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March 28, 2020

SATURDAY NIGHT THREAD

How much fun is everybody having? A lot, right?? Ha ha!!! Here in Miami we just got an emergency phone warning -- such as you might receive during a nuclear attack -- telling people over 65 to STAY HOME. Which is pretty much what we've been doing anyway. FUN!!

Feel free to comment in the comments. Or not! Either way we're staying home.

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I guess if falls to my lot to open this up. (Unless it takes me too long.)

So, in Florida, this is basically everybody but a few accidents?

Mind you, my experience with Florida is a) pretty minimal, and restricted to winter -- which means, in Florida, I was the only one who thought it was nice outside; and b) from 40 years ago.

So maybe there are a few striplings of 37 or so who have grown up since I was there.

Up here just east of the wide-open spaces, everyone is engaged in a mathematical experiment to see how many people can simultaneously walk their dogs on the same city street while maintaining a 6-foot interval.

I'm finding it a good time to read more about movie making in the 20th century, starting from the beginning. An amazing, but self-indulgent and demented industry, kind of like politics. It's true as the saying goes - D.C. is Hollywood for ugly people. I have three serious, long books to read but, um, I don't feel like I'm going to.

Day 1,275 of being quarantined:
I woke up early carrying on a conversation with our cat in Russian, which is odd since neither of us speak Russian.
Staying at home with wife and cat takes some getting used to by all concerned. Watching network TV seems to hurt more than help. I find myself hoping Godzilla will turn up and make a game or talk show exciting.
Watching movies helped for the first month, but now I am reading Hemingway and Milton's poems. The wife has taken up crocheting without needles and the cat just stares out the window and sleeps a lot.
The best part of being in quarantine is happy hour can start anytime you darn well please.
And W.C. Fields quotes really make good sense.
"Reality is an illusion created by lack of alcohol"
Fits the times. Y'all stay up with your medications and watch TV with caution. Now that I have time, I plan to learn Russian for some reason.

friends are starting to use apps to get together virtually....happy hours...guitar jams, etc. I hear there are virtual cocktail parties going on Still going out to the pool and nature walks/hikes as weather here is good. Store shelves are emptier every time I go which is a bit scary. and the people at the stores seem to get scarier every time too.

Watched The Seventh Seal yesterday...all about the Black Death...that certainly brightened my day :) but an excellent movie!

Thank god I don’t have cable. No fox, no cnn. So I just go out for a walk for an hour or so after each meal.

The grocery store had most of what I was looking for, except dishwasher detergent. And, in the spice aisle, I commented “They’re out of thyme.”

True on many levels.

It's just me and Mrs. wanderer (and our cat, Mozart), but I'm guessing most people are learning that what Benjamin Franklin said about fish and houseguests after three days applies to all family members.

I'm here at the office with the wife preparing for when we come back to work - I'll be 65 by then. The only warnig I have seen is if you are open and doing business when you are not supposed to be open for business, the Anaheim police along with City Code Enforcement will A) turn off your electricity and water B) take away your business license. C) show up and cough.

So, while the wife puts every working instrument under cover so when people do come back for treatment they don't cough on anything. We found some pretty good sized plastic covers for chairs we plan on putting on our heads along with industrial strength goggles, N95 face masks, Welding shields, latex gloves and a force field. We don't have an actual force field, but if anyone actually shows up in the future we plan on having one operable by that time, like maybe September. I'll hopefully have my Medicare up and rolling by then if those offices are closed down with no running water, electricity or business licenses.

I have updated and cloned the hard drives of all the office computers, painted, moved a lot of boxes of supplies out of the way should anyone cough, piled face masks latex gloves, bleach cleaner, ammo and chased this bird away from one of my driveway cameras. Actually I put the ammo back, People are boarding up their business because they are afraid of even more desperate than usual people breaking in. Not me. I'm good.

Florida is just telling people over 65 to stay home NOW? The CDC put out that warning weeks ago, which is why I stocked up on at least two months of food on March 10th, before everyone else began panic buying. The stores even had toilet paper, although I already had enough. A week later I made my last trip into civilization for a doctor's appointment and looked for a few more items, and there was no bread, meat, eggs, etc.

This is nothing new for me. I lived on an island in a NH lake for 27 years, and it got pretty isolated during freeze up and ice-out. There's a limited amount you can carry in a 9-foot long hovercraft, even when it's not full of eels, so you get prepared and have backups for critical systems. I moved to the mainland 20 years ago, but my house is way back in the woods, and I haven't changed much.

Unfortunately, this is not going to end any time soon. Another guy I know who still lives on an island was packing up his (bigger) hovercraft with food for a six-month stay.

I can stretch my food out for longer if necessary. Unfortunately, my meds will run out, so I will have to hope the pharmacy is still functional in two months. I have a paint respirator, safety goggles, and rubber gloves (but no hazmat suit) ready for the trip.

So in the meantime, I'm just doing what I usually do — wasting time on the internet, reading, doing projects around the house, etc. It has finally warmed up enough here so I can do some yard work. I took the brushcutter out and attacked some of the stuff down the hill in front of the house. At the rate I'm going, it will grow back up by the time I finish.

It's the end of the world as we know it, and I feel fine.

I hope to have this arrive in time for my next trip to the pharmacy and the store: https://amzn.to/2vUJFXl

I suspect I won't need help with a six foot zone if I wear it.

Our EAS just activated for a tornado watch. Part of me wants to set up a lawn chair to welcome the locusts and frogs.

I've been transcribing some Smithsonian documents here: https://transcription.si.edu/
And also brushing up on my Spanish here:
https://www.duolingo.com/

Whew! Since I'm nowhere near 65 yet, and I live in N.C., I'm safe for now. Actually I'm closer than I care to admit. I'm not going out because I don't trust anyone to stay home if they're sick. The only person I'm having problems with, who continuously tries to go out, is my 88 year old father. So a lot of my time is being spent keeping him at home. I've been watching a lot of movies, reading, writing on the Dave Barry Fans Facebook Page, which is a lot of fun and also accepting new members. Not that I'm promoting it or anything.
Since all of our restaurants are doing 'take out only' now a small diner near my house is redoing the 50's style of dining. Their waitresses are now dressed like carhops from the 1950's and they're playing 50's music over the loudspeaker. It's great and gets everybody's mind off this horrible virus. Their food is really good too.

Hey Le Pet - я говорю на русском языке - нет.

Hi Dave,

How's that jigsaw coming along?

I'm waiting for a report of 911 call concerning a stolen jigsaw piece out of Flathead county.

The PA Governor issued a stay home order. But you are allowed to go out if you want to go hiking. So long as you don't also want to go to a liquor store, as they are closed. He also closed the lumbermills but left the paper factories open, and closed the coal mines but left the steel mills open. Not sure how that works...

I teleworked every day this past week. Today was my first day off. It felt weird to be home and not working. It didn't really feel like a day off.

But I've seen plenty of recent pictures of you, Dave – you're forty-five, aren't you?

A few years ago, I'd say it's tough pushing 65.

Now I realize how much harder it is to be dragging it.

It’s good to know there will be some sort of phone call because I can only stand to read your blog for the news at this point.

All four of my kids are home now (10,12,14,16). No soccer, baseball, band concert, play practice, softball, choir tour, hangouts, skatepark. So...we bought a zoo. 4 chicks, 2 rabbits, a mama sheep with triplets and we’re serious about the garden this year. Ive adjusted surprisingly well to not driving kids everywhere all the time. And as long as they’re building sheep pens, bunny hutches, they’re not accusing me of ruining their social life, etc.

But still, there’s the weirdness of how excited I was, I mean imagine my delight, when I discovered a whole roll of toilet paper, unopened, hidden way back on a shelf in the garage.

Well I am still working Dave and made it to Joanne Fabrics yesterday where I picked up a face mask kit. I got them all made and then I turn them in for another kit and they donate them to hospitals. So that is my life. I have to disinfect so much at work. All the time and then when I get home spray lysol on my shoes and clothes int he wash. Handles and door knobs get cleaned all the time.Mich numbers are going up quite a bit. Stay safe as that is what I am trying to do

I woke up in the middle of the night when it suddenly occurred to me that the answer to all this is "42."

We're seeing Darwin's principle at work.

I am having serious concentration problems, to the point where I can't watch any movie or television that I haven't already seen. Yesterday I sat down by myself and re-watched Moana. I'm not yet desperate enough to turn on Frozen. I work from home three days a week now, and take turns with a colleague going into the office on alternate days. I am the only person in the entire building, which is creepy yet ok, since I can turn my music way up. Mostly it's Broadway show tunes. Would you like to hear me sing "Turn It Off" from Book of Mormon? No, I didn't think so. This week remote-kindergarten starts for us. I spent all yesterday downloading all 4,962 "Distance Learning" applications that the school requires, since apparently counting out sets of pennies by 5s and 10s at the kitchen table isn't good enough.

Saturday Night Thread was the little-known sequel to Saturday Night Fever.

{hugs} and Snorks to all.

I have been telecommuting for two weeks now. I go to my office on Fridays for several reasons. It is still open because we are deemed Essential.** I do not have a place for an office or desk at home; all I have is teeny laptop screen at the kitchen table. At the office, I have no distractions or interruptions. I usually need 2-3 hours on Friday to make up my time. So I drive in to use my large monitor and water all the houseplants.

They are spraying/dousing the turnstiles in disinfectant - the bars are dripping and you have to step through a puddle as you badge through. All frequent touch-points are disinfected: door handles, light switches, stair rails. While I was there, I heard the door open briefly, but no one came in: it was one of the rock-star facilities folks giving handles and light switch a wipe. Floors are being mopped over and over. Tables/chairs in the break rooms are thinned out to enforce distancing.

** If you haven't seen "The Little Prince" with Jeff Bridges, Rachel McAdams, etc., you should. It's on Netflix. Being Essential isn't all it's cracked up to be.
Also "Modern Times" (1936) with Charlie Chaplin and Paulette Goddard. Genius then and now.

Day 1000 - The can of SPAM tucked way at the back of the cupboard is starting to look appetizing. Started searching online for SPAM recipes.

Jim---The supercomputer Deep Thought told you you wouldn't like the answer to life, the universe and all sorts of stuff being "42"

However, an unreliable source tells me the Titanic was traveling 42 km/hour when it hit the iceberg...

42 is also the number of beers remaining in the fridge.

And the colors are so vivid....

Personally I think people with IQ's under 65 should stay home too.

@ Marc - Toasted SPAM and cheese sandwiches, Don't knock it 'til you try it.

Broke the rules yesterday. Big time. My son was to be married on April 11. Then the poop hit the fan and eventually the church and reception hall they had booked pulled the plug. So, he got married yesterday at his in-law's house. 15 total attendees, and actual hugging took place. I know, cause I did some of it.

They are flying out to Sedona now to quarantine themselves in a resort hotel.

Apparently I spelled Sedona wrong, but my computer is not offering a better way to spell it and I'm to lazy to look it up.

vaporsmith---No, you are correct in spelling Sedona. Beautiful place in Arizona, been there several times.

Without reading anyone else's comments yet, I will claim at least top three. I spent Saturday evening in the Emergency Room! Fun, right? Thankfully, not coronavirus related, just some pretty bad gastrointestinal problems I will spare you, but still. Fortunately, anyone with breathing or other Covid issues are directed to a different entrance, different part of the hospital, and they are very, very careful - no visitors allowed, etc. Two & a half hours was probably a record for getting out of the ER, but the timing was horrible, to say the least.

Stay well, people.

Jeff, get well soon. I'm glad you survived the ER.

vaporsmith, congratulations! It's nice to hear some positive news amid all this mishegas (craziness).

Jeff: did you at least take a souvenir roll of toilet paper home with you?

Staying at home and watching the news on-line. I gather that President Trump thinks that millions of terrified Ontarions are about to swarm over the border into New York state. I think you can all rest easy -- everybody I know plans to stay here. My major activity is trying to persuade my husband that rummaging around multiple grocery stores to find exactly the right banana is a bad strategy just now. Live long and prosper!

Jeff, we TOLD you not to consume Taco Bell and White Castle within six hours of each other. Maybe now you'll get it. And get well!

vaporsmith, congrats to your son and all the family. A small wedding at home is wonderful too. That's how Mrs. wanderer and I got married in 2003. The city mayor, who is a friend of ours and had been sworn in only two days earlier, did the ceremony. We really didn't have a Plan B had she not been elected.

Went to NC, got back last Wednesday. Michigan was on lockdown, and before we headed back, I called the State Police asking if I would be arrested crossing the state line("no"). WV, Oh, and Mi all on lockdown during trip, lots of truck traffic (bless 'em). Grandson had pneumonia when we got there, had to wait 8 days to touch the kid due to c-19 test. Am a school employee, so....not much going on. During the trip down and back, and since returning, had baby wipes soaked in alcohol(isopropyl) wiping everything we touched. So far, so good.

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