whom all the papers endorsed two years ago?

    Why do I tend to take virus conspiracy theories involving the FL Governor with a grain of salt? Because the powerbrokers in the state who pushed Andrew Gillum over a more moderate Dem candidate would love to see Ron DeSantis be a one term Governor. The Times, Tampa’s daily fishwrapper and birdcage liner, tops that list.

    The Times Tallahassee bureau has one job right now, the same one they’ve had since Jan 1, 2019.

    https://www.tampabay.com/florida-politics/buzz/2020/03/13/andrew-gillum-found-in-miami-beach-hotel-room-with-suspected-drugs-police-say/

  34. Goobernor Jay has ordered ALL schools, K-12 public and private, to close immediately and stay closed for at least the next 6-weeks. There will be absolutely NO school activities; sports, clubs, concerts, meetings, travel, etc.

    This is not going to be at all helpful in a number of ways.

    The dominos are falling.

  35. Went out and filled up the truck (was down to half tank) and got the oil changed (hit 5,096 miles). I now have 36 gallons of gas in storage !

  36. Wait. Wasn’t this the candidate for FL Governor whom all the papers endorsed two years ago?

    Why do I tend to take virus conspiracy theories involving the FL Governor with a grain of salt? Because the powerbrokers in the state who pushed Andrew Gillum over a more moderate Dem candidate would love to see Ron DeSantis be a one term Governor. The Times, Tampa’s daily fishwrapper and birdcage liner, tops that list.

    The Times Tallahassee bureau has one job right now, the same one they’ve had since Jan 1, 2019.

    https://www.tampabay.com/florida-politics/buzz/2020/03/13/andrew-gillum-found-in-miami-beach-hotel-room-with-suspected-drugs-police-say/

    Just another meth head. There are lots of them.

    Just don’t let them operate heavy equipment or state governments.

  37. “How canceled events and self-quarantines save lives, in one chart”
    https://www.vox.com/2020/3/10/21171481/coronavirus-us-cases-quarantine-cancellation

    “This is how we all help slow the spread of coronavirus.”

    This got passed to me from a friend of mine with severe asthmatic bronchitis. He blows through an inhaler or two every freaking day.

    Neat looking chart. I did not have the heart to tell him that there is no excess hospital capacity. When I had my second heart attack in 2012 or 2013 (who keeps track of these things ?), they admitted me from the ER after they got me stabilized with lots of drugs. The 300 ? 400 ? bed hospital was full so they put me in the maternity ward.

    At 4am, the cardiac icu tech comes looking for me, takes about an hour to find me. I had pulled off the oxygen feed while I was asleep and my blood oxygen drifted down to 80%. He gave me a lecture and put my oxygen feed back on. I checked myself out against doctor’s orders at 2 or 3pm that day and got myself out of that crazy place.

  38. In Israel, they closed schools from 4th up. Fatalities in 0-9 years have been 0. Closing pre-K to 3 allows some people to still work that would otherwise have to stay home. A briefing I read today from virologists/epidemiologist at the UCSF medical school were concerned about school closures impacting staffing at hospitals.

    Given the fatality rates by age, those over 60 need to self-quarantine, along with those that immune suppressed, have lung disease, diabetes, etc. Everyone else should be fine with hand washing, social distancing, staying out of crowds.

    6 Flags Over Jesus (a.k.a. Lakewood Church) is moving services online. The local Roman Catholics Diocese (and many others) have relieved members from their weekly mass obligation.

  39. Given the fatality rates by age, those over 60 need to self-quarantine, along with those that immune suppressed, have lung disease, diabetes, etc. Everyone else should be fine with hand washing, social distancing, staying out of crowds.

    My parents, 78 and 81, drove a 100 miles today for lunch to meet with my mom’s cousins. Both are stage 4 cancer in remission. Dad is still teaching the high school boy’s class on Wednesday night church and plans to do so for the future. He is very concerned about how to teach boys to be Christian men.

    ADD: My parents were born in the depression transitioning into WWII. They do not fear much.

  40. 6 Flags Over Jesus (a.k.a. Lakewood Church) is moving services online. The local Roman Catholics Diocese (and many others) have relieved members from their weekly mass obligation.

    My church has shut down until April. 2,000 members with 1,500+ of them showing up every Sunday.

    I like Joel Osteen. He preaches the prosperity gospel too much but, he is a good preacher. I got enough hellfire and damnation preaching in the 1970s to last me a lifetime.

  41. The Marble Falls HEB was crowded today. Thanksgiving shopping crowded. The paper aisle was empty. Good time to dust the shelving. All check stands open, Business Center was closed as they had those folks running a register.

    Almost everyone had heaping carts. Oh, so did I but four 30 packs of Miller High Life take a lot of room. Go ahead and judge but I had room in the spare fridge. Did not buy a brisket. Bought a “chuck shoulder roast”. What happened to the cut Mom used for pot roast? I don’t need the bone but the dogs would like it. A few potatoes and onions. Bananas and apples. Various cheeses. Half and Half. Some Mexican crackers and a box of Ritz. Taco shells.

    Did I think to get a few tomatoes? A couple of carrots? Of course not.

    Frozen chicken tenders because the frozen breasts are just stupidly sized… you get a bag of little chicken breasts or a bag of “OMG Monster Chicken” the size of a turkey. Pretty sucky for portion control. Yeah, I know, hie thee to Costco for the individual wrapped chicken.

    The soup section was pretty much wiped out of Ramen other than Cream of Chicken and Shrimp whatever. Spam and other canned meats were pretty full. I don’t know. I’d rather have more to eat than Ramen.

    Well, it’s Spring. The trees and such are leafing out. No TP? Hey, just watch out for Poison Ivy.

    The folks in front of me had a lot of frozen pizzas, bagle bites, hot pockets, and similar. More in their cart than I had in mine. Yeah, not feeding kids with that. Not with just a 2 quart jug of milk.

    Which…. what’s with buying lots of frozen veggies? If the power goes out, then what?

    I saw gas for $1.85. Figures. I paid $2.49 a week ago. My cans are full, too.

  42. “Kung Flu Curriculum”
    https://daddybearsden.com/2020/03/12/kung-flu-curriculum/

    “Research Project – What was John Moses Browning’s best invention and why? Minimum of 500 words.”

    I like the way this guy thinks. And I’ll never shoot my .308 BAR without a shoulder cushion again.

    Hat tip to:
    http://raconteurreport.blogspot.com/2020/03/whistling-past-graveyard.html

    And the quote of the day:

    “QOTD, same site comments:

    Pure poetry in prose.

    “I envisaged the End of Days to be more exciting than starving to death trapped in your own house while wiping your bum on a sock.”

    Didn’t we all.”

  43. The Marble Falls HEB was crowded today. Thanksgiving shopping crowded. The paper aisle was empty. Good time to dust the shelving. All check stands open, Business Center was closed as they had those folks running a register.

    You know, if this whole thing blows over in two weeks, people are going to try to return half that crap that they bought. I would not like to be the returns stocker at that time.

  44. Which…. what’s with buying lots of frozen veggies? If the power goes out, then what?

    At Sam’s Club today, I noticed the Tiger Moms had Pediasure cases in the carts. What’s that about?

    The cereal aisle was wiped out. I didn’t venture further into the store since I only stopped to replenish my caffeine supply and work snacks.

    Work sent us home for two weeks. I’m on PTO next week regardless.


  45. You know, if this whole thing blows over in two weeks, people are going to try to return half that crap that they bought.

    Actually, if it is cold, like meat and dairy and frozen stuff and produce, you’re not going to get a refund. Because all of that goes into the trash. Why? How is the store to know you didn’t leave all that out in your car overnight?

    Ok, watermelons that are not ripe get a refund or exchange.

  46. Actually, if it is cold, like meat and dairy and frozen stuff and produce, you’re not going to get a refund. Because all of that goes into the trash. Why? How is the store to know you didn’t leave all that out in your car overnight?

    I’ve returned subpar meat to HEB and Sam’s without a problem, but it wasn’t wrapped in plastic with a pricetag still attached.

    The toilet paper and paper towels will go back to Costco in a couple of weeks, even if the emergency isn’t resolved.

  47. The LA Fitness near the house closed tonight for deep cleaning. A**hat walked in visibly sick the other day and started working out on the machines before the staff intervened. Management found out today that the individual tested positive for WuXu Flu.

    What is wrong with people?

  48. “Latter-day Saint missionary dies in Texas after ‘brief illness’”
    https://www.sltrib.com/news/2020/03/13/latter-day-saint/

    “A 19-year-old Latter-day Saint missionary serving in Texas died in her sleep after what church officials described as a “brief illness.””

    Oh crap. So this is why the Mormons closed their doors and are bringing all their missionaries home.

  49. I just got an announcement from WinCo (they have over 120 stores, open 24-hours) that they will be closed from 12 a.m. to 5 a.m. every day for the foreseeable future in order to clean and re-stock. With the unprecedented crowds, it is necessary.

    We are entering a new paradigm.

  50. My father-in-law’s nursing home in Lewisville, Texas is closing their doors to all visitors at 7 pm as of tonight for the duration. No family, no spouses, nobody.

    They probably should have done this a week ago.

  51. At Sam’s Club today, I noticed the Tiger Moms had Pediasure cases in the carts. What’s that about?

    What is a Tiger Mom ?

    Pediasure is carbs, man. Carbs are life.
    https://pediasure.com/

    Remember the “Deep Impact” movie ? They were stocking the boat with Ensure.

  52. @lynn …. no, the Church of Jesus Christ (LDS) is *not* bringing all of their missionaries home.

    They are bringing some home early, especially those in the most-affected countries. And older (think 50+) missionaries are also being brought home, especially if they have health conditions. From the Church Newsroom (official news releases) https://newsroom.churchofjesuschrist.org/article/coronavirus-update-february-27-2020#missionary-work .

    In Europe, all senior missionaries and young missionaries with serious or chronic medical conditions will return home beginning Thursday, March 12, 2020. These missionaries, who are at a higher risk for complications from COVID-19, come from 22 missions across Europe. After returning home, they will self-isolate for 14 days. These missionaries will not receive a new temporary assignment but will be considered for reassignment once the COVID-19 situation abates.
    Missionaries who remain in those countries where COVID-19 is of particular concern will take precautions to stay healthy, including staying in their apartments as much as possible, avoiding personal interaction with other people and teaching through phone calls or other technology. Mission Presidents are communicating with families to let them know of these precautions and keep them updated on local circumstances.

    The Church is taking steps to reduce the number of missionaries in areas where the virus is of particular concern. These steps will give mission presidents more flexibility to ensure missionaries are effective and safe and that there is adequate space to house missionaries if they are moved out of cities where there are greater concerns about infection.

    Of course, all meetings (including Sunday meetings) have been cancelled for now. This is in response to guidelines to not have large gatherings. Plus closing all Church-related conferences, buildings, etc. The Church has a large technical capability to broadcast/stream many different activities, so there will be alternatives to Sunday meetings and guidance available.

    I note that the Church started a more ‘home-centered, Church supported’ study plan last year, which will allow members to continue the Church curriculum studies at home.

    I don’t think that the unfortunate death of the female missionary (serving in East Houston) is related to the current COVID thing. There are unfortunate deaths of serving missionaries in the past.

  53. What is a Tiger Mom ?

    Constance Wu in “Fresh Off The Boat” is the poster child.

    Wu doesn’t realize it yet, but that was the best acting job she will ever have.

  54. Diarrhea is one symptom of a Wuflu case.

    It’s going to be home treatment for all but those needing respiratory support.

    Carbs? Just sugar with some salt and other minor additives. Chocolate bar and water probably has more carbs…

    –this whole thing isn’t blowing over in two weeks. In two weeks we’ll be where Italy is if people don’t stay the hell home.

    — areas less affected by covid? Where are those areas??

    n

  55. I don’t think that the unfortunate death of the female missionary (serving in East Houston) is related to the current COVID thing. There are unfortunate deaths of serving missionaries in the past.

    I doubt it too. But it was just the wrong time at the wrong place. And I feel sorry for her friends and parents. And the other missionaries.

    I did the missionary thing in Denver, Colorado back in 1975 for two weeks when I was 15. It was wild. I doubt that I converted a single person. We just tried to keep from getting bit by people’s dogs. It is amazing how many dogs get out when people open the front door.

  56. Of course, all meetings (including Sunday meetings) have been cancelled for now. This is in response to guidelines to not have large gatherings. Plus closing all Church-related conferences, buildings, etc. The Church has a large technical capability to broadcast/stream many different activities, so there will be alternatives to Sunday meetings and guidance available.

    We are doing the same thing at my church. I suspect the LDS closure emboldened our preacher.

  57. Disney was the linchpin in my opinion. Helped my wife to finally flip the switch and see from my POV. My sibling still intends to travel as planned from Chicago to Tampa and will spend time with my mom, in Sarasota, where they’ve had several confirmed cases. Jeez.

    n

    Added, and Disney will put our yearly DVC points back in our bucket without additional restrictions. Hooray. That was the last financial burden/sticking point for my wife.

  58. –this whole thing isn’t blowing over in two weeks. In two weeks we’ll be where Italy is if people don’t stay the hell home.

    The general population will be going bonkers in two weeks. What may keep us from going the Italy route is our gadget and streaming obsessions.

    Free Baby Yoda for everybody!

  59. And that will lead to outbreaks 5 days later, and it will still have bought some time.

    Disney+, hulu, netflix, redbox, anyone who can provide distraction for a small amount of money will make bank for a short time at least.

    n

  60. Child’s school is closed next week. Most of the private schools in town are following example of public school closure. Also announced as closing effective COB today are our museum, convention centers, libraries, various cultural centers and other municipality controlled / owned public gathering places.

    Less than 150 tests completed in Alaska. One positive, from an international pilot passing through that recognized what he had and minimized his contact with others.

    I noticed that Grace Christian School continued in their hosting duties for a basketball tournament, they were live streaming nearly empty bleachers and teams playing earlier today. No word on if they are closing next week. I was surprised this week at how light traffic was when I left work. Our spring break however I don’t recall observing a difference in traffic at spring break in past years. May simply have failed to noticed.

    The closure of public facilities is having a rolling impact on scheduled events. Our arts community and festival community will take a heavy hit. Even our dog community is affected. Several dog show activities are cancelled (400-500 dogs typically present, probably same number of humans).

    Store shelves are empty of TP, hand sanitizer, etc. Interesting times, indeed.

  61. Australia’s latest count is 220 cases with still only 3 deaths. Formula 1 event has been cancelled.
    Many companies are asking employees to work from home. there is a ban on public gatherings over 500. Schools are still open. Most supermarket shelves are still empty of TP, pasta etc.. People queuing outside supermarkets before opening time.

    Questions are being asked re how many test kits are available and how many have been tested. Interesting times..!

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