Category Archives: Corona Virus/Pandemic

A Long Read to Ponder: Biden in Vietnam & at the UN: Who Could Have Imagined?

An image from Vietnamese TV news, during Biden’s visit.

NOTE: Friends, this material just blows my mind.

Yes, that’s an outdated 1960s expression, but it fits here: this material is about the Vietnam War. And for me (plus, I figure, most of the remaining survivors of that era of national agony), having our minds blown was a thing.

Maybe initially it was fun, or mind-expanding. But for me, and for many, it happened too often back then, and it didn’t always mean by taking drugs. I didn’t do much of that, but had mind-blown fatigue anyway. Continue reading A Long Read to Ponder: Biden in Vietnam & at the UN: Who Could Have Imagined?

Covid Diary: Karma is a Beech


The plane ticket said “Dayton, Ohio,” on American Airlines  flight # 5321, after a stop in Charlotte.

But I now realize that mentally it was really Florida airlines, the stop was in Orlando, or better, Pensacola, the plane was full of Floridians, and I was one of them:

Florida: The land of Pandemic, schmandemic. Phooey on “Don’t Say Gay” — now (& forever), it’s “Don’t Say Virus.” And if you talk about masks, remember some of us are carrying those new guns that don’t show up on TSA scans, and in Florida we stand our ground, shoot first and check our hearing aids later.

I wasn’t carrying, but may as well have been wearing mouse ears.

It was the same after I had actually landed in Dayton for a Quaker conference at Earlham, just across the Indiana line. The crowd there wasn’t huge, but the talk was continuous; and maybe contagious.

Then coming back, again all Florida, all the way: not one but three crowded airports, and two fully-packed airplanes. Plus I was  stuck in Charlotte for three hours (flight delay) and my gate area was jammed like Daytona beach in spring break (except everybody had more clothes on). I don’t remember any masks, and mine were safely stowed in a checked suitcase.

So I had a fine time with Friends in Indiana; but payback was waiting. I’d felt a bit punk at times during the conference, mostly ignored it. Once at home in Durham, coughing started, followed by general “flu-like symptoms”; not horrible, but not good. Tuesday I did a home Covid test: negative.

But by Friday, enough was enough. Went to Duke Urgent Care; arrived 20 minutes before they opened, got in line.

Once inside, their efficiency was impressive: you’d almost think they’d been through this drill 2200 times this past week.

(But that’s an exaggeration; it’s the weekly number of reported cases for the whole state, as of a few weeks ago. And reporting in the state is, choose one:


___That is SOO Last Year

___Don’t give a flip

___All of the above. )

None of this snark applies to the urgent care folks: they took me seriously, knew what to do, and got it done: stuck the swab stick up my nose; this time it came back positive. Next they took blood to see if it showed a clot coming on (no sign of one, thankfully). Finally sent me off to the pharmacy to get some new pills, aimed at warding off “complications” to which geezer patients are more vulnerable.

The pills are called WHAT??

EUA molnupiravir??

Try saying that three times quick. I think it must have been a finalist in the Most Unpronounceable New Med of the Week; maybe the winner’s company gets to charge more?

And I’m taking EIGHT of these red babies every day for five days?

Yes, and isolating too, though they told me if I feel better I can count the five days since last Tuesday. So I’m better enough today to be crabby, but am staying home anyway.

And I also noticed this knee-slapper in today’s Washington Post:

Tally of covid-19 cases after CDC conference climbs to 181

By Lena H. Sun

The tally of people infected with the coronavirus after attending a high-profile Centers for Disease Control and Prevention conference in April has risen to at least 181, the agency reported Friday. No one was hospitalized.

The CDC’s Epidemic Intelligence Service officers and alumni — the disease detectives deployed to identify and fight outbreaks — met April 24-27 at an Atlanta hotel. The conference drew 1,800 in-person attendees, the first in-person Epidemic Intelligence Service gathering in four years. Like many conferences, it was crowded, with much face-to-face contact, many events held in small rooms and lots of socializing, according to attendees.

About 70 percent of participants who responded to a CDC survey said they did not wear masks at the event.
The outbreak of covid-19 cases at the conference underscores the persistence of an evolving and highly infectious virus. . . .

[NOTE: Rumors that the next Epidemic Intelligence Service conference would be held in Florida could not be confirmed . .. .]

Gwynne Dyer: China & Covid


GWYNNE DYER: Xi must play his hand carefully to avoid political disaster with China’s zero-COVID trap

‘He is caught in a trap, but he built it himself’

Saltwire News, Canada
Gwynne Dyer · Columnist | Dec. 2, 2022

“Our COVID-19 policy is the most scientifically effective, the most economical and yields the best result,” insisted the People’s Daily newspaper in China after mass public protests against the government’s zero COVID policy last weekend.

If President Xi Jinping believes that, he is in for a lot more trouble. Continue reading Gwynne Dyer: China & Covid

Cartoons: “It’s Been A[n Un]Quiet Week in Lake [Trouble] Wo[n’t] Begone . . .”

An epidemic of the eloquent unsaid . . .







A “Werewolf” will hopefully soon head home . . .

Which one will the wee lad get busted for??

Unthinkable, but Undeniable . . .

Congratulations, and ”Meow” . . …


O.M.G. – What Goes Around Really DOES . . .

More Republicans Died Than Democrats after COVID-19 Vaccines Came Out


The sharp divergence in excess death rates that emerged in the post-vaccine period “is pretty striking… and the magnitudes are quite large.”

A new study looks at excess deaths by partisan affiliation in two states during the pandemic. Continue reading O.M.G. – What Goes Around Really DOES . . .