Coronavirus – Day 15: The Howl

On my mind

I am feeling optimistic about things today. It might be wishful thinking or just some of the latest news items I read but I’m hoping that we’re getting close to turning the corner. There’s a rumor that we might be flattening the curve here in the Bay Area. Man, I hope that’s true.

The Howl

There’s a thing where I live where everyday at 8pm, everyone opens their window or steps outside and howls at the top of their lungs. The dogs all jump in too. It’s loud. Apparently it was started by someone who wanted to send out a howl to honor the health care workers. It is nice and it’s good to hear the yell from all my neighbors to feel more connected to where I live. ABC News did a report on it too.

I tried to capture it in this video. It’s not great, but you get the idea

Some Good Stuff

Cases

  1. World: Cases 737,929, deaths: 35,019 (up 4,172 – a daily increase of 206%!)
  2. USA: Cases 143,055, deaths: 2,513 (up 322 – a daily increase of -34%)
  3. Marin: 93 cases (up 21), 1 death

This video give you a good perspective as to how the US is faring compared to the rest of the world…

 

Coronavirus – Day 14: Masks

I’m thinking today about masks. It’s hard to say what to do about masks. Some believe they’re not effective in protecting you from the virus. Personally, I feel like they have to be as they block moisture coming in and out of the mouth. Even if you’re not sick, the more you can block, the better.

Of course, it doesn’t really matter because you can’t buy a mask anywhere. Luckily we have some left over from the forest fires that ravaged our area last year. Whenever we go out (which is close to never), we put on the mask. We used to get looks but now I think people appreciate it.

I read today that the US has only about 1% of the 3.5 billion masks we need to combat coronavirus. In the US, we don’t manufacture them and both Europe and Asia have put a ban on mask exports. Soooo, we won’t be able to get new masks any time soon.

Our Weekend Activity

After maximizing our screen time in the morning, we did manage to do some good activities. We hit an empty parking lot for some exercise.

We ended the night with some ping pong and then made a fort in our living room and had a slumber party on the floor. Fun for everyone – except my back.

The Bad News

New York is totally overwhelmed. The 911 system in New York City typically gets 4,000 calls a day. Now they’re getting 7,000 – all related to coronavirus. Speaking of masks, the 911 responders are doing most cases without appropriate equipment to protect themselves from infection. NYC has become the epicenter of coronavirus, with more than 30,000 cases as of Saturday, and 672 deaths. If the rate of growth continues, NYC will suffer a more severe outbreak than those experienced in Wuhan, China, or the Lombardy region of Italy.

In Good News

James Dyson, the guy who’s made your amazing vacuum cleaner has focused on ventilators and has made an awesome one in 10 days. He’s now generated 15k of them. Love it.

and also, this guy:

Cases

  1. World: Cases: 664,695, deaths: 30,847 (up 2,024 – daily increase down 47%)
  2. USA: Cases: 124,464, deaths: 2,191 (up 482 – daily increase up 18%)
  3. Marin: 74 (up 5), 1 death

Coronavirus – Day 13: Kids

What i’m thinking about? My Kids

My kids and the silver lining in all of this madness. Even though I work at a company that’s 100% remote (we did it before it was cool. OG), I didn’t get to see my kids that much during the day until the schools shut down. Now, I see them all day.

Sasha comes into my office (aka the garage) about 4x a day and says “can I type on the ‘puter?” in just the cutest, heart-melting way. Playing with my kids, comforting them and being their dad is one of the great gifts in life, and I’m getting a strong dose of it now.

This paragraph from Prof G. really resonated with me yesterday

Caregivers live longer, and are happier, than anyone. I had kids late in life and never really comforted anybody until I was in my late thirties, when my mom was dying. And now with kids. The species chooses prosperity, and its foundation is people irrationally passionate about the well-being of someone else.

So true.

The Hospitals

I was also talking about the virus yesterday with a friend. While we still don’t know all the details of it, such as why there are some people who are infected but show no symptoms, or why some children experience it just as a mild cold, one thing we can all agree upon is that that the hospitals are scrambling. Those workers see the disease up front, not as a news story but as the person right in front of them. They try to protect themselves, but there’s no way the masks can stop it when you’re around it all day, every day. They put themselves at risk, for us.

And, they are panicking. They’re doing the best they can, but it’s madness. We hear story after story. My heart really goes out to them as it must be so uncomfortable and scary. If you work in healthcare and are going in every day, thanks you. Truly, thank you.

This pic was taken in Morristown, NJ, this week:

Also, we need to shut down America.

The middle of the country STILL isn’t shutting down to protect themselves. Here’s the chart. I’m not sure if this is a red state/blue state thing or if those areas legitimately aren’t as impacted as the others. I hope it’s the latter.

With this kind of activity, we’ll be inside longer and this disease will spread more than we’d like.

Some Fun Things

Some good outfits out there (thx to Kesner)…

Cases

  1. World: Cases: 618,043, deaths: 28,823 (up 3,788 – daily increase of 32%)
  2. USA: Cases: 104,865, deaths: 1,709 (up 408 – daily increase of 60%)
  3. Marin: 69 cases (up 4), 1 death

Coronavirus Log – Day 12: Fear

Where my head is:

I’ve now seen the virus more up close as I have some friends and family who are sick. I’m getting more scared about it. I’m scared of my family getting sick and people close to me dying. I know this isn’t a new concern to most but it continues to get more real for me.

It really makes me appreciate the family I have, my awesome kids, and how great it is to be with them every day.

If you’re scared too, just know that we’re all in this together. It’s crazy fucking times.

Other Items

This mayor totally lost his shit…in a great way. Pretty great:

Different people respond differently to the isolation. This guy has it figured out (kid friendly):

Also, following up on yesterday’s Triscuit’s post. A good thread…

Cases

  • World: Cases: 553,244. Deaths: 25,035 (up 2866 from yesterday – daily increase of 15%)
  • USA: Cases: 86,012. Deaths: 1,301 (up 255 from yesterday – daily increase of 4.%)
  • Marin: 65 cases (up 5 from yesterday)

Coronavirus Log – Day 11: Triscuits

Family Outings

We’re four people in a 1100 sq. ft house with one bathroom so things are getting tight. But, we’re getting creative. We did a group workout yesterday, and today, we did a team bike ride at a local church parking lot, which was fun for everyone.

Hunter loves riding his bike and Sasha is starting to come around.

Social Distancing

While at the church, we encountered a police officer. Super nice guy. He wanted to hand us some stickers and asked if the kids wanted to join him in the car and play with the dashboard buttons and turn on the lights. Really nice request, but WTF!!!??

Here’s my issue with that: we can get rid of Coronavirus. It’s actually pretty easy to do. All we have to do is, as a nation, take 14 days and not come in contact with anyone. That’s all. If we do that, this virus will disappear. It’ll be gone. Everyone just needs to take 14 days.

But if our police officers, who are on the front lines helping people, think it’s a good idea to invite others into their cars to touch all the knobs they’ve been touching, then this whole little plan just isn’t going to work. Oh man, we’re effed.

New York!
I was reading a lot about the scene in NYC yesterday. The NYTime has a good behind the scenes story and a video with the doctor.

The scene in Queens NY is crazy, an excerpt:

New York has become the epicenter of the entire world of the virus and they need not just thousands of additional beds but tens of thousands.

Finally, a Very Important Thread
In lighter news, this thread on Twitter was one of the best things I’ve read in months. A guy goes DEEP on
Triscuits

Cases

  • Worldwide: Cases 491,623, Deaths: 22,169 (up 2,494 from yesterday – daily increase of -1%)
  • U.S.: Cases: 69,210, Deaths: 1,046 (up 244 from yesterday – daily increase of 17%)
  • Marin CA: 60 cases (up 7 from yesterday)

Coronavirus Log – Day 10: Still Inside

My situation:

We’re hunkered down over here and enduring the storm. I am going a bit stir-crazy. Something about being around people and the energy they bring makes me feel good. Living in NYC and walking those streets was always energizing for me. I loved it. Here in Marin, I loved taking my kids to dropoff and being among all the kids and parents. It was hectic but fun to catch up with other parents and see the other kids talking and playing. I miss it. They probably can’t verbalize it but I think my kids miss it too. This will be a challenging period.

The government passed a $2 TRILLION dollar stimulus deal last night. We all will receive a one-time direct deposit of up to $1,200, and couples will get $2,400. The payments will be phased out based on income levels, before ending for those earning more than $99,000 annually. Families receive an additional $500 per child. That’s a lot of cash but people need it.

Related note, I called Wells Fargo yesterday and got a reprieve from paying my mortgage for 3 months, so that’s nice.

Other Items:

Cases

  1. World: 438,749 — Total deaths: 19,675 (up 2,516 from yesterday – daily increase of 37%)
  2. USA: 55,243 — Total deaths: 802 (up 209 from yesterday – daily increase of 71%)
  3. Marin: 53 cases (up 6 from yesterday), 0 deaths

Coronavirus Log – Day 9: Starting to Get Real

Yesterday was the first day where people in my inner circle – people I talk to every day – started testing postive for COVID. It’s makes the disease much more real and, let me tell you, it’s scary. It’s very contagious and seems to be coming for us.  This recounting of the day-in-the-life from a doctor is very interesting and really shows how this disease is taking over:

On a more positive note, my kids seem to be having fun at home. Sasha did a FaceTime call with another 5 year old. They two of them took the phones into their respective bedrooms and talked like teenagers. Sasha climbed up to her top bunk and turned to me and said, “Dad, can you go away. I’m talking with my friend.” Five going on fifteen.

On the other call, Sasha just set up her piano and played it for her friend. It was loud and annoying for her friend but cute for me.

Cases

  1. 392,780 — Total deaths: 17,159 (up 1,831 from yesterday – daily increase of 5.4%)
  2. USA: 46,481 — Total deaths: 593 (up 122 from yesterday – daily decrease of 7%)
  3. Marin: 47 cases (up 9 from yesterday), 0 deaths

Coronavirus Log – Day 8

(note: if you’re reading this via email, it’s better to click and see it in a browser as the images and embeds work much better)

Is this still happening? The novelty has definitely worn off and now it is getting inconvenient. I went out of the house yesterday with my kids. We went bike riding around the neighborhood. At first I was really enjoying it and then when i saw my son get close to complete strangers, I got very worried.  Doing this one activity could be the one activity that gets the entire house sick.  Luckily, Hunter didn’t get that close but it I got the message.

People are continuing to suffer around the world, specifically those in small businesses.  This is proving to be faster than 2008 and more destructive:

The nurses and hospital staff are starting to feel the pain

 

Cases

  • World: 350,536 — Total deaths: 15,328 (up 1,736 – daily increase of 3.8% from yesterday)
  • USA:  35,225 — U.S. coronavirus case numbers now third-highest in the world. Total deaths: 471 (up 131 – daily increase up 200% from yesterday)
  • Marin: 38 cases (up 1 from yesterday), 0 deaths

Finally, this is a funny read about cancelling your homeschool:

We know there are parents out there who can both love their children unconditionally and also teach them Common Core mathematics. If this global pandemic has taught us anything, it’s that we are not those parents. Just because we chose to close our homeschool, it does not mean your mother and I do not love you. It means we love you enough to know we can either love you or teach you algebra, not both.

Coronavirus Log: Day 7 – The Weekend

Happy Sunday from our house to yours –

Quick note for the Weekend post: The new album from The Weeknd is good. I particularly like this song:

Our first weekend while under quarantine. It was pretty fun. We went bike riding with the kids, and I went for a run. Upon my return Sasha helped me stretch out and then both H & S did a little workout with me.

I’ve been worried about eating foods at restaurants and ordering food for takeout or delivery. This read about Food Safety  gave me some much-needed facts and is making me less worried. A good read.

In the “I’m not at all surprised department,” the kids in Florida partying are coming down with cases of COVID

I get a weekly newsletter from Eugene Wei and I liked this metaphor he wrote about:

The Never-ending Bottle Episode
In the TV business, a bottle episode is the industry term for an episode that is severely constrained in order to be produced as cheaply as possible; usually, it refers to an episode shot entirely in one location, primarily with cast regulars. Without having to move the crew around and relight multiple locations, and without having to pay non-regular cast members, you can shoot the episode on the cheap.

Some shows have organic bottle episodes (for example, some serial killer show may plan for an episode where our lead profiler interviews the serial killer in his maximum-security prison), but more often it’s because a show has gone off-pattern (TV lingo for off-budget). When that happens, the showrunner announces that episode so-and-so will be a bottle episode, and the writer of said episode nods and then wanders to the bathroom to sob in a stall.

Writers usually hate to be assigned to a bottle episode; it’s like having your birthday on Christmas. You just feel swindled compared to other writers who have the budget to use multiple locations and high-profile guest stars. However, as in many creative endeavors, the constraints can summon untapped reserves of creativity. Such episodes often consist of a lot of people just sitting around and talking to each other. The one I remember most, because of what prompted it, was the “Isaac and Ishmael” episode of West Wing, its season three premiere. It was written and shot quickly and aired several weeks after 9/11, a stand-alone episode outside show continuity, consisting of a series of Socratic dialogues on terrorism and how to deal with it.

We’re living through a version of a real-life bottle episode now, many of us isolated at home because of the Covid-19 pandemic. This is that emergency episode that falls outside the overarching narrative continuity of our lives. I find it challenging to process how life might be forever changed, that while we were going about our daily lives, we missed the transition to a new season, the dark turn in the plot. Even as I bunkered down and haven’t left my condo for 11 days now, I’m not sure I’ve fully accepted that life might be changed quite drastically for the foreseeable future, if not forever. This isn’t a stand-alone episode, from which we’ll return to the core plot branch next week. This novel coronavirus is woven into the ongoing narrative now, forever.

Cases:

  • World: 316,187 — Total deaths: 13,592 (up 1,671 – daily increase is down 12% from yesterday)
  • USA: 26,747 Total deaths: 340 (up 65 – daily increase is down 7% from yesterday)
  • Marin: 37 cases (up 0 from yesterday), 0 deaths

Coronavirus Log: Day 6 – Starting to Feel It

What we’re thinking about

We’re worried about Diane’s medicine. She has bad asthma and needs her inhaler. She has only 1-2 weeks left and she’s worried there will be a run on that medicine as people get sick and she’ll be left without. It’s quite stressful. We’re looking to score some more. Stay tuned.

We are finding our groove a bit in home schooling. Hunter is dining great although he’s telling us that school at home is “way harder” than regular school, which I’m excited to hear

The standing “quaran-time” happy hour is pretty great to have every day.  While we don’t talk about much, it’s been great to see old faces and see how everyone is stressed out, the same as me.

Where we’re at:

The main thing on my mind is that this is going to last a LONG time and that it’s really going to impact a lot oF people. This is confluence of 3 things:

(1) The cases are going up. We’re on a higher trajectory than any other country

(2) The reports from hospitals are that they’re running out of supplies already. One hospital has already ordered to stop testing people coming in so they don’t waste the gowns and masks.

(3) There are still many areas that are not taking this seriously and not isolating themselves. This all but ensures this is going to spread and that we’re going to be inside for a lot longer than we thought. We needed to get EVERYONE inside and that is just not happening. Yesterday the California governor predicted that 56% of all Californias will get infected.

Other Items:

Another crazy moment by our president where he lashed out a reporter:

Cases:

  • World: 287,239— Total deaths: 11,921 (up 1883)
  • USA: 19,931 — Total deaths: 275 (up 70)
  • Marin: 37 cases (up 12), 0 deaths

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