Mon. Dec. 28, 2020 – counting them down…

Cool, damp, overcast.  That’s my best guess for the day.

Sunday was nice.  A bit on the damp side, but shirtsleeves and sunglasses weather.

So naturally I was at my secondary cutting up shipping crates and throwing out obsolete trade show booth parts.  I got there and my neighbor had a huge commercial style grill set up and was getting meat ready… For the next 4 hours my brain was marinaded in the smell of grilling meat.   Neighbor had some sort of party/family get together that involved a dozen kids, a whole lot of chicken, really loud tejano music, and a tiny bouncy house, with appropriate numbers of adults.   Looked like a parole meeting for the parents honestly.   Not a mask anywhere to be seen, not even worn badly.  It was in a space open to the outside, but it was typical hispanic get together.  They are not, in general, stand offish or ‘reserved’ when in family groups.

On my drive home I saw several other large groups having outdoor parties.

I made a bunch of space but still have a long way to go.  Forklift could fit if I had to move it today.  There is still a lot to be gone through and gotten rid of, and there is a whole bunch of shuffling around that needs to be done, but progress was made.

Progress being made is good.  Groups gathering is bad.  Yes, I’m saying that flat out.  Take the time to read Aesop’s report from the front line.  He’s ground truth/boots on the ground in Cali.  Yes, he can be an alarmist.  Yes, his language is ‘salty’ and he doesn’t suffer fools gladly.   But you can either believe he’s making the whole thing up (which doesn’t fit with the previous 6-7 years I’ve been reading him) or he’s telling the truth and it’s grim.  Not seeing it where you are?  Awesome.  Hope that continues to be true.  Remember though back a few months when all the rural and semi-rural areas were saying it was a nothing burger?  Most of those same areas are seeing plenty of cases now.  Sooner or later, it does get to where you are.  I don’t usually put pull quotes in my actual post but here are a couple…

“Nameless SoCal Hospital is full, bottom to top, wall to wall. “

“ER is holding ICU patients, now for multiple days. Entire ER is now set up for COVID isolation, which is running 75-90% of patients seen, 24/7. And those are only the ones too sick to send home. “

“Morgue overflow conex cold storage is now full of corpses. “

“We ran out of body bags day before yesterday, so until we got more, deceased patients had to stay in occupied rooms. Even with getting decedents out, new dead are piling up faster than we’re getting old ones off to coroner or mortuaries. “

“Between staff shortages and actual sick staff, we’re starting the day with 50% staffing in some units, and it’s virtually impossible to get hired guns to come in. Everyone is over this, and all they get by picking up registry work or extra shifts where they work, is more sh*t sandwich, every day, into infinity. And you can’t spend bonuses if you’re dead.

And in L.A. County, everything I just wrote? Worse. Squared.”

“We’re all dreading what happens when we get the Christmas/New Year’s Stupidity Surge, 3-5 weeks from now, but it’s definitely coming.

Things are spiffy where you are? Outstanding. Goody for you. No, really. Hope your luck holds.

Meanwhile, I’m hearing from nurses who blog in other states, e.g. Texas, that they’re getting, now, what we had here in Apr-July, and hospital manglement (not a typo. -A.) there learned nothing from what happened in NYFS, NJ, Atlanta, Nawlins, or CA, and accordingly planned for no such thing.”

Ordinary care is not available at his hospital anymore.  They are one step away from disaster triage and rationing care.

Say whatever about whatever.  Masks, Fauci, overreach, lies, models, whatever.  For SoCal at least, the disaster is HERE.  All the other stuff no longer matters.  Once the hurricane arrives, all the models, storm tracks, colored charts, mean nothing.  All that matters is getting through and then the recovery.  That’s where SoCal (LA and probably Riverside) is right now.  Everyone else is probably going to get there sooner or later.  Knowing what we know from round one, even if it happened only to ‘other people’ and not you, what are you doing to be ready when the storm gets to your area?

I hope everyone here has been using the hiatus to build up their stocks.  There is zero reason to be caught short again.  It’s time to be ready to pull back in, limit your exposure, and get ready to ride out the next wave.  Cali is leading the way- and not in a good way.  There is very little reason to think your zip code will protect you.

Avoid crowds.  And keep stacking.

 

n

Thur. Dec. 17, 2020 – hace frio hoy!

Cold.  Damp.  But maybe no rain, and maybe some sun.

Yesterday was overcast and cold until late in the day when the sun finally peeked through the clouds.  Didn’t do anything outside.  Didn’t get much done period.  What little I did do was needful, but it wasn’t my most productive day.  It was 34F when I went to bed.

So today I’ll be visiting my client.  He’s got a bunch of stuff that was working after my last visit that isn’t working anymore.  I’ll be troubleshooting and moving gear around.

Before that, I’ll going to maybe do a bit of in person shopping.  I’m hoping to pick up my prescription in the store, and there are things I would like to have in the fridge.  We’ll see how much of the list I get done around the house first, then getting ready for my site visit, then maybe the store.  Once I head to my client’s house, I’m there until dinner.

Friday will be full of pickups.  I got some Christmas presents, and a bunch of batteries for my solar project.  I grabbed a handheld ham handie talkie too at one of the auctions.  I really didn’t get too much radio gear this year.  I guess that’s a blessing with the Hamfest being canceled.

So much to do, IRL, for the Holidays, at my secondary, with auction selling and buying, and I’m falling behind because I’m just not as motivated as I was.  Mild depression?  Who knows.  This is certainly the time of year for it, and the year has been heaping on reasons in spades.  You could describe the change in mask and stay at home compliance as a sort of ‘cabin fever’ too.  Whatever, if I’m affected, lots of other people must have it worse.  If you’re feeling depressed, you’re not alone, and there is help out there, and right here for that matter.  Talking seems to help, and is the usual prescription.

I always feel better looking at the stuff I’ve put away to secure my family’s future.  I’ve got stacks of stuff to get rid of, true.  But I’ve got stacks of stuff to get us through what’s already started, and will be a long time finishing.  The trick is knowing what to stack.   Food and ways to prepare it, water and ways to purify it, shelter and ways to defend it, health and welfare materials and the knowledge to use them, these are ALWAYS good to have.  Keep stacking these and you’ll probably be alright.

nick

Fri. Oct. 30, 2020 – Tired. Very tired. But awake and engaged!

Cool and maybe sunny?  Windy and damp to a high degree of certainty.  50F when I went to bed.

Most of yesterday was sunny and windy in the 50s and 60s F.  I half froze cleaning the leaves out of the pool 🙂

I got a bunch of little things done yesterday.  Nothing worth writing home about, or indeed, writing here about.

I was tired and falling asleep in my chair all day. I got to bed late and didn’t sleep well.   I am hoping today will be better.

Still planning to do mostly Halloween prep.   I’ve got a few more things to put out, and the new stuff to pull together.  Child two needs additional work on her CV costume.  And all the normal stuff needs doin’…

So I better get going.

n

(use this time wisely, and keep stacking)

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.

 

Sat. June 20, 2020 – another week gone

Slightly cooler, humid, might be some rain.

Yesterday we got rain almost everywhere I wasn’t.    I could see the cell moving across the north side of town as I drove around, but I never had any significant rain hit the truck.  It did rain here at the house according to my  wife,  so I won’t have to water the gardens.  Streets were dry by the time I got home though.

Juneteenth was a nothing burger.  I’ve lived here since ’03 and never was aware of any particular celebration even though it’s supposed to be a Houston thing.  I certainly never heard anything about it in all the years I’ve lived elsewhere.  The scanner had the cops following and keeping an eye on various groups throughout the day, but I didn’t hear about any violence.  I guess it could have gone a different way, and it did bring home the value of the scanner for at least a heads up, since I was completely unaware until I heard the first discussion about the gathering crowd.  I chose a different route for my errand and avoided any potential threats.

Today I’ve got a couple more things to pick up, and then I’m battening down the hatches again.   Too many stories of people who just HAD to go out and break the distancing rules, who are now getting sick.   I don’t feel super anyway, so I’m not risking it.  YMMV.  I am ADVOCATING that you all continue to isolate as much as possible.  I could be wrong and often am, but the downside risk is huge for this one.

Kids are at swim team practice with the wife this morning, and then (possibly) staying for some free swim.  I’m not the boss of her and I know she’ll TRY  to stay separated.  It will also let her take the tenor of the (female half of the) tribes.  Perhaps she’ll get home with renewed commitment to isolating.

It could happen.

Dinner was stewed chicken thighs, in the slow cooker with a sauce packet and veg.  I didn’t have what I usually put in, so I went with onion, turnip, beets, carrots, and apple.  It tasted great.  Just a bit of extra sweet to go with the savory of the spice packet.  Dessert was a cupcake.  Daughter baked cupcakes for our friends with covid, and another family we haven’t seen in  a while.  They dropped them off as a drive by act of kindness.

Some of you know from yesterday’s comments that Barbara is sick in the hospital, which is why she hasn’t posted this week.  Please see my post over at her site for what details we have.  I’ll be passing along whatever she or her sister Frances would like me to.  Please keep  her and those who love her in your prayers.

The one scenario/ contingency I can’t remember Bob ever discussing planning for was his absence.  Give it some consideration in your own situation and planning.

Keep planning, and stacking.

 

nick

 

Mon. May 18, 2020 – another week, home school, home work, home sweet home

Nice, sunny and cool.

Yesterday was cool to start, without much sun, then got hot and sunny, but turned into a picture postcard evening. Comfortable and a pretty pink sunset, with breezes for cooling. Nice.

I got a couple of things done moving toward having a work area in the back corner of the garage. Moved some stuff out of the way (20+ coleman lanterns of all fuels and vintages), and added some plywood to the back of a shelf. The plywood will be a tool board eventually. It’s all a bit fussy and low criticality, but that’s about all I’m feeling up to at the moment.

I did cut the grass, and was soaked through when finished. Looked at the gardens a bit, but don’t have the weekly report until tomorrow.

Breakfast was instant hash browns with a BB date in 2016, seasoned and served under fried eggs… yum. Also chocolate chip muffins from mix. Dinner was one of the ready to eat main courses from Costco. We eat a lot of the lamb shanks, but this time it was mexican grilled chicken thighs. Added half a can of corn, a can of beans, and some tortillas for a nice and low effort dinner. I freeze the main courses so it takes a bit longer than 7 minutes in the microwave, but they last much longer that way.

The news that several sailors tested positive for Covid-19 after having previously tested negative more than once, and returning to duty, is alarming to say the least. We’ve had other reports of similar cases, but there was always a way to deny it. They are arm-waving that the tests may not be good, etc. but it looks like pretty strong evidence you CAN get this a second time, or that it doesn’t go away but just goes dormant for a while. This is very bad if that is the case. Think about what will happen if it becomes undeniable that we WON’T get immunity, and that the second time can be worse (as we see in Korea and China). Pretty much everyone’s plan for getting back to normal involves immunity in one form or another. We don’t currently have a lot of time with the people who have recovered to see what long term or even medium term consequences might be. We might be in for some more unpleasant surprises in the coming months.

Which means, keep prepping. Lots more bad stuff can be coming down the pike. This is a pretty good rehearsal and test of our systems. While the trucks are still rolling, and the system is still mostly intact, restock, stock up, and keep stacking.

nick

Sun. May 17, 2020 – well that was a bust

Cooler and dreary. Maybe some rain? [71F and grey at 9am]

Yesterday was quite cool at around 70F and generally dreary all day.

I had quite a bit of pain and limited range of motion, so I was moving slow and doing very little. Took more tylenol yesterday than in the last 6 months. About the only thing I got done was to clean the oven and bake some cast iron at the same time. The oven really needed the self clean cycle, and I had some cast that was in the garage that needed a touchup. Two birds, one stone.

Another blogger calls it ‘piddlefarting around’. That’s what I did. Bunch of little things of no real consequence that ate the day. My wife even made the dinner. I did do a couple of pieces of shipping, one ebay sale to Canadia and some masks to my sibling. Yeah, not the one that said I was ‘killing first responders’ by ‘hoarding’ masks, that was a couple of weeks ago. This is the sibling that basically did all of the things I suggested before this hit, but secretly and without telling or thanking me, ‘cuz I’m a paranoid prepper. Grrrr. If they weren’t individually wrapped I was going to take a sharpie and write on each one, “you were right”. But I didn’t because the important thing is that my loved ones are safe and better prepared than they were. It does occasionally stick in one’s craw…

Worked on a puzzle with the wife. Ate, watched Pippi Longstocking -1973 made in Sweden version. Kids laughed and enjoyed it. I don’t think it was the version I remember from my childhood, but we’ll see on the next book’s film. It’s dubbed in english, which is effective, but there is just something half a bubble off about the timing or something that makes it seem very strange to me. The ‘character’ accents they chose for the dubbing are very strange.

Today I’ll either bite the bullet and go to the chiropractor, or I’ll feel better. I know which one I’d prefer…

Dinner was marinaded and baked chicken from the last delivery, baked acorn squash (one of my favorites to have in the cabinet as they last forever and are easy to cook), and steamed rice from storage. More Easter candy for dessert.

If it weren’t for a totally rational desire to avoid infection, I’d have gone to the chiropractor days ago, and been back to normal by now. That sucks. I’m also thankful that I can make a choice and that it isn’t life or death.

Keep stacking, keep learning, keep prepping.

nick

Fri. May 15, 2020 – another week zipped by

Warm to hot, sunny and damp.

Yesterday got pretty dang hot, 103F in the driveway. Sunny for most of the day too, when it wasn’t threatening and overcast.

My neck and shoulders were really stiff and sore, so I was moving kinda slow.

Did math with Kid2. She was so frustrated by 3 digit long multiplication, mainly because she wasn’t keeping the columns straight. She thinks long division is easy, but multiplication gets her. Other daughter had trouble with columns running off to the side too, despite gridded paper. Once we got some precision in her writing, it got better. Kid2 does a weird thing, she makes all her numbers moving the pencil backwards. She starts at the end and bottom, and draws the number upwards. They look ok, and she’s FAST, but it’s weird.

Got almost all the medical resupply I ordered. I’m good on bandaids and bandages for a while now. Still waiting for wound wash. Bandaids, tape, and vet wrap will all age out. The adhesive or non-adhesive parts will change and they’ll become much less useful than they were. I can’t recommend stocking cases under normal expectations, because you’ll just never use it. Aesop reminded me that ACE bandages can be washed and reused many times and might be a better choice than Kerlix and tape. Of course, I’ve got some ACE bandages too. The kerlix sure is more comfortable in our climate though.

Did more work in the garage. It’s like playing one of those sliding number games with 15 filled squares out of 16, and to move a number around you have to slide all the other numbers around too. I can see progress, I just can’t quite see the end. I keep finding useful things, so that’s a plus. I’m not pulling much OUT but I’m stacking it and restacking it and at least I have a fresh idea about what’s there. So much stuff that needs to get sold. One long delayed project got done. I’ve been meaning to put together a simple and basic tool kit for each vehicle, not a ‘fix it on the side of the road’ kit, but a couple of tools so you aren’t stuck with nothing if you need to turn a bolt, take the legs off something you bought, or similar. I’ve been collecting the bits, just never put them together. I built two today. A tall tin can with a lid, had Japanese bar mix snacks in it (it’s an inch or so taller than a soda can, and very sturdy tin). 6 in 1 screwdriver, basic wire strippers, small vice grip pliers, disposable knife with the ‘snap off’ blade, small adjustable wrench. Small box of strike anywhere matches, one trash bag-rolled, and six feet of duct tape wrapped around the can. Surprisingly there is still room in the can for a Powerbar or another tool, but I can’t think of much that would be good but not overkill. A small Channelok plier would be nice, but the vise grip should be sufficient. In any case, I don’t have a small Channelok to add to the cans so they’re done for now.

Dinner was frozen pork chops, fresh zucchini saute’d in butter with Parmesan cheese, and stuffing mix from a bag. Meat was from 2019, zukes from the store several weeks ago, and the stuffing was either Thanksgiving or possibly Christmas. Not much from the ‘prepper’ pantry, but you can’t eat out of rusted cans and old cartons every day…

Today I’ll be doing more of the same, and heading over to my secondary with some stuff that I CAN get out of the house and garage. I note that TX has a small uptick in cases about 2 weeks since the first easing of restrictions. I’ll be wearing PPEs if I have to interact with anyone, count on that.

Latin America is starting to show a lot of cases. Can India and Africa be far behind?

Keep working on skills and stacking. Join the other 300M of us going through closets, kids rooms, and garages… you never know what you put away and forgot about.

nick

Mon. Mar. 16, 2020 – plague continues to grow, avoid people

Warm and wet.

Yesterday turned into a fine day in the late afternoon. OC and grey for most of the day, the breeze finally cleared the air for a little while.

I got a whole pallet of scrap loaded and delivered to my secondary location, where I stacked it on a pallet behind the dumpster and wrote “Free” on it. If it’s still there when this burns out, I’ll take it to the scrapyard myself. At the moment, my time is worth way more than scrap value to break it down, and more than being close to the guys at the yard for only a few bucks in ‘breakage’ if I don’t separate it. This is another case of “should have done it long ago, before China tanked.”

Getting rid of that pallet opened up a nice spot for a metal shelf unit to hold food and supplies. Going to the secondary also let me pick up two black tubs of food. I’m concerned about bringing everything home, but I’m also concerned about theft while it’s there, and not being able to access it if things continue to get restricted. Right now, I’m leaning toward bringing most of it home.

——————————————————————————

Trump and the others trying to manage this crisis are handicapped by their privilege. Yes, I’m using the SJW word, and in mostly the same way they do. US leaders are trying to calm the public down, which is a knee jerk reaction. People get excited, you try to calm them down. In this case, I think it’s entirely appropriate to buy enough food and supplies to stay the flock indoors and avoid people for a couple of months. Others disagree. Trump and TPTB have privilege that they don’t see– they won’t be going out next week to shop. They won’t be taking their lives and the lives of their loved ones into their hands and exposing themselves to a hundred potential infecteds, or touching the same surfaces 100s of dirty sick people have also touched.

I don’t care if the stores have food in a week. Or two weeks. Or if they’ll stay open somehow. I won’t be going there, and neither will Trump, Fauci, or any of the other stiffs on TV.

I won’t be going because I don’t want to get sick. I UNDERSTAND WHAT QUARANTINE MEANS. Clearly they don’t. It certainly doesn’t mean, after a week home with your sick kids, and a day after YOU start coughing, head to the Kroger for some lunchmeat and ramen. The folks at Kroger don’t want your virus shedding butt in there either.

I won’t be going out into ‘the community’ because that’s where ‘community transmission’ happens. FFS people lockdown means LOCKED DOWN. No way the queues will maintain enough separation between people. No way they’ll be wiping down surfaces and waiting 10 minutes for the virus to die before the next person touches it. YES, 10 minutes of wet time. For almost all the disinfectants.

—————————————————————————–

My wife and others have said the same things, this feels weird, wrong somehow. I figure it’s because we are experienced and prepared. We’ve had PRACTICE and we have routines even — but for hurricanes, storms, earthquakes, etc NOT pandemic. We’re trained to head out for one last thing before the storm gets here. We’re used to working through a list and getting a few more things done before the storm. We’re used to checking on neighbors, making sure they have what they need and are getting ready. We’re used to cracking a bottle and grilling the freezer meat when the power is out, or sharing a meal with neighbors while the aftershocks shake. We know that there is backup out there and eventually help will arrive. We pride ourselves on not needing help, but providing it.

All that experience is WRONG for this disaster. You need to stop going to the store. Stop touching all the things. No get togethers. No casual contact. No more ‘one last thing’ if it involves people. My neighbor was out in the yard so I asked him what their plans were. He said “I’m going to hockey practice.” No, I meant for the next few weeks. “OH, I’ve been to the store 3 times, we’re good to stay home.” Then he jumped in the truck and went to join a group of people potential infecteds and play hockey. He’ll need a store to be open next week, and he’ll be walking right into what will feel like an overnight increase in infection.

———————————————————————————-

Take precautions and finish up! Recognize that this IS different than all the other disasters, and don’t get caught out because of your own habits and expectations.

If you aren’t done yet, keep stacking, but do it by remote control. Don’t go out and play in it.

nick

Sun. Mar. 15, 2020 – 3 months, not 3 weeks

Warm and wet.

Light rain started last night, after a damp and overcast day. Some moments of clear sky and nice breeze, but generally threatening all day.

My AC is working again. It took several pounds of R22 to bring the system pressure back up. I’m hoping it holds for the season.

If you haven’t been reading comments, I encourage you to do so as that’s where the good stuff is. I think of the day’s post as a topic sentence for the day, but it often ends up something completely different. It’s always interesting and civil.

Also, please check out Aesop at https://raconteurreport.blogspot.com/ He’s on the front line of this in CA. I’m active in the comments over there too (if you’re interested).

After consideration, and some thought, PLEASE STOP GOING TO STORES. The curiosity factor will get you killed or sickened. All over the web I’m seeing people check in and admit they didn’t really need anything but were just curious. I admit I did it too, last week. But now, the freaking stores are full of people from the community. That’s where “community transmission” comes from! Read the Italian ICU report I linked late last night. The ONLY thing that will help when the ICU inundation starts is slowing the rate of contagion. The only thing that slows the spread is isolation.

Don’t even think about ‘get it now, while there are still beds’. Between the time to show symptoms and the normal time until it gets bad, you won’t beat the rush. Everyone with it NOW will beat you there.

I commented last night why you need at least 3 months of supplies, please take a moment and consider my timeline. If it doesn’t make sense, let me know. No need to tell me it’s overreaction, but do please keep sharing your honest thoughts. We all need to avoid any mania (beyond what some of you already believe we’re infected with, and if we are, we need to slow the spiral. If you change your mind, I’m not going to judge, I’m going to celebrate.) Getting your stock up to the three month level is about the only reason I can think of to risk going into a store at this point.

I’m also sure we are about to get some internal domestic travel restrictions. It’s already been mentioned in at least two official places. The Governor of Florida is calling for it. They will ground most of the planes at some point, the math insists on it. I expect one or both of my siblings to be stuck in FL but at least my mom will have company. No resources, but company. I don’t want to consider what that means for my family long term. No matter what YOUR belief about the validity and necessity of the measures is, this now has a life of its own, and shutting down air travel is the next step. They will likely wait until they have something they can point to for such a drastic seeming decision, so watch for that. It may be a ‘magic number’ of infected, dead, or occupied ICU beds, or it might be something external to the USA. There won’t be much if any warning, we’ve already BEEN warned. One, maybe two weeks minimum would be my guess, but it’s coming.

This sort of disaster is about the worst kind. It’s everywhere. There won’t be help coming in from outside the region, like most natural disasters. What help might be available because it won’t happen everywhere at the same time, will be held in reserve for what the outsiders know is coming to them. You are on your own. No one is coming to save you. The ONLY thing that will help is if you get immunity after having the virus. If that happens, the people with mild cases will be able to keep everything going and we’ll only lose those with acute symptoms. If you don’t get lasting immunity, or worse, get it bad the second time, better start praying for effective drugs. And soon.

With that in mind, start praying for an antibody blood test, so we can confirm who’s had it and is possibly immune. There are an increasing number of people sharing stories of having been sick in the last month, but not having the flu. Heck, I have been coughing for the last month. I don’t think I got the flu, as I never had any real fever, but I felt pretty bad for a while. It’s important to remember that there might already be, and certainly will be, a large pool of people recovered from the mild symptoms. As long as they have immunity we’ll get through this. Until we can identify them though, we need to keep everyone isolated. (and there was an article about the virus being present in lungs for 30 something days after recovery, that would be bad news if true.)

So, if you aren’t stocked up, get there. Stop going out. Time to pull it all in and hope for the best.

nick