The SlimeLords of OutHouse Earth

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As a lifelong, steadfast, science adherent, over the course of the past sixteen months, my preexisting respect for our world’s pandemic professionals could only intensify. To CliffsNotes what I’ve learned from them:

Whenever / wherever folks impulsively and prematurely let down their guard, the opportunistic coronavirus has rushed in to fully exploit that unfortunate, unforgivable lack of resolve.

For the corroborating, damning evidence, reasonable people need look no further than the alarming worldwide Covid-19 infection and fatality spikes (past and present); in particular, within the United States, India and Brazil.

In other words, what that godforsaken Corona-V and HIS asshole, inbred, variant varmints have taught me is that THEY… NOT HUMANS… are the SlimeLords of OutHouse Earth. Sorry to coin such a phrase, but from the microbial POV, that’s, precisely, how they assess the damned dump. Beyond that, whenever THEY decide time is ripe to collect the rent, we wee mortals can wind up coughing up (our lungs); worst case scenario, wind up paying in full (with our very lives).

Alas, of late, my pandemic expert heroes have begun to (impulsively? prematurely?) minimize their own masking up / social distancing protocols; my word choice, indeed, intentional. To further drive home my point, let’s take a few secs to free associate several synonyms of “minimize”: belittle, downplay, make light of, pooh-pooh, etc.

That’s not too harsh an appraisal, either, seeing how when “The Suits” follow suit / let down their guard, too, they’ll need to rely on the easily exploited “honor system”; one where their hardcore antimasker, antivaxxer “Karen” customers will shamelessly lie about being inoculated; for the express purpose of satisfying their psychotic urges to go maskless.

True, the vaccines are becoming a game changer; playing a significant role in ushering in our return to a more normal life.

However, everything these experts have taught us, tells me that it’s not, yet, time to be letting down our guard. The last thing we need is for yet another variant to rear its ugly head; to get its (literal) choke hold on humanity. What if such a mutation winds up bamboozling the available vaccines, oh, say, one month, one week or even one day from now?

On a more uplifting note, just yesterday, I did manage to breathe a sigh of relief into my pandemic mask when I discovered how my fellow grocery shoppers (store employees, too) were not, yet, buying into shedding their masks; even though the proprietor had impulsively and prematurely torn down his entryway’s “you must mask up to shop here” signage.

Look, there’s nothing I’d love more than to be proven dead wrong. But, how is erring on the side of caution wrong? How does masking up and staying socially distanced harm anyone?

It’s the alternative that could be dead wrong; could even involve the permanent microbial overthrow of society; all “courtesy” of Corona-V and “his” variants; a.k.a. The SlimeLords of OutHouse Earth.

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Stay Publicly / Properly Masked!
Stay Safe at Home!
Stay Healthy!

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To Don or Doff; that is the Question?

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Of late, as the vaccine “have” nations have just begun to protect their populaces, an impatience has been (shall we say?) germinating / incubating. Yep, immature folks have been demanding the relaxation of pandemic mitigating protocols; chomping at the bit to eschew (chew off?) their pandemic masks.

While modest gains have been cause for celebration, pragmatists (I among them) regard such a course of action to be too much, too soon.

More to the point, for reasons I shall never understand at all, throughout the pandemic, mask wearing has been so hyper politicized / ostracized, its as if facial coverings brand wearers as what? Some sort of wusses?

Far be it from me to rain on anybody’s way too early VCV-Day (Victory over Corona-V) parade, but…

Even as I type / you read these words, it is still conceivable that epidemiologists have yet to discover the full range of dirty tricks, which that filthy pathogen still has well hidden up its figurative sleeve. My gawd, the experts did not brand Corona-V “novel” just for the “fun” of it. And, lest we forget, until late 2020 / early 2021, Covid-19 variants had been unheard of.

Little doubt, these same experts (and critical thinking laypersons, too), at present, are all wondering:

  • Just how long will present day vaccines continue to protect the public?
  • Might anti vaxxer movements / vaccine hesitancy thwart herd immunity?
  • What impact will vaccine “have not” nations have on the “have” nations?
  • What if there are yet to be born microbial cousins; e.g., Covid-21? 22? 23?

Should any of these concerns prove problematic, that’d mean our current pandemic woes are far from over; that that next “once every 100 years” pandemic could arrive significantly sooner.

Granted, such worries tend to sound rather iffy. Nevertheless, what does anyone have to lose by continuing to, bare minimum, social distance and mask up? Are not those who balk at doing something so simple to comply with the actual wusses here?

In other words, why piss away what little progress we have made, so far?

Look, as of my posting time, 3,385,901 (known) souls have already perished, worldwide (and still counting). Seeing how even one of those deaths has already been one too many, is it really too much to ask for everyone to continue playing it safe? After all, this pandemic can never truly be over until IT IS over.

On a more positive note, there is no denying that our masking up, this past fall/winter. did kick conventional influenza and rhinovirus ass; not to mention prevent aerial allergens and pollutants from entering (even damaging) our lungs / bodies.

Even in pre-pandemic times, many civilized, compassionate peoples throughout our world already respected one another sufficiently to mask up.

I headlined this post, To Don or Doff; that is the question? So, what is the answer?

Well… long sigh… the grown-ups “in the room” would not only automatically consider the former D-word the easiest, wisest, smartest possible, no-brainer solution to our pandemic woes, they’d also be sufficiently patient to allow the eventual arrival of actual, favorable conditions to settle the matter / answer the damned Q for us.

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Stay Publicly / Properly Masked!
Stay Safe at Home!
Stay Healthy!

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A Rogue’s Gallery of Contagions

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OK, I get it. Adults, by far, are the most efficient spreaders of Covid-19. And that pretty much sums up the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s rationale for their recent ruling to HALVE the minimum social distancing guidelines within America’s elementary and middle schools. But, how wise was their decision?

Call me overly cautious, but damn it, I can still vividly recall my own early school days. And you know what?

We kiddies had been extraordinarily efficient at passing around maladies such as measles, mumps, influenza and rhinoviruses; the veritable rogues gallery of contagions.

Hell, had classroom throwing up been any more commonplace, it’d have been a regular feature during Show and Tell. I can still remember one kid, by name (Keith) whose vomiting “performance” could’ve won him an Oscar; i.e., had such a gory category for the Academy Awards existed.

Call me overly cautious, but, damn it, here’s my assessment. With June’s end of the school year mere weeks away AND the far more communicable and deadly Corona-V variants now in the pandemic mix AND the distribution of the vaccinations, so far, far from achieving worldwide herd immunity, I ask…

  • Is it really prudent for any of us to be taking needless chances?
  • Does not letting down our guard risk yet another pandemic surge?
  • Is not more human suffering and death the last thing humankind needs?
  • Would it really kill us to play it safe?

To not show Corona-V the proper respect is to flirt with disaster.

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Stay Publicly / Properly Masked!
Stay Safe at Home!
Stay Healthy!

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Tick… Tick… Tick…

 

Each time I (conscientiously) mask-up to (reluctantly) set foot into Donny’s Diseased America, I log “The Event” on my wall calendar along with the locations of where I’ve been. It’s all in the hope that, if/when Donny’s Disease strikes me down, at least such data could, somehow, prove useful to contact tracers.

Alas, at that point, the 14 day, COVID-19 incubation countdown clock gets reset… Tick… Tick… Tick…

So far… for me… that now stands at 3 days down and 11 to go.

The rub, here, is that even if no symptoms appear, I still don’t know, with any certainty, whether or not I pose a health threat to humanity. And I cannot justify getting tested, each time, when our essential workers, not I, should go to the head of America’s long line.

Of course, owing to my old age and lifelong, respiratory issues, being asymptomatic would not be the likely outcome. Nope, I would not expect Corona-V to treat me kindly.

Truth told, I’ll be surprised to still be alive and well come Election Day 11/03/2020… let alone New Year’s Day 2021.

Nonetheless…

• I remain fully committed to tirelessly do my part to prevent human suffering and death… i.e. to shelter at home and social distance / mask-up in public. And I will continue to do so for as long as it takes.

• I grow weary of  the man-child, so-called leader who, day in / day out, is doing his damnedest to needlessly prolong his DIY pandemic… to sadistically inflict human misery by ginning up his childish devotees’ ferocious defiance of painless pandemic etiquette… as well as their selfish resistance to basic human decency.

Alas, Donny literally doth have the power of life and death and gets off, regularly, on lording that fact over us.

The good news, here, is that yet another countdown clock is going Tick… Tick… Tick…

And that readout now stands at 57 days…

57 days till Election Day… the day when our ballots must rein in the reign of terror of one Donald J. Trump… in all likelihood… the biggest health threat to humanity to ever walk on 2 feet (with a 4 knuckle assist).

 

Stay Safe at Home! Stay Publicly Masked! Stay Healthy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My View and “Whew!”

 

16 days ago, due to hot, humid summertime conditions, my oily / sweaty skin caused my homemade mask’s left rubber band to slip off my ear while I was within a public, indoors setting. YIKES! Since I had nearly completed my business transaction, I was soon hightailing it back to my car and heading for home. But… had my exit been soon enough?

My being an old man with preexisting breathing issues, I knew that, if exposed, it’d take a miracle for this pitiless pathogen to either spare me or render me an asymptomatic carrier. Excuse the wordplay but, as for expecting a favorable outcome, I wasn’t holding my breath. I just tried to put it out of my mind and keep on busily blogging.

Well, factoring in how COVID-19’s typical incubation period ranges from 2 to 14 days, I suppose it’s not too early to breathe my sigh of relief… naturally, while social isolating at the infinitely safe distance, which the www affords us all.

So, here it goes…

“WHEW!”

An unnerving, worrisome incident, such as mine…

• Makes me wonder why, at the very least, Donald J. Trump could not have supplied top of the line surgical masks… maybe even N-95’s… to everyone residing in the U.S. Hey, preventing people from getting sick, right from the get go, certainly would’ve made our heroic healthcare providers’ livelihoods and lives a helluva lot safer and easier.

• Reminds me of what steps a fully prepared, proactive, principled POTUS would’ve taken… e.g….

[1] Deploy the National Guard to home deliver sufficient provisions (even prescription meds) to ensure all quarantined citizens can survive, comfortably, for two to four weeks, [2] Repurpose appropriate buildings to safely house and similarly supply the homeless and to reduce overcrowding in existing, multifamily / multi-generational residences, [3] Routinely test everyone for COVID-19 throughout sequestration, [4] retest just prior to cautiously reopening society, and [5] as a final kick-start the economy / restore consumer confidence gesture, ensure every inconvenienced person receives a substantial, stimulus check from Uncle Sam.

Had Trump implemented such procedures, would there even be a need to be masking up America, a half year into, what turned out to be, the coronavirus crisis of his own making?

To be sure, those who wallow in obscene wealth, right on cue, would’ve Tweeted and bleated against such commonsense  measures… even deemed them too costly. Costly? As if what? Saving lives would not be worth whatever the cost? Would they rather blow their wads on palatial mansions, yachts and solid gold toilets?

But, more to the point… do these tightfisted fools actually believe ending a crisis in two months is less cost effective than letting Trump drag it out… on and On AND ON INTERMINABLY!

Well, that’s all I’ve got, for now. Thanks for the opportunity to express my point of view and exhale my “WHEW!”

 

Stay Safe! Stay Publicly Masked! Stay Healthy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Joggers End Run Safety Protocols?

 

For the past three years, from June thru August, my community’s public school system has offered their students the opportunity to enroll in an outdoor, summer fitness program. Their coach supervised activity, for the most part, involves jogging, citywide, upon the vast network of public sidewalks (inclusive of the walkways that run through my neighborhood).

For the past three weeks, I’ve been noticing the increasing number of non socially distancing, mask-less kids… the bulk of them running in tight, side-by-side formation.

The irony, here… be the basic, pandemic, safety protocols needed or not… the vast outdoors, by its very nature, affords everyone the perfect opportunity for social distancing. With minimal effort it’d be easy for everyone to maintain that recommended safety bubble of 2 meters / 6 feet… or more.

Granted, if we can even believe all that our oft, far from truthful leaders have been telling us, out-of-doors transmission of COVID-19 is supposed to be rare. The operative words being “supposed to be”.

However, the full name of that godforsaken pathogen… namely… Novel Coronavirus is what inculcates a healthy dose of awe / respect. Novel means new… so new that the medical community is still discovering the full range of its “talents”. Stated conversely and more realistically, there’s still too damned much that they (and we) don’t know about it.

Let’s say that (as I’m typing this / as you’re reading this) Novel Coronavirus is “flexing” its mutation muscles. What if that means that outdoor transmission has… all the sudden… become easier?

Seeing how jogging does increase both respiration’s rate and intensity, how might that negatively impact joggers who are “flying in formation” for at least an hour?

Let’s say that “only one” asymptomatic, COVID infected, deeply breathing, running kid, somehow, manages to infect another deeply breathing, running kid and, in turn, that kid runs home and infects one of her/his elders… oh… say… a grandparent with a compromised immune system?

Lest we forget, both a pandemics’ first and second wave needs to start somewhere.

And all it would take to fire off a runaway pandemic’s starting gun is “only one” representative of the human race!

 

 

 

 

 

Far More than a Singing Lesson (Vid of the Day)

YouTube’s Anne Reburn and her “clones” cover I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing (In Perfect Harmony). An earlier version of this Bill Backer / Billy Davis / Roger Cook / Roger Greenaway composition had been the soundtrack to an über-successful TV advertising campaign, which, circa 1971, had added more “fizz” to Coca Cola’s™ profits.

Tapping into that advertising blitz’s popularity, recording artists, such as the Hillside Singers and the New Seekers, covered a lyrically reworked version, which dropped all product references. And, from that point forward, “Sing” became an international radio hit.

Interestingly enough, it was during that very bygone era when my younger self’s brand loyalty had “somehow” shifted from Pepsi™ to Coke™… where my allegiance has remained ever since. [Note to Self: On this summery mid-afternoon, be sure to pop open a can and enjoy.]

Yet, there was… still is… far more in play. We’re speaking of the heady, lyrical, upbeat appeal for equality / inclusiveness / world unity. Such principles certainly exemplify my ideals.

Beyond that, “Sing” suggests that Madison Avenue’s impact is not always measured in mere dollars and cents. Indeed, headstrong capitalism, when tempered with a healthy dosage of altruism, hath the power to sell far more than commodities.

Hmm… re the above… might it be time to take this reality check, multiple choice test?

a. Have I been reading too damned much between the lyrical lines?
b. Has pandemic necessitated social isolating rendered me stir-crazy?
c. Is Ms. Pollyanna seated upon some branch of my family tree?
d. None of the above?

Whatever the answer(s), rest assured, both Ms. Reburn and I are well aware of how it’ll take far more than a feel-good three-minute song to cure societal ills (btw, I hope you stuck around to check out her post performance soliloquy / reality check).

To briefly put a more distinct face on those ills… too damned many of our compatriots, worldwide, have been facing down the dual, deadly, “I can’t breathe” issues… one precipitated by the pitiless, out of control coronavirus… the other by the out of control, brutal cops’ chokeholds and asphyxiating tear gas.

And be one fighting for her/his life in an ICU, fighting for freedom in the streets, or too damned scared to even consider exiting our sequestration bunkers, we’ve all been feel powerless to do one damned thing about it… and could never expect autocratic leaders to ever channel their power constructively.

And that’s F’ing depressing! And that’s not healthy!

So, if listening to I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing can cheer us up… even in some small way… even for a fleeting moment… what’d be the harm in that?

 

Stay Safe… Stay Home… Stay Healthy…

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bygone Bullies Prepared Me For 2020

My younger self would’ve never believed it possible that, come 2020, I’d actually be able to put a positive spin on being bullied from the 4th grade thru the 9th grade (inclusive)… in other words, for 46% of my K-12 pubic schooling experience.

What I learned from being verbally / physically assaulted… even spat on… had actually given me some firsthand insight into discrimination and brutality issues. And my retreat from that ugly scene had even better prepared me for coping with a pandemic shut down world.

You see, my tormentors had unwittingly taught me what it feels like to be discriminated against. In turn, feeling sorry for myself had actually taught me how to feel empathy for similarly persecuted individuals. So, whenever / wherever I see oppression rearing its ugly head… well… my heart sinks and eyes tear up.

To put a face on wretched discriminatory conduct, we look no further than Donald J. Trump’s insensitive, in-your-face and online bullying… all for the express purpose of devaluing precious human beings based upon their ethnicity, religion, orientation, physical attributes and disabilities. And as if that weren’t bad enough, already, there are also his stunningly childish, vicious, ad hominem verbal attacks.

But let’s dig deeper into to the specifics of my days of yore M.O. to avoid bullies. To put it into pandemic parlance… this involved none other than social distancing / isolating. Other than my parents and only sibling, my only after school contacts with humanity had been listening to my transistor radio in my bedroom. The affable DJs and the recording artists they featured, during their broadcasts, had become akin to my surrogate friends.

By the time my rebellious teen years arrived, I opted to appear so radically different from my oppressors that I grew my hair long. Interestingly enough, my winding up in violation of my school’s stringent grooming protocols, left the assistant principal few options but to suspend me! And this was to punish me HOW? Anyway, in time, long hair styles became my lifelong preference. And that certainly doth work out well when a pandemic shuts down the barber shops.

Granted, about three years into the new millennium, I began entertaining the notion of seeking and experiencing the life I had never had… i.e. to make the most of whatever time I have left… but how doth one quickly kick lifelong, hermitlike habits, such as mine? Of course, the Trumpian Flu soon rendered that Q a moot point.

Ergo, I’ve now come to the realization that that life may never happen… mainly because the powers that be… drawing on the abundance of their density and rapacity… have opted to prematurely re-open our world. And… long sigh… the resurgence of COVID-19 is already underway.

Now, whether or not we’re ordered back into our bunkers, that’s where I’ll be. These days, I won’t even need to rely on radio DJs anymore.

You see, yearning for a career that would jibe with my reclusive lifestyle, I had chosen Communications Arts for my college major… i.e., in hopes the radio station studio might, someday, become my new hide out from a bully saturated world.

And, when that plan didn’t pan out, I set up a modest home studio… where in the months of corona sequestration, yet to come, I’ll be spinning my own LPs / CD’s for an audience of one… moi.

 

Stay Safe… Stay Home… Stay Healthy…

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hey, get a room!

 

One would expect that, to avoid contracting the über-communicable disease, COVID-19, we’d discover germ-o-phobe Donald J. Trump, practically OD’ing on the contraindicated Hydroxychloroquine, encapsulated by the somewhat more useful Hazmat Suit and hunkered down in his bunker.

However, seeing how he’s also an addleheaded, adulation junkie, who’s been feeling entrapped by the coronavirus necessitated quarantine “wall” and, as such, has been suffering from agonizing withdrawl symptoms, it’s easy to see how he’d prioritize scoring his next fix of totally undeserved praise… and in the process… even sacrifice his own personal safety and everybody else’s well-being, too!

Which doth fully explain Donny’s scheduled, upcoming campaign rally, which will be descending upon the coronavirus stricken / sickened community of Tulsa, Oklahoma.

What will make Trump’s politically obscene scene particularly risky, will be how, for him and all the attendees, it’ll be akin to a clothing optional (mask-wise), frowned upon social distancing, indoor orgy.

19K to 28K of Trump’s feverishly frenzied, freaky fanatics are expected to show up. Little doubt most of them will wind up sweatily crammed together… spitting out three word, monosyllabic, moronic catchphrases such as “BUILD THE WALL!” and “SEND HER BACK!” And all throughout, they’ll be interfacing with one another… so much so… they’ll also be shedding and spreading a host of microbes… not necessarily limited to coronavirus.

Hell, were these reckless revelers any more up close and personal, they’d need to get a room.

 

Stay Safe! Stay Home! Stay Healthy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Another Anthem for Anyone in Need (Vid of the Day)

Ms. Shirley Șerban performs Lockdown, her pandemic inspired, lyrical update of Downtown, originally composed by Englishman Tony Hatch. Back in 1964, Ms. Petula Clark’s recording became an instant international hit… a Billboard Hot 100, stateside chart topper and, on the UK Singles Chart, she wound up at #2.

Were Billboard to ever diversify their charts to establish a new category… specifically for pandemic anthems… Ms. Șerban’s timely performance / lyrics would surely become a chart topper, too.

And for whatever my own timely words may be worth…

Stay Safe… Stay Home… Stay Healthy…