Sat. Sept. 5, 2020 – In which I go out on a limb…

Hot and humid, but maybe less so than last week.

I basically wasted the whole day yesterday.  Some very minor stuff got done, but I spent a bunch of time sleeping at my desk.

Today I’ve got yardwork and all the stuff I didn’t do yesterday.  Joy.

 

I’ve stopped checking covid medical news daily, or even weekly. If something catches my eye, I’ll scan it, but for the most part, now that the disaster is here, I’ve switched from “getting ready” to “deal with it” mode.

My wife is keeping an eye on the medical news for both of us.

Funny thing is happening. I’m seeing articles confirming stuff from WAY back at the beginning of this. Like this article

Coronavirus can spread throughout apartment blocks by flushing the toilet: Three Chinese families on different floors all became infected after virus spread through plumbing

Or the stuff about HCQ with azithromycin and zinc- there was a guy in the comments at Aesop’s blog VERY early on with a lot of info about this.

The reports of heart and lung damage that were dismissed early on, are now backed up with evidence from infections here.

The idea you could get it again was there as early as Feb/Mar with reports from China, and yet this is just now news?*

My observation is that there was plenty of good info very early, at least in some circles, and that much of what got reported after that was trying to downplay (or wishfully deny) what was known; or it was interpreted thru a political viewpoint. That is also why I’ve stepped back from following every report obsessively, once politics got involved everything became distorted. And, at the end of the day, it doesn’t matter. There is a virus, it is here, it is killing some people, and I don’t want to get it.

 

Some things are still true:

If you are old or sick you are more likely to have a bad outcome. If you need to be hospitalized your chances of dying are high. (Just on its face this makes sense- you only hospitalize serious cases.)

There are long term effects, and some of them are serious. Since we didn’t have long term survivors we didn’t (and don’t) have a good handle on what those are. The ones we are seeing are potentially life changing.

Random interactions don’t seem to have high transmission, but if you are unlucky enough to come in contact with a ‘super spreader’ your chances of getting sick and having it bad are much higher. There are a lot of ‘super spreaders’ but they seem to be widely dispersed.

Enclosed spaces and groups are a bad idea.  Wherever we see groups together for any length of time, we see cases.  Oddly to me, about 15% of the group seems to get sick, where I’ve seen good numbers.

This is going to be with us for a long time, basically until everyone who can get it does.

<strong>Consequently, the only official high level strategy goal that matters was and is to manage the number of concurrent cases to try to keep from overwhelming and destroying the health care system.</strong>** Everything else is opportunism or revisionism.

Finally, it bears repeating that there is no one “coronavirus”. There are dozens of different strains spreading and they have different aspects and different outcomes. Just because Johnny got strain x and had no real problems doesn’t mean that if he’d gotten strain y he’d have had the same experience. And it doesn’t mean that if Jane gets strain x she’ll be fine.

We are going to be living with this for a long time. Accept that, get used to that, adjust to that, and get ready for what’s next. The social and economic effects are just getting started. No matter how you feel about the medical effects on you personally or on the country and the world, the social and economic changes WILL affect you. That’s the next storm I see coming, and it’s what I’m preparing for. I sincerely hope I’ll be OVER-prepared, just as it turned out that I am over-prepared for the covid pandemic.  Not only am I replacing used or spoiled material,  I’m adding to the pile, including materiel.  I kindly suggest that you too keep stacking- skills, knowledge, connections, and stuff.

nick

*yeah, no one trusts the chinese, and scientists don’t trust anecdotal evidence, and now finally they have cases in the Western world that absolutely can’t be arm-waved away, or ‘what about’-ed to death.

**This goes all the way back to the initial briefings by CDC and their pandemic flu planning. And it worked. NYFC lost control, didn’t take the necessary steps, and did have bodies pile up outside of overwhelmed hospitals. That could have been everywhere (although worldwide it seems to be worse where the population density is higher than the average US density), and it could have continued longer. The ONLY realistic goal has been to try manage the number of active cases.