Fuck! Fucking Fuck, Fuck. Pandemic edition. March 12, 2020 10:30 AM   Subscribe

Everything is cancelled, we're worried about everyone, and the world is upside down. I presume that MeFites, too, need a place to scream. Here it is. FUUUUUUUU-----
posted by BuddhaInABucket to MetaFilter-Related at 10:30 AM (903 comments total) 37 users marked this as a favorite

Seriously. Hang in there everybody.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:33 AM on March 12 [41 favorites]


It's a big scary horrible thing, but hey, the benefits of being part of an online community is that we can all scream together and still not expose anyone to coronavirus!

We're a communal species. I'm so glad that we have places to congregate our minds and hearts if not our bodies.
posted by sciatrix at 10:41 AM on March 12 [31 favorites]


My job- at a garden center- has not been cancelled yet and as I need a paycheck, tomorrow I will go to work- until they cancel it. This is not something you can do from home so... ha ha. FUCK.
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 10:48 AM on March 12 [22 favorites]


Agreed. For all the faults of the internet, it allows those (who are lucky enough to have access) to communicate and commiserate, even in this time of crisis and quarantine.
posted by deadaluspark at 10:50 AM on March 12 [2 favorites]


I need pictures of giant lizards and dinosaurs roaring at the sky and flailing tiny arms ineffectually in order to express my feelings at the moment. I don't know how to do it, without the image tag.
posted by meese at 10:51 AM on March 12 [4 favorites]


@Homo neanderthalensis

I am in the unexpectedly good place of being on unemployment, which will thankfully last through most of the worst of this crisis (I hope, god I hope). However, I scored worker retraining and I am supposed to start school on April 6th... I'm in Washington. At least one class has almost no way of being done online. I haven't even gotten my financial aid yet, and now I'm wondering if some of my classes are going to happen and what happens if I get bumped down to part time after a class gets cancelled? Everything's just so freaking up in the air and there's confirmed cases in my county now, but everyone is still going to work...

My roommates are still going to work and I'm trying to avoid as much contact with them as possible. Oof. This wouldn't be so bad except that out of the three 40-ish men in this household, I'm the only one who knows how to clean or disinfect anything... I certainly can't count on them to be clean enough to not spread it to me if they get it. I've already smuggled all my non perishable food into my bedroom.
posted by deadaluspark at 10:54 AM on March 12 [4 favorites]


I'm cycling back and forth between fear and anger right now. Trying not to give in to despair.
posted by vibrotronica at 10:54 AM on March 12 [1 favorite]


Forget flattening the curve -- try cattening the curve!

My work is going to required wfh as of Monday, which is fine by me. I mostly worked from home for my last job. My cats are very happy about this development (as long as I don't run out of cat food, and I've got enough for over a month on hand.)
posted by gingerbeer at 11:00 AM on March 12 [15 favorites]


cycling back and forth

Cardio is good for anxiety-management! You’re ahead of the game.
posted by curious nu at 11:01 AM on March 12 [11 favorites]


I've officially become my mother and have been obsessively cleaning the house from top to bottom daily out of anxiety/boredom/sheer panic.

It's certainly gotten my heart rate up.
posted by deadaluspark at 11:03 AM on March 12 [1 favorite]


I'm trying to read everything I can while also staying calm and fuck it's hard. I work at a public library and everyone has stopped talking about the weather, it's all virus all the time. We do have an official line that we need to stick to, so I can't just shake every overly blase dumbass who comes in and share all the stuff I'm reading. Leadership is still talking in terms of "if it gets here" and taking what seem like insufficient precautions, which makes me want to scream.
posted by Knicke at 11:04 AM on March 12 [6 favorites]


I work in a hospital in Boston! All of you are advised to stay away from me until at least 2022.
posted by bondcliff at 11:05 AM on March 12 [30 favorites]


Teen daughter home with high fever and cough. Insurance, pediatrician, Dept of Health all unwilling to test because she doesn't have documented contact with a confirmed case. The nexus of incompetence, ass-covering, and deception is making my head explode.

Luckily catastrophizing is my hobby, so we're well stocked with meds, food, cleaning supplies. Spouse & I work remotely, though it's hard to concentrate on work through this scrim of rageblood.
posted by apparently at 11:07 AM on March 12 [46 favorites]


The next door neighbor, (one of them,) has hosted a two day panic attack that is keeping her home. She is a victim of her internet readings, and other goings on of the last week, besides viral fears. The folks who read the crazy undertoad sites, paranoid sites, disinformation sites, are going to be dragged under by this. In some ways having Big Daddy Trump fart this off is saving some people from worrying themselves to death, and on the other hand if they, in their end-times, and rapture euphoria, forget to wash their hands, then they will get punished by this situation.

However, I maintain they can run the numbers on who they have in tow, people on ships, people here and there, and this virus might be innocuous in many cases, and in fact very widespread. After all no one does viral assays on folks who come in with colds or pneumonia. They might not know shit about this, really. Last year, my grandson could have died from a virus that went around my town, with intolerably high fevers, nausea and vomiting, cold symptoms, symptoms so severe it was hard to keep down remedies that would offset the fever, or any other symptom. It took a concerted week, to keep him going. All the docs would say was, "It's a virus, it is all over town." Later a friend of mine had this in a city far away, he was in the hospital.

Health care is not what it is supposed to be, and with all these algorithms looking up our pant legs, all the time, you would think the numbers would jump up and down, screaming, maybe they did, but not soon enough.

With The Arctic melting and dumping its contents into rivers, lakes and water supplies, there is an entire previous biome held in stasis, that is now unleashed on us, via global warming. Why just in the last few years, people went to Alaska and dug up Spanish Flu victims from what was frozen ground.

I had to tell my Dad as he raged in the last years of his life, "This is your life, this is the relationships you have, people who love you, and who are now caring for you. Live this to the fullest and enjoy the love family has for you, and make the best of it, for yourself, and the rest of us. You don't want these years to be misery, don't choose that."
posted by Oyéah at 11:10 AM on March 12 [18 favorites]


My 11yo son had a bout of long hacking coughs this morning and there was a confirmed case at his school yesterday, so I spent the morning in between work calls trying to get through to the pediatrician just so I know what next steps would even be. He's fine, it was just morning phlegm, but I'm extra jumpy now. Plus I'm a hypochondriac so every time my head hurts I have to stop myself from running for the thermometer, because we only have so many probe covers and I'm not sure I want to go into CVS if I don't have to.

On the other hand, there's a small evil voice in my head that keeps telling me that hey, I bet I finally have a shot at winning the Hamilton lottery...
posted by Mchelly at 11:13 AM on March 12 [4 favorites]


> I bet I finally have a shot at winning the Hamilton lottery...

I've got some bad news for you....
posted by gingerbeer at 11:15 AM on March 12 [5 favorites]


I'm lucky to work from home, so staying home and doing social distancing is all already very normal in that respect; my wife works at a museum with lots of kids coming through so who knows on that front but maybe they'll shut down visits soon, if the schools don't kibosh them first. (She could very happily work while they're closed, and probably get twice as much work done, so, we'll see.) Most of my explicit familial-scope concerns about everything are still abstract right now, at least.

But man it's a weird time to be moderating. I'm glad MeFi is here for folks and to no small extent I'm personally glad it's here for me to follow along with y'all but boy howdy the multiplex experience of watching over thousands of people all getting worried together can be a whammy. I'm trying hard not to be short with anybody but I can kind of feel moments of Very Grumpy Cortex lurking somewhere on the stochastic horizon. Apologies in advance when he shows up.
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:16 AM on March 12 [119 favorites]


Hello, thank you for modding. This place is amazing and you are amazing and thank you thank you.
posted by Don Pepino at 11:17 AM on March 12 [42 favorites]


I'm a substitute librarian, and I'm worried about what will happen if they close the libraries. I don't have sick leave, or PTO. No work, no pay. Herr Duck works for the Twins (he's in guest services, so he only works game days) so he's been watching the news to see what the commissioner and owners say after today's meeting. It's generally expected that they'll push back the start of the season. No games, no work, no pay. So then neither of us will have a job other than consulting, and the economy isn't booming right now (except in the explodey-sounds-with-your-mouth way).

My sister is a Para at an elementary school. We wonder which of us will get sick first. And then we talked about who will take care of our homebound octogenarian parents?

I estimate that in the last 10 days I've been in contact with about 900 people: election judge on super Tuesday, three different libraries with a steady stream of patrons, four city bus rides, two different YMCAs, two political meetings. I'm doing my best to wash my hands and not touch my face, but if I contracted it and it's just asymptomatic, I'm fucking Typhoid Michelle. Am I going to kill my parents by dropping off a hotdish? I'm feeling so doomy and hopeless right now.
posted by Gray Duck at 11:18 AM on March 12 [15 favorites]


I'm thinking of posting an AskMe about some suggestions for 'projects' I can do at home to keep sane, like pickling, making cheese or knitting or something.
posted by Ms. Moonlight at 11:24 AM on March 12 [20 favorites]


Stochastic I have looked this word up four times, in the last five days. I just did it again. Having a mental block about another word for random, doesn't mean I am around some bend, with out a map to get back, or does it? Getting grumpy is bad for the immune system.
always look on the bright side...
posted by Oyéah at 11:26 AM on March 12


Mrs Molerats and I had a silly fight this morning (love u sweetie) about doing one last big grocery run. We def have enough food to survive 2 weeks, but yeah, the urge to stock up is strong. Anyway, I realized I was mostly just reaching for like "if we're stuck inside for two weeks we want snacks and non-essential treats to keep us lounging' which I now realize sounds stupid, like no I don't NEED snacks, but it was just a place for the "IDK what to do" energy to go...
posted by nakedmolerats at 11:26 AM on March 12 [5 favorites]


This should probably go here: If y'all haven't read "A Song for a New Day" by Sarah Pinsker.... now you know what to do with all your spare time.
posted by seanmpuckett at 11:28 AM on March 12 [5 favorites]


The only good news I've heard is that dogs can't get this kind of Coronavirus, and that they can't transmit it to humans. I guess that's two things.
posted by Gray Duck at 11:29 AM on March 12 [12 favorites]


I’m afraid I won’t see my parents this year. Because of the carbon footprint, we no longer fly to the US and Europe annually; it’s every other year now. It’s so hard not seeing our families as they get older and older, along with beloved friends, but it’s the right thing to do. We were to leave in April. My poor travel agent has been getting us refunds on hotels, cars, and rescheduling our plane tickets to some nebulous far off date. But that’s just money. My parents are old. I haven’t seen them since September 2018. I’m worried for them. I miss them.
posted by lemon_icing at 11:30 AM on March 12 [21 favorites]


Ms. Moonlight, you should ask that! I'd be interested in ideas. Right now I have a huge pile of mending to do and a pile of books in my "to-read" stack.
posted by Gray Duck at 11:30 AM on March 12


Are there any structures available for a Mefite Gofundme for folks whose jobs/income will be heavily impacted?
posted by nakedmolerats at 11:32 AM on March 12 [9 favorites]


My boss's boss is keeping our whole office showing up to the office when the rest of the University is emptying out and most of our work could be done at home, and we could schedule the rest (stuff like opening the physical mail, printing docs to be signed) to be done with minimal contact with each other.

My mother won't be convinced to not fly to NJ next week, dismissed my worries as unreasonable when I tried to dissuade her (twice), and called washing your hands for 20 seconds 'ridiculous.'

I don't know how to respond to any of this and want to be at home not only because it would be safer for me and those around me, but also because I just want to scream and scream.
posted by bridgebury at 11:32 AM on March 12 [9 favorites]


Stochastic I have looked this word up four times

I used to love the Stochastic Book Fair when I was in grade school.
posted by Greg_Ace at 11:32 AM on March 12 [58 favorites]


In the “fucking fuck” vein the primary reason that schools aren’t unilaterally closing across the US is because it’s how we feed and care for a lot of our kids, and even for those with enough food, the parents don’t have or can’t take enough sick/dependent leave or telework — in other words, society is so fundamentally broken with regards to health and wellness that it’s let everyone get sick, or let kids starve. I think I’m going to try and telework as much as I can the next couple of weeks and maybe post something on NextDoor and just offer to cook things for families as much as I can.
posted by curious nu at 11:33 AM on March 12 [16 favorites]


I'm trying to remain sanguine about my travel plans. I've been a lifelong traveler who's been sidelined by life's little things the past few years. This year was looking bright, as my son and I are booked to fly to Malta via Madrid in a few weeks (from Seattle). Of course it now looks like we'll be rescheduling. It's the smart thing to do and the right thing to do, so it's no biggie, especially in light of the big picture.

I actually moved from Mukilteo last fall. I'm near Spokane now, having transitioned from a private (dental) practice back to public health. I'm in a rural area that will likely trail the rest of the region in being swept up in the pandemic, but we, as a clinic (full medical/dental/naturopath, but not urgent care), are planning and prepping as we can. If you were going to set a novel in a place that your characters had chosen to ride out a zombie apocalypse, this place would probably be on a short list, so it will be really interesting to see how /if/why/when Covid shows up and what happens then.

Meanwhile, i just hope all of you are staying safe and healthy, and that we all get through this.
posted by OHenryPacey at 11:48 AM on March 12 [6 favorites]


So, I was reading this article on The Atlantic, "You Will Adjust to the New Normal"..
"This OMG realization that we have termed the ‘adjustment reaction’ is a step that is hard to skip on the way to the new normal,” they explain. But most do adapt: “The adjustment reaction is a temporary phenomenon that eases the transition to whatever is next. Very few people get stuck in a long-term over-reaction.”
Guess what? I'm kinda one of those "very few" people. My therapist has me down as "adjustment disorder." And while it's somewhat helpful to know "oh, my body is having lots of weird stress reactions because this is exactly the kind of uncertain, out-of-the-ordinary situation that my nerves do not know how to handle very well," that knowledge doesn't really stop it from happening. The main thing that seems to help is turning away from news and social media.

This morning, waiting for the bus, I was listening to some super chill music, trying to breathe nice and slow. Someone walked by with this cute black Labrador dog who was pulling really hard on the leash cuz he was just SO excited to be outside exploring. I looked at the dog and thought "see? Dogs are still dogs. It's going to be ok." Nearly cried.
posted by dnash at 11:49 AM on March 12 [32 favorites]


I have been enjoying watching the doggies; thanks to the post about P!nk by Harald74
posted by mightshould at 11:49 AM on March 12 [4 favorites]


I am on vacation in Florida and am able to check the stock market every thirty seconds and generally worry full time. I will have to fly home on Wednesday leaving behind my 87 year old mother who lives here and is super stubborn about even laying in some extra food/supplies. I miss my dad who used to be the most unflappable person I knew and spent his whole adult life predicting a market crash and would have at least got to say I told you so. On the other hand my adult son got word today that he has been hired for his absolute dream job after a really tough five years and for that I went ahead and cried a bit.
posted by InkaLomax at 11:50 AM on March 12 [13 favorites]


I've been home sick for several days. So I'm ahead of the curve! Hahahahah FUUUUUUUUUCK.
posted by medusa at 11:51 AM on March 12 [7 favorites]


Oh thank fuck, this is the thread I need. I'm so stressed. Fuck.
posted by beandip at 11:54 AM on March 12 [4 favorites]


Being unemployed and looking for work is super awesome right now...
posted by acidnova at 11:54 AM on March 12 [13 favorites]


Well, this sure has lit a fire under my ass to get out of retail. Absolutely nothing to help me if I get sick and have to stay home from my stressful and germy job. Yay.

Took Excel and Word exams today. Scored pretty well! Hopefully it will help allay fears about my comparative lack of experience for some of these jobs I'm applying for.
posted by the liquid oxygen at 12:00 PM on March 12 [12 favorites]


I already WFH, I'm in pretty good health (and wash my hands frequently), I have no current travel plans, people around here don't seem too panicked, and honestly I'm not anywhere near freaked out about this situation. Yet. Still, at this late point it's occurred to me that maybe I should take the "stock up on food" idea at least somewhat seriously, Just In Case.

Since I happen to live in earthquake territory I'd already been thinking about getting some bulk packs of freeze dried meals by way of prep, but hadn't yet ordered any because they're not exactly cheap. Just now I tried to actually order one or two from Amazon, but they're all out - like, all out ("not currently available", "ships in # months", etc.). All I can do is ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ since it's my fault I procrastinated, but...shit. I do have quite a lot of rice and dried beans on-hand but I guess I'd better head to the grocery store (or stores...?) tonight to snag a few tins of sardines, boxes of pasta, and packs of frozen veggies. And cheese, gotta have cheese (and liquor) to see me through the dark times!!
posted by Greg_Ace at 12:04 PM on March 12 [5 favorites]


Metafilter: cheese (and liquor) to see me through the dark times!!
posted by medusa at 12:16 PM on March 12 [12 favorites]


WTF! my retail job in the garden center, lifting heavy things, etc, has scheduled me for 10 hours at the end of this month. There's no way I can do that without getting hurt. That is 9 hours (required 1 hour lunch break) and then back the next day for 7 hours. Arrrrgh. (not pandemic related; but still, corporate greed without concern for employee-bot......)
posted by mightshould at 12:22 PM on March 12 [3 favorites]


I established my strategic whiskey reserve a few days ago.
posted by paper chromatographologist at 12:23 PM on March 12 [8 favorites]


Medusa Take care, and get better! Sending Earth vibes! Sending Sun vibes!
posted by Oyéah at 12:25 PM on March 12 [1 favorite]


We've been trying to put towels in the laundry more often than usual, so today I had to crack open the Strategic Dishtowel Reserve.
posted by medusa at 12:29 PM on March 12 [10 favorites]


Ugh, I've been applying for a new job this week, on an accelerated timeline, and when I'm able to step back and get some perspective I know that this is a good thing, this seems like a cool job at a cool place, and the accelerated timeline is because they really want me.

But it also means that this week has involved three rounds of interviews, including prep for a technical interview, plus prepping a short presentation, plus wrangling references, plus doing my regular full-time day-job (the stress of which prompted me to start sending out resumes in the first place), plus sneaking around my workplace looking for private places to take calls and taking lots of time off for unspecified "appointments", plus anxiety that every headache or cough could be COVID, plus my preferred primary candidates getting knocked out one by one, plus insomnia from the stress of all the above, plus the whole damn world burning down.

And I just want to grab someone and shout HEY ASSHOLE, STOP THE RIDE, I THINK I'M GONNA PUKE.
posted by firechicago at 12:32 PM on March 12 [14 favorites]


I have been watching the Sapsucker Woods Pond and trying to keep breathing as everything escalates.
posted by ChuraChura at 12:33 PM on March 12 [8 favorites]


To be 100% honest I'm most worried about being assaulted by a patient or family member. It's something that's always in the back of my mind but I walked by a room yesterday where my (pregnant) coworker was getting berated by the father of a teen who was very angry that his kid wasn't going to be tested. The guy was posturing, had his finger inches from her face, screaming. My friend the nurse had both hands out with palms up, speaking quietly and trying to diffuse the situation. I grabbed her and we RAN down the hallway holding hands to the nurses station. He followed us and pounded on the glass with his fists while he screamed at me that I was a fucking bitch and I called security.

I think the panic is a greater danger than covid, on a person-to-person level and of course to the world at large.
posted by pintapicasso at 12:34 PM on March 12 [58 favorites]


I’m immunocompromised and in Paris, too worried to even comment in the check in threads 😢 I’m on garden(ing) leave until May and was WFH before so not too exposed, but had to cancel a two week trip home to the UK. I live in a studio but have managed to stock about 2 weeks of food and toilet roll, but the social isolation is difficult.
posted by ellieBOA at 12:49 PM on March 12 [12 favorites]


I and grumpbearbride are not immunocompromised and have been staying home since Monday with plenty of supplies, but I am in a state of incessant anxiety over the fates of the many elderly people in my life, including parents and friends, and those of my friends who are immunocompromised or even just smokers. This sucks an enormous ball of shit and the US is completely unprepared to handle this. Our president and his administration are just hot piles of santorum, preferring to manage optics rather than do what needs to be done to help people. This 0% payroll tax bullshit? It makes me so fucking mad. UNIVERSAL BASIC INCOME. FREE HEALTHCARE. On the bright side this unfolding catastrophe will likely accelerate the pace of those necessary programs by many orders of magnitude. Fuck this "oh won't someone think of the corporations" dingleberry sauce.

FUCK FUCK FUCK.
posted by grumpybear69 at 12:55 PM on March 12 [7 favorites]


I also work in a public library and I have stocked up enough groceries for so many weeks but I think I will still be going to work every day and seeing all the people and touching all the books. I am also trying to decide whether or not to go through with the elective surgery I'm supposed to have next week and it is all causing so much anxiety I can hardly function.
posted by tangosnail at 1:03 PM on March 12 [7 favorites]


Hi everybody thanks for making this thread. I have a sore throat and a little cough and I am NOT loving it let me tell you.

I've been going out every few days for the last few weeks dropping 300-400 at the grocery store that i do NOT have and I still feel like we are woefully unprepared. I've been doing this because my inner cave man has been LOUD about this topic. Like I can feel these instincts coming out of nowhere and suddenly I have these very strong opinions about where to go and what to do. It's been pretty interesting to observe.

On top of this my husband is immunocompromised and I don't know if I should just like what, leave the house? And go where? A hotel? With what money? I don't know, man.
posted by bleep at 1:03 PM on March 12 [11 favorites]


Ontario's just closed schools for three weeks. ONTARIO IS ENORMOUS.

And one of my bandmates wants to cancel our last show before an extended hiatus and I will be devastated if we do. No one has said cancel everything here, more like consider cancelling huge international things.

Ugh.
posted by wellred at 1:08 PM on March 12 [5 favorites]


This apocalypse is a weird combination of boring and anxiety-inducing. I would really like to leave the house. I would really like enough toilet paper. Southeast PA is really shutting down.
posted by angrycat at 1:10 PM on March 12 [10 favorites]


Ohio public schools are closing for three weeks starting Monday.

Governor DeWine has banned all public gatherings of 100 or more people.
posted by cooker girl at 1:11 PM on March 12 [1 favorite]


pintapicasso, I'm sorry. That sounds terrifying.

This apocalypse is a weird combination of boring and anxiety-inducing.

Yes. It all happens so much faster in the movie version.
posted by medusa at 1:14 PM on March 12 [10 favorites]


ONTARIO IS ENORMOUS.

I'd just like to add that the numpty (this term is growing on me) who is the premier of this province introduced substantial cuts to local health departments who do silly frivolous things like comprise the fucking front lines of...

*checks notes*

...pandemic management.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 1:15 PM on March 12 [12 favorites]


Okay, my small 40ish person company will announce their plan for COVID... tomorrow.... at... our... all team breakfast.

I can't even for once. That is the legit dumbest fucking shit I have ever heard. Gather us all together in one not big room to announce what's up with this global pandemic. Perfect.

This is how fucking stupid humanity is, isn't it.
posted by OnTheLastCastle at 1:20 PM on March 12 [35 favorites]


Maine reported its 1st case today. That was my line in the sand, and I am going from prudent to staying home. I do have to go out for 1 purchase, will go in the morning when it's less crowded. Our Governor, Janet Mills, made it clear she actually cares about Mainers, was calm, factual, and I felt better even though the (expected) news is bad. Of course, that makes me want to go to the movies or something, the same way the TP madness makes me want to buy toilet paper even though I have toilet paper.

This isn't a political thread, but the President of the US is a deeply effed-up jerkhole who doesn't care at all about people and even now, it blows my mind. Watching the Governor was such a contrast.
posted by theora55 at 1:24 PM on March 12 [10 favorites]


There are 2 reported cases in my county of 300,000 people, and we've just heard that someone has tested positive in our nearest small town, population 1,600. My family are now, hopefully, going into self-imposed isolation, thankfully 2/3 of us work from home anyway. My sister and her partner are still going out to work though and we help look after their kids so I feel like it will make its way to us anyway. My dad is 65, has high blood pressure and a history of pneumonia. There are 20 ICU beds in the entire county. I am scared for him.

Meanwhile you can see Boris fucking spit-on-his-name Johnson looking all flabbergasted at the idea of having to be some sort of actual leader in some sort of actual crisis, it's really beyond a joke.
posted by Balthamos at 1:35 PM on March 12 [5 favorites]


Our state only has two verified cases (of course it's more than that - the US isn't testing enough), but I'm immunocompromised, so I've been careful for a while. I was hospitalized for the flu in January, and I had to look at my hospital discharge notes today - turns out I was admitted with sepsis, and I had no idea. So if I get this, I'm definitely in the group that could be in trouble. I'm really lucky that I can work from home. But I did come in to the office briefly today, and someone here is sick despite the fact that we've been explicitly told not to come to work sick.

That said, I'm getting pretty tired of the tunnel vision on my cancer support board. Of course, if resources are strained and they have to choose between treating us (our cancer is incurable and strikes older people) and someone who is young and healthy, they're going to choose the young, healthy person. THAT IS AS IT SHOULD BE. I want to live as much as anyone, and there's a decent chance I have another few decades, but at 61, I've probably lived longer than most of the people who've been on this planet. Also, there's a lot of misinformation flying - supplements, etc. Makes me very grateful for MetaFilter, which is mostly sane - and thanks especially to the mods.
posted by FencingGal at 1:39 PM on March 12 [19 favorites]


Scuttle-butt around the parents group is that my kids school district is about to close for at least 2 weeks but maybe 4 weeks (in Utah). I don't expect a stick will be left standing of our house if they get trapped inside that long.

Also that (unverified and highly likely to be wrong) rumor that Trump may try and ban travel to California and Washington from other parts of the US....just ugh. I'm sure there will be an exemption for "real Americans".

Plus-side - the good folks at Sad Guys on Trading Floors are finally posting again.
posted by inflatablekiwi at 1:43 PM on March 12 [5 favorites]


inflatablekiwi, we're also hearing rumors that widespread school closures are coming in Colorado.
posted by medusa at 1:45 PM on March 12 [1 favorite]


Schools just shut down in my Iowa capital city until at least March 17.
posted by OnTheLastCastle at 1:47 PM on March 12


I am venting by screaming (politely) at my congresspeople. In case anyone would like to join me:
Dear Senator,

I'm writing with two requests on the coronavirus crisis:

FIRST: I strongly support H.R.6201 (the Families First Coronavirus Response Act) and I ask you to vote for it - and to do whatever you can (including public shaming) to get Senator McConnell to schedule a vote;

and SECOND: as part of your Congressional oversight, I'm asking you to request immediate and ongoing copies of all past and future communications between the administration and CDC, and between the administration and the Dept of Health and Human Services. The administration's lack of transparency is a danger to public health, and I'm counting on you, Senator, to use your oversight authority to make sure the public has all the information we need.
(And reminder, free Congressional faxes if that's the way you roll.)

I've been making a point of thanking the people answering the phones, too (when I get a live person), thanking them for helping to keep the government functioning right now.

Makes me feel a little better, anyway.

Please stay as safe as you can, everyone. I need you all.
posted by kristi at 1:48 PM on March 12 [17 favorites]


Our organization (of tens of thousands of people) has been absolutely stellar at handling this, so don’t lose hope that competent responses are possible. They’ve been keeping everyone informed and supported with accurate and reliable information and guidelines, and humane and accommodating employment and public safety policies. Which makes the response I’m seeing from literal governments all the more infuriating.

As for the Fucking Fuck part of this, I am hearing complete fucking crickets from anti-vaxxers and other anti-intellectual groups who normally like to displace their anger by yelling in our collective ear. But fuck ‘em. And where are the people who like to claim that every earthquake, hurricane, and tsunami is somehow God’s punishment for wicked sinners? We’ve been delivered an inescapable virus that disproportionately endangers the elderly, who we often blame for (apathy towards) all the world’s ills, but this time it isn’t punishment or comeuppance? Granted, I never liked hearing from these groups, and hopefully the nature of this crisis shuts up their ideology for good.

I’m trying to avoid Doomy Gloomy prognostications, and I do think we’ll pull out of this relatively okay, but man is this going to hurt. My most silver lining is the hope that maybe enough rich people will be angry about the destruction of their market gains (that would have been largely avoidable with competent leadership at the helm) enough to help the world excise its cancerous tumor of a human being, or at least get out of our way while we try to perform the surgery.
posted by Arson Lupine at 1:54 PM on March 12 [9 favorites]


My union has been striking for something like four weeks now. The net result so far: seemingly zero. I'm losing around fifteen days of pay for nothing very much that I can see, and they're talking about another round of ballots for even more strike action. I'm already underpaid as it is, and this is taking a huge bite out. Fuck.
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 2:03 PM on March 12 [6 favorites]


I am saddened by how much I want Mitch McConnell to catch this. On the one hand I wish I were a better person, but on the other hand shrug emoji.

Fuck that fucking cynical, conniving, lying fuck.
posted by aspersioncast at 2:04 PM on March 12 [42 favorites]


This is a really sucky time to be 35 weeks pregnant.

We finished out baby classes this week and the instructor told us that with current guidelines if we have coronavirus when I give birth for safety reasons we won't be able to hold our baby. We can pump and let someone healthy bottle feed, but that's it. I've got weeks to go and am currently healthy but the idea that I or my partner might not be able to hold our daughter is bringing me near tears.
posted by lepus at 2:07 PM on March 12 [37 favorites]


MaraudingEnnui and I both work from home so we are used to self-isolation. Now that the weather here in Amsterdam has cleared a bit we are trying to get out for walks or bike rides. They've closed things down here in NL (Museums, theaters, cinemas all closing) so the world feels a bit grayer. On the other hand, ME loves to cook so we are stocked with supplies so that we not only eat, but eat well and even treat ourselves a bit. Libby/Overdrive means we have vast quantities of stuff to read and get off the news cycle a bit.

My family is across the ocean and I know I won't be seeing them again very soon. Mom has some long term health problems and is heading to Mexico next week. I told her to go (if her flight isn't cancelled) as she has a huge family network down there and so I actually feel that she is safer there. If Dad hadn't died last year (of a respiratory infection!) then I'd be extremely worried about him now.
posted by vacapinta at 2:13 PM on March 12 [7 favorites]


My office is not taking this seriously AT ALL. They were scoffing and laughing (literally!) at an email from building management recommending that we wash hands and not come in if we're sick. The selfishness and self importance...! Thankfully, I am not in financial or physical danger, but I hate that in order to stay employed I have to engage in behavior that makes me a menace to others!

My parents are over 60 yo, smokers, my mom had bad pneumonia years ago that permanently weakened her lungs, and my dad has pre-COPD -- so they are at high-risk and scared. I'm scared for them. I hope that everyone who's high-risk has someone to reach out to for help.
posted by rue72 at 2:16 PM on March 12 [8 favorites]


some teacher tweeted they were practicing using the whiteboard feature on Zoom and a student figured out how to lock the teacher out of the session
posted by angrycat at 2:23 PM on March 12 [9 favorites]


I work for our area hospital network, and about %30 of my job is now answering questions regarding the corona virus, including being expected to take the brunt of random people's anger when they call and blame us for killing people because we're not passing out free masks.
My roommate and best friend is immunocompromised. I am so terrified of what could happen. We are very in debt right now, he's mentally ill and hasn't been able to have a job in years. He got hired 2 weeks ago in fast food, it was a major accomplishment for him, but they've taken him off the schedule because they're scared of his autoimmune disease. It's total bullshit and such a hit to our finances this month.
posted by FirstMateKate at 2:23 PM on March 12 [6 favorites]


Trying to decide if this eponysterical or the opposite of eponysterical.
posted by terrapin at 2:26 PM on March 12


We're starting WFH on Monday, but it's supposed to rain tomorrow so I think I'm going to get a head start. One of my old office mates left the company almost two years ago, and no one ever took over his desk... where I found his old laptop dock and a KVM switch. I'm going to try to set that up tomorrow.
posted by backseatpilot at 2:26 PM on March 12 [4 favorites]


Just called my aging and sole-surviving parent back in New Zealand to tell them they should self-quarantine themselves and go on a self-imposed “gardening leave” for the next few weeks. And apparently they woke up with a cough this morning. .... Sometimes it truly sucks to live 7,000 miles from “home“.
posted by inflatablekiwi at 2:44 PM on March 12 [11 favorites]


Our workplace has finally recommended that everyone work from home. There''ll be a small group going into work for stuff they can't handle from home, but almost all will be taking laptops home and hoping for the best. I'll go in to grab a couple of monitors and a docking station tomorrow and hope I get out of there uninfected.

Meanwhile my kid tells awful knock-knock jokes and talks incessantly about Pokemon love balls (?) and Minecraft purple palace parrots (?) and I'm sitting here wondering who would raise him if my wife and I (both in risk groups) were to gasp our last gasps.
posted by pracowity at 2:53 PM on March 12 [4 favorites]


This morning we had a mandatory, 30-person meeting sitting around a conference table in a closed room to discuss whether my employer would be willing to consider work-from-home. It was particularly fun when the division head would mention that we're all supposed to be maintaining a distance of six feet from others while we were sitting one foot from the person on either side of us.
posted by less of course at 3:04 PM on March 12 [7 favorites]


Good luck, lepus, and mazel tov despite strange days. I think it's gonna be weird and shitty but you're gonna be okay.
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:12 PM on March 12 [7 favorites]


Our Philadelphia-based office is starting WFH on Wednesday through the rest of March, so only a few more in-office days to go. Philadelphia county has 1 confirmed case, Camden County (where I live) has one confirmed case, so I feel okay going in until then. Misterussell is a HS teacher - they had a professional development day today to create 14 days of distance learning plans. Tomorrow the school is closed for deep cleaning. NJ's Governor recommended the cancellation of gatherings of over 250 people. Hm. Much more than than in our schools so we'll see when those distance learning plans go into effect.

And I texted my ex-husband, who works in a hospital in North Jersey, to tell him I hope he remains okay. We had a nice text chat. That is my kindness for Q1 2020.
posted by kimberussell at 3:15 PM on March 12 [7 favorites]


My entire industry just got shut down for at least the next month. No paychecks, and no idea what's coming after that.

It's honestly terrifying.
posted by mollymayhem at 3:15 PM on March 12 [17 favorites]


I am furious that US leadership cares more about the economy than the public health crisis they have been ignoring, and therefore exacerbating, and which is likely the reason the stock market they care about so damn much has been cratering. I hope they all keep shaking each others' hands. Fucking idiots.

I also hate that my adult life has been punctuated by 9/11, the 2016 election, and now this. I was so excited to grow up and be an adult, but these sort of traumatic world crises have made me rather bitter. I'm sure every generation goes through this (and I'm not discounting my fortune in not having to have lived through harsher times of war), but I'm still mad that so much shit has happened in the last 20 years. My psyche can't take much more of this world-changing bullshit.
posted by phatkitten at 3:19 PM on March 12 [36 favorites]


Our small office of the large company has been getting notes and messages all week on how to stay safer. Travel is banned or restricted, as are training classes. The latest is that face-to-face meetings are discouraged. We are now practicing talking to each other with our backs turned.
posted by Midnight Skulker at 3:22 PM on March 12 [3 favorites]


I’ve mentioned this in other threads, but I feel like I’m incredibly lucky to have gotten out of food service and back into teaching in Japan, as if I managed to make the tight choice at the right time for a change. My school closed on the sixth, but my responsibilities only changed in that I didn’t have to go in on the 11th, and am not scheduled (or at this point, allowed) to go in until the 23rd, and even that might change (it’s literally just a prep day for the next school year, changing seating in the office, etc). We’re also waiting to hear when the next school year is going to even start. It’s tentatively scheduled for the second week in April, but who knows.

Mrs. Ghidorah, though, still works in the kitchen of a restaurant in Tokyo four nights a week, so not only am I worried about her, I’m also at home alone most of the time. Last week sometime, I was watching the news, and they were already talking about how young people can be asymptomatic, yet still contagious, and need to take care to avoid spreading it to others, too. As a helpful visual aid, they put on the screen that they were referring to people in their teens, twenties, and thirties, and I was just like “look, I get it that forties means I’m not young anymore, but did you need to spell it out so bluntly?”

I went out last night for a bit to take care of some errands and such, needing to take the train into Tokyo. I haven’t been able to find masks in any store for honestly as long as I can remember at this point, and I look around and see I’m one of the only ones not wearing them, and I’m thinking, where the hell did everyone find theirs?! I noticed I’m being hyper vigilant about spacing and who I’m sitting near. Walking through Tokyo station felt weirdly like the Matrix crowd simulator, where you’re not sure what to look for until someone turns into an agent (or in this case, coughs). The number of people (almost always guys) wearing masks, but leaving their nose exposed, or pulling them down to their chin, it’s infuriating, and I want to tell them that not only are they doing it wrong, it would be better if they weren’t even bothering, so the masks they’re wasting could have gone to someone who might actually need them. I’m doing my level best not to touch anything, keeping my hands in my pockets while walking, avoiding handrails, using alcohol hand spray whenever it’s available, washing my hands as often as I can, but honestly, I feel like I’m starting to get a little paranoid about everything, and am doing my best to just not go out at all.

It’s weird, here. Disney just announced they’ll remain closed until early April. The spring high school baseball tournament was cancelled for the first time in its 100+ years of existence, and Mrs. Ghidorah and I shared a sympathy cry during a news report showing gruff older baseball coaches having to tell their players that they wouldn’t be going at all, and trying to console weeping teenagers, telling them that they just have to do their best to get to the summer tournament, while even that is in question at this point. Then they cut to business owners in and around the stadium used for the tournament, and there was an elderly couple who’d been running a restaurant in the are for god knows how long, having been told the tournament was cancelled. The wife said she wouldn’t believe it until she saw it on the news, and talked about how important the tournament was for their continued existence. The film crew showed her watching the announcement on the news, and she had to turn away from the camera to wipe tears from her eyes.

Yesterday’s news on the NBA and Tom Hanks hitting at nearly the same time for me had this weird sort of “shit got real” effect, not just for me, but for a lot of people, and I was part of a lot of discussions about how now this will make people take it seriously, to the absurdity of relying on a celebrity to make things seem real, to recognizing that no, I feel the same low level dread about Hanks, an older man with diabetes. On twitter I saw someone trying to figure out whether the news is good in that it’s making people finally take notice, or if it’s bad in the way that novels or movies about doomsday scenarios that have been slowly escalating use the death of someone famous resulting in the next day, streets being empty and people cowering in their homes.

All of the closings here (and everywhere) are going to have an impact. Every game cancelled is hundreds of workers staying home, and so far, the only team owner I’ve heard say anything about it was Mark Cuban saying that he’d put together something to make sure his stadium workers were taken care of. The government here announced that they’d use the country’s emergency budget to ensure that people told to stay home/not go into hourly paid jobs would receive a daily stipend, and that small businesses would be eligible for support, but I haven’t seen any details on that since the announcement.

As much as everything is cancelled, and the trains seem much less crowded, there are still people everywhere. Some friends tell me their bars are much busier than expected, and parks are full of kids running around. I’ve seen various reports saying the experts studying this believe that it’s more than likely that we’ll all get it at some point, and yeah, the flattening/cattening the curve makes total sense, but it doesn’t changed the impending sense of doom that I can’t shake, or my low level dread over my mother in Chicago with COPD, my in laws here in their late 70s, or even our immediate neighborhood, with two elderly women who I’ve come to care very much about, and all you in this thread and elsewhere. Stay safe, and sorry for the rambling unfocused novel.
posted by Ghidorah at 3:24 PM on March 12 [14 favorites]


The boss of my lab at the University of Pennsylvania has put us on optional work-from-home for everyone except folks taking care of animals. We're moving to daily check-in video conferences, which is way more attention than we normally get from our boss, for whom "hands off" is an understatement. He's kind of a hypochondriac in the best of times, though, and I think he's genuinely worried about folks staying at home getting sick without anyone knowing. It's sort of sweet.

I finally had a chance to run errands today, picking up frozen veggies and pasta and getting a new laptop that I've needed for like two months since my old one broke so that I can actually work from home when I'm not working with the animals. The stores in my Philly suburb were very busy for the middle of the day. There was still plenty of everything I needed but stocks of many staples were definitely running low.

My wife is sick with something that is probably not COVID-19, which sucks but at least means she can't go to her retail job which she hates. She's got enough sick leave so far, but her part-time job is online tutoring which might actually pick up dramatically with schools closing, so if she can't work her main job we hopefully have another source of income for a while.

I've been meaning to try rereading some works by Camus for a while to exercise my very rusty French. I picked up La Peste the other night. The combination of the story itself, my piecemeal understanding of what I'm reading, and the daily news about the actual pandemic happening make for a pretty surreal reading experience.

I'm trying hard not to be short with anybody but I can kind of feel moments of Very Grumpy Cortex lurking somewhere on the stochastic horizon. Apologies in advance when he shows up.

You know, I have to say, I'm glad that there's a pretty high threshold for Very Grumpy Cortex showing up, but I feel like we've gotten to see a bit more of him recently, and... I kind of like him.
posted by biogeo at 3:43 PM on March 12 [5 favorites]


I am furious that US leadership cares more about the economy than the public health crisis

Or rather, that they believe the health crisis won't seriously affect the economy. (I mean. It's no surprise that they care about the money more than the people, but normally, they're aware that those are connected.)

Over the last couple of decades, the industries that have been expanding are entertainment and service, and those are going to be what's hardest hit by people staying at home. Airlines that worked hard to overbook by 5-10% so they could always run at capacity are going to be slammed hard by cancelled flights; sportsball is losing revenue by shutting down stadiums; some hotels may wind up going bankrupt.

If the coronavirus ended tomorrow and there was never another case, we'd still be feeling the aftereffects for years.

I'm hoping for a switch to WFH next week. In the meantime, I'm enjoying the near-empty BART trains and quick commutes because rush-hour traffic is lighter than normal.
posted by ErisLordFreedom at 3:46 PM on March 12 [7 favorites]


My husband is on an (uninfected, as far as anyone knows) cruise ship, due to disembark in Spain tomorrow. Spain just closed all their ports to all cruise ships. We have no idea if he's even going to be able to get off the ship tomorrow or if he's going to get a bonus cruise to god-knows-where-they'll-let-us-dock. I've been self-isolating the past week or two by indulging my agoraphobic tendencies and just...stewing in all the bad news with my fellow online-life-havers. My livelihood is safe, since I work from home for an online company, but the livelihoods of a number of my friends are at high risk and I'm just...everything is fucked, everyone is fucked, and I'm ready for this ride to be over, kthxbai.
posted by Hold your seahorses at 3:47 PM on March 12 [11 favorites]


It's really bad where I am, working at a cultural org in NYC. Like really bad. It's been a long day of scenarios and problem solving and tradeoffs and scary financial pictures.
posted by Miko at 3:54 PM on March 12 [7 favorites]


OK my uni, my dept anyway, just authorized office staff to WFH if desired on a week by week basis as we see what unfolds. I was surprised that in my immediate coworker group of 4-5, I'm the only one who has officially chosen to WFH next week already.
posted by nakedmolerats at 4:01 PM on March 12 [1 favorite]


I also sing in two choirs that are suspended from rehearsing for the time being. For now at least we don't have any immediate performances coming up, but it will be interesting to see how we all practice independently or remotely.
posted by nakedmolerats at 4:02 PM on March 12 [1 favorite]


MY SYMPHONY TICKETS FOR TONIGHT FOR RHAPSODY IN BLUE WERE CANCELLED. Show is in 2 hours and they just called it. After an email this afternoon saying we're still on everything's fine.

That's it, the world's over. Fucking fuck.
(╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻
posted by phunniemee at 4:09 PM on March 12 [7 favorites]


...for me had this weird sort of “shit got real” effect

I know what you mean. I had my SGR moment this afternoon when I read that in my semi-rural Wisconsin county there are two tests pending for COVID-19.
posted by Short Attention Sp at 4:13 PM on March 12


My school admin team keeps meeting and I am the only saying WHAT THE ACTUAL FUCK PEOPLE WE NEED TO CLOSE THE SCHOOL and no it's not happening and I am completely furious.
posted by yes I said yes I will Yes at 4:14 PM on March 12 [10 favorites]


My entire industry just got shut down for at least the next month. No paychecks, and no idea what's coming after that.
It's honestly terrifying.
posted by mollymayhem


Solidarity from the other coast. We've canceled all our performances through 3/31. There's a possibility of more due to the fucking travel ban. All of our overhires are just going to be fucked. We're trying to do maintenance projects to at least keep a few of them working but we're also loosing money from canceling performances. Everyone is confused and worried and cranky. I just have the worst case of snow day fever. I don't want to think about projects to do because I'm pretty sure work is just going to be closed in a day or two anyway. I just want the weatherman to come on and say school is canceled so I can put on pjs and play video games.
posted by Uncle at 4:15 PM on March 12 [10 favorites]


I'm now on mandatory home quarantine after Spain was elevated to CDC Level 3 late last night... three days after I flew home and have been going to work, running post-vacation errands, etc. I got some mild pushback from one administrator ("but you say you feel fine!") but everyone else has been really supportive, offering to drop off food and other supplies if needed. A rando came around today selling carpet cleaner and I yelled "coronavirus quarantine" through the door and he ran away looking confused but terrified. So there are perks.

I'm extremely worried about potentially having been a vector, especially with new reports of asymptomatic transmission. There were several cases identified in my home city during the week I was away, and I bet a lot more brewing, so hopefully I can get through this and get back to what I know best: helping to take care of very sick people.
posted by basalganglia at 4:28 PM on March 12 [15 favorites]


My entire industry just got shut down for at least the next month. No paychecks, and no idea what's coming after that.
It's honestly terrifying.
posted by mollymayhem


Solidarity from the North Coast.

As of today my company has two gigs remaining on the books until the middle of April. And those two are St. Pat's Day gigs which are ??????? because the Governor of Ohio (A Repub who has thankfully not gone Full Trump) just today put a moratorium on gatherings over 100 people (with some exceptions - like restaurants can still be open because some distance can be maintained between people.)

The moratorium means my occasional side gig at the local House of Blues is now gone until the end of March at least - all concerts are cancelled.

Or rather, that they believe the health crisis won't seriously affect the economy. (I mean. It's no surprise that they care about the money more than the people, but normally, they're aware that those are connected.)

Over the last couple of decades, the industries that have been expanding are entertainment and service, and those are going to be what's hardest hit by people staying at home.


FUCKING EXACTLY!!!!!

GODAMMIT YOU FUCKING MOUTHBREATHING REPUBLICANS QUIT DICKING AROUND WITH TAX BREAKS AND START FORKING OUT CASH MONEY!!!!
posted by soundguy99 at 4:32 PM on March 12 [5 favorites]


'Stochastic' needs to be one of those words that you confidently think you know the meaning of until you want to use it to describe something, and then you are suddenly gripped by an unshakable feeling that it doesn't mean anything at all . . .
posted by jamjam at 4:32 PM on March 12 [2 favorites]


Solidarity from the other coast. We've canceled all our performances through 3/31. There's a possibility of more due to the fucking travel ban. All of our overhires are just going to be fucked. We're trying to do maintenance projects to at least keep a few of them working but we're also loosing money from canceling performances. Everyone is confused and worried and cranky. I just have the worst case of snow day fever. I don't want to think about projects to do because I'm pretty sure work is just going to be closed in a day or two anyway. I just want the weatherman to come on and say school is canceled so I can put on pjs and play video games.
posted by Uncle


Thanks duder. Yeah, I was loading in a show when the news came down, and we just kept pressing on with this bizarre "mopping the decks of the titanic" feeling about the whole thing. I'm not on a show right now, just gigging around. I'm in theory working tomorrow, and I have a day sometime next week to crossload a few trucks for a tour that got cancelled and extract the rental electronics from the set. But after that, no work and no prospect of work for at least a month. Nothing on the books at all. I'm guessing they'll be some load outs from shows that just never open, but no one knows.
posted by mollymayhem at 4:34 PM on March 12 [5 favorites]


Like several others, I also work at a public library. Maintenance has stepped up their cleaning, but you just can’t disinfectant thousands of books, dvds, magazines, etc etc etc.

We have a fairly significant population of homeless and low income patrons who depend on us for free computer/ internet, and now with it being tax season, plus the online census coming up... they need assistance and you just can’t help someone with computer stuff from 6 feet away or whatever the Safe distance is supposed to be.

Fuck this fucking administration and fuck every voter who put them “in charge”. I am so, so angry.
posted by bookmammal at 4:35 PM on March 12 [8 favorites]


Oh, fuck, the census.
posted by mollweide at 4:38 PM on March 12 [18 favorites]


Just coming in to echo ghidorah’s face mask waste rage. I’m also probably cancelling my second attempt at an Easter holiday; having already cancelled Milan I’m considering calling off my drive along the south coast of Turkey now that they have cancelled school. I half expect Wuhan to be the only safe destination by mid-April. Ugh.
posted by mdonley at 4:41 PM on March 12 [2 favorites]


Fuck the census? No, fuck, the census!
posted by medusa at 4:41 PM on March 12 [7 favorites]


Should we not be going anywhere except work, home and occasionally the grocery store now?
posted by Selena777 at 4:46 PM on March 12 [6 favorites]


Also, I am trying to buy a house right now and the 3 places I was supposed to see this week have all moved into temporarily off the market status. I guess people don't want people traipsing through their homes at a time like this? I get it but meanwhile I've got a mortgage approval letter with a timeline and a lease with a timeline and I would like to not be facing both a global pandemic and not having a place to live in a few months and aaauughh the house thing is stressful enough.

I needed Rhapsody in Blue it was the only good thing. At least I have the ability to work from home (til that lease runs out thooo) and a 48 pack of toilet paper. I have to count my blessings.
posted by phunniemee at 4:46 PM on March 12 [5 favorites]


Oh yes; the census.... it's come to light in my area that, reportedly (per a census worker), if respondents leave the ethnicity and/or sex categories blank; it defaults to white male. I did a bit of research online today but could not find real substantial factual evidence. And I'm too frazzled to do more research.

This timeline is poised to further disenfranchise at risk populations in the US.
posted by mightshould at 4:49 PM on March 12 [8 favorites]


Just greater undercounting alone would be a disaster.
posted by mollweide at 4:51 PM on March 12 [1 favorite]


We could all be dead in a week. So fuck it, I'm ordering a tin of Uncle Joe's mint balls. Join with me, minty ball lovers! Though preferably after amazon has dealt with my order.
posted by biffa at 4:54 PM on March 12 [4 favorites]


Things have been mostly normal here on MV until today. The restaurant was certainly way to slow for Indian night last night (best damn curry I've ever tasted) and we are all washing our hands more at work. I am worried that this could impact the summer season, just like in JAWS. A lot of people won't make it with out the usual summer onslaught of vacationers.

And then today, on a local FB group, someone reported four crazy hours at one of two Stop and Shop supermarkets on-island, resulting in lots of empty shelves. Rumor is wealthy seasonal residents from NYC and elsewhere who can work from home or don't need to work are coming to the island, opening up their summer houses, and stocking up. Some islanders are pissed about it (again, not sure if true) and that is disappointing. But on the other hand that could be a vector to bring the virus here. Or it could be here already.

We'll get through it together, this thread will help a lot.

Very Grumpy Cortex

That's the name of my new wall of noise band.
posted by vrakatar at 4:55 PM on March 12 [12 favorites]


Well, I was already in a fucking fuck mood, having cancelled plans to travel and visit family, and had mild cold symptoms that left me wondering if should isolate. And then things took a turn for the worse! Yay!

My neighbour, who from time to time *screams* abuse at his children, had one of his shouting, screaming fits. (Last time this happened, a few months ago, I ended up calling the police after I heard him, out of control, screeching at his 10-year-old son that he was a “fucking horrible c**t” and his son leaving the flat). This time, I steeled myself and did what I was too scared to do last time - stepped out of the flat when I heard him opening his front door, and stood there in front of him and his 7 year-old-daughter in the hallway, and told him he shouldn’t be screaming at his kids like that.

He was taking his daughter to something, but came back and knocked on my door afterwards and we had a - if not friendly - kind of level-headed conversation wherein he kept reassuring me he wasn’t violent, told me it was his son’s fault for being so annoying, and that he didn’t really have a temper. I managed to tell him that he did have a temper because I’d heard him call his son a f.h.c (he reeled a bit at that but didn’t deny it), told him to take responsibility for his temper, not blame it on his son, that I thought he should get some help for his temper, that I’d called the police rather than knocked on his door because I was scared.

Of course, while I made multiple great points in a calm but firm voice (all of which he failed to understand or accept), I came away angry with myself for the one thing that I did wrong, which was kind of agreeing to knock on his door next time rather than call the police again. Which feels like I’m now expected to be the one monitoring this whole thing. Fucking fucking fuck. It's amazing how powerful social convention is, that even though I know I could still call the police if I wanted to, a bit of me feels like I've agreed to knock on his door instead and am now obliged at some point in the future to go and knock on the door of a very angry man for the sake of his kids rather than anything else. I live on my own, so nobody for moral support on that front.

Anyway. Thanks for the modding, cortex, all power to you.
posted by penguin pie at 4:57 PM on March 12 [65 favorites]


If you were contributing to a decision involving a church with a congregation full of senior citizens, would you continue to hold worship during a period where every smart agency was telling small groups of vulnerable populations not to gather if at all possible?

Would you talk about how "every person can only be responsible for themselves" and "organizations can't be..." Blah blah blah? Even when your loved one counters that the average person has no symptoms for 2 weeks and infects another 2.2 people during that time?

I can only do what I can do, but I was so very disappointed to learn that when issues of life and death were literally on the line, my opinion, since it disagreed with hers, meant absolutely nothing with this loved one -- someone I really thought held my opinion in value.

Goddamn FUCK.
posted by WCityMike at 5:02 PM on March 12 [13 favorites]


My mother just shared this conspiracy theory on Facebook and I am shaking with rage. I have no idea how to even approach this.
posted by brook horse at 5:04 PM on March 12 [9 favorites]


WCityMike, do you go to my parents' church? Because it sounds like you go to my parents' church.

My take-away from this thread is that Cortex is a dude.

I told my brother and mother, who are flying in, to think about if there's anything they'd want to be sure to have if they're stuck here. I am relieved that my grandmother's nursing home has banned all visitors apart from death-bed situations. I'm planning to stop by Home Depot on my way to the airport to get supplies for a project that would be something to do if we're stuck at home.

Also, I am forking furious at our local DoH which seems to be dragging its feet hard on testing in the community where the cruise ship docked. Still investigating almost 2 weeks later? Nothing to report at this time? You can all piss right off.

If I wasn't still working (schools here haven't shut down...yet), I'd be working on organizing mutual aid.
posted by DebetEsse at 5:24 PM on March 12 [3 favorites]


I just want to state, for the record, that I did not ask the writers of this Voltairian universe to provide large scale, disruptive examples to horrifically illustrate my pet peeve about the difference between exponential growth (rate of spread of covid-19 or similar epidemic) and probably-quadratic growth (rate of approach of the impending climate disaster, as measured by rate of growth of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, at least).
posted by eviemath at 5:29 PM on March 12 [10 favorites]


My wife is Type 1 diabetic. The death rate in China for diabetics with the virus is 7.3%. To be fair, we don't know if all those diabetics were older, out of control, or what. However we are not taking any chances. She works (worked) at a Catholic school and told the principal today that she is done. She is self-isolating at home to try to minimize the chance she gets the virus.

Luckily I work from home full time and we are in a place where losing her income is no big deal.

I'm more scared than when she was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2016.
posted by COD at 5:38 PM on March 12 [7 favorites]


People’s phones here were blowing-up earlier today with a rumor that the area Kroger warehouse is being shut down. Panic ensued, and the local markets have been bum-rushed.
posted by Thorzdad at 5:47 PM on March 12


penguin pie, that was an awesome thing of you to do. If you are able to do it again safely, that is also awesome, but if you feel you need to call the police rather than intervening yourself, that is also awesome of you. It's a crappy situation to be in but you've already done great. Thanks for being a helper.
posted by biogeo at 5:49 PM on March 12 [36 favorites]


I just got back from Food Lion, it was busier than normal but not out of control. I shopped for 9 days of dinners and was able to get everything on my list. Only thing noticeably out of stock was toilet paper.
posted by COD at 5:52 PM on March 12


I don't feel worried for my own health, but... My grandfather is in the hospital for an unrelated issue. It is very serious and just... what fucking timing. I think this will kill him, if the hospital becomes stressed. We are already under-served in my community.

On a better note, I work for a company which provides WFH solutions and video conferencing. We're offering expanded free services in these scary times and it feels good to help enable people to communicate safely.
posted by one of these days at 5:56 PM on March 12 [6 favorites]


I am in Westchester County miles from ground zero New Rochelle. I also went to Madison Square Garden for the Allman Brothers concert with 20,000 other fools on Tuesday night.

I figure it is a matter of time before I show symptoms. I am self quarantined having already stocked up on supplies weeks ago. I am in my 50s and have had some heart issues so higher than average risk.

For some reason I am not concerned. I figure I ride out a miserable week or two and move on.

My only question is, if you get it once, do you become immune or nearly immune? Would not want to go again.
posted by AugustWest at 5:59 PM on March 12 [4 favorites]


Thanks, biogeo, that means a lot - appreciate it.
posted by penguin pie at 6:03 PM on March 12 [3 favorites]


Can I play on my tiny violin for a second? I bought a Really Good Seat for a musical in SF, after seeing it twice from the cheap seats here in LA. And now it’s canceled, so if I want to see it again I’ll have to take time off and fly somewhere, and I don’t have that kind of money right now.

I have a computer job, but it’s messing with terabytes of confidential data, so WFH isn’t realistic. I could do 40% of my job remotely, but for some of my coworker, that number is under 10%. Our workload is light right now, and that gives me extra time to be anxious and read the news. Today was my Friday, and after lunch I talked to HR about possibly limiting my days/hours in the coming weeks. HR let me know that management was, at that very moment, in a meeting about the company’s COVID response.

That reduced the mental spinning, until my two bosses started having a meeting in the office closest to me, and I could only hear about 20% of what they were saying... important things that were too important to share with the rank and file right away. I feel lucky that I was the person they called in to pull together information that will help with the company’s plan.

Then I left work. In the rain. This mood in LA, you guys. The MOOD.

Stopped for groceries on my way home. No dried rice or beans or paper products to be seen. My social plans for the weekend got cancelled. I resolved to cancel the Expanse screenings I was going to host starting Monday.

No more gym for me. No more hang outs. Maybe not even my roommates. But we have a tiny kitchen for 5 people, and no dishwasher. This feels extreme, but I’d be more anxious going out.

I’ll go to work Sunday (under 10% of the office is staffed), and Monday morning, but after that... I really hope my company Takes Measures.

To end on something I’m thankful for: the massive patch of feral kale growing in our backyard. And that one Swiss chard plant.
posted by itesser at 6:07 PM on March 12 [6 favorites]


My wife works for a small home healthcare firm. Their workforce of caregivers includes many moms. With the Indy area schools closing, many of their caregivers won’t be able to work their shifts because they have to be home with their kids.

This now has the company looking at triaging their clients in terms of who absolutely must be cared for or who can be shuffled to the bottom of the priority list, because they very probably aren’t going to have enough caregivers to cover clients. Clients who can’t be covered, of course, can’t be billed. Loss of billing will severely affect the stability of the company and, in turn, my wife’s job. She’s the breadwinner here. Not good.
posted by Thorzdad at 6:19 PM on March 12 [6 favorites]


Tiny silver linings I’ve been holding onto:

• My graduation from medical school being delayed six months last year means that I am not working in a hospital right now
• My 65yo parents were on a work trip through Zimbabwe and then many European countries that was supposed to last all of March. They cut their trip short yesterday (for their own safety AND so as not to be vectors) having visited only Zimbabwe and the UK
• I just learned today that they fist bumped, elbow bumped, and bowed through their entire trip—no handshakes at all
• my sister and her family moved to this area last fall, so I get to do voluntary isolation with my family instead of being completely alone
• itesser’s comment has given me the mental image of grumpy and aloof feral kale roaming their backyard

This is a scary time. I’m glad Metafilter is around to help us get through it.
posted by ocherdraco at 6:20 PM on March 12 [22 favorites]


I live in an apartment buidling and got an email from the management that started with the the following items (paraphrased):
  • If you need maintenence and are sick, tell us so that we can take protective measure before entering your apartment.
  • Don't come to the rental office if you are sick, use email, phone, or the website.
  • The safety of our tennants is our highest priority!
posted by paper chromatographologist at 6:20 PM on March 12 [2 favorites]


I bought Lady Gaga tickets for Toronto on Aug. 9 today. I mean, I know that's being so optimistic but it was also an amount of money I'd be OK losing if it comes to that. (I hope things make more sense by August. I also decided to do Toronto instead of going to the UK for my 40th, even if I was thinking of that for more around October because who the hell knows? and anyway, Toronto is a shorter flight and not separated by an ocean and I figure if I need to sneak back across the border (although ...), I could.

I'm a bit grouchy that my work hasn't told us to all work from home because all of us can (and most of us do for 2-3 days a week). As I've said elsewhere, I'm not worried about getting sick myself, but my boyfriend's business partner/housemate is in a high-risk group & his parents are, too, so it's sort of like ... well, I guess I'm just not seeing my boyfriend for a bit. And I'd feel better seeing him in public situations (like a restaurant, say) if I knew I'd be working from home.

I didn't go to the gym this week. I'll ponder next week (it's a small one but also kind of spacious and I go at times where it's not too crowded). I am good with supplies/food so I have no worries there.

Strangely, the early spring has caused havoc with my allergies. I don't have a sore throat or fever so I'm not worried. But I think maybe if I sniff and cough enough, people will just decide I should probably work from home.
posted by darksong at 6:23 PM on March 12 [1 favorite]


I'm sole carer for my elderly mother who just finished radiation treatment for esophageal cancer. She's on a feeding tube and is likely to be for months yet. She was in hospital last week for radiation-induced gastritis and I couldn't get her out of there quick enough. There are cases coming down all around us (Sydney) and I am doing one last shopping run today for things I cannot get online and then we are self-isolating for as long as we can.

I haven't had a good nights sleep since November and between doing tube feeding and medication 8 times a day, I don't have the energy or time to worry beyond that. I'm very grateful that my paranoia made sure we had plenty of toilet paper before the great TP Crisis of 2020 hit Australia. My husband has been very grateful for my pantry and so far I have resisted (mostly) saying "I told you so!" in revenge for the years of snide remarks about me prepping for the apocalypse.

Best wishes to everyone here. We can do this!!
posted by ninazer0 at 6:24 PM on March 12 [14 favorites]


Feral kale is a misnomer. The real mistake, though, is believing any kale can actually be domesticated. One wrong step, and even the gentlest seeming kale can revert back to its latent Paleolithic rage responses. Please keep that in mind when petting your kale.
posted by Ghidorah at 6:26 PM on March 12 [32 favorites]


What I told my kid tonight is that, during this crisis, you're going to see a lot of people do a lot of shitty things. But you're also going to see a whole lot of people shine. People will help other people. We'll get through this. It's gonna suck for a while, but we'll get through it. Most of us, anyway.

For like the first time since my 20s I have a lot of upcoming shows that I've been looking forward to. The earliest is in April, at a small local venue. I expect that one will be cancelled. Others are in June and July but I figure if they're still cancelling things in July not seeing a show will be the least of our problems.

I'm on vacation next week with no real plans so it'll be a good week to not be sitting in front of a screen all day. I think I'll turn some bowls and walk in the woods a lot. I told my boss I would be working remotely tomorrow because I see no sense in risking infection from work or the train. My mom is 88 and sick and I am a caregiver. It would be bad if I got sick.

Be well, everyone.
posted by bondcliff at 6:40 PM on March 12 [11 favorites]


On a lighter note, gamers will be pleased that, to date, there are no cases in Madagascar.

Also, I'm having a real hard time sympathizing with those coping with SOCIAL DISTANCING!!! Look, by my count, I have had face-to-face contact with 3 people today. In the last two weeks, that number rises to 5. On a typical workday, I chat with a dozen people, all online. On a typical weekend, no one. What you Shiny Happy People don't get is that I HAVE LIVED MY WHOLE GODDAM LIFE IN QUARANTINE because no one wants to get near the FAT DISABLED UGLY GUY just in case FAT DISABLED UGLINESS is contagious! So WELCOME TO MY WORLD!
posted by SPrintF at 6:41 PM on March 12 [19 favorites]


Ah, Madagascar, you scamp/reason why I always lose pandemic!
posted by Ghidorah at 6:49 PM on March 12 [2 favorites]


My oldest daughter left yesterday to live with her fiance. I'm very happy and proud for her with her career and strength - I can look and go job well done, if I had known this possible future for her back when I first met her twenty years ago, but to know she isn't just at work and there'll be no more of her annoying habits like grilling fish without the hood going, her nagging over the dining table clutter, the Vietnamese soap operas playing at full volume - the house is so much emptier. Soon my boys will be moving out for army training and I will go from a mom of five to just one little goblin running around.
posted by dorothyisunderwood at 6:50 PM on March 12 [12 favorites]


There is a nonzero chance my next contract, the bulk of my year's income, which starts in 4 weeks will vanish. I am privileged enough that I can survive a few months off, and the next one after that is already booked, but it would be crushing to morale and budget.

It's all anyone at work is talking about and people are spinning out and that's stressful. I excused myself to go sit by the lake, that was nice. I'm supposed to go out west and see my parents in a few weeks between gigs but that seems unlikely.

And hey, in addition to the specific and general anxiety of all this, it also crystallized for me this week that I'm nonbinary, so I have the fun of realizing I have no idea who I am anymore. Having a week fam.
posted by yellowbinder at 6:53 PM on March 12 [11 favorites]


Ocherdraco, we also have aloof/grumpy feral cats back there!
posted by itesser at 6:56 PM on March 12 [5 favorites]


Incidentally, Kale Rage Response is the name of my new band.
posted by Greg_Ace at 7:30 PM on March 12 [6 favorites]


So WELCOME TO MY WORLD!

Hi SPrintF, I see you and I am sorry. A note to anyone who might benefit: brook horse opened up a Disability/Ableism thread, if that's another good place to be for anyone.

From my perspective, there's not much going on here in Vermont. Shelves are normal, except for hand sanitizer, people are normal, big colleges are closing but (most) schools haven't just yet. We know things are coming. I decided since I'm miserable with worry, I might as well feel actually crappy, so I got my shingles shot today (I had shingles at 49 11/12 and have had post-herpetic neuralgia on and off ever since, I'm stoic about it but I hate it intensely.) and I feel like a horse kicked me in the arm. And, of course, they tell you all the scary stuff that might happen but for now it's just headache, sore arm. And I waited YEARS for this because Vermont is so small and I think they allocate it according to population.

My sister works for a state agency in a state that is under a state of emergency and she's nervous but doing okay (no TP where she lives) and my long distance boyfriend and I decided this is not a good weekend for a visit (he works at a university with a few confirmed cases) and I'm grumpy about that but I think it's the right decision. I'm cancelling everything and am lucky to still have paying work. Will be around here a little more, a small balm for Very Grumpy Cortex (hugs, man).

But honestly? I've been sick with something since August, stole my energy, gave me a weird cough, weird pains, ran up lots of medical bills (ongoing) and everyone kinda shrugs. And I hate it and it makes me angry. And I'm sort of putting off more sleuthing until the health care system isn't overtaxed. I've basically been in an uncomfortable state of agitation since Summer and while I present pretty decently, I am a mess and frightened. Thank you everyone for being a mess with me.
posted by jessamyn (temp) at 7:30 PM on March 12 [52 favorites]


FUCK.

Just yesterday I decided to take up my boss' suggestion that I could work remotely until shit blows over because I was not enjoying the low level constant anxiety being in an office full of hundreds of humans since things started looking worse, even though there are no (confirmed) cases here in Pittsburgh (yet). Home could be safe and I could take necessary precautions when and if I needed to go out, on my terms.

Tonight my housemate informed me that the person she traveled with to DC last weekend has a cough and fever today. She feels fine for now but we all know that you can be contagious before symptoms manifest. So home is no longer safe. I'm canceling plans and super bummed even though I know it's the right thing to do. My husband works at a grocery store and my other partner at a state assistance office so there was no guarantee but I still feel annoyed.
posted by miratime at 7:33 PM on March 12 [3 favorites]


Last March I posted in one of these fuckity fuck threads that my youngest sister had died. Well, history fucking rhymes and THIS March another one of my sisters up and fucking dies! On Sunday, she was hit by a pickup truck turning left, when she was in the crosswalk WITH THE FUCKING WALK SIGNAL. She died instantly, which I suppose is some cold comfort. She has two kids. She was walking her fucking dog.
Last year, when my other sister died, my grief was overwhelming and I cried rivers. This year and this dead sister has left me dry eyed with a hole in my fucking chest. With everything else that is going on, my pea brain can’t get past the howling rage. I am so fucking over this decade already. Hugs to everyone that needs them, and I’ll accept a few in return. Jesus fuck. I can’t believe all of this is happening.
posted by msali at 7:37 PM on March 12 [103 favorites]


Shit, the Seattle Public Library is closing all branches for a month. Time to do some panic borrowing before closing time tomorrow.
posted by mbrubeck at 7:46 PM on March 12 [4 favorites]


msali—I am so, so sorry. My heart hurts for you.
Hugs to you.
posted by bookmammal at 7:46 PM on March 12 [5 favorites]


msali I am so very sorry for your loss.
posted by OHenryPacey at 8:08 PM on March 12 [2 favorites]


msali so sorry for your loss. Fuck.
posted by bxvr at 8:16 PM on March 12 [2 favorites]


msali, I'm so sorry. That's terrible.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 8:19 PM on March 12 [1 favorite]


msali, I'm very sorry.
posted by Don Pepino at 8:25 PM on March 12 [3 favorites]


Oh msali that really is an awful lot to bear, so very sorry for your fresh pain. I wish we could all fast-forward beyond all this; social isolation atop grief is a terrible combination.
posted by kinnakeet at 8:28 PM on March 12 [1 favorite]


msali, I'm so sorry. What an awful year.
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 8:30 PM on March 12 [3 favorites]


msali, condolences. That's hard.
posted by medusa at 8:32 PM on March 12 [1 favorite]


And as for me, well, fuuuuuuuck, my partner is a potential COVID-19 case. Freakout time! I have an ask question if you want to give me advice. Or just hang out here if you have some fucks to give?
posted by medusa at 8:34 PM on March 12 [8 favorites]


As far as I can tell my work isn't at all prepared for this situation. Local schools and churches are closing, universities have switched to online classes, the stores are sold out of TP. We've been assured that they're monitoring the situation. I'm scared that we should already be working from home (which we aren't equipped for), and that by the time they decide it's necessary the damage will have been done. But if I self-quarantine, I'm concerned about getting fired. And if they do close the office, I'm scared that we'll be forced to use our PTO and then if necessary go without pay. And then face layoffs as the company tries to bring its profits back up.

And heck, one of my friends, who I saw Sunday and who was sick at the time - neither of us thought much of it - is affiliated with an institution with which one of the local covid patients is also affiliated. I'm not worried about myself, I'm worried about being a carrier and spreading it to my older relatives.

I'm so angry. I feel so fucking disposable and used in multiple areas of my life. And my medication has a side effect of increased anger and my heart rate has been high this week (also probably thanks to the meds). I won't type out all the other things I'm pissed about because I can feel the vein in my temple starting to throb and so far typing the stuff out is just making me more sick with rage.
posted by bunderful at 8:36 PM on March 12 [7 favorites]


I'm kind of in crisis, i think.

a) i was going to go out west to see mom, she's in a nursing home, and not well. I have decided not to go, and worry this will be the last time I see her.
b) I had a conference in Seattle I was really looking forward to, it makes me happy, and keeps me sane, and that's cancelled.
c) Other work stuff has cancelled and money is v v v tight right now.
d) My dad, who I thought was sober, has been drinking spectuacually, and has landed himself in the hospital, with alcoholic encephalopathy, and we think maybe fatal, but again the not travelling thing.

Plus the low key terror of the world.
posted by PinkMoose at 8:41 PM on March 12 [16 favorites]


of course they should cancel.
posted by PinkMoose at 8:42 PM on March 12


Hugs, PinkMoose. We know things should be canceled. That doesn’t keep the cancellations from affecting us.

And msali, you have my condolences. I’m so sorry for your losses.
posted by ocherdraco at 8:46 PM on March 12 [5 favorites]


msali I am so sorry. This is more than anyone should have to bear.
posted by InkaLomax at 8:59 PM on March 12 [3 favorites]


Morale is low. But I've never read a more honest, teeth clinching thread on mefi. I'm sick, lost hours, wonder about my job even as I got a good offer or interview today, at my poor me lowest...what will the restaurant look like in 3 weeks and that's fear and speculation. I can't shake this cold but it's been a week, clinic even rushed a flu test for me so as not to infect others, luckily it's negative but my behavior at work was angry and that's not me. Trying to be proactive, I'm pretty convinced my insecurities are tied to poor diet, dehydration and fear run rampant thus slowing recovery. Lord I'm old enough to remember my grandmother telling me about 1918. Somehow gratitude must rear forth and remember others are suffering more then I.
Condolences msali.
posted by clavdivs at 9:05 PM on March 12 [13 favorites]


Co-worker exposed march 2-6. we found out today. office closed. deep clean. self-quarantine til 27th. ugh
posted by 922257033c4a0f3cecdbd819a46d626999d1af4a at 10:14 PM on March 12 [11 favorites]


Fuck all the fucking fuckage, hope they impeach that shitstain again just for this moronic travel ban.
posted by Burhanistan at 10:19 PM on March 12 [5 favorites]


In "retirement," I become the Commodore of my town's yacht club, which basically means I run a restaurant and bar (and oversee our sailing school). We're closed now for two weeks while we do our annual deep clean and tackle disruptive projects, which is fortuitous. Some of the members think I closed the club due to the corona virus, which has earned me both kudos and criticism.

Anyway, over the past 18 months we've become mostly solvent and one of my goals--offering the full-time staff health insurance--seemed within reach. I socked away a bunch of money for it and planned to tell staff in about a month, before the busy summer season starts. We'd be the only restaurant around to do so which would make us a really competitive employer. But now I think I'll need to use those resources to help pay everyone if we can't reopen. The irony.
posted by carmicha at 10:27 PM on March 12 [15 favorites]


This is how I feel when a massive hurricane is in the gulf coast, not fearful as much as powerless, like the gods are rolling dice on my fate, and all I can do is wait for their verdict.
posted by Beholder at 11:02 PM on March 12 [11 favorites]


So I live in Seattle. We closed on a house purchase last Monday. This was our fifth attempt at buying. We kept getting screwed because other buyers could cut corners we couldn't--hell, one time we even lost out even though we offered more money. We'd been shopping since July. Finally got a house.

We're supposed to move in at the end of the month, we've gotta get out of this one because it's just not healthy, but like... hiring/paying/expecting movers to come out and work with all this going on seems horrible of us. We can't move on our own. We need movers. I'm trying to re-schedule it sooner, so at least the window is tighter, but in arranging this, dragging people out to work, I feel like I'm part of the problem.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 11:04 PM on March 12 [10 favorites]


msali, I’m so sorry about your sister—that is awful, especially on top of your other sister’s death. Although it’s not much, I offer as many internet hugs to you as you would like.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 11:11 PM on March 12 [1 favorite]


[from an askme answer, not this thread]
> Don't go to the boardwalk, don't go to the beach, don't go to the hiking trail. Stay home.

This was about someone who was going to travel & stay in a hotel, but I hope the staythefuckhome idea doesn't mean you have to stay in your damn house all the time. I'm lucky enough to live somewhere low enough density (and car obsessed) that I can take a walk without crossing paths with other pedestrians. If I'm not out so long I need to find a bathroom, how am I endangering the at-risk?

I've been working from home for a week now and live alone. If I don't get out some I'm going to go crazy.
posted by ASCII Costanza head at 11:13 PM on March 12 [5 favorites]


msali, I'm so so sorry. Health and strength and peace to you and your family.
posted by suelac at 11:14 PM on March 12


Pretty much have Heroin (VU) on repeat ... and not a whole lot else. All Is Terrible, it's all Entropy by Pynchon.

I used to like that short story, really I did.

I was a fucking idiot.
posted by aramaic at 11:36 PM on March 12


I wonder how many relationships this is going to end. I just hissed like a snake at my very sweet SO because he was cracking his fingers in his sleep.
posted by angrycat at 11:47 PM on March 12 [8 favorites]


So I'm the IT manager (ex sysadmin) for our school, trying to prepare for the school being shut indefinitely. Of course this means I've spent much of the last two weeks in covid meetings, and the rest trying to answer the flood of emails about systems to support teaching from home, and yet more trying to work out how to improve the VPN without spending any money... Yeah, it's been a lot of late nights recently.

So the biggest problem isn't software that teachers can use to set work with; we've already been using google Clasrrom for ages for homework, so that should work for that, and we've got google Meet with recording and skype 4 business for stuff that has to be live. (Microsoft Teams can suck my balls, what a useless pile of buggy shit)

The huge problem is the admin staff, trying to access our finance system/MIS that dates from two decades ago that REALLY doesn't like being accessed over a VPN, and of course we've got no money to buy terminal-services licences or space on our SAN to spin terminal servers anyway, and of course these staff don't have any home IT so we're desperately trying to resurrect our scrap pile of 10+ year old laptops to try and get them functional again so they can try and use the VPN anyway even if it'll suck, and of course the only parts are from china with infinity-days shipping or insane prices and they'll still be murder slow as fuck, but it's only like payroll and invoices, so of course we're not allowed to buy them new laptops, and yes Judy, I know you've been waiting a whole 6 hours for a reply on an email about how to use some pettifogging detail of google Meet, but you do know there are hundreds of other fucking staff asking questions right, and passive aggressive CC'ing the head when you're whnging that I've only sent you three detailed personal mails answering your fucking questions, and if you learned to fucking read you could click some of the links I've sent you on that exact fucking point or just fucking try it yourself rather than expecting to be spoon fed, and oh yes Boss, the admin staff can take their own PCs home instead of laptops, we'll just need to wipe them and set them up for remote working, oh but they're still using them and of course we don't have any spares because we haven't got any money and oh yes, of course we'll still be coming into the office so we can support people's random pieces of crap from home with no remote software to do it with and I'm sure that'll go just fine, but the UK government is keeping the schools open after all and even if they weren't I'm still going to have to be in the office trying to keep the VPN up and answering calls from the clueless so telling me I should stay-the-fuck-home anyway hahahahafuckingha.

Fuck everything, basically.
posted by Absolutely No You-Know-What at 12:04 AM on March 13 [15 favorites]


I'm glad this thread is here, and my sympathy to everyone here that's having a rough time. My week has been lousy. I have been planning on visiting my parents in Key Largo. I have gone every spring for the last 20 years or so, except the last 2, so I was really looking forward to it. As the virus has bee spreading, I've been increasingly struggling with it - is it irresponsible of me to travel while this is happening, and possibly give it to my dad, whose health hasn't been good lately? But on the other hand, his health hasn't been good, what if I don't have much time to spend with him? And then yesterday my work announced that anyone traveling to affected areas will have to do a 2 week quarantine before returning to work. It seems very likely that by the time I was supposed to go florida will have been affected, so I'm going to have to cancel. My mom was very understanding when I told her, but I'm still so sad and disappointed, and very worried that my dad will catch it, and he's also diabetic so it's even more dangerous for him and everything just sucks. Hang in there Dad.
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 12:23 AM on March 13 [6 favorites]


This is my fucking fuck. F-in-law emailed on Monday. When we saw him at Christmas he seemed fine. Apparently now he can barely get out of bed to go to the bathroom. It looks like liver cancer with masses elsewhere too. They are doing more years to determine prognosis. But any other time we would be on a plane now.

Mother-in-law is 80 too though, so while we would want to relieve her of some of the caretaking (cooking, driving him to appointments etc) the worst we could do is show up and infect her with COVID-19. So even if we went over now, we'd need to self isolate for 14 days before seeing them, which means we can't be any fucking help right now when she needs it. (We are trying to do what we can remotely in terms of mobilising her local networks, money, services, etc).

But it's not okay.

And my husband had a job interview on Tuesday at his current workplace (he is about to be unemployed). He said to the interview panel beforehand that he had just learned about his father's cancer and might not be at his best, and they offered to skip the interview entirely as it was supposedly " just a formality". But he thought that was unfair somehow, so he said he'd go through with it. Then he says he proceeded to do a really bad interview. And he has heard informally that he will not be being hired after all.
posted by lollusc at 12:26 AM on March 13 [12 favorites]


Also this seems really minor in the scheme of things, but as an academic my social network is spread around the world. (People keep leaving and getting jobs in other countries just when we've gotten close.) I rely on conference travel and similar to see them. So far the three conferences I had funding for this year have either all been cancelled or my own university has forbidden me to travel, plus several of my favourite people in the world who were meant to be visiting Australia in the next couple of months aren't coming, so I don't know when I'll next see my closest friends. And this year I had significant travel funding that I probably won't have again for a few years. Also one of those conferences was my first international keynote, so also sad for my CV.

Anyway that is totally a first-world problem and I'm not even THAT sad about it all, but it kind of sucks to be sad about everything else and also waking up every day to an inbox of emails about how people you really miss are not going to be anywhere you'll see them in the foreseeable future after all.
posted by lollusc at 12:33 AM on March 13 [9 favorites]


Also also, I have allergies and every time I sneeze (into my elbow) anyone around looks at me like I am trying to kill them. I would have hoped my streaming, itchy red eyes made the source of the sneezing clear, but apparently not.
posted by lollusc at 12:39 AM on March 13 [10 favorites]


Anxious as fuck. Confirmed case where I work but told my area should continue as usual. We're preparing for work from home.

Did I mention I have contamination OCD? And live alone? And am in recovery from an eating disorder that nearly killed me last year? At least I'm physically healthy.
posted by daybeforetheday at 1:36 AM on March 13 [8 favorites]


In Seattle and up late worrying. Working from home for a week. Kids are now home for 6 weeks. Supposed to move next week. Surrounded by boxes. Will we be able to move? How locked down will we be? We went from "consider working from home" to "shut it all down" in 8 days.
posted by rouftop at 1:46 AM on March 13 [2 favorites]


I'm a US citizen who has been in South America since last June, and I'm currently headed to COVID-free Uruguay for at least 45 days. (This was a total change of plans btw.) That is, if they keep letting in flights, my tourist visa doesn't get cancelled midstay, and my AirBnb host doesn't decide to panick on me.

In Montevideo I'll practice social distancing, wash my hands a lot, and buy into private health insurance, which I'm fortunate enough to be able to do. Uruguay seems to be laying in test kits as well as home-based testing for those who can't make it to an ER. And Montevideo is a cool enough city just to walk around, although I'll probably avoid museums and such.

I'm likely to get a mild case when (not if, but when) I'm exposed. But it concerns me that I could be asymptomatic and still infect other people, hence the social distancing. I'm good at being alone but will probably increase my phone calls to friends.

Going back to the States means facing down the US health care scam, which is about to have its finest hour, if by finest you mean a capitalist's dream. Hoping I don't have to do that before the first great wave of infected people start to recover. I don't see that happening for another few weeks.
posted by Sheydem-tants at 1:51 AM on March 13 [4 favorites]


msali I’m so sorry.
posted by ellieBOA at 1:52 AM on March 13


After spending nearly all of the long winter in Sweden, mostly Stockholm and its archipelago, am back in England to do a whole bunch of admin. Have got through the most essential parts, am working through the less essential parts now.

But it's the combined forces of the weather (rain: five days out of five) and the pervasive damp that are getting to me. I'd forgotten that it gets into your bones, and your soul, and the entire country is a wet, sodden mess. With infrastructure that is not fit for purpose (train cancellations: three days out of five), panic shopping, and the usual background of misinformed citizens and a socio-economic structure that's been underfunded and it shows in a myriad of unpleasant ways.

Distracting myself, when taking a break from admin, by reading MetaFilter and tweets and a few other things. Have post-compiled some tweets from a twitter thread about embarassing sex stories, which seemed like a good distraction; the post and comments from MeFites (just added a lot more anecdotes).
posted by Wordshore at 2:14 AM on March 13 [9 favorites]


In hindsight, Friday the 13th just before the Ides of March was a poor choice of wedding date.
posted by Going To Maine at 2:35 AM on March 13 [25 favorites]


msali, how awful for you and your family. Sending internet hugs if you would like them.
posted by paduasoy at 2:35 AM on March 13 [1 favorite]


When my wife and I were dating and starting to get close, she wound up home quarantined and since I'd been exposed, I wound up quarantined with her. It had been a running gag that "There's no one I'd rather be quarantined with." I'll be honest, I didn't expect that to (potentially) come up multiple times in a relationship!

Neither of us have it now but we're both immunocompromised so we're locking ourselves down as much as possible.
posted by Ghostride The Whip at 3:05 AM on March 13 [12 favorites]


it also crystallized for me this week that I'm nonbinary, so I have the fun of realizing I have no idea who I am anymore.

That sounds really hard. The pandemic sucks on its own, while making everything that already sucked, suck all the more. It is that much harder to get mental health care here in Sweden, where it is hard already. I am not worried for myself, because I am more stable mentally than I have been ever, maybe, courtesy of a new anti-depressant I have been on since December. I know what it feels like off that drug, and I know I will be fine (if wobbly) without it. But many of us are not in that situation, as this thread shows.

On Tuesday of this week Sweden had 353 cases. On Wednesday, 500. Today, Friday morning, we are up to 688. A Swedish health expert predicts that 60% of the population will end up contracting it. Of course, it will be mild for many. But those folks who really need health care may be in trouble. In Stockholm, mismanagement of a new hospital helped lead to slashing staff last fall. Moreover, every third "kommun" (county? region? I should know this; warning, link is in Swedish) has budgeted less for welfare programs in 2020 because of money problems. Things like elder care. You know, luxuries.

So things suck, absolutely. And yet, I am finding moments of fun. As some of you know, my dad died last Sunday. He had been dying for awhile but still, it was painful. I went off to see The Vampire Lovers (Hammer production, beautiful lesbian vampire, many sets of lovely breasts) last night at Stockholm's Cinemateket, and it was such a fun film. One of the most entertaining bad movies I've seen. Also, I read something from a Jonathan Fields newsletter I subscribe to (not findable on the web thus far) that I found helpful:

A certainty anchor is a practice or process that adds something known and reliable to your life when you may otherwise feel you’re spinning off in a million different directions. Rituals and routines can function as certainty anchors; their power comes from the simple fact that they are always there. They are grounding experiences to which you can always return, no matter what’s going on. Their consistency makes them effective tools to counter the anxiety that comes not only from living in uncertain times, but from embracing endeavors that ramp uncertainty even higher.

Certainty anchors can be anything, from brushing your teeth at the same time every day to a weekly movie night or daily tea break. Whatever. I am going to spend some time developing additional certainty anchors for myself. Given the pandemic and various kinds of not-promising larger family developments, my ADHD brain has an urgent need for more certainty anchors. For me, participating in MetaFilter is probably my most important certainty anchor. Knowing that I will find smart, engaged, thoughtful, funny folks here every single day means a lot to me. Thank you all for being here. Take care, dear Hive Mind.
posted by Bella Donna at 3:16 AM on March 13 [39 favorites]


msali my most sincere condolences. Giant internet hugs to you and anyone else on this thread who needs them.

Internet hugs are currently the best hugs, because non-contagious. Not sure how I feel about this new normal, TBH.

My fucking fuck is being stuck in a locked down Italy and my 97 yo grandmother is in a North Dallas suburb hospital with fluid in her lungs due to her heart condition since Wednesday. When I talked with my dad on Monday, he told me she was probably going to a nursing home soon, as she's severely struggling to physically care for herself, and I begged him to try to organize some stopgap measures until this Corvid19 crap passes. Now I'm worried that she'll catch it in the hospital, and/or that the worst happens and I will be stuck here.

My dad was diagnosed this year with diabetes and had January's bronchial infection turn into pneumonia in February; my mom's husband just finished chemo. So I also get to worry exponentially about them as well.

Also get to worry about how our household income will be slashed next month, so that's fun too.
posted by romakimmy at 3:18 AM on March 13 [8 favorites]


My Mother's church [seventh day adventist] is hosting communion tomorrow.

They usually wear cotton gloves, but because her background is in the NHS she is insisting that everyone preparing the bread wear food grade silicone gloves, and also that instead of the church members taking their communion from a shared plate, she will personally - (with silicone gloves on) give each person taking communion their piece of bread.

The Seventh Day Adventist Church international network have a robust and reliable tele-worship system that anyone can access via internet browser but the central church has not (yet) told people that remote worship is preferable to in person worship.

I WOULD SCREAM IF IT MADE ANY DIFFERENCE. BUT IT WONT.

Every time we discuss church and religion I am glad I noped out of it all at an early age
posted by Faintdreams at 4:21 AM on March 13 [4 favorites]


(Allow me to note that feral kale and remote worship both make excellent MF handles. Carry on.)
posted by Bella Donna at 4:28 AM on March 13 [8 favorites]


Oh man. My income comes from two places, my job at the auction house where aour customers are majority elderly and high risk so I don't have a good feeling about it staying open, and the antique dealing I do with my dad which is... Going to be completely dead for a while. It's going to be a bad year for the antique business, I'm hoping we can ride it out but we'll see. Luckily I'm married to a teacher who will continue to get paid regardless so I'm ok but I realise I'm very privileged in that regard.

My husband got an email today saying his school is "likely to close" before Easter too.
posted by stillnocturnal at 4:48 AM on March 13 [3 favorites]


msali, I’m so, so sorry. Internet hugs to you.
posted by penguin pie at 4:55 AM on March 13


Fuuuuuucccckkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk kkkkkkkkk kkkk

Myself, my boss, and the HR Director spent probably a good 15-20 hours this week meeting about what our company should do, and trying to keep abreast of the most current information and recommendations. It's hard, we are a manufacturing facility so work from home is not an option for the majority of our employees. Plus, the CEO and other non safety-related leaders are all about making money which doesn't happen if people are not here, so they're pretty resistant to the more impactful precautions.

One of the things I learned this whole process is that our union employees do not get sick days. (!!!?!!) I advocated for that non-stop all this week, to the point of raising my voice and pounding on the table a couple of times and that is definitely not my style.

The senior leadership got together early yesterday and I got a sneak preview of the memo that's going out today from my boss. I'm happy -- they are banning all work travel, all meetings (internal and external), are being conservative about visitors and contractors to the plant, will be sending home people that show up sick, and, giving everyone 3 paid sick days. I'm super proud of that. Its probably one of the biggest changes I've made in my 2 years there.

The other big issue that this whole thing is causing is lack of supplies. Obviously there's no hand sanitizer or masks available, all of my industrial sources are out until at least July, after that they're going to be prioritizing healthcare over everybody else. Now, the latest thing is disposable gloves. This is a problem as we work with chemicals in my workplace and a lot of people need them. We're moving from having them in a vending machine to having the managers dole them out three pairs per employee per day. I've stockpiled a little, and hope it's enough.

And and, I'm also on the board of trustees for my church. After getting out of hours long meetings with the people at work talking about covid, I check my personal email, and have like 30 from church members who all have different opinions on what we should do. We decided last night to close until April, which I think is a sensible thing to do. We have a lot of elderly people in our congregation. We are still paying all of our staff their normal hourly rates, which I think is a nice thing to do as well.

I took a half-day of vacation today, because I feel burned out (and, my boyfriend was on vacation with his family and got back last night. I've missed him so much, I realized how lonely I get without having someone to talk to daily).

Hugs to everyone...I hope we all pull through this OK, and I'm grateful for this community.
posted by Sparky Buttons at 4:58 AM on March 13 [25 favorites]


Atlantic Canadian here... we have had only one confirmed case here, in New Brunswick. Which makes us extremely lucky so far. But that means that there are seemingly very few people taking this seriously at all. You would think this would would be a fantastic chance for us to be proactive...close schools, have ALL travellers self quarantine for 14 days, advise anyone who can work from home to do so, and issue serious warnings to our high population of elderly people that maybe they should stay home for awhile. But we're not even doing this.

There have been 8 coronavirus 'assessment' stations set up in Nova Scotia. Which sounds great. But. They are still only testing people who have travelled and are experiencing symptoms. You can have all the symptoms of coronavirus and have been in close contact with someone who has travelled, but NO TEST FOR YOU. I just read an article stating that the Nova Scotia health department is expecting a rise in positive tests in kids when returning to school after travelling for March break, which is next week. So they KNOW there will be a rise in cases in the following week. Why wouldn't they....try to prevent these? Why don't they start testing members of the community who are sick and haven't travelled? It is so disheartening. We are a vulnerable area, where thousands and thousands of our aging population have NO family doctor. Doctor and nursing shortages and lack of hospital beds are normal here, so it is scary to imagine a crisis hitting our hospitals.

2020 was supposed to be better. I am so disappointed in humanity. Fuck fucking fuck fuck fuck.
posted by fourpotatoes at 5:06 AM on March 13 [9 favorites]


Deepest sympathies to Bella Donna on the death of your dad - I know you've been dealing with this for quite a while.
posted by soundguy99 at 5:07 AM on March 13 [5 favorites]


About that flattening the curve - it has it's own URL now: https://www.flattenthecurve.com/.

Not as catchy as https://staythefuckhome.com/ though
posted by DreamerFi at 5:51 AM on March 13 [6 favorites]


Genuinely believe this will be a transforming global catastrophe. And that we have already lost control in the states. Expecting to get very sick, and also for several relatives to die (my in laws, brother, parents, aunts and uncles are all in vulnerable categories). Hospital systems are going to be overrun and doctors will have to implement battlefield triage. Those who are less likely to survive will be simply left to die because there just won't be resources available to treat them. Hundreds of thousands or more will die and the face of life itself will change quickly and dramatically. I'm already unable to keep up with the pace of events.

I'm just saying this because somehow saying it means I stop helplessly panicking about something I can't do anything about besides wash my damn hands (which are already getting irritated from too much washing)
posted by dis_integration at 6:24 AM on March 13 [3 favorites]


...we'd known that we might have some sort of limitations in the near future, but my (biochem) lab just got word from the department that we're shutting down Monday. As in, turn off all instruments, freeze everything, and get the fuck out. It's ostensibly for a "pilot week" (which would have been spring break), during which professors and TAs can frantically try to figure out how to teach their courses online, while the undergrads frantically try to move out. But... we've been told to assume it could be 6-8 weeks.

I have paper-writing and bioinformatics and stuff to do. But I'm not sure I have 6-8 weeks of it. Not a great time to be the sort of scientist who does benchwork.

Yesterday, my inboxes included COVID-19 email from: my current (postdoc) university, my grad university, my undergrad university, a science professional organization, a bike supply company, two music venues, the airline on which I'd booked flights for my almost-certain-to-be-cancelled vacation, and my luthier. (Violin varnish & alcohol-based sanitizers are a poor mix!) Makes it a bit hard to focus on winding down my experiments, honestly.
posted by ASF Tod und Schwerkraft at 6:33 AM on March 13 [2 favorites]


For me, right now, it is the uncertainty that is the worst. We just had all our plans changed by the seesawing talk about potential domestic travel bans, which has been an enormous pain to resolve quickly, for example. I just wish that the national response was being led by science, and that there was at least an attempt at coordinating an international response. Instead, in this country, it seems like it is being left entirely to counties and states to respond, with national actions being limited to harmful theater like banning travel from Europe and delaying testing to avoid higher numbers.

Plus, uncertainty about things like, will my job still exist? What will be the impact on the many people in our family who are older and/or immunocompromised? And, watching retirement savings dwindle with each market dip has been "fun". I have two coworkers who are retiring later this year -- I am hoping they are still able to do that.

Best wishes and virtual hugs to everyone who is dealing with hard stuff.
posted by Dip Flash at 6:42 AM on March 13 [8 favorites]


I just wish that the national response was being led by science, and that there was at least an attempt at coordinating an international response.

This. [USian perspective]. I am appallled at how we, as a handful of decidedly non-medical experts comprising our senior team, had to sit around our table like dunces Googling around for what other culturals were doing, this university, that school, how hard we should panic, what were the right steps around closing to the public, cleaning, banning travel, etc. WE HAD SO LITTLE GUIDANCE. Now I think we've stayed open way too long and had the opportunity to spread any virus to literally thousands of people. And closing had to be an institution by institution decision instead of a very clear mandate or at the least strong urging by some responsible public body/ies.

We are on our own out here. More and more I realize how prophetic Masha Gessen was with Rule No. 3: Your Institutions Will Not Save You.
posted by Miko at 6:55 AM on March 13 [17 favorites]


EVERYTHING IS SO SHITTY. There is so much anxiety and fear and bad shit going on in the world (and in my family) right now. So I would like to note something a smart therapist once told me, something I often quote here: Worry is not a strategy. This is not worry- or anxiety-shaming; I have a clinical anxiety disorder myself. This is simply a public service reminder.

Also, I subscribe to historian Heather Cox Richardson's Letters from an American newsletter, and she wrote something yesterday that resonated with me. "The realization that they had to take charge meant that today state governors, business leaders, sports team owners, university presidents, mayors, and so on, began quite suddenly to assume responsibility for managing the crisis." That was a reassuring message. In the face of massive federal incompetence, incompetence that was groomed and nurtured and cultivated by our president and his crooked cronies, US local and regional officials and other folks (hi, kitten kaboodle) are stepping up to help people.

The historian also wrote something else that is true: "... it has been my observation that people are angry and touchy and upset these days. We are all on edge. If you can be kind to someone, it will go a long way in this atmosphere. Someone did that for me today, surprising me with flowers when I left the deserted office for what will likely be months, and I promise, they brightened a very grim day."

During times like these, community and kindness mean a lot. But many of us do not have community we can rely on. Do you need help? In Al-Anon, we learn to ask for help. If the first person we ask cannot help us, then we have to keep asking. Please ask someone, and keep asking if you need help. You may not get the help you need but every time you ask, you are doing a great job of showing up for yourself.

I cannot do a lot but I can do a little. If you need to vent, if you feel sad and alone and frightened, unable to sleep, drop me a line. I cannot offer an actual lifeline (or even toilet paper, sorry to report) but depending on the time, I may be able to act as a witness to your suffering. If that small thing might be helpful, do not hesitate to write. (If this is a stupid idea, then, you know, don't.)

More than anything, please, love on yourselves, my friends. Kindness should start at home, no kidding.
posted by Bella Donna at 7:04 AM on March 13 [28 favorites]


CANADA IS CONSIDERING CLOSING BORDERS AND MY WIFE LIVES WITH ME HERE IN ONTARIO CANADA AND CROSSES EVERY DAY FOR WORK. I FUCKING HATE ALL OF THIS SHIT. I JUST WANT TO SCREAM AND CRY. SHE'S COMING HOME FROM WORK EARLY IN CASE A FORMAL ANNOUNCEMENT IS MADE AND THE BORDERS ARE CLOSED, SO WE'RE DOING WHATEVER WE CAN TO FIGHT THIS SHIT BUT FUCKING FUCK FUCK EVERYTHING IS HELL.
posted by Fizz at 7:05 AM on March 13 [24 favorites]


Hate to favourite these things. Fucking fuck. Sending so much love.
posted by wellred at 7:10 AM on March 13 [9 favorites]


msali, that sucks to hell and I'm so sorry.
posted by kimberussell at 7:13 AM on March 13


HUG YOUR LOVED ONES. HUG YOUR PETS. HUG YOURSELF. BE KIND.

*sighs*
posted by Fizz at 7:15 AM on March 13 [3 favorites]


'Stochastic' needs to be one of those words that you confidently think you know the meaning of until you want to use it to describe something, and then you are suddenly gripped by an unshakable feeling that it doesn't mean anything at all . . .

My first thought was I've worked in a research dept where they do a lot of modelling of real world stuff and throw 'stochastic' around all the time, and I still don't have any idea what it means. Then I thought, Wait, are all these people faking it? Including my SO? Am I the dupe? My faith shattered?
posted by biffa at 7:21 AM on March 13 [5 favorites]


I seem to be able to resist sinking into incandescent rage on the regular; I'm guessing it's the citalopram? A++ for that.

Anyway, I wish for everyone the simple joy that a cat finds in making biscuits on a sheepskin rug, you can pet him, he will let you rub his belly and purr like a machine that makes love.
posted by seanmpuckett at 7:24 AM on March 13 [11 favorites]


I’ve mentioned my dad’s accident and paralysis in other Meta threads. He’s doing so much better now, but he is also 79 and in a hospital in a region that has just declared its (I think, these things move so fast) 52nd case. And I’m worried about my mom, who is of a similar age and has been going to visit him daily in the hospital. When I talked to them yesterday they were wondering if she should still be visiting. I myself have been flying back and forth over the last two months to be with Dad and support Mom, and I was planning to go again at Easter, but...I don’t want to put them, or my partner who has respiratory problems, or anyone, in jeopardy.

Bella Donna, my condolences on your dad’s death. I know you’ve been at his side a long time now; peace to you.

It’s a stressful enough time in the world right now without other stuff on top of it, and my sympathies go out to everyone in this thread, especially people with other things going on.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 7:25 AM on March 13 [5 favorites]


Jessamyn, I’ve been dealing with something similar. I had a weird internal pop while lifting something over the summer, and people I was working with told me I had a weird protrusion on my side (I was wearing a tight dry-fit shirt), so I went to a hospital, told them everything, and they did a ct scan and told me there was nothing wrong, even though I had a weird bulge and I was in pain. A couple weeks later, the pain wasn’t getting any better, so I went to another hospital, same thing, same result, and at that point, I just sort of shut down, feeling like there I wasn’t going to find a doctor who would actually take me seriously. Finally, by December, other issues forced me to get my neck checked out (bulging disc that hopefully will go away with therapy), and I mentioned it to the doctor at the spine and sports medicine clinic I’d gone to, and he said, hey, let’s do an X-ray just to check.

It turned out I’d manage to break the tip of a lower rib, and it has healed in a way that it’s just sort of poking me in the gut, and aside from surgery to do something about it, just an ongoing deep unpleasantness in my side will be with me for the rest of my life. I’m grateful to the doctor who finally listened (and who listened to me when I said, very plainly, that I would really rather not be put on an opioid painkiller for my disc issues because, if it’s not actually going to heal me, that’s not a road I need to go down), but goddamn, I’m still furious with the doctors who essentially just ignored me when the break was still fresh.

All of that to say, I understand at least a part of what you’re going for, and you have my sympathies. I wish you health, and that something gets figured out and it turns out well.
posted by Ghidorah at 7:30 AM on March 13 [12 favorites]


My kid turns 5 in two weeks and we had to nix a birthday party. I mean, we'll have one with just us and maybe our parents, but here at home with UV HEPA air filters running full blast and fans on and plenty of hand washing and individually wrapped snacks. Renting a party room at an indoor playground or water park is not going to happen.

He doesn't know what the fuck is going on, he's 5, he just wants a birthday party with his friends. It's such a small innocent thing to want but right now even that is too much. He's been talking about it nonstop and I'm not sure how to tell him.

So many little heartbreaks out there right now, besides the big scary sad ones.
posted by castlebravo at 7:31 AM on March 13 [8 favorites]


He doesn't know what the fuck is going on, he's 5, he just wants a birthday party with his friends. It's such a small innocent thing to want but right now even that is too much. He's been talking about it nonstop and I'm not sure how to tell him.

Is there a way to set up skype or video chat in some way with his friends? I realize as I'm typing that it's hard to explain why or make that understandable, and it still squashes his enjoyment in a way.

I'd say try to focus it on how this is a family party but we'll do another one soon once everyone is better, sell him on an "Un-Birthday" party later this year. And then just spoil the fuck out of him on both of these days as much as possible.

Also, update, wife is safely across the border, so we're at least together. Small joys and small victories as we all battle this storm together.
posted by Fizz at 7:38 AM on March 13 [19 favorites]


So my school has moved online but my filthy fucking dogshit roommates are just all "oh well I've just accepted that I'll catch it." This is from a guy who runs his own tax business and could easily work from home if he wanted to. But even though half the fucking city is closed today, this dumbshit still wants to go downtown to his office.

I've been doing everything I can to avoid catching it and I'm going to get fucked by these fucking losers who can't even clean up after themselves at the age of fucking forty.

FUCK HAVING ROOMMATES FUCK THIS COUNTRY'S DOGSHIT WAGE SLAVERY.
posted by deadaluspark at 7:38 AM on March 13 [23 favorites]


My department's been asked to send any RNA isolation kits we have sitting around to one of our affiliated hospitals for use in coronavirus testing. We are unlikely to need them for our own work in the near future, but still, not the best of signs.
posted by ASF Tod und Schwerkraft at 7:38 AM on March 13 [1 favorite]


Mr. eirias’ fucking irresponsible large employer is still sending people on “essential travel.” Friends, countrymen, your fucking software go-live is not essential. He came home last night from a visit to a customer that - surprise! - has a COVID-19 infection. He wasn’t in the same building as the known case but it seems entirely possible to me that someone he did interact with was already covertly infected and we just don’t know it yet. And given the lack of testing, I don’t think he’s going to get a follow up call if anything goes wrong. I’m making him sleep in the guest room for the next two weeks and I’m looking up disinfectant recipes and I told him he should telework today but he’s afraid of pissing off his stupid selfish shitty employer, on whom we depend for insurance, and I’m hating everything.

Well, not everything. Little e’s school is moving online starting Monday (good) and my employer has OK’d me teleworking for the duration (good). Actually lots of people around here are doing the right thing. Just, you know, there are some unfortunate gaps.
posted by eirias at 8:10 AM on March 13 [5 favorites]


Oh castlebravo, I feel you on the birthday front. My grandson was going to have his 5th birthday party at Leos (it's Swedish, so no apostrophe), which is a big chain of ginormous indoor play spaces. But even if Leos is still open by the end of this month, which seems unlikely, exactly zero parents are going to want to bring their kids to that place.

Which everyone understands. Well, everyone but the 5-year-old. He hasn't got the news yet that his party is cancelled. His mom is going to tell him the party is off because Leo is sick. Leo is the company mascot. The mascot appears every Saturday around noon as a human wearing a lion suit who hugs kids crowding around him while an insufferably loud and dopey marketing song plays.

Between Thursday at 8:50 pm Swedish time and today, Friday at 3:15 pm Swedish time, the country has diagnosed 114 new cases for a current total of 801. Courtesy of the Josh Marshall twitter health feed I just saw that Sweden has even fewer hospital beds per 1,000 residents than the US. The US has 2.8; Sweden has 2.3 (below Canada and the UK at 2.6). Germany has 8.1, so I am feeling relieved on behalf of German MeFites.

I am so grateful I still have some self-care choices. I have blown off work this week (with my client's blessing) and in an hour I am leaving to see another vampire movie (second night in a row!), From Dusk till Dawn. I hear it is fun. I need some fun. Cinemateket Stockholm, I salute your shockingly on-point 2020 programming choices, which include 5 vampire flicks. Between that, MetaFilter, and YouTube renovation/redecoration porn, I've got my self-care and self-distraction tools all lined up.
posted by Bella Donna at 8:18 AM on March 13 [5 favorites]


My dad texted me last night (after being silent through my arguments with my mom in the family group chat on Monday and Wednesday) and told me that they're not flying out to visit me next week. So that's a huge relief. Also, I'm still coming in to work on a daily basis, because my office is apparently necessary for university function, but starting tomorrow our building is no longer open to the public, and more and more people are working from home every day, so things are starting to feel... Like they're headed in the right direction? I dunno. Maybe I've just adjusted to knowing things are going to be bad and weird for a while, but I've calmed way down from my anxiety earlier in the week. What I can do has been done, and now I gotta just wait it out.
posted by bridgebury at 8:25 AM on March 13 [3 favorites]


He doesn't know what the fuck is going on, he's 5, he just wants a birthday party with his friends.

I'm a lot older than 5 and am feeling whiny that I won't get that either. And my birthday's not until the end of April.
posted by jenfullmoon at 8:29 AM on March 13 [9 favorites]


Anyone who needs a virtual attendee to a birthday party, let me know! (Other options include Birthday Minecraft/Fortnite, etc)
posted by curious nu at 8:38 AM on March 13 [5 favorites]


I'm one of those that people look to for answers so I'm reaching out to work leaders to get a feel for what's going on, and all they say is "leaders are evaluating the situation and will let you know, maybe" and it's frustrating since I'm trying to be proactive but not over-reactive.

Right now I feel angry and frustrated and that I'm letting people down by not knowing what's going on and when I try either I get the wrong information, or it changes before I can act, or whatever.

(everyone else's issues seem much bigger than mine, which may be why I just keep pushing down my bad feelings and try to smile and drive on and it's so hard)
posted by jazon at 8:45 AM on March 13 [3 favorites]


Deepest sympathies to msali and belladonna; grief in the midst of all this is so hard, go gentle on yourself.

I’m still sick, it’s still probably just a bad cold, but this is day five and I still feel like shit and my sinuses have become a solid block of pain. I ended up using 16 hours of PTO this week which means I have 16 left. Tick tock. My gallbladder briefly attacked last night citing my reckless consumption of 1/4 of an avocado. Fortunately the Dr gave me some magic blue capsules that sort of shut it off but omg I feel as if I would kill for butter on my toast or a cookie. But they won’t do the surgery while I am sick and the longer we wait the longer it will get as inevitably the hospital fills up with Coronavirus so I guess it’s broth and smoothies and occasional interludes of mind warping pain forever. Also it is cold and raining and I cannot bring myself to walk the unruly hound but if I don’t he will get out of the fence again and take himself for a delightful jaunt around the neighborhood FUUUUUUCK
posted by mygothlaundry at 9:02 AM on March 13 [8 favorites]


My supervisor has been essentially absent and uncommunicative since things started. I have graduate and undergraduate students who are now reaching out to me for guidance about ongoing research projects and things. I have told them not to come to campus, not to worry about their semester research, and that I will speak to our supervisor on their behalf and take any fallout from her. I'm very frustrated.

Lots of things I was hoping to do have been cancelled. Other things will probably be cancelled but nobody is communicating about them (like conferences in LA in April, or Denver in May). I'm at work today tying up a variety of loose ends and collecting paper data to work with for the foreseeable future in the hopes that I won't have to come in for a while. I'm having a very hard time focusing and I am resenting that I am, once again, stepping in to cover for people with very permanent employment who are dropping the ball in meaningful ways while I feel very precarious.

I am sad and lonely and grumpy.
posted by ChuraChura at 9:08 AM on March 13 [17 favorites]


In my last outing in public for the next two weeks, I stopped by a friend's house to pick up my husband from band practice. We're a very huggy group and we didn't hug and it broke my heart a little because that's just what we *do*. That little thing was what pushed me over the edge. I'm fine now, just sad. I'll take walks in the neighborhood and hopefully ride my bike as the weather gets better; luckily we don't live a densely populated area so going outside won't violate social distancing protocol. But gathering with friends is how I've been coping with the shitstorm we've been faced with sine 2016. Maybe we can do Skype parties. I dunno.

I'll be glad to have my daughter home but I'd be lying if I said I wasn't worried about her being a carrier, given she's been in Chicago for school. I know it's likely we'll all get it sooner or later...I just preferred later, I think.

Condolences to msali and BellaDonna. I'm so, so sorry for your losses.
posted by cooker girl at 9:17 AM on March 13 [7 favorites]


my cats are now tired of me messing with them. also, there is no ground beef or lasagna noodles or sausage in the store, so I have gone from being a cabin-fevered asshole with the redemptive powers of cooking to just an asshole
posted by angrycat at 9:36 AM on March 13 [4 favorites]


I did get a text last night from someone I went on a date with A FULL YEAR AND A HALF AGO and haven't spoken to since. "hey are you still in town? I'm working from home now and I think we live pretty close to each other."
posted by ChuraChura at 9:39 AM on March 13 [8 favorites]


self-quarantine and chill
posted by angrycat at 9:43 AM on March 13 [20 favorites]


We're in Tacoma, Washington, where there was a diagnosed case at an elementary school five minutes away from me earlier this week, and the school closure until April 26th was announced yesterday. My 7-year old is excited, while I'm scrambling to structure the upcoming time so I don't spend the whole time refreshing Twitter while the kids watch Octonauts. I'm one of the lucky ones -- I'm a SAHM and work remotely part-time, so I can take care of my two kids, and we have a nicely stocked pantry. My heart breaks for the kids and families for whom this is going to be a huge burden, but closing down everything was the right call.

Wishing health and endurance to you all!
posted by shirobara at 9:43 AM on March 13 [2 favorites]


Hey I just got laid off because of the revenue crash! So that’s fucking awesome.
posted by Miko at 9:46 AM on March 13 [28 favorites]


I'm on hold with the UI department to find out if I need to amend my Training Benefits Application that I turned in last week because now all my classes are going to be online.

Unsurprisingly, the wait times to get on the phone with someone at the UI department have FREAKING EXPLODED.

So, people are already losing jobs over this. Lots of them. Because the system is already getting flooded. It's been well over an hour already and my usual wait time is about 20-30 mins.
posted by deadaluspark at 9:48 AM on March 13 [1 favorite]


Miko, I am so so sorry. Fucking fuck.
posted by FencingGal at 9:56 AM on March 13 [6 favorites]


Oh no, Miko. Good luck to you. I hope you are eligible for unemployment benefits.
posted by eirias at 10:01 AM on March 13


One of my coworkers called in sick today and an elderly friend of mine in Santa Cruz just came down with a cold. Feels like the dominoes are falling.
posted by jenfullmoon at 10:12 AM on March 13


This is starting to remind me of time dilation in a bad car accident. Right before the end of my fourth year in college, I was driving two friends to a senior dinner for our department. We got hit by a lebaron doing about 70, and the fact that I was driving an old two door blazer is probably why none of us died, though the impact of the other car put my right front wheel under the blazer’s engine block. We got hit, we spun, we tipped on one side, spun more, flipped back upright, and finally came to a stop nose first in the drainage ditch on the other side of the intersection, and I can still remember every moment up until we came to a stop, and it felt like forever, from the split second before impact when I saw the car to when everything finally stopped.

It was an eternity of waiting for the terrible moment in which there was nothing any of us could do to finally come to an end, to stop and if we survived, give us back any sense of control over our lives. More than anything else about that accident was the utter feeling of helplessness as it Just. Kept. Going.

That’s what this is starting to feel like to me, we’re all just hoping the spinning stops and we can get out and see how bad the damage will be when it’s done. I’m low key terrified of the next couple weeks and months, and I don’t really feel like I can talk about it because everyone else is going through the same damn thing, and doing their level best to get through each day as it comes, with its own fresh detail or bit of news that makes it that much worse.
posted by Ghidorah at 10:13 AM on March 13 [56 favorites]


Part of Eve's Discussion
Marie Howe

It was like the moment when a bird decides not to eat from your hand,
and flies, just before it flies, the moment the rivers seem to still
and stop because a storm is coming, but there is no storm, as when
a hundred starlings lift and bank together before they wheel and drop,
very much like the moment, driving on bad ice, when it occurs to you
your car could spin, just before it slowly begins to spin, like
the moment just before you forgot what it was you were about to say,
it was like that, and after that, it was still like that, only
all the time.
posted by foxfirefey at 10:21 AM on March 13 [39 favorites]


Ghidorah, probably the most apt description I've read so far. It really does feel like time dilation thing is going, especially for people who are having to spend a lot of time at home when they usually wouldn't. That time passes even more slowly.
posted by deadaluspark at 10:22 AM on March 13 [7 favorites]


I just hissed like a snake at my very sweet SO because he was cracking his fingers in his sleep.
posted by angrycat at 11:47 PM on March 12


I mean, is "snake" the best simile here?

I worked from home regularly for years, but have been back in an office for half a decade. My current living situation is very different from my old WFH time, and finding dedicated work space in this situation, with two roommates who are also going to have to be home, is a problem. And, if I don't have a dedicated work space, I know my productivity is going to drop while, conversely, the AMOUNT of time I spend "working" will significantly increase. I won't get as much done, but I'll also spend lots of time "at work" because I can't put the fucking laptop away.

I missed a twelve-step meeting last night because gathering with friends feels weird right now. I probably will not go to my weekend LARP/fighting practice for the same reason. Luckily, I interact with my therapist over FaceTime, so at least I still have that.
posted by hanov3r at 10:26 AM on March 13 [3 favorites]


I just burst into tears reading about The Austin ISD still distributing free meals to families that depend on them but it's such a fucked up indicator of how far behind our country is falling. I am still absolutely baffled that 63 mil people voted to do it this way instead of having competent leadership, making progress and taking care of people in the country. I'm trying to dig back out of despair...
posted by Bacon Bit at 11:21 AM on March 13 [12 favorites]


I had to patiently explain to some people how colloidal silver is not a great idea. The guy who brought it up was like "Some people on YouTube say it works gangbusters for them. Huh, I'm stumped." Okay, I linked you to the Mayo Clinic but if some YouTube guy says it... sure, equivalent sources.

But then he also dropped a Q-anon acronym and I was like oh noooooooooooooo.
posted by OnTheLastCastle at 12:06 PM on March 13 [7 favorites]




Miko, Bella Donna, everyone who is struggling to deal with specific or general fuckery: I'm so sorry. You have my socially distant support.

Jessamyn, my wife has been dealing with some similar weird chronic health things for years now, and it has really been rough on her. I deeply empathize.

If you are still in my area, msali, and are not opposed to some light pandemic exposure, I'd love to grab a coffee or something if you could use a friendly face to vent to. All the hugs.
posted by Rock Steady at 12:17 PM on March 13 [6 favorites]


Here’s an organization offering free online recovery support groups for people missing 12-step meetings and similar.
posted by mbrubeck at 12:23 PM on March 13 [6 favorites]


Denver Councilwoman Candi CdeBaca tweets “sarcastic” endorsement of spreading coronavirus at GOP rallies . The self-described Democratic socialist said her Feb. 28 tweet was instead meant to call attention to the president’s downplaying of the virus.
posted by medusa at 1:03 PM on March 13 [1 favorite]


Well, Yakety Sax has definitely been the right choice for this press conference.
posted by deadaluspark at 1:15 PM on March 13 [4 favorites]


Candi CdeBaca

Hey, that's an illegal use of a silent consonant!
posted by biogeo at 1:20 PM on March 13 [1 favorite]


Apparently that's a generally accepted shortening for the surname Cabeza de Baca/Vaca.
posted by Strange Interlude at 1:28 PM on March 13 [2 favorites]


My elderly friend said she has a fever.

Hell, if I get a fever I can't even get a thermometer to check on that.

Heck, if I or my officemate come down with anything, we don't have any backups to do the work because we are so short staffed as is. All of the stupid policy and procedure shit we have had to argue out this morning ("can so an so get an exception if their program is canceled?") may not even matter. I wanted to KICK someone who's whining at me and say, "Don't you get it? You're NOT going to get to do (thing he wants) now!" Except of course, I can't say that, so I am ignoring his email until I stop raging.

I still keep checking to see if the play I want to see has been canceled yet. I know it's dumb and I shouldn't go regardless but part of me wants to and if it's ever going to run even once, it'd be tonight, right? But if it's canceled, then I don't have the question of wondering or not.

Maybe people will start filming plays and then livestream them out? That might work.
posted by jenfullmoon at 1:35 PM on March 13 [3 favorites]


I have friends with family members in nursing homes or hospitals, recovering from surgery, unable to get needed surgery, recovering from or being treated for cancer, with various health concerns. I'm in my 60s and many of my friends are also geezers. This is personal. I hope no one I know gets Covid19. Of course I hope nobody I know gets seriously ill from it. Or anybody I don't know. When these fools have told everybody we don't need government, that government is bad, they're just cheap, greedy, heartless jerks. Government has a huge and important role to play, and a responsibility to do it well and honestly. The current President is incompetent and corrupt, and I'm pissed. Gonna stay pissed at least until November 3rd.
posted by theora55 at 1:35 PM on March 13 [13 favorites]


(Reference. I take whimsy in stupid things to keep from screaming.)
posted by biogeo at 1:38 PM on March 13 [2 favorites]


Hey, folks, I'm finding reading today's Carolyn Hax chat at Washington Post (I think you can only see if you subscribe, though) to be comforting. Here's the relevant bits:

"Here's what I'm thinking these days.
Since we don't have a choice, this is the best time possible to find value in slowing down. You can't know whether or when or how long, so, okay. Here's today. What can you do with today? What can you do, bake, read. Whom can you call who has gotten nothing from you but texts. What pile hasn't been sorted through because you've been too busy.
What changes can you plan to make now, to apply whenever you're out and about again, to alleviate your concerns about feeling separate.
Your parents will have to worry about your parents. You, just enjoy them. Call, write, Facetime/Skype. Decide to watch the same show so you can talk about it later.
And, if you're like me, you can remind yourself 12 x per day that this happened in the streaming era, so the world as we know it can wait."

"I should have said upfront that the slowing down was bad for us, horribly timed, and took away some things we will never get back--and put us in an awkward, possibly even dangerous position in at least one respect. It's not all homemade soup and movies.
So that's the preamble to the "okay, I guess I have to find some value in slowing down." Because it's there, it's done, and here we are. And it will go a whole lot better if I keep the frame around the good parts I can manage instead of the bad parts I can't.
If there are people out there who aren't worried about loved ones or a scary financial impact of some kind, then I don't know any of them personally. The costs will be immense, and we all will bear them. I just hope the response is quick and decisive on providing relief. I realize it doesn't lighten the burden you carry, but you're not alone in carrying it."

posted by jenfullmoon at 1:49 PM on March 13 [12 favorites]


Watching that presser was like--I am full nerves and irritation, let's watch this--was the worst decision ever.
posted by angrycat at 1:49 PM on March 13 [7 favorites]


YAY I just got informed that Monday starts WFH in my office! (I came prepared - brought a laptop bag, just in case.)

The office is very very near empty today; those who already had permission to work from home are doing so. They're officially allowing it for everyone else now.
posted by ErisLordFreedom at 1:52 PM on March 13 [3 favorites]


I've barely been able to keep up with this thread, I promise to go back and read everything.

Schools in my area are closed for the next month. On one hand I'm so grateful to work for a company that has been updating us diligently since January and announced yesterday that all employees globally are expected to work from home as much as possible for an indeterminate amount of time. Announced as in Global Executive board, the President of North America, the Pittsburgh site manager AND my manager all said the same thing - work. from. home.

Well it is at least a month for me. Mr. theBRKP recently switched to contract work and while his happiness has gone up immensely, his current employer STILL has not decided about work from home. So it may be me and my kiddo for the next month. I'm scrambling to come up with things to keep him occupied while I am working.

And I'm out a serious amount of money because I had to cancel the 20th wedding anniversary trip Mr. theBRKP and I were supposed to take to NYC in early April. I booked an extra fancy hotel room for the weekend, because TWENTY YEARS. NONE of it is refundable.

To add insult to injury, the show we were supposed to see announced that they were postponing all US and Canada tour dates. But it is STILL listed on the MSG website as "tickets available". Fuckers.

posted by theBigRedKittyPurrs at 2:03 PM on March 13 [3 favorites]


They just made an announcement that they are NOT closing schools in my small town. I assume that decision is partially because many/most parents wouldn't have childcare options and/or food insecurity for many of the kids.Watching closely. Concerned.
posted by jessamyn (temp) at 2:09 PM on March 13 [3 favorites]


i keep thinking i'm getting sick but it's just turning out to be Life in various stupid ways

- allergies
- forgot to take meds
- maybe took too many meds? not sure
- forgot to eat
- ate only potato chips for a full day
- did not sleep at all
- read too many articles about plague and now i have a stress buboe
posted by poffin boffin at 2:09 PM on March 13 [43 favorites]


poffin boffin, I keep feeling like my lungs are tight (a sure symptom of upper respiratory issues for me) but then I realize it's just PANIC PANIC PANIC.
posted by cooker girl at 2:11 PM on March 13 [19 favorites]


1) Our work has OT open next week, because THAT is what you do in pandemic / quarantine situations.
(Admittedly some of our job can be considered vital, but majority of it is not - granny can wait for her HBO upgrade).

2) We have no WFH option even if we wanted it.l

3) Our stock hit 25 cents from hovering around 70 cents. (don't get me started).

4) This conference from Trump, JFC. It's like a really sad attempt an episode of "Big Boss" for American Society - all those great pharmacy CEOs telling us how they're happy to be helpful and blah blah.

Trump can't get his ego out of the way, he's so far out of his element, he knows it.

I would feel more confident of Palin got dressed up in a Corona Virus mask and did a reprieve of the Masked Singer but "Masked COVID19 Spokesupdate" vs whatever these clowns are doing.

That lady having the temerity to suggest that she was on the HIV team and how it took 4 years, and acted like that was amazingly fast, and I'm thinking - no you fuckers were delaying because you wanted the queer and addicts to die. You are inspiring confidence in absolutely nobody but your true believers.

And apparently Wall Street cuz I guess if CEO gives a speech then it's ok.

When Bernie tweeted "time to declare a state of emergency" to Trump, I'm like - uh... I can't remember he IS a fascists we're trying to avoid enabling or he isn't? (I mean I get it, but...)

Yesterday I had the feeling of "this is fine" but truly ... Like the nihilism cartoons where "nihilism : nothing matters" 1) sad dude crying 2) cool dude "nothing matters, party!" And I'm like dude 2.

I felt like the guy in Office Space and ready to just smile and walk out of it all.
posted by symbioid at 2:11 PM on March 13 [5 favorites]


I went to work. People are streaming in buying plants and soils so they have something to do. Our big bosses have put info sheets in the break room and bathrooms about hand washing and how to cough that doesn’t even mention Covid. My trainee just didn’t show up for work at all. My coworker B. Says they’ll stay open. That moneys everything to them and they’ll stay open unless they’re forced to close. So in a few days I’ll have to pull the trigger myself- and possibly lose my job in the process. I had such a panic moment this morning at work that I took a propanalol. I’m working like it’s a normal friday and it feels like we’re rearranging the deck chairs on the titanic...
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 2:12 PM on March 13 [12 favorites]


Trump kept asking "any questions for these fine folks" a million times, and nobody said, "Please, Sir, Mister WalMart, Sir, will you for the good of the order, please please prettypretty please keep paying your people even if they can't come to work because they have the plague?" No, the important thing to know was "WHAR'S THE PURELLmrrrr???"
posted by Don Pepino at 2:19 PM on March 13 [6 favorites]


Oh yeah, I keep wondering if I'm developing a sore throat off and on for the last few days because my throat feels *slightly* different than usual at times, like the pH in there changed or something. Then I drink water/eat ice cream, whatever and so far it's gone away, mind you. But then I wonder, is that bad enough to pull the ripcord and be out indefinitely or what? Do I have to immediately bail for a slightly different feeling that goes away?
posted by jenfullmoon at 2:21 PM on March 13 [7 favorites]


Again sort of pissed--the Vermont state legislation is closing for a week

BUT THEY ARE NOT CLOSING SCHOOLS.

Crazily they're saying it's because people may not have childcare which is sort of a fucking moot point considering these kids live in rural mountains and farmland and the ONLY human opportunities they have to catch anything

HAPPEN AT SCHOOL so sure VT legislators, keep sending kids to the one place GUARANTEED where they will get infected and then they can go home and kill their parents and then NOBODY has childcare cuz of the whole dead parent thing.

I am so furious.
posted by yes I said yes I will Yes at 2:44 PM on March 13 [13 favorites]


we’re all just hoping the spinning stops and we can get out and see how bad the damage will be when it’s done.

Thanks for the condolences and best wishes, everyone. I had this brief vacation while watching From Dawn to Dusk. Sure, I felt shitty with the mysterious gut thing that jessamyn and I may or may not share but otherwise enjoyed the crazy vampire movie. Then I get home and discover...

My kid and her partner are both in a mental-health crisis right now AT THE SAME TIME (her dad is with them for a few days, thank god) and the mental health department in their town is reportedly closed down because of the pandemic.

Also, a delightful colleague in the US with whom I work closely got a breast cancer diagnosis this week that she just shared.

Thank you for the Carolin Hax commentary, jenfullmoon. Thank you for the resource, mbrubeck. I, too, will be skipping a much-needed and anticipated 12-step meeting tomorrow. Because I took the week off from work mostly and also because of the pandemic and also because I feel shitty, as noted above. I'm sorry I keep posting so much, it's like I cannot stop, it is a form of self-soothing but be of good cheer, it is nearly my bedtime.

I am so so scared for my kid and her partner. They have little kids. It is not their fault they are ill. It is not their fault they cannot get the treatment they need. I am just so scared.
posted by Bella Donna at 2:53 PM on March 13 [23 favorites]


My stress response is to touch my face. A lot. You can imagine how the last week has gone.
Fortunately, there is good advice on the interwebs.
India has just witnessed its second death from Covid19 today. The number of confirmed infections is still below 100, but I am not sure how accurate the figure is. I do, however, blanch at the thought of a full-blown community transmission (social distancing is basically a theoretical concept in a country of 1.3 billion people, with very few jobs that have the luxury of working from home).
I'm scared for my immunocompromised, elderly parents. I'm scared for me, too.
Stay safe, everyone. Virtual hugs if you want them.
posted by Nieshka at 2:59 PM on March 13 [12 favorites]


I tried to stop by a grocery store after work around noon today to get stuff to make carnitas and couldn't even get into the parking lot. This parking lot is ALWAYS at least half empty. People are freaking out and panicking.

(There's much more to fuckity fuck about but dammit, I was thwarted on a carnitas mission! WTF!)

Good luck and hang in there folks! Metafilter rules!
posted by snsranch at 3:04 PM on March 13 [3 favorites]


Today we had a meeting to update everybody and we found out in passing that a co-worker got back today from a work trip to Haiti. So the boss says, "No worries! Haiti is in good shape!" Which. I mean, virus-wise Haiti is actually probably in excellent shape. With the giant caveat of "where did Princess go recently, though?" Still, even given the cruise ship variable, Haiti is probably not a big tourist destination lately. But, like, can we know that it's "in good shape?" I'm not trying to dump on my boss, who in general has handled this situation with decency and a level head, but come on. Why not stay silent when you don't actually know a thing? We have but the vaguest notion what is going on in the United States. Does anybody think we have a good solid on-the-ground understanding of the Covid-19 situation in Haiti right now?
posted by Don Pepino at 3:23 PM on March 13 [5 favorites]


My stress response is to touch my face. A lot. You can imagine how the last week has gone.

Mine too, Nieshka. Thanks for the linky laugh.

Bella Donna, what a terrible turn of events. I'm so sorry.
posted by eirias at 3:26 PM on March 13 [2 favorites]


Fortunately, there is good advice on the interwebs.

Sure, only:

1) "Put a band aid on your favorite finger." Well, like back in October I managed to get my left index finger smashed pretty good, so I've been walking around with a band aid on my good finger for like 4 months as the dead nail grows off and going, "AAAAARGH! I CAN'T MANIPULATE ANYTHING OR FEEL ANYTHING PROPERLY OR USE MY HAND LIKE A HUMAN BEING STUPID FINGER STUPID BANDAID!!!" and I JUST managed to remove the last of the nail a week ago & live without a band aid on my good finger so at this point dying seems like the less frustrating option and

2) "Wear gloves. This is the same trick as the Bandaid. Gloves won’t block the transmission of diseases, but wearing gloves can train you to touch your face less." NOPE. I wear gloves for work all the time so I've been thoroughly trained to touch my face with gloves on ALL THE TIME.

Goddammit I'm touching my face right now.
posted by soundguy99 at 4:18 PM on March 13 [7 favorites]


...soundguy99..... just when and how did you get that face/keypad transplant.... asking for a friend.
posted by mightshould at 4:55 PM on March 13 [3 favorites]


Just want to say I really appreciate this thread and I'm glad to at least know how my imaginary friends are doing. My system is definitely fighting something so I'm just trying to support that however I can.
posted by bleep at 5:26 PM on March 13 [10 favorites]


The largest school district near me (Charlotte Mecklenburg) announced they were moving up Spring Break and having next Th/F be teacher work days. SO THEY STILL WANT TO HAVE SCHOOL FOR THREE DAYS NEXT WEEK WTF IS WRONG WITH THESE PEOPLE?!

My district is always the last to do something, so I expect we won't even get that. They are starting to explore distance learning plans, though. We also are getting more ad revenue from our educational YouTube channel. But I just don't understand the rationale behind not taking this MUCH more seriously. I get that people are in denial, and not everyone is mathematically and scientifically literate enough to understand the gravity of the situation. And it's also not good enough. We don't know if we should go to school next week, whether or not they call it.

We got a preview of what it's going to be like to have our 19 month old home full time today, and oh boy. She was a late walker, but is making up for it by being a perpetual motion machine. On one hand, it's great because she has caught up almost entirely on gross motor skills. On the other hand, I'm chasing her from one thing to the next thing. It does help one stay present with all the anxiety though.

This was meant to be the last regular season meet for NCAA gymnastics, but it was cancelled, along with basically all of gymnastics. I know it's a little thing in the big picture, but that is the Friday night routine every week of the season. So the gymternet got together to live-watch an old meet, and it's one of the VERY bright spots in an otherwise shitty week. I highly recommend old NCAA meets to any of you who is missing the routine of watching live sports.

I'm also grateful for you all. I've been mostly lurking for the past few years (having a baby changes A LOT, as it turns out!) but it's so comforting to come back and see the names of people I've known for over a decade. Take care of yourselves, friends.
posted by guster4lovers at 5:43 PM on March 13 [12 favorites]


We just cancelled/postponed the Deb* and Year 8 camp. (Debutante ball) Argh. The best thing about the Deb is when it's over and kids aren't distractedly looking at dresses during class or talking about who is going to go.

Will we, won't we, be forced to move to online lessons?
"If you just shut the schools, the kids are all down at the shopping centre or at the playground or at the movies, or perhaps being minded by grandparents or others — that may not actually be helping to limit the speed of the spread of the virus in the community,"

So, fingers crossed, we'll stay open for now.
posted by freethefeet at 6:09 PM on March 13 [2 favorites]


Hah, I saw all kinds of sports activity, picnics, and frat boys partying on the lawn today. So....yeah to that last bit.
posted by jenfullmoon at 6:15 PM on March 13 [1 favorite]


My grandfather, whom I had mentioned worrying about due to the pandemic response in this comment, passed suddenly this morning. It was so fast. He went in for a broken shoulder. He had underlying heart issues but... fuck. I knew it would be soon but not this soon.

On the elevator ride up, I ran into my aunt and she told me he had just eaten a popsicle. When I got to his room I had to wait maybe two minutes while a nurse moved him. The nurse came out to give an update, another two minutes. Then when I went into the room... I didn't get it right away but my mother, who is an experienced long term care nurse, knew immediately. He was either gone or just about. She immediately called people in from the waiting area. Checked her watch.

In a way I think he was saved a lot of suffering. With the pandemic, I am not sure if he would have gotten a personal care worker as originally planned, which he would have needed to have any quality of life. He also would have had to make a difficult decision soon which is now, um, I guess no longer relevant. I am comforted a small bit to know at least he did not die wanting for care. Now all I can do is look out for my family and hope he is at peace.

It has been a long and difficult day. Friday the thirteenth, huh.
posted by one of these days at 7:37 PM on March 13 [41 favorites]


I finished reading a Shirley Jackson short story anthology, just as the virus was starting to become daily news...and I feel like real life is the next chapter of the anthology, like I have somehow entered one of her stories...the tone of everyday is a Shirley Jackson story....
posted by Tandem Affinity at 7:38 PM on March 13 [9 favorites]


One of these days, I’m so so sorry. I wish you and your family peace.
posted by FencingGal at 7:44 PM on March 13 [10 favorites]


One of the biggest employers in town had a foreign employee visit, and test positive after returning home. Three positive tests in my county, the president of the college is self-isolating after his wife tested positive....

And I lost my job yesterday. Unrelated, but brutal, as I've been living paycheck to paycheck to begin with. Been trying to figure out how to survive as long as possible on as little as possible while also staying away from other people. My roommate works in a cafe at a museum that has not, apparently, been closed.

My girlfriend has some health phobias that covid is triggering, and I'm afraid I may not see her much in the coming weeks, if at all....

Isolating because of the virus is one thing, but being isolated while in the immediate aftermath of job loss is.... well, my psychiatrist is impressed with how I'm holding up so far, but I can see a darkness on the horizon.
posted by MuChao at 7:54 PM on March 13 [14 favorites]


Minneapolis has decided to keep schools open next week (at least for now), but the last email mentioned distance learning for kids with underlying health conditions, and we’re going to pull our medically complex 1st grader out starting on Monday. I feel crazy but I know I’m not, and my epidemiologist brother in Seattle says we’re buying just a couple extra days before the whole state shuts down, but it’s been an embarrassingly slow decision on our end. If it were a friend in my shoes I would tell her to absolutely keep her kid at home, so why am I second-guessing myself?
posted by Maarika at 8:28 PM on March 13 [6 favorites]


somebody tweeted that their middle school kid reported the kids are calling the virus 'boomer remover'

which, you know, is why the schools need to be closed, so those little vectors don't get to the boomers (and other vulnerables).
posted by angrycat at 8:57 PM on March 13 [5 favorites]


I feel like “boomer remover” is gonna be the next “knock-out game” cable news panic where a bunch of older not-canny people force-multiply a social media shitpost into a perceived youth violence, uh, pandemic.
posted by cortex (staff) at 9:18 PM on March 13 [14 favorites]


"OK, boomer"

"*gasp* Why, you little vector!"
posted by Greg_Ace at 9:23 PM on March 13 [11 favorites]


ha ha my medical condition just got added to the list of conditions that cause people to be at high risk of mortality

ha
posted by angrycat at 9:25 PM on March 13 [9 favorites]


Not gonna lie, somebody on reddit came up with “KO Boomer” and I gasped with delight. And yes, I know how horribly cruel and insensitive it is, but gallows humor is humor now.
posted by lattiboy at 9:50 PM on March 13 [11 favorites]


Nicholas Kristof is reporting on a Seattle hospital memo stating they're down to four days worth of gloves.
posted by angrycat at 10:02 PM on March 13 [3 favorites]


Cortez, anymod, sort of a joke, sort of a request, seeing as I imagine we’ve got a lot more people reading a lot more often than usual, maybe put up note on the top, where you’ve done announcements before, something along the lines of

“Remember to wash your hands, stop touching your face, and just take a deep breath, we’ll get through this”
posted by Ghidorah at 10:05 PM on March 13 [5 favorites]


Man, I've gotta stop reading all these medical articles! Dr. Fauci says we're going to be holed up inside for 8-9 weeks. I'm prepared to hunker down for a while but I don't think I'm gonna last that long. Some other article suggests that this will become a seasonal illness, like the common cold -- if colds could put a large percentage of their victims into hospital ventilators and killed 1 in 6 people over 80.

ARGH. I think the only way to handle this shit is to take it one day at a time and not try to plan a perfect solution. There's only so much "everything's even more fucked than you imagined" you can digest in a single serving.
posted by Harvey Kilobit at 10:55 PM on March 13 [5 favorites]


Fauci, Fauci, Fauci!
posted by clavdivs at 11:16 PM on March 13


"Some other article suggests that this will become a seasonal illness, like the common cold -- if colds could put a large percentage of their victims into hospital ventilators and killed 1 in 6 people over 80."

People will develop some immunity after having been infected and recovered which, in turn, will create some herd immunity. At the same time, it's likely there will be a vaccine in a year or so. In that case, it won't be remotely as bad.

The previous paragraph won't be true if SARS-CoV-2 rapidly mutates. But if it does, then that will create much more opportunity for it to evolve into lowered virulency, which under current conditions will be selected for—just as has been the case for the coronaviruses we're much more familiar with: those that cause the common cold. Living, ambulatory hosts are the best hosts.

So, it's very unlikely that it will be both seasonal and as widespread and virulent.

However (and this has been speculated to have been the case with the Spanish Flu) under Paul Ewald's vector theory of the evolution of virulency, if societal conditions are such that the primary vector is a third-agent, such as health care workers or widely transported patients or the like, then a rapidly mutating pathogen would lack a selection pressure against virulency and virulency would likely increase rather than decrease. This could happen in overcrowded hospitals with overworked health care workers and large movements of patients between care centers—a scenario not unlikely in the present circumstance.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 11:24 PM on March 13 [6 favorites]


Gallows humor ttttttt.
'April is the cruelest month, breeding lilacs out of the dead land, mixing memory and desire, stirring dull roots with spring rain.'

The old guy with the penny already got Boomer broomer anthology ha-ha gripped.

Wait till your catching drones with fishing nets for it's battery pack. Training in basic infantry tactics helps if the Charmin plants cease. Fuck, to tired to be negative and dude, sorry about job loss, been there twice in 3 months and I've isolated until I was cleared of flu and ya, the money thing is real. I'm hoping if this is long term governor's will look into suspending evictions, expididite social and prez-dent slump may as well suggest to pump another 2 trillion and help out folks. Don't like it but, fuck.

Calling it, if he doesn't shit Tiffany cuff links, not re-elected, guarantee. See 1918 elections. And 1920. Just reverse ruling parties.
posted by clavdivs at 11:40 PM on March 13 [5 favorites]


Another fucking fuck is that two friends who were meant to be traveling to NZ for a work-related event this week now can't (due to the new NZ travel restrictions) and because our stupid work funding for that required them to pay upfront and be reimbursed and I knew they couldn't afford it, I arranged with work for ME to pay for their travel and be reimbursed on their behalf. And now I'm pretty sure I am not going to be able to get reimbursed for non-refundable flights and accommodation for their travel that they didn't even go on. I bought them extra travel insurance on top of our work's travel insurance, but because it didn't go through the usual admin systems our usual work insurance apparently won't cover it, and reading the fine print of the extra insurance, I'm pretty sure it won't cover this either.

On the plus side, we did it this way because I can afford to eat the cost of this and they couldn't. On the minus side, goddamn it.
posted by lollusc at 12:27 AM on March 14 [8 favorites]


Guys, I'm still tripping over that press conference. I feel like it broke me somehow.
posted by angrycat at 12:52 AM on March 14 [15 favorites]


Plus side: hey maybe we just got a lot of available time and attention for political organizing.
posted by Miko at 4:58 AM on March 14 [13 favorites]


I just finished a grad program with quite a bit of student loans to show for it in December and finished my licensing procedures in mid February. What a fucking shitty time to be job hunting. I picked up a bar job to pay the bills. What a fucking shitty time to be in the service industry.

I am 1100% bracing for the possibility that this will financially ruin me before I even get a chance to start on the new career I just spent years preparing for.
posted by astapasta24 at 5:07 AM on March 14 [8 favorites]


I know this is going to come off very much as crying because my diamond shoes are too tight, but bear with me.

See, I just got offered a job. A job that immediately pays 30% over my current salary. It's in an industry I'm okay with working in. Everyone (including the people who responded to my AskMe, and thanks to you all) is advising me to take it. All that's great, and not the problem.

The problem is that I'm so paralyzed with indecision and uncertainty and self-doubt about the whole thing. I'm afraid of change, but I'm also afraid of being too comfortable and things staying the same. Some highlights from the current Spotify playlist in my head:

- What if I take the new job and hate it?
- Worse, what if I take it and they hate me?
- What if I just talk a really good interview game, and I actually would suck at the job and end up getting fired?
- I'm pushing fifty in a tech field...am I going to fit in at all?

Add to all that the fact that the job's in another city, meaning there's a big move to coordinate on top of everything else with all of the mental/physical/financial stress that entails. (Mrs. Example and I are familiar with the city and have friends there, so there's that...but still.)

I keep going in circles. One minute I'm more than okay with the prospect...then the next I'm terrified I'd be making a huge mistake. Trust me, I know I'm getting myself all worked up about a situation a lot of people would love to have, and I feel guilty for allowing my head to get into this place, but here we are I am. Sorry. :/
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 5:39 AM on March 14 [9 favorites]


governor's will look into suspending evictions,

I know some things like this are already happening at the local level - Cleveland has ceased water & power shut-offs (one of the electric utilities is owned by the city) and set up a special hotline to get those turned back on if you've already been disconnected. And the private electric and gas companies have also pledged to stop shut-offs for non payment. Pretty sure we're not the only city to enact similar measures.
posted by soundguy99 at 5:50 AM on March 14 [3 favorites]


My family has been relying on Dr John Campbell's youtube videos for clear, concise information about the outbreak since early Feb. His latest video (13/3) is an uncritical regurgitation of the UK government policy- no more testing, no more attempt at containment, aiming for "herd immunity", a passive response that means people will die.

Whatever shred of a human flesh mask that covered the Tory's populist death-drive 1% economic machine just blew off in the wind. They do not want to stop people from dying. They want to protect their bottom lines. They probably want the NHS to collapse under the weight of this so that private healthcare and insurance vultures can come in afterwards and pick at the carcass of this country.

With the government's tactics and lack of testing we in the UK must now wait for it to hit our families and hope and pray for mild illness and recovery. I feel a lot worse not having an independent and informed source to turn to.
posted by Balthamos at 5:53 AM on March 14 [12 favorites]


Another "my diamond shoes are too tight" problem (hilarious phrase): I had planned to quit my horrible toxic job (with telecommuting privileges, health benefits and sick/vacation time) and go back to school. And find a job with normal hours, but most likely contracting work without any benefits at all. Right before a possible pandemic-induced global economic plunge. Yeah. I can't escape the logic of waiting a quarter or two to see how everything shakes out, but it's a huge, depressing setback. And while still working my stupid fucking job 60+ hours a week, now on a project where one of the execs is an abusive asshole who likes to scream at people, I gotta keep going. My niece will stay with us while her college figures out next steps (that's no hardship; she's great), and I gotta clean the house this weekend and hold it together, and I just want to run away and hide from everything and everyone. And most of my family are in the Seattle area and we worry and don't know when we can see them again. Fuckity fucking fuck.

Mr. Bad Example, I'm rooting for you.

*(((((MeFites)))))*
the stars denote disinfection
posted by Orange Dinosaur Slide at 6:29 AM on March 14 [13 favorites]


My condolences to all of you going through hard times and who has had a recent loss.

My partner died in early January really suddenly and I've been having a horrible time. Going to work every day was getting me through things as well as my friends (who are wonderful mostly) who have been keeping me busy. Having to get dressed and getting to go places where no one knew about my personal tragedy has stopped me from going to a really dark place. I'm so scared that the grief will take over if I'm isolated. The only good thing is the virus seems to have reduced the death weirdness substantially.

My work is handling things really poorly with its usual lack of communication. I'm testing out WFH along with a couple other people from my department. I'm mad that they don't send everyone non essential home because a lot of people could very easily do their jobs remotely better than I could. I've been looking for another job but I'm actually glad I didn't leave this one recently as I think I'm high enough in the org that my job is secure barring the company shutting.
posted by SpaceWarp13 at 6:56 AM on March 14 [26 favorites]


Ok, in the last hour Dr John has uploaded and is "back to normal", so take that off the fuckety fuck list.
posted by Balthamos at 7:40 AM on March 14 [2 favorites]


I work in child care, most of my day is in a school environment. Our schools here have closed and other large child care corporations such as YMCA and Boys and Girls Clubs have closed their child care and March Break camps. The city has closed their March Break camps as well. Just found out we will be open for March Break (in a very small space since we can't use the school) and probably open while the schools are shut (again, in a very small space). So frustrated about this. I think it's irresponsible, they're caring more for the money than the people.
posted by Lay Off The Books at 8:28 AM on March 14 [5 favorites]


I pulled the trigger. Texted my boss this morning- no response as of yet. Yesterday we had kids running around because they're parents are desperate to entertain them with schools and daycares closed. toddlers just touching everything and having meltdowns with spittle flying everywhere. (poor dears) The last straw for me was the two nurses/techs in UCSF branded scrubs chatting about the difficulties of proper insulin dosing while asking me my opinions on growing veggies. They didn't use the hand sanitizer. I hope I don't lose my job- but my parent's lives are more important.
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 8:42 AM on March 14 [9 favorites]


I can see a darkness on the horizon Then turn 180 degrees and see what is over there. I am looking right now that I may keep this day afloat, but not overflowing.
posted by Oyéah at 9:49 AM on March 14 [2 favorites]


Then this, little headline from NY Times. Modified headline only...

Those long lines at the store? People, (Mefites,) are stocking the liquor cabinet, not the pantry.
posted by Oyéah at 10:20 AM on March 14 [1 favorite]


Having my first panic attack in 20 years, because 90% of my writing and editing clients are travel or travel-related and I was barely hanging on as it was. I've always been stubborn and proud but am considering asking a few friends if they'd use my Amazon affiliate links for large purchases. Which is humiliating, but capitalism is grand. Oh, and my boyfriend of 1.5 years dumped me, so that's fun, too. But at least I live alone, and so many people are struggling with much more. Thanks for being here, y'all.
posted by 2soxy4mypuppet at 10:54 AM on March 14 [13 favorites]


Dear Cost Plus: please do not send emails/texts telling everyone to come into the store for a free pizza cutter for Pi Day, today only!

SERIOUSLY SOMEONE PLEASE DELETE YOUR PREVIOUSLY SENT AUTO BLASTS FOR THINGS LIKE THIS.
posted by jenfullmoon at 11:00 AM on March 14 [8 favorites]


Love to everyone who's dealing with stuff more serious than my stuff. Here's a five-paragraph essay anyway, because that's how I cope and process, and maybe someone will find it cathartic. I guess this is my pandemic diary of the past week.

Materially, I'm fine. I'm exceedingly fortunate on multiple fronts in that regard. I work for a company that's already remote and that has been compassionate in its response to everyone dealing with the fallout from this. I have means and had tip-offs from a friend across the country who was paying better attention early on to get prepped well before the rush. I had actually just started working out of a coworking space a month ago, to collaborate on a specific project, and I asked fairly early on to stop doing that, and got a good reply and support in doing so. These two beautiful cats are mostly a comfort, though I think they're soaking up some of the stress and acting out a little.

Physically, I'm OK, except that I've been having a flare-up of a chronic condition for 10 weeks, the only real solution offered so far would be minor surgery, and the surgeon's office hasn't called me back after a week and multiple messages. I'm afraid that a non-emergency surgery like this for a new patient won't even be able to get on the books right now, and so I'll have to continue dealing with this flare-up. This is impacting my relationship of almost a year; added to that has been the stress of having very recently opened up our relationship (we'd always agreed it was on the table, and an offer came up that my partner wanted to explore). I've been happy for them, but I haven't always been happy with how the communication has been early on in this, and pandemic time hasn't necessarily been the time most conducive to working it out in a low-stakes way.

Mentally, well, with those combined stresses and some specific occurrences in relation to that, I've had two panic attacks in the past week, one last night. I hadn't really had one of these for many months. I've been spiraling. My particular combination of OCD, PTSD, anxiety, and depression, plus relationship stress, can equal me having a panic attack, then just sobbing for hours off and on, over emotional pain or hurts that almost certainly don't merit that level of response. Add the communication problems about the relationship stuff, then virus-related stress, and it's been delightful. I don't feel good. Though I certainly don't physically feel as bad as friends who self-quarantined because they think they might have the virus and little way to get tested because they don't meet current testing criteria.

Relationship-wise, the latest thing is that all of this might lead to my partner and family accelerating long-term plans to relocate from the big city to somewhere more remote, probably without me for now or indefinitely. His parents are older and had planned to retire there anyway in the next few years, and the family has little safety net, since they all work in the service industry. Two in the family were recently laid off, two have seen their hours cut significantly, and the restaurant where my partner works has had to cut back occupancy by half, while facing supply-chain issues from affected countries. His parents are vulnerable to the virus in multiple ways. He's refusing offers of help; he would basically prefer to uproot everything than accept it. Also, I'm unfortunately still supporting my ex from halfway across the country, when we'd been planning to wrap things up, because I can't in good conscience push to proceed with the divorce if that might disrupt health coverage for someone with multiple severe chronic illnesses in the time of a pandemic, especially while his workplace is closed. It all feels impossible and unfair, but I feel like I'm doing the right thing as much as I can.

For all my privilege, I feel so powerless and trapped right now. It feels like I'm just gonna curl up with my cats and my work and have to watch everyone I love drift away because no one has a safety net. This hits harder, perhaps, because I just came out of that incredibly lonely marriage a year ago and felt like I was creating a new life here that I loved, and now it's all disintegrating. I'm sorry to complain about it when people are worse off, and that too is breaking my heart. I just haven't felt like this, haven't been glued to the news and social media like this, since 2014, I guess, when it all went wrong in Ferguson. I feel what others in the thread have described, that epigenetic call to prep, to modify my behavior, to respond in ways that were adaptive to my ancestors who knew when it was time to prepare or time to get out. Among my ancestors were folks who escaped pogroms and survived the Great Depression. I guess I can thank them, even as I'm wishing so hard that things were different.
posted by limeonaire at 12:44 PM on March 14 [15 favorites]


One fun thing, though: Collecting companies' email blasts about the pandemic. I've long kept a collection of companies' and media outlets' correction emails. Now I guess I'm informally starting a collection of those messages. It feels like something a library might be interested in someday, a catalog of responses and reassurances in the face of pandemic. Maybe there's a benefit to my having been so overwhelmed by everything for a while that I just stopped unsubscribing to things I got subscribed to by various companies, 'cause now I'm getting these from everyone and it's minorly entertaining.

Also, an update I just found out after posting my five-paragraph essay: Two of the folks in my partner's family who weren't doing so well job-wise apparently have just found work, so the timeline may not move up after all. That doesn't change how precarious things feel, but it does give us more time, hopefully.
posted by limeonaire at 12:53 PM on March 14 [14 favorites]


I got a COVID-19 email blast from a spammer today. Here's how your Buy Cheap Dental Insurance family urges you to handle the pandemic... [click here]
posted by Harvey Kilobit at 3:26 PM on March 14 [2 favorites]


Bridge over the River Why.
posted by clavdivs at 3:32 PM on March 14 [2 favorites]


I got the sweetest COVID-19 email blast from the local-ish minor league baseball team (I bought tickets for a game on my birthday which is in September). I was going to toss it into the "nice stuff" thread but it seems on topic at the moment in this thread.
The delay of baseball is the delay of spring—and it reminds us of the famous quotation by Hall of Famer Rogers Hornsby:
People ask me what I do in winter when there’s no baseball.
I’ll tell you what I do.
I stare out the window and wait for spring.
For now, we sit by our windows and wait for the health and renewal represented by spring.... When this fog clears and the sun shines once again, we seek to welcome you with open arms, as we sing, “Take Me Out to the Ballgame,” and most poignantly, “Take me out with the crowd.”
Hugs, limeonaire.
posted by jessamyn (temp) at 3:34 PM on March 14 [38 favorites]


Now I guess I'm informally starting a collection of those messages.

Hey me too! I wonder if this is worthy of a project. My fave so far is the fancy knife company sent an email that they would close due to the virus, then the next day let me know that they were again open for all my knife-sharpening needs.

Second fave: Mayor Muriel Bowser called me today about the virus (well, her office hit me with a pre-recorded message), and you can bet I both screenshotted the caller ID and saved the message.

Still voting against her because she endorsed Bloomberg. But I was glad to be included.
posted by aspersioncast at 3:35 PM on March 14 [5 favorites]


My employer has instituted a "recommended but not mandatory" work from home policy starting Monday. Just about everyone there actually has a job that can be done remotely. However, the previous policy was "not allowed under any circumstances", so we're going to have something like a hundred and fifty people all trying to do this for the first time on Monday morning.

Of course it's an all hands on deck situation for the IT department, of which I am part, but not usually on the front lines, so to speak. I will be looking for ways that I and my team can take workload off the front-line staff, at least one of whom was already well into helmet fire territory on Friday. It feels like my most useful role is going to be maintaining overall situational awareness and providing emotional support to the team, including people who do not report to me. I feel up to that challenge, but at the same time I'm dreading it.

So many other companies are doing the same, we're also expecting to have problems with capacity with ISPs, phone providers, web conference services, messaging systems, you name it, interfering with our ability to help others do what they need to do.

This doesn't feel nearly as important as what other people in this thread are dealing with. But because it's not a mandatory thing, anybody we can't help sufficiently... is probably going to have to go in to the office. It is not usual for our work to have potential health consequences for other people, and I really hope we can keep things together.
posted by FishBike at 4:23 PM on March 14 [3 favorites]


Fuck. Someone on my parents flight to Singapore tested positive and now they’re quarantined in Bali.
posted by Waiting for Pierce Inverarity at 4:55 PM on March 14 [15 favorites]


3500 new cases in Italy today...I can't even imagine what they're going through. Of course I live just outside Manhattan, soooo... Fuck.
Invisible things are the fucking worst.
posted by sexyrobot at 6:12 PM on March 14 [12 favorites]


My library schedule just shortened and I was asked to work a different shift, via text, on Saturday night. I . . . might just fucking ignore it.
posted by aspersioncast at 6:38 PM on March 14 [2 favorites]


On the good news side, my friend who got sick yesterday is apparently fine today, as she emailed to say "oh yeah, I had some friends over for pancake breakfast!" Said friends live close by, but... I don't even know what to say on that last bit really. I would still want them in contact because my friend and her husband are elderly and her closest kid lives in my town (3.5 hours or so away) and I would want those people to check in.

I am proposing that certain people text or email me daily just to prove that they are alive. Of course it took my mom like 4 hours to text back because she's with her boyfriend.... oh well, I hope she quarantines at his house. He's the sane one.

I'm also debating emailing all my theater friends to ask if they want (me) to institute a group text check-in since we won't be seeing each other for months and we all live in different towns, etc. I'd email so that if anyone doesn't want to be bothered they don't have to respond to me and I'll leave them alone, no questions asked, especially since some folks don't want group texts blowing up their phone and whatnot. Is that Too Much to ask of people? Should I leave that idea alone? I was just thinking yesterday that if I die, it will legit be three weeks until the smell drifts into the hallway....
posted by jenfullmoon at 6:50 PM on March 14 [2 favorites]


I don't post super often but I'm so grateful for this and other COVID-19 threads on MF. I have an anxiety disorder that's usually really well controlled, but this is giving it a run for its money, TO SAY THE LEAST. And even though I've responsibly used Ativan since 2007 under the care of multiple psychiatrists/doctors, my current psychiatrist has become weirdly stingy about it. I'm starting to have panic attacks in the middle of the night (which is a symptom that my anxiety has gotten quite bad), and having to ration Ativan is not making me feel calmer. I'll have to ask nicely for some additional pills on Monday.

I keep wondering if my anxiety is making this situation seem more dire than it actually is, but then I read the threads here and Twitter threads from various doctors and health experts, and I think my anxiety is super justified. THIS IS VERY SCARY. And yet lots of people in my life do not seem to understand why I'm so anxious about it. My sister had a fever yesterday, yet went to a restaurant today. Some friends went to the movie theater tonight. I keep hearing stories about packed bars and restaurants in cities across the country. I AM SO ANGRY that people are being SO CAVALIER about this. FUCK. And it feels shitty to sit here and be judge-y about it, but also, PEOPLE COULD DIE. In the case of my family and friends, I don't think it's purposefully rebellious or dismissive; they legitimately don't understand how bad this could get. Thanks for nothing, federal government.

Two silver linings: 1) my mom and dad are taking this VERY seriously, which helps me worry less. My dad is 77 and has COPD, and he basically doesn't leave the house now. Their church canceled all services and activities. In a HUGE sacrifice, my mom has stopped going to the gym, which she usually does 3x a week, and has been asking me for tips on home workouts. She knows how important it is to shield my dad from this. 2) One week ago, I adopted two shelter kitties who are VERY scared and living under my bed. I'll start telecommuting on Monday, so maybe this will speed up our bonding process!
posted by leftover_scrabble_rack at 8:46 PM on March 14 [17 favorites]


My anxiety is not well controlled at all. I have started new medication for ADD (non stimulant! Yay!) a few weeks ago and because of that addition my doc is not ok with adding another new medication yet. So we increased the Zoloft dose and I am frantic but somehow managing? I can’t take my precious short acting anxiety option for lady reasons and I’m mad about it.

I’m extremely lucky to be safe and securely housed and well fed but the nagging fear that it could all fall apart in minutes or hours is constant if not totally accurate.
posted by bilabial at 8:50 PM on March 14 [7 favorites]


I keep hearing stories about packed bars and restaurants in cities across the country. I AM SO ANGRY that people are being SO CAVALIER about this. FUCK. And it feels shitty to sit here and be judge-y about it, but also, PEOPLE COULD DIE.

This is how I feel too. It's definitely not just you. I saw some friends earlier out at a packed park and a packed brunch bar, joking about social distancing in their Instagram story, and it made me feel so upset. That's just one reason I'm upset, but yeah, it sucks.
posted by limeonaire at 9:36 PM on March 14 [4 favorites]


Did I mention the amount of sports, picnics, and frat boy partying I saw yesterday?
posted by jenfullmoon at 9:53 PM on March 14 [2 favorites]


I have diabetes. My flatmate starts his new job on Monday. He'll be an exterminator, going in to residential homes all day every day. Fuck.

I am long-term unemployed due to a series of really shitty life events that had nothing to do with me except that over a four-year period, most of the people close to me just kept dying. There was literally nothing I could have done to stop any of it, and that is infuriating. My husband died first. That alone broke me. Then the slow drip-drip of almost everyone else in my life who I loved, who functioned as a safety net, who just filled in the dark places--that just about erased me. I am living off savings that should be my retirement. Old enough that I have little hopes of decent employment. Young enough that I'm looking at needing to be employed for another two decades. Forever, if I burn through retirement. And, oh yeah, I am autistic, so most of the jobs I might be able to get I won't be able to keep because they burn me out so damn fast.

If I end up in the hospital I'll have to give up my dog. He has separation anxiety, barks when no one is home, and the animal behaviorist I hired to help me with him cancelled due to the virus. I live in an apartment building. He can't be left to bark nine hours a day. There is literally no one else who can take him, even for a day, because we moved far, far, far away from all the sad things and don't know anyone out here. Now seems like a bad time to try to make new friends.
posted by tllaya at 10:04 PM on March 14 [17 favorites]


The restaurant and bowling center I work at was slow all day and then just when I thought I might call the kitchen closed at 8:30 I had two 4 tops walk in, then the lanes started to fill up. I ended up locking the doors after 11pm. This was strange but people are spooked and need normalcy, and community, and to blow off steam, and there are no confirmed cases here....yet.

At the workplace we are using gloves more, washing hands more, and today we pulled all the condiments from the tables, cleaned the bottles, and now they go to the table by request and get cleaned as soon as they come off the table, and stored in a designated condiment corral. I made a sign for the kitchen door that says " SAFE is better than FAST until this virus bullshit is over so MIND YOUR HANDS!!!"

The servers and bartenders have already taken a hit in the pocketbook and I cringe when I think about what they will do if this crisis lasts more than a week or two.

I've been thinking back to 2001 and back then it was "something monstrous and monumental has happened, what do we DO?" and this is more like 'something monstrous and monumental is about to happen, what the fuck do we DO?"

I chose to stay frosty, try to manage my risks and the general risks, wash my hands every 20 minutes at work, and try to have a lil fun and at least laugh now and then. This sucks and is very serious but i refuse to give up on joy, and goofiness. They may be our greatest strenghts.
posted by vrakatar at 10:16 PM on March 14 [11 favorites]


Now I guess I'm informally starting a collection of those messages.

Hey me too! I wonder if this is worthy of a project. My fave so far is the fancy knife company sent an email that they would close due to the virus, then the next day let me know that they were again open for all my knife-sharpening needs.


What a great idea! I am relatively new to MetaFilter and am not sure what creating a project would involve... but I would love to be a part of this. I'm an information science researcher with All Sorts Of Opinions about metadata, crowdsourced and curated collections, etc. MeMail me?
posted by tumbling at 10:17 PM on March 14 [4 favorites]


If you all get this started, let me know, and I'll forward whoever wants them all the corporate and small-business and local-government coronavirus messaging emails you'd like.
posted by limeonaire at 10:52 PM on March 14 [3 favorites]


Separately, related to people failing to do the social distancing thing, this has me concerned: "COVID-19: New York Will Be The Next Italy, But Doesn’t Have to Be"

There's a related trending hashtag right now: #shutdownNYC

Someone should probably consider making an FPP.
posted by limeonaire at 10:56 PM on March 14 [1 favorite]


Things that are freaking me the fuck out tonight: There's a reported case of re-infection or dormancy (positive test, recovery/negative test, positive test) in Japan. There were, apparently some in China, but people (rightly) didn't really trust that data.

If the thing can go dormant and re-emerge or people can get re-infected, we're incredibly fucked.

WaPo
6:39 p.m.
Japanese man tests positive for virus again — two weeks after apparent recovery
TOKYO — A Japanese man who apparently recovered from the coronavirus two weeks ago has again fallen ill and tested positive, public broadcaster NHK reported on Sunday.

The man, who is in his 70s, first tested positive for the virus on Feb. 14 while on board the quarantined cruise ship, the Diamond Princess.

He recovered and was discharged from a medical facility in Tokyo on March 2, NHK reported. It has been standard practice in Japanese hospitals to demand at least two negative tests before releasing patients.

He then returned to his home in Mie prefecture in central Japan by public transport.

But he came down with a fever of 39 degrees Celsius (102.2 Fahrenheit) on Thursday, NHK reported. He went to hospital on Friday, took a test and was shown to have the virus on Saturday.

By Simon Denyer
posted by DebetEsse at 12:50 AM on March 15 [5 favorites]


I'm idly wondering, if my medical condition is on the list that makes COVID-19 especially dangerous, does that mean if we get to a triage situation the doctors will be like, yeah, she's fucked, move on.

i mean i'm doing some waking and baking and am therefore a bit paranoid, but that is a real thought in my head
posted by angrycat at 3:48 AM on March 15 [10 favorites]


Damnit. My oldest is getting married next month in Cambodia, dates already shifted in part for the virus and now Singapore has issued a stay-home-notice of 14 days for everyone travelling in ASEAN countries. I'm trying to find the small print to see if it means I can travel and the rest of the household will be allowed to continue with just me in a SHN, or if that means the entire household goes into quarantine with a SHN. A friend already had to cancel because she can't get two week's leave for a relatively non-essential trip. We wanted to have the entire family turn up but it looks like it'll be just me and her youngest sister (there's no way I would be able to avoid her for two weeks anyway).

Fortunately our tickets were slightly better this time so we can ask for credit vouchers I think. The travel-tourism industry is hit so badly right now. I have no idea what will happen to all the Singapore-based airline people.
posted by dorothyisunderwood at 3:55 AM on March 15 [5 favorites]


So many other companies are doing the same, we're also expecting to have problems with capacity with ... web conference services

Oh dear lord, can you imagine working for Zoom right now? No one there can be getting any sleep.

I’m in North Carolina, and our K-12 schools are closing Monday on order of the governor. I go full WFH Monday, from a schedule that was optional 1 day a week from home.

I’m working very hard to approach this experience with gratitude because I am very fortunate.
posted by jeoc at 4:23 AM on March 15 [6 favorites]


Oh my Lord reading the #shutdownNYC twitter is horrifying. Accounts from bartenders of packed places this week.
posted by angrycat at 5:03 AM on March 15 [2 favorites]


I already work with a distributed national (Canadian) team but personally work in a large office, in a huge building, which I reach by public transit, and am trying to arrange for my teammate who has a serious health condition and myself to WFH (I'm her supervisor) ...but it's a bit complicated and along with everything else, my hypervigilance has decided to take centre stage in brainland.

I also live in a huge building with a zillion elderly people - the big congregations of buddies in the lobby haven't been happening as much which is good, but I worry about them all. I try to stay away and not touch the elevator buttons with my hands.

I dunno.
posted by wellred at 6:20 AM on March 15 [4 favorites]


I think at the beginning of the thread someone offered to attend birthday parties and events via Minecraft. I have never played Minecraft. I am not a gamer. But my grandson likes Minecraft and now I am wondering if interested parties might want to develop some kind of MetaFilter related Minecraft community During the long weeks of working from home and/or voluntary confinement ahead of some of us.

Since I’ve never played the game I have no idea how to organize this. But if some people are enthusiastic, maybe we can start a different thread on meta-talk to discuss it. Ping me if you think this is an interesting idea.

It turned out that I did go to my Al-Anon meeting yesterday and it will probably be the last one I go to for awhile. I had been gone a long time so volunteered to lead the meeting as a form of service. Someone had already written at the end of the closing to note that people did not have to hold hands at the end while we said the serenity prayer together. I did more than that, because I am a wordy gal, and noted that I would not be holding anyone’s hands nor would I be giving or accepting hugs even though both those things are my favorite parts of the meeting.

There were about 15 of us. A few people held hands. Most people kept their arms down at their sides. I and the persons on either side of me interlocked our arms at the elbows. One guy just stayed in his seat at the table and laughed. I thought that was a fine approach as well. One of the attendees was jetlagged because they had just gotten off a plane from the US. Learning that was when I decided it is too risky to keep going to meetings. For now.

I will go to the store and to the pharmacy and to the doctor. Because my office is at my exes place, a short stroll From my place, I will continue to see them unless they say otherwise. I am worried about some of the elderly people in my apartment building. This being Sweden, I don’t know what their names are or if they live alone or if they have other people to help them.

I was really struck by a recent news account about a professional runner who found an elderly couple nearly in tears. The runner was about to go shopping and one of the oldsters rolled down the window of their car and called out to her. They were close to tears because they had been sitting in the parking lot for several hours, too afraid to go into the store because of the risk of infection but unwilling to go home because they were running out of supplies.

The professional runner apparently got their grocery list, bought the stuff for them, and then put it in their car trunk so the old couple never had to get out of their car. That runner is my hero. I feel badly about that couple apparently being so isolated that they had no one else to ask for help. Glad they got it.
posted by Bella Donna at 6:34 AM on March 15 [24 favorites]


#ShutdownNYC - wow. I am not at all surprised that scoffers are gathering in big numbers. As vrakatar says above, it's an understandable response to anxiety. I have wondered myself how we will fight Americans' tendency to take a vacation mentality in this scenario. A people who feel like wage slaves with little time off suddenly get some relief from work schedules, and their reflex is "party." I saw a lot of this locally yesterday.

And I definitely understand the dilemma these owners face. With a shutdown of as little as a week or a month, many businesses will have to just close. So the choice is not only about impacting individual livelihoods, but also a fairly large-scale jobless situation at the time of comeback.

It really has to be a unilateral action by the state/city government that doesn't put any place at a competitive disadvantage to close.And there has to then be a massive relief fund to help those workers survive the crisis, and then infusions of incentive to reopen closed businesses after the fact. In other words, shutdown is the right thing to do but let's be honest, it is going to cost a fuck ton.
posted by Miko at 6:37 AM on March 15 [5 favorites]


Things have changed: My office (Philadelphia) is now WFH starting tomorrow through the rest of March; misterussell goes to school (NJ) Monday to disseminate handouts and then they are off the rest of March.

He went to the store today for a perishables run and noted that along with the other predictable outages, ketchup was also completely sold out.

I'm trying to remain positive, but I'll probably have to quit visiting AskMe because while people here are all "yes, stay home!" ... the Green is very, "But surely you don't mean *I* have to stay home too, right?"
posted by kimberussell at 7:03 AM on March 15 [9 favorites]


I am worried not just about the people I care about who are in high risk groups — I am also worried that Trump will figure out how he can take advantage of the situation, in which everyone is (correctly, well-meaningly) clamoring for restrictions to freedoms in an election year, to retain occupancy of the White House. This is one of those dumb second order worries that I don’t know if there’s an answer for because we have to do the things we have to do. But a fucking fuck thread appears to be a natural home for it.
posted by eirias at 7:05 AM on March 15 [7 favorites]


You said it better than I could, Miko. I'm seeing some friends who are like, go out! Support bartenders during this time! I just want to shake them at how misguided that advice is, and yet, of course, if the government calls for a city shutdown and puts nothing in place to support small-business owners and restaurant workers and bartenders, who are numerous in this city and among the most vulnerable in terms of being exposed to a lot of people and having no safety net, things really are going to get terrible without recourse for a lot of people.
posted by limeonaire at 8:06 AM on March 15 [8 favorites]


I checked in with the guy I know from Twitter who worked at my local supermarket, just to see how he was holding up. Apparently he is NOW working at the big Trader Joe's in Burlington and said yesterday was their biggest sales day since the store opened, including opening day. Said people were all being reasonable and no one looked like they were hoarding (just buying a little more than usual) and yet still most of the shelves were empty by the end of the day.
posted by jessamyn (temp) at 8:13 AM on March 15 [2 favorites]


It's like the government is asking us to watch a lot of people become homeless and we have to do it to stay alive. Our instinct is to help with the immediate problem of needing money because the staying alive problem is the 2nd one on the list and the 1st problem is still unsolved. But we have to let it stay unsolved. It's a hard thing to ask of people. It's crazy.
posted by bleep at 8:14 AM on March 15 [8 favorites]


I'm about a 2 hour drive north-east of Toronto up the 115. I live in a village that's so far unaffected by the panic buying (knock on wood). Any mefites who need a hand in the area or a stock up of supplies, drop me a line and we'll see what we can do. I'm also a lawyer (sorry) if anyone needs a power of attorney drawn up quickly to get them through a quarantine.
posted by LegallyBread at 9:04 AM on March 15 [9 favorites]


This is one of those dumb second order worries...

When you look back at how they took advantage of 9-11 I don't think it's a second order worry at all. In fact, I'm 100% sure somebody in the administration is tasked with finding way to use this crisis to extend authoritarianism permanently.
posted by COD at 9:24 AM on March 15 [7 favorites]


MIL is returning from her visit to SIL over spring break today. SIL is being kicked off campus so is moving back in a week. Neither of them have been taking this particularly seriously and have been spending all of the last few days out and about. FIL is a complete homebody and has been extremely vigilant about washing his hands, so if it were just him I wouldn't mind visiting. But with MIL and SIL home I don't think we'll feel safe visiting them for a while. Given we usually go over twice a week this is going to be rough emotionally.

I'm extra sad because we were hoping to get extra time to spend with FIL while MIL was gone on break. She's a lovely person but BIG!!! ENERGY!!! and exhausting to be around, while FIL is super duper chill. She tends to take over conversation so I value the time we get to spend with just him. But with my school going all on-line middle of the week + stocking up for isolation, we've been too busy to visit.

Also I need to call my grandpa to check in but I'm super anxious because even though he's a smart dude, he's a Republican and I'm worried he's been taken in by the "it's no worse than the flu." I'm trying to gather some arguments to convince him to stay in if I can. I'm going to offer to do errands and such for him but he's a super independent guy so I don't know if he's going to accept. He's so social and loves to be out and about too, so I'm pretty worried about it. He's not very stubborn though so I'm hoping to be able to convince him. If anyone has any good links to arguments or facts to use to convince elderly folk to stay home, that'd be great.
posted by brook horse at 9:38 AM on March 15 [2 favorites]


What are people doing about tipping without cash when a payment terminal doesn't provide for it?

If I saw cashiers wearing their Venmo QR codes, I'd definitely scan them, but this isn't happening yet and I wonder if management would approve. I've been shopping so little that I haven't had the "tap-to-pay short circuits the payment flow" problem since social distancing began, but I used to just tip in cash when that happened. I used to be annoyed at Abba's Bjorn Ulvaeus' support of eliminating cash (for killing the black market), but now it just seems prudent.
posted by ASCII Costanza head at 9:54 AM on March 15 [3 favorites]


brook horse, I found this video compelling: obituaries in an Italian town, February vs March
posted by eirias at 10:03 AM on March 15 [8 favorites]


Public library system I work for is still open. We are the only library in the area that is still open. Schools across the state are closed per the governor. I’m working this weekend at the reference desk, and we’re still running programs such as story times. The word is “we are giving patrons the choice whether or not to attend.” A coworker helped a patron yesterday who casually mentioned she had just returned from Seattle.

Two of the three supervisors at my location are on vacation. Our system director stopped by yesterday, did not come up to my floor, apparently was happy that it was so busy, and dropped off ice cream treats for staff. Because yeah, that’s what we need right now.

I am so angry. Going back in a few hours for a half day shift. Hoping the powers that be are going to rethink this because this is crazy and dangerous.
posted by bookmammal at 10:17 AM on March 15 [10 favorites]




"If anyone has any good links to arguments or facts to use to convince elderly folk to stay home, that'd be great."

I just looked up and ran some numbers. I used the US population statistics from here, and the case fatality rate by age in China from here.

In 2018, the US population was 324 million. People in their 50s were 43M, 60s were 37M, 70s were 23M, and 80s were 13M. The total for 50-89 was 116M. That's 36% of the entire US population.

Case fatality rates in China for people in their 50s was 1.3%, in their 60s was 3.6%, 70s was 8%, and 80s was 14.8%.

What we don't know is what portion of the population in the US will be infected, or how that will be distributed across age groups. I'm seeing estimates of infection over the year in the US to be anywhere from 20% to 75%. It's a novel virus where no one has prior immunity; even assuming some containment that number is likely to be higher rather than lower. (For a comparison, from 5% to 20% get the flu in the US each year, and that's with some immunity and vaccination.) I've settled on 50% as a very realistic number.

But that's for the whole population on average—it's not at all clear how the infection is distributed across age groups. Previously, it was thought that the low case fatality rate for children indicated a low infection rate. But I've seen increasing reports that, via testing, it looks like children are infected about as often as adults and that the very low CFR is because they don't get very sick.

With the very questionable assumption that the total number of infections this year will be about the same for the elderly as the population in general, and assuming that's about 50%, then half of the 50-89 group will be infected, amounting to 58M people. Even if the case fatality rates for this group are lower than they were in China, that still amounts to deaths in the millions among the elderly.

Based upon China's case fatality rates for these age groups, and a 50% infection per year rate, that results in about 250,000 deaths of those in their fifties, 670,00 deaths of those in their sixties, 910,000 deaths among those in their seventies, and 940,000 deaths among those in their eighties.

That's about three million deaths of older people in the US, two-thirds of them among those older than 70.

In my opinion, given that the US began containment and social distancing later than China, that the US has fewer hospitals beds per capita than China, and that US containment and social distancing will by necessity of the government and social structure here be less effective than China's, these estimates are very conservative and quite likely to be underestimates.

Middle-school kids joking about covid-19 and young adults shrugging their shoulders and going out and celebrating time away from work may have another think coming when grandma dies from this. Likewise the elderly who think this is overblown—it's coming for them or someone they know.

Slowing the spread of SARS-CoV-2 via containment and social distancing is the only way we can reduce these fatalities. The death rate will be reduced primarily by "flattening the curve" such that covid-19 cases are spread throughout the year, as opposed to primarily in the spring. Spreading the cases out over the year will allow the health care system to adequately treat the cases they see and, ideally, allow time for better treatments and a possible vaccine to be developed.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 10:52 AM on March 15 [9 favorites]


For convincing older people that this is a big deal, I've found this doctor explaining the situation in Italy to be useful.
posted by benzenedream at 11:15 AM on March 15 [3 favorites]


It's sort of mind blowing how much has changed in a week (here in my east coast US city). At the start of the week, there were the first hints that things might be shifting dramatically, and then over the course of a couple days, it was "all the students have to move home, classes are all going to be taught online" and then "All of you need to work from home too." I think it's the correct call in a tough situation (and way better than the alternative of trying to force everyone to still come into work), even if it's left everyone scrambling.

But it's all happened so quickly that I feel like my head is still spinning. I know I should be grateful that I still have a job that I'll be doing from home, and I still have health insurance, which is more than so many people can say right now. At the same time, I've been dealing with a chronic health problem since October, and everything for the last few months has already been such a struggle because of that, and because of other things.

I'm in that weird place where I'm tired all the time from being in constant pain, but I also feel like I'm crawling out of my skin because I'm used to being way more active than I can be right now. And being stuck at home only amplifies that more. Plus my mood has been all over the place because of the pain and the limitations from this, and trying to find treatments that will actually work (no luck so far)...

I just really don't feel equipped right now to deal with suddenly having my life upended. I should be stocking up and planning, and it's just so hard to make my brain cooperate right now. And again, I know that I have it so much better than so many other people. But I just already felt like I was hanging on by the barest thread, and one of the things that kept me hanging on was the routine of going to my job, seeing my coworkers, the students, doing a job that I really enjoy (even if the pain has take a lot of the enjoyment out of anything).

I mean, I haven't even really felt the WFH impact yet because it's just the weekend. And yet, I still already feel like I'm crawling out of my skin and suffocating and I just want to get out, but even though I'm in the younger cohort and don't have pre-existing health problems that put me at risk, I know that I need to take advantage of the fact that I can stay home while others can't. So here I am, at home, trying to just hang in there and take it one day at a time.

It's all just really fucking hard right now.
posted by litera scripta manet at 11:20 AM on March 15 [13 favorites]


Update: Grandpa seems to be taking it seriously, but he's apparently getting married (?!?! I knew he was seeing someone but didn't know they were even thinking about marriage) in a month, and it sounds like he expects this all to have blown over by then, so, um. I'll take that as a partial win? Thanks all for the resources!
posted by brook horse at 11:39 AM on March 15 [13 favorites]


brook horse, I was just thinking of you as I read a newsletter by the journalist Anne Helen Peterson and saw this link to an article she wrote, just in case you need another resource for further conversations with your grandpa: “I wrote this piece about how to talk to parents and grandparents who aren’t taking COVID-19 seriously— it includes strategies for people who think it’s politicized, people who don’t think of themselves as ‘at risk,’ and people who are just being stubborn. If you’re struggling to convince your elders to change their behaviors, 1) you’re not alone and 2) keep trying.”
posted by the thorn bushes have roses at 11:52 AM on March 15 [12 favorites]


the thorn bushes have roses, thank you so much! I'm definitely going to keep that in my back pocket; he talked about us all going out to eat for Easter because he thinks it'll be over by then (and to be fair to him, my school also thinks it'll be over by then because classes are only online until April 10), so if he hasn't changed his mind as that's coming up I'll definitely pull it out.
posted by brook horse at 11:57 AM on March 15


According to CNN, South Africa has declared a state of emergency and banned travelers from high risk countries and allegedly TWH has tried to buy a cure exclusively for the US, though a more recent article has German officials denying the latter.
posted by jojo and the benjamins at 11:59 AM on March 15


litera scripta manet, you're not alone. As my posts yesterday probably hinted at, I let myself basically have the day yesterday, not exactly a mental health day, but just giving myself the space, since I was alone and my partner was with family and then (unexpectedly but unsurprisingly) metamour, to totally break down, cry, mourn my previous feelings of comfort and having a plan, read Twitter and MetaFilter, watch cathartic movies, cuddle and hang out with the cats, talk to friends and family, do a little financial planning, order in Chinese food to support a local restaurant, and buy stuff on Amazon. I guess it really was Shabbos, a day of rest, if not comfort.

Today, I'm doing a bit better, and as usual for Sunday, I'm buckling down, dealing with finances, cat litter, laundry, trash, dishes, etc. Later I'm gonna get some wine and cider. Maybe by the time my partner decides to make it home, I'll be relaxed and slightly drunk. 💪 Hang in there, everyone.
posted by limeonaire at 11:59 AM on March 15 [11 favorites]


My partner and I have started the social distancing, no going out for dates, limiting trips to the supermarket, no dog park, and until I get cleared to work entirely from home I'm going to only go in a few hours in the morning.

Yesterday I tried to make one of those limited trips to get groceries but there was a line to get into the store and employees out front blocking the exit so no one would sneak in. I talked to one of the guards a bit, he said the store was at capacity so they were operating with a 10 in 10 out policy. Also the the checkout line was hitting the back of the store.

I left without groceries, we'll try again in a few days and can get by without fresh produce. Spending an hour in a tightly packed store can't be good.
posted by lepus at 1:23 PM on March 15


Vermont public schools are now ALL closed, through at LEAST April 6 (between us friends, word on the street is it is going to be longer...a LOT longer).
posted by yes I said yes I will Yes at 1:39 PM on March 15 [2 favorites]


the extroverts on my feed are fussing about social distancing, but while I’m an introvert, it’s hitting me really hard since isolation is a huge trigger for my depression. I don’t have close friends to keep in touch with, and constantly chasing my acquaintances for a chat is unsatisfying.

Mental health-wise, I hugely rely on routine social gatherings where I’m allowed in because of inertia, rather than specifically asked to do something. Now that midsize gatherings are cancelled (and im avoiding the ones that aren’t), I’m struggling a lot.

Plus I live in a house of 2 married people (to each other), 2 people in LTRs (who sometimes stay over), and one person who is in the throes of a new relationship, whose partner is staying with us for... a while? The house is big enough, but since people are all paired off, they hang out in their rooms watching TV and doing couple stuff, so if I’m in common areas, it’s generally just me and the cats.

I hope I can find the mental alignment I need to go for a hike when it stops raining.
posted by itesser at 1:39 PM on March 15 [7 favorites]


tumbling: likewise, if you want me to forward the emails I've gotten (that I haven't deleted yet), I can do that if you actually want 'em.
posted by jenfullmoon at 1:51 PM on March 15


My first thought was I've worked in a research dept where they do a lot of modelling of real world stuff and throw 'stochastic' around all the time, and I still don't have any idea what it means. Then I thought, Wait, are all these people faking it? Including my SO?

I asked my SO what stochastic meant. She gave a basic definition and example relevant to her work. It sounded convincing enough, given i don't know what it means. Then she confessed she could only give that definition as she looked it up 3 weeks ago for a lecture. She has been using it in conversation with other so-called experts at work for years!

Trust no-one.
posted by biffa at 1:52 PM on March 15 [6 favorites]


boy, rewatching Chernobyl, it's basically like:

first minutes after Chernobyl: you idiot, of course the core hasn't exploded, go and look at it and be sure to look right at it to determine the core hasn't exploded

x days into coronavirus: you paranoid people, it's just a flu, let's go to the St. Patrick's parade
posted by angrycat at 2:05 PM on March 15 [13 favorites]


Bars and restaurants across the entire State of Illinois have been ordered to close until the end of the month. Fuuuuuuuuck.
posted by hwyengr at 2:07 PM on March 15 [4 favorites]


The Republican Gov of Washington, Tim Eyman, is trying to get a rally of 251 together to flout the state's restrictions
posted by angrycat at 2:09 PM on March 15 [1 favorite]


You go, Tim. Who cares about a pandemic when there are libs to be owned?
posted by tonycpsu at 2:24 PM on March 15 [1 favorite]


Whoa, Trump dismissively saying "Relax." Did the heads of all women everywhere collectively explode? When has telling anyone to relax ever had anything but the exact opposite effect? As if he's ever had to worry about having enough food in the house.
posted by HotToddy at 3:14 PM on March 15 [6 favorites]


I've already been largely isolated for the past six months and hating it because all I want to to move on to the next phase of my life (get a job and my own place). I graduated with my 2nd master's last year and since then I've been living with my mother and it's been draining for both of us.

The work I've been looking for is out of state (not many opportunities in my state). My original plan for after landing a job to find temporary accomodations (via airbnb, sublet, etc) while I save up money for a permanent place is seeming less feasible. I'm also worried about employers delaying hiring new people, paricularly since I'm looking for jobs in academia. I know I'm in better circumstances than most in this immediate moment, but psychologically I'm already losing it with the social distancing because I've already been doing it for six months due to lack of funds and the fact that I can't drive with my poor eyesight and this area is not walkable at all (suburban nightmare).

I recently had to travel for an onsite interview and have also been paranoid ever since I came back last week because my mother is in her 70s. We've been taking lots of precautions but the simple fact is that's impossible in a shared living space to ensure lack of potential transmission.

But I was so grateful to have a mini vacation from my isolation and felt amazing to be somewhere that I could walk around and do things and feel independent again. Even with all the fears of the virus starting to ramp up at the time, I felt human again for the first time in six months. It's so hard coming back to this indefinite personal hell. Yes, it absolutely could be so much worse for me but I'm miserable enough already.
posted by acidnova at 3:30 PM on March 15 [5 favorites]


I'm trying to figure out what to do for my nanny. She typically works about 8 hours a week after school and she's also an hourly Ed tech so she's totally hosed. I'm not sure I want her coming over to the house regularly though. But I feel like should figure something out for her. (Can I just keep paying her?)
posted by selfnoise at 4:14 PM on March 15


So it's looking likely my fiancee will be put in isolation for recent travel to the US. This isolation should extend to me, of course. It is voluntary, but I heard she may end up "suspended" from her job duties (she works for the Canadian government) for two weeks and paid out of EI rate? I am not sure how it's going to work but I think there will be at least some compensation.

I know it's not her fault, but I'm so mad just in general. I wanted to say something about cancelling her plans when she left but I don't think she wouldn't have listened to me anyway. I remember she left on the 4th; I had stocked up some supplies on the 29th of February so it was already a concern for me by then.

She was not an infection hot-spot but she did attend some large events. She returned on Wednesday, March 11th. Neither of us has shown any signs of sickness.

I sincerely don't know if I can miss my grandfather's funeral. I think it's possible for me to go responsibly but I don't know if that's just wishful thinking or what. I feel like I'm going to lose it.
posted by one of these days at 4:16 PM on March 15 [4 favorites]


But I feel like should figure something out for her. (Can I just keep paying her?)

No kids, so I don't have a nanny, but if you've already budgeted for it I think that's exactly what you should do.
posted by Meghamora at 5:01 PM on March 15 [13 favorites]


Because big retailers prefer multi packs for everything, their inventory sells out more quickly in disasters. Now maybe people will simply fill their basket with as many double packs as it will hold, but if you want two rolls of paper towels and the only paper towels remaining are eight packs, well, that's what you're going to get.
posted by Beholder at 5:09 PM on March 15 [1 favorite]


But I feel like should figure something out for her. (Can I just keep paying her?)

No kids, so I don't have a nanny, but if you've already budgeted for it I think that's exactly what you should do.


Yeah, we ultimately just decided to pay her normal hours for now and tell her to stay away.

The decision matrix is going to get real weird if one of our employers decides to be a dick about WFH.
posted by selfnoise at 5:19 PM on March 15 [11 favorites]


I'm expecting. I've just heard a rumor that another pregnant person in our town has been told they may have to prepare for a home birth.

It was very clearly a rumor. I'm not taking it seriously until my doctor's appointment next week when I'll ask. But still, maybe I need to start bingewatching 'call the midwife'.

UGGGGHHHHHH
posted by freethefeet at 5:34 PM on March 15 [9 favorites]


I’ve been sick for almost a month with strep and was finally turning the corner, then I started getting worse again today plus low fever and mild body aches. I’m guessing I either have the flu or strep 2.0 but OH MY GOD I AM SO TIRED OF BEING SICK. This is really fucking with my mental health ahhhh
posted by brilliantine at 5:39 PM on March 15 [6 favorites]


So, I'm now living the scenario my anxiety brain has entertained since 2005, the year that I graduated college, started a job working on developing antiviral drugs for a measles outbreak, and read John M. Barry's fantastic book The Great Influenza. Three weeks ago I was worried because I was still living a duality - one half of my brain 100% aware the pandemic was coming, the other half trying to be practical about how typically, my anxieties are not grounded in reality, and therefore it would be prudent to buy plane tickets for my brother's wedding, continue planning to see the in-laws, finish preparations for my PhD committee meeting, etc. But now, other than concerns about my parents, I am weirdly calm watching all the things that I expected to happen, well... happen. We sold all stocks in late February. I bought an extra pack of toilet paper two weeks ago. A week ago we bought a bidet. We shut down the lab on Friday. My boss and a few other lab heads on campus have scrambled to inventory donateable resources across the academic research labs to get supplies to the public health department's testing facility. My professional society is coordinating similar efforts at a global scale. I emailed my entire family and acquaintance list, and explained why we need to #flattenthecurve yesterday. The call went out for volunteers with substantial lab experience to do diagnostic testing at the state public health department, and I've signed up for any shift they'll give me. I started seeds and prepared all the raised beds for planting this weekend. My husband and I are giving blood tomorrow. And none of it, none of it, none of it is enough.
posted by deludingmyself at 5:45 PM on March 15 [18 favorites]


[One comment removed. I appreciate that crunching numbers is part of how some of us process and express anxiety, but I think it'd better if we let this thread stay more in people-venting-personal-vents territory and avoid stuff like napkin math predictions of mass death etc.]
posted by cortex (staff) at 6:59 PM on March 15 [11 favorites]


My kids, playing superheroes.
Kid 1: Watch out! There's danger!
Kid 2: Maybe it's a new virus.
posted by medusa at 7:16 PM on March 15 [11 favorites]


Welp, new CDC guidelines will keep me out of work for AT LEAST the next 2 months. Fuck.

I live alone and social distancing will keep me away from other people for the foreseeable future. I hugged a friend goodbye last night and immediately wondered when the next time I’m going to touch another human.
posted by mollymayhem at 7:24 PM on March 15 [12 favorites]


Touching humans is overrated. Humans who are touching, they are fine as long as it is their state of being. Apparently I am not supposed to go out of my house, or talk to my immediate neighbors since they work in schools, and have an actual vector, (child.) All schools are not out in California, we don't have enough cases where I live to justify closing schools just yet. I mean we have zilch for cases at this point. But I hear you mollymayhem best to you in your solitary confinement. Fanfare is pretty pleasantly talkative on this site. I looked at the big maps today, hah, US 3,700 cases, good thing border security is good, so Mexicans with 41 cases, can stay safe from us. India has so few, I would have figured them for massive numbers, but then again, getting in the Ganges has benefits, must have benefits for the immune system. Arm chair theorizing fine, but I was listening to a 18 month old screaming in the grocery store, you know, I wish I could cry like that, I think it would do me good. Must go out to the Panamint Dunes and get my scream on, it couldn't hurt.
posted by Oyéah at 7:33 PM on March 15 [3 favorites]


The stores were deserted today, I mean, they had more than desserts, but there were few people out. The store glut is over, now the hoarding is a thing. I am not shopping tomorrow, nope, my friend is working out ordering groceries delivered.
posted by Oyéah at 7:40 PM on March 15


I hugged a friend goodbye last night and immediately wondered when the next time I’m going to touch another human.

Thought that on Tuesday the last time I got to hug anybody. I fear it'll be at least three, six, nine months from now. if then.
posted by jenfullmoon at 8:17 PM on March 15 [5 favorites]


The last time I shook hands was months ago, with my favorite doctor who helped me find out I have celiac disease and who left his practice for another healthcare role elsewhere in mid-February. Now I have to find a new physician. My insurance company provides telemedicine so that will help if I need anything immediately.

I fear as much as ever for my sister, who should be on social security and continues to hold out hope for her appeal of rejection, who gets referrals for specialists but can't find any that take her insurance, whose doctors have to fight her insurance company over whether to give her insulin, so she gets none for 2 months at a time. I fear most for her survival because she lives with 3 retail workers.
posted by Radiophonic Oddity at 8:43 PM on March 15 [2 favorites]


Shout out to all the people keeping the dish and laundry trains running in their households despite really feeling THE WEIGHT over the weekend.
posted by ob1quixote at 11:34 PM on March 15 [11 favorites]


If anyone has any good links to arguments or facts to use to convince elderly folk to stay home, that'd be great.

@EricaHauver: "Education was my top job today. But they were starting from different places. If my mom does not embrace the changes they need to make, they won't happen, so we started with the 'not much worse than the flu' myth..."

It was like the moment when a bird decides not to eat from your hand

A male Red-bellied Woodpecker goes for the cranberry and walnut combo meal

also btw...
Good Bones by @maggiesmithpoet

3500 new cases in Italy today...I can't even imagine what they're going through.

#LoveInTheTimeOfCoronavirus
-the people of Naples singing together from their balconies
-these videos from Italy are really finishing me off
posted by kliuless at 11:42 PM on March 15 [4 favorites]


we were busy today and then the word came down- takeout only for a month. Almost everyone laid off. Maybe me. my boss is gutpunched. we've been working so hard to get it right now we have to wait and see what remains. gutpunched.
posted by vrakatar at 11:58 PM on March 15 [10 favorites]


You know, I get people pushing back on global warming. The warming of the oceans and the air, it's too huge of a thing. So when scientists start talking about it, yeah, I can wrap my head around the level of stupidity that is climate denialism. Especially when addressing it means drastic lifestyle change.

But people are supposed to listen to their doctors about viruses. Hell, we have a whole franchise of TV shows about humanity trying to survive a virus. And yet still you're getting pictures of like big crowds at Walt Disney World. I don't fucking get it.

So much about this week has been baffling. I'm still stuck on why people were/are stockpiling toilet paper. I don't get the animal instinct behind that one.
posted by angrycat at 12:00 AM on March 16 [2 favorites]


The toiletpaper thing... I think there are several factors at play. At least one of them has to be that those people, in a lower layer of their mind, equate toilet paper with modern (Western-centric) comfort and civilization. If that runs out, what are we but barbarians? Everything we built up will come tumbling down once there is no more toilet paper.

Personally I'm not worried about it. We've got electricity and water, a washing machine and detergent, and a metric shitton of old T-shirts. I'm sure we'll think of something. Once the toilet paper runs out, which it won't.
posted by Too-Ticky at 1:22 AM on March 16 [6 favorites]


I'm still stuck on why people were/are stockpiling toilet paper.

My theory, as if we needed another theory, is just that toilet paper never goes bad, is always in demand, and is light enough to transport in large (but highly visible) quantities, so people who set out to buy enough for a month reckon they might as well grab enough to last way longer and be done with it. People with oversized cars and homes have no problem moving and storing stacks of stuff.

When everyone else sees those people rolling by towards the cash registers with mountains of toilet paper, some people hurry to get their own mountains of toilet paper and others start snapping and clicking and tapping and tsking to make it A Thing.
posted by pracowity at 2:29 AM on March 16 [4 favorites]


According to CNN, South Africa has declared a state of emergency and banned travelers from high risk countries

Yes president Ramaphosa did a speech here in South Africa last night. Biggest news for us is that all schools will be closed from this Wednesday to after the Easter weekend (we don't have kids but my husband teaches at a Deaf school so that affects us directly). Also, all kinds of restrictions on travellers. As far as I know all confirmed cases in South Africa have been from people who recently travelled in Europe or Asia, no confirmed cases of local transmission but this stuff changes so fast, who knows. This thing is going to make our already terrible problems with xenophobia so much worse :(

So far there's very little sign here that anything has changed. Lots of people talking about "The Corona", and no hand sanitiser in shops, but not much evidence of hoarding, no panic buying. Went to a dinner party on Saturday, some people nervously fist bump, the rest enthusiastically hugging and kissing as though nothing has changed. That's the last social thing I'm going to. Amazing how my mind space changes from one day to the next.

We did a bit of a stock up on non perishable food so that we can survive a quarantine, but I don't really see anyone else around me doing much to prepare. Apart from everyone sharing corona memes and fake information about how sunlight and fresh air is the best cure for the virus. Oh, and taking a hot bath. That works too, if you believe your Facebook Friend.
posted by Zumbador at 3:49 AM on March 16 [5 favorites]


I emailed my entire family and acquaintance list, and explained why we need to #flattenthecurve yesterday. The call went out for volunteers with substantial lab experience to do diagnostic testing at the state public health department, and I've signed up for any shift they'll give me. I started seeds and prepared all the raised beds for planting this weekend. My husband and I are giving blood tomorrow. And none of it, none of it, none of it is enough.

Dearest deludingmyself, you have done so much! You have done so much to take care of yourself, your family and friends, your community. You are doing much more than anyone I know who is not a first responder. You were so clear and decisive about the coming danger. Jesus, you sold off your stocks and bought a fucking bidet. Who does that? A person with clear vision and a deep understanding of the dangers ahead.

A single person cannot be responsible for stopping this pandemic. One human cannot fix everything alone all at once. My dearest fellow MeFite, you may not feel like you are doing enough but please, if you can, take a moment to appreciate just how much you have done and how much you are doing. Thank you for your service to the community. It is not your fault you cannot single handedly stop the virus. But your efforts are not wasted. They do matter. They will make a difference even if it is impossible to track the difference. I just hope others who can step up in helpful ways follow your example. (Myself included. I just do not know what that might be yet.)

Thank you for modelling what leadership looks like on the personal level. You are wonderful, no kidding.
posted by Bella Donna at 6:06 AM on March 16 [26 favorites]


I'm still stuck on why people were/are stockpiling toilet paper.

It's an English totem. To quote Adrian Edmundson as Baron Von Rickthoven in Blackadder:

"How lucky you English are to find the toilet so amusing. For us, it is a mundane and functional item. For you it is the basis of an entire culture."
posted by Chaffinch at 6:33 AM on March 16 [4 favorites]


Oh hey they market crashed

Again

After reducing fed interest rates to zero.

I am so tired of being right.
posted by The Whelk at 6:48 AM on March 16 [4 favorites]


Did they actually inject $1.5T or is that yet to happen?
posted by Chaffinch at 7:05 AM on March 16


None of these measures will have any effect. Taking federal leadership on coronavirus would have an effect, but ah hahah hahahahahaha aaahhh... I kid.

I currently work in finance and I'm looking forward to a really difficult couple of months and then probably getting laid off by private equity dickbags disappointed they can't sell the company for 50x investment or whatever.
posted by selfnoise at 7:23 AM on March 16 [7 favorites]


I am so tired of being right.

My dude, you were correct. What you have never been is right, and may the universe bless you for that. :-)
posted by Bella Donna at 8:03 AM on March 16 [6 favorites]


My fucking coworker did a fucking double shift yesterday while seriously ill with covid-like symptoms. My office manager, who at least used to playfully call me ‘boo’ came back early after a respiratory thing and when I expressed skepticism she told me “we’re divorced.” Our assistant director was fucking going to yoga as of last week. We fucking work in inpatient drug treatment for women who have been chronically homeless. All of our patients smoke, at least one has diagnosed COPD, it’s the first time in weeks we haven’t had someone HIV positive. I am a nurse, my work is essential, my manager agrees that my coworkers are being dangerous but doesn’t have a lot of power, even though I’m asymptomatic and have no underlying immune/respiratory conditions I want to do nothing but hide at home until my coworkers and my city get their shit together. Oh, and I just moved clear across the city to be closer to this job, and while I’m grateful to be living in a beautiful home with no cockroaches, most of my supports are in my old neighborhood. Most of my friends are front line workers in some capacity so we can’t really hang out and I’m scared for all of us. Oh and also the community dynamics among my patients are a mess, I’m pulling back from one of my beloved volunteer groups because the interpersonal drama isn’t worth it and the people in it don’t have my back like I thought they did, and my brother is freshly out of a psych hospitalization. I don’t even know.
posted by I am a Sock, I am an Island at 8:19 AM on March 16 [23 favorites]


Multiple of my supervisors have been quarantined. Clinic is closing tomorrow. Everyone is rushing to scan copies of our questionnaires/interview forms so we can at least do some assessments over the phone. I'm not going in because I've had a little bit of coughing, I'm 90% sure it's the dry air (we keep the window open at night, it's only happened right when I wake up) but the team said they'd be okay without me so I am staying home just in case. Mom texted to see how I'm doing, said I might be coming down with something and she wants to bring me fucking colloidal silver while having some congestion herself! I think I managed to ward her off but by fucking god.
posted by brook horse at 8:46 AM on March 16 [14 favorites]


New York Times just had an article about doctors delaying elective surgery because of coronavirus - but also including surgery for early stage cancer. I have cancer (multiple myeloma), and I'm currently going to the infusion center for chemo every week. My hemoglobin has been steadily going down in spite of treatment, though I haven't needed a transfusion since early February. My doctor said a month ago he was "thrilled" with my other numbers, so if it weren't for coronavirus, I could still have a long time to live. I completely get that if they have to start making tough choices, I'm one of the people they are going to have to let die. I'm 61 and I have incurable cancer. But man, it sucks. Also, I live across the country from my children - I've been thinking about moving closer to them for ages. If I die, I have no idea how they're going to handle burying me and dealing with my stuff.

So fuck, fucking, fuck. On the plus side, I am working from home, I have a home, and financially, I will probably be OK.
posted by FencingGal at 8:49 AM on March 16 [32 favorites]


I went in for a routine clinic checkup with my Nurse Practitioner this morning (I had a prescription change that requires an in-office visit) and the place was practically deserted. She said that I was her "last regular patient" and that all other routine visits had been cancelled for the time being, and that she was "being reassigned" but we can still keep in contact via the online portal. I stole a few pairs of latex gloves on the way out. I don't feel bad about it.
posted by Gray Duck at 10:00 AM on March 16 [1 favorite]


Hope y'all didn't want to come to Canada any time soon.
posted by wellred at 11:08 AM on March 16 [1 favorite]


My work could be done at home but my manager is making a point by having us come in at least through the end of the week. Also he has a cough.

Boss tried to cancel our one on one today for no apparent reason and I was like "dude, I have subcontractors and program clients I need to communicate next steps to" and he huffed and deigned to work with me on our contingency plans and messaging, clearly hadn't thought anything through and spent the half hour meeting with me blustering and in general being a pissy child. At least I have an office with a door.
posted by geegollygosh at 11:18 AM on March 16 [2 favorites]


We thought since our little peanut's school is online 2 days a week anyway we would be able to keep her busy doing her normal home school stuff but no. They have to shut down completely. It's gonna be a long couple of months. Hugs everyone.
posted by Bacon Bit at 11:26 AM on March 16 [1 favorite]


My wife will be graduating from teacher's college this spring. In Ontario this is a 2-year Master's degree program that is fairly demanding. She's worked really hard at it: she isn't a native English speaker and all of her education was done in Japan so she had to adjust to how university works here and we've got 2 kids and taking care of them eats into her available time. So graduating is a really big thing for her, and all of us really. Her parents were going to fly in from Japan for the graduation and then stay for the summer, and then when travel restrictions started coming up we thought that maybe they could still come and self-isolate - they don't need to see/do anything here, spending time with the family was the main thing, but with the travel ban that's just been enacted in Canada that isn't seeming very likely either. Plus I wouldn't bet on there being a graduation ceremony at all now anyway.

I'm just really sad for her missing out on her parents being there for her graduation, and maybe for not having a graduation ceremony at all. She definitely deserves one.
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 11:31 AM on March 16 [3 favorites]


Welp, we can't get access to a VPN because ours is overloaded as is. So good luck on the work from home option.

Also, big boss just sprung a Zoom meeting upon us all with 8 minutes notice and I couldn't get it to work, so that was great. Uh...just try not to get close to anybody?
posted by jenfullmoon at 11:37 AM on March 16 [1 favorite]


I manage a store with 10 volunteers (all senior citizens) and 4 paid employees.
All my volunteers are staying home.
Two of my employees are seniors who are staying home (thankfully with secure financial situations).
One of my employees lives with an immune suppressed senior and is staying home.
My remaining employee's mother, as of yesterday, needs full-time care (not COVID-related) and will need a flexible scheduling situation.
Sales are through the floor and I may have to cut hours on my one employee who actually needs the money.

I'm going to need to staff the store on top of all the administrative duties, solo.
My eye has been twitching for a week and today it just... really decided to go nuts.
posted by BuddhaInABucket at 11:39 AM on March 16 [5 favorites]


I know this is the dump your stress thread, but I just found out this was happening in my region and it makes me so happy. Hoping to volunteer if I can outside work hours.
posted by Mchelly at 11:41 AM on March 16 [7 favorites]


(to clarify I am not an evil capitalist overlord complaining about loss of labor. I told everyone to take whatever precautions they needed to stay safe. It's just that I am in charge and now responsible for everything on my own).
posted by BuddhaInABucket at 11:42 AM on March 16 [2 favorites]


Welp. We'll see if my big boss tries to weasle out of closing the garden center by claiming it's a "Hardware and home supply" store, but It looks like after tomorrow SF is shut down.
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 11:48 AM on March 16 [3 favorites]


Cross posting from the Coronavirus thread to add fuuuuuccckkkk. It’s weird that as a chronically ill person I’m normally fine at staying home, but when it’s a confinement order somewhat worse.

France has imposed isolation from tomorrow at 12pm except for food shopping, medical appointments, and work that cannot be done remotely for 2 weeks but likely to be extended, I’ve been hearing 45 days. There will be sanctions for breaking this announced tomorrow.

The EU is also closing all borders from tomorrow at 12pm.
posted by ellieBOA at 12:34 PM on March 16 [5 favorites]


My officemate is clearly getting it, as she "can't stay warm."
posted by jenfullmoon at 12:36 PM on March 16


My office is remote-only now, since one of our employees is sick with what her doctors suspect (but have not yet tested) for Covid. I have no problem with this, since my job can be done 100% remotely, but am frustrated that it took an actual case of a sick employee for them to fully close the office.

Seattle schools have been closed to slow the progress of the disease, and one of my managers cheerfully told me on a conference call that she and other parents have arranged for their kids to have "school" together in person. Indoors. (headdesk)
posted by creepygirl at 12:54 PM on March 16 [6 favorites]


Fuuck. My mom's surgery was postponed, so she's still stuck in the hospital where she's been since last week.

Fuuuuck. Now my employer won't even let people who are working from home back on to the campus to retrieve anything they might have left at their desks, which are being repurposed for employees from other work locations whose jobs can't easily be done remotely.

Fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck. The band's calendar for April is officially toast. We're weekend warriors, so it wasn't many gigs, but it was going to be a few nice extra paychecks around tax time.

I have no more fucks to give for Comcast, which still can't keep the internets flowing into our house, but that's nothing new. We are on the other side of an intersection, and therefore Verizon Fios isn't an option, meaning Comcast has little incentive to get things right over here. Tomorrow, we'll have a tech come by for the third time since right before we started working from home.
posted by emelenjr at 1:33 PM on March 16 [7 favorites]


Day 1 of working from home with kids. Holy motherforking shirtballs. This is taxing my ADHD to the limit. Fffffffuuuuuuuuuuuu.

My best friend's sister may be dying of a rare cancer she was only just diagnosed with. FUCKING FUCK. I need to find out how to be a good support person in this time. We aren't even allowed to go visit. SHE isn't even allowed to go visit. The helplessness... :(
posted by MiraK at 1:35 PM on March 16 [9 favorites]


MiraK, that is horrible. I am so sorry for your friend and her sister and you.

We got the official order from the college executive last night. We are to move our courses online starting Wednesday. Notified Sunday night. A whole day after the other post-secondary in my area made the call. I keep thinking, why so late? What took so long to make the call?

I've been preparing a bit for this, because I suspected it would happen and we had a little warning, but MAN. It is so hard. I emailed all my students last night because even though they all received the college president's email, I knew many of them would not absorb it all or would not even be able to make it through the whole email.

My literacy students have been emailing me nonsensical responses that show me they don't understand what they're reading. How the FUCK are they supposed to learn anything online? Most of them don't have reliable internet or a computer at home. Also, see above, they can't read. And somehow they all think they're not supposed to come to school today, which, fine, but they DO all think they're supposed to come tomorrow and Wednesday (??).

My upper level students' emails were not nonsensical but were full of questions I simply couldn't answer.

We are supposed to be here on campus holding face to face classes until end of day tomorrow, I have a department meeting this afternoon where we will be told exactly what this means for our courses, and like my colleague said, "I don't even want to be here today!" It feels so weird to know that semi-quarantine is coming but hey, for now we are all at work together, breathing on each other! Wheeeeee!

One of my students told me, "I was looking at you when you were explaining what would happen, and I thought, 'She's really, really stressed.'" I feel bad because although I'm trying, I'm not even managing to be calm for my students, many of whom are now dealing with trying to finish courses online, manage their fears, look after their kids at home and homeschool them, keep their families from being sick...and although I want them to be careful and understand how serious this is, I don't want them to panic. Yet here we are.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 1:42 PM on March 16 [8 favorites]


Something got through to my laissez faire boss and suddenly I am deemed nonessential - this is in fact the truth although who else you gonna call when you need a sign made ASAP telling clients to sanitize their hands? - and as of, uh, now, I’m working from home. It’s terrifying how fast this has all happened.
posted by mygothlaundry at 1:51 PM on March 16 [7 favorites]


Good news everyone -- my office has relaxed its dress code for the rest of the month!

(Our response has been ok but not great. Everyone who can work from home is encouraged to work from home. The trouble is that a large portion of employees can't, either because they work a call center job that currently isn't configured to be done remotely or because they don't have a company laptop. On top of that, the large WFH volume this morning caused us to max out our VPN licenses. IT is burning the midnight oil to fix all these issues, but I don't think we have the time.)
posted by bassooner at 1:54 PM on March 16 [4 favorites]


I have a T-shirt that says "Go Luck Yourself" with an angry black cat on it. If I worked at bassooner's workplace (alas, mine will still maintain dress code for those of us still forced to be here), I would bust it out...
posted by jenfullmoon at 1:56 PM on March 16 [2 favorites]


I saw a cold/flu/COVID-19 symptom chart and I’m fairly sure I had it the last week of January. It came on gradually over a couple days, started as a throat tickle, and I had shortness of breath, none of these are common with flu. I’ll never know for sure, of course.

On the plus side, my mom got invited to a last-minute dinner party (!) today and she was going to go (!!) but I convinced her not to. Talked to her just now and she said she doesn’t think friend is taking it seriously. Gee, really?
posted by Automocar at 2:52 PM on March 16 [1 favorite]


oh thank god, why isn't this thread in the landing page header with the FAQ


AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH


Some things I would like to say that may have been said but I had to look up:


-Betadine/generic iodine surgical scrub is effective against other coronaviruses (MERS, SARS) and is not sold out at the pharmacies near me

-Likewise Hibiclens

-Do not use "denatured ethyl alcohol" to make sanitizer. The articles out there really need to talk about this, because it's what's in stock on amazon and is marketed at "99% pure ethyl alcohol." It has methanol in it, which can be absorbed through the skin and can leave you blind if it doesn't kill you. In other countries, it has turned up in counterfeit products.

-This product is EPA registered as FG552, and is approved for use in hospitals and restaurants (with care, don't get it in your food) and kills coronaviruses. Note: FG552 and FG550 are not the same but are sold under the same brand and in similar packaging. FG550 is not approved for use in restaurants and hospitals so far as I can tell.
posted by snuffleupagus at 2:53 PM on March 16 [11 favorites]


One of my (as of now, former) friends just keeps posting on fuckbook how this is all a big overreaction. (There are only 2 confirmed cases near her.)

I know of one potential case that's awaiting results today.... a person who travelled on a plane to and from a tourist destination and may have come back and infected their significant other who is superintendent of a large hotel construction site. They are both in quarantine awaiting results. The infected person tested negative for flu. Both have symptoms.

Stop and consider the number of people on a jobsite who are now on another jobsite.... and how many of those people have no resources or even traceability.....

A simple and real example of how it spreads and impacts us all. But unfortunately for my former friend, they cannot go out to a restaurant and it's just so awful.
posted by mightshould at 3:01 PM on March 16 [5 favorites]


And I just want to grab someone and shout HEY ASSHOLE, STOP THE RIDE, I THINK I'M GONNA PUKE.

Every. Damn. Day.

Then again as of two hours ago everyone in France is on lockdown (excluding essential trips for non-remote work, medical, food) so at least I'll be able to puke, literally and metaphorically, in the comfort of my own home.

Hang in there mefi.
posted by peakes at 3:28 PM on March 16 [3 favorites]


So hey, almost everyone BUT my group can work from home now! We are truly the BUTTMONKEYS of this office.

blah blah we can't figure it out on the VPN but yeah, you just let a ton of other people go home because they have kids or illnesses or whatever....
posted by jenfullmoon at 3:28 PM on March 16 [4 favorites]


I think this sort of boring/shocking, slow/sudden, chaotic/bureaucratic shitstorm is what we should expect for the rest of the 21st century, with increasingly shorter intervals of everything going sort of OK.
posted by paper chromatographologist at 3:34 PM on March 16 [12 favorites]


Aaaaaaaaaaaand now Tormund (Game of Thrones) has tested positive.

Along with Idris Elba and Olga Kurylenko.
posted by soundguy99 at 3:44 PM on March 16


This winter has been a bit surreal for me.

Last October my Dad, in the US, died of a respiratory infection. It was a bacterial and an unknown viral infection. It progressed pretty rapidly and he was soon in intensive care moving to more powerful respirators as he struggled to breathe.

I returned to NL from the US in mid-November. In December I was told that my brother had a fever and strong viral bronchial infection. He is a tough, healthy guy but it was bad enough that his son took him to the emergency room. He recovered. Late December, in NL, I got what appeared to be a viral bronchial infection. I am one of those people who NEVER gets sick but I did get a fever this time and weeks of coughing and green phlegm. I didn't recover until mid-to-late January.

Then in February we started hearing about the new coronavirus in China. And recently that is has likely been around since November of last year. I know that my brother and I probably picked up things from hanging around an ICU ward for so much time but it has certainly been the long winter of lung infections.

Here in NL, the PM announced last night that all bars and restaurants will close. Schools are closed. Amsterdam is a ghost town. Coffee houses (where you can get your legal pot) remain open for take-out. There was a surge of people in the supermarkets but no mass panic or stockpiling. It is all fairly orderly thus far.

It has been a wet, dreary winter and this week we are starting to get a bit of sun. So at least we can sit out on our balcony and wave to our neighbors. One older lady who sits out there stroking her cat, sipping tea, and reading all day. A younger couple doing yoga routines. We can hear a musician playing his piano. Last summer we had an opera tenor nearby, his voice coming out of his back door and across his balcony. Hopefully he is still around.
posted by vacapinta at 3:45 PM on March 16 [10 favorites]


Irdis Elba has COVID nooooooooo no no no no not my pretend boyfriend nooooooo
posted by angrycat at 4:07 PM on March 16 [10 favorites]


yeah we can't let that much sexy fall to this stupid virus. sexy vibes repel the virus. In my imagination. Can't hurt hashtag staysexyidris.
posted by vrakatar at 4:52 PM on March 16 [3 favorites]


Idris Elba is fine, keep your fingers crossed for his grandma.
posted by benzenedream at 4:53 PM on March 16 [4 favorites]


Have you seen the man, benzenedream? I'm sure his grandma is pretty fine, too. This is my educated opinion as a doctor. ;D

(note: i am not a doctor.)

(but yeah, there's the rub, right? we've all got relatives at risk, one way or another.)
posted by invincible summer at 5:05 PM on March 16 [2 favorites]


Well, our office went from "please work from home if you can" to "anyone going into the office must pass a mandatory temperature screening" to "we're revoking access to the building for all non-essential personnel at midnight tonight" in a span of... 4 days?
posted by btfreek at 5:47 PM on March 16 [8 favorites]


(and of course that last announcement prompted a sudden rush of people all heading to the office at once to lock things up/take home their stuff/do one last thing/etc... argh!!)
posted by btfreek at 6:09 PM on March 16 [5 favorites]


At my office, they're setting up for work-from-home, and my Dept coordinator and I will be switching off - Safety isn't really a job that can effectively be done from home 100%, but 2 people at 50% will be decent coverage.

I found out today that there are 3 coworkers quarantined , all from my side of the office; 2 cube banks over. One who is herself sick, and 2 that have immediate family members who have Covid symptoms. And we sent 2 people home sick today who both came in and worked a few hours first. I told my boyfriend about this, and he was like "yeeeeah, maybe we shouldn't see each other for a while.". I don't blame him and actually offered it myself last night - his mom and brother-in-law are both very high risk, his mom especially as he lives with her and would be her primary caretaker.

Oh and I hate working from home, so I'm not happy about it. Whiiiiinnne. I ordered myself a desk and an office chair, that should help a little bit. My dining room table is not really an ergonomic work surface.
posted by Sparky Buttons at 7:29 PM on March 16 [7 favorites]


Oh hey, jury duty is still going on in a few counties! Nobody thought that one through?
posted by jenfullmoon at 7:42 PM on March 16 [3 favorites]


I went to the county Board of Elections this morning to get my early vote in (because until like 11 am I was fully expecting to spend all of St. Pat's Day in Sharon, Pennsylvania) and even though the Sharon gig cancelled, I'm glad I did because voting tomorrow is FUBAR'd - Citing health emergency, Ohio officials to order polls closed on Election Day, despite judge’s ruling.

Fuckity fuck fuck fuck.
posted by soundguy99 at 8:55 PM on March 16 [4 favorites]


Government is being too slow to close schools despite pushing by doctors. Local real estate agent sent out a stupid advice letter written by a "immunobiologist" yoga teacher suggesting alcohol, homeopathic remedies, herbs, vit C, acupuncture and breathing to treat coronavirus. Contacted them asking to retract this, and they 'apologise if some people are offended' and they wanted to 'give further information for people to consider'. FUUUUUUUUU
posted by quercus23 at 10:11 PM on March 16 [6 favorites]


Governors need to be clear on a few things:

1) predatory pricing will result in jail time
2) offering medical advice not from the CDC/NIH/virologists will also result in jail time
3) income relief will happen for those screwed by this
4) fever screening should be happening at markets
5) testing on research machines should be OKed, fuck the CDC test kit availability limits. Look at the Canadian example where they sourced a number of reagents and machines to avoid testing bottlenecks.
posted by benzenedream at 11:46 PM on March 16 [11 favorites]


Some clueless radio station in LA was promoting an IN-PERSON EVENT for "our listeners 65 years of age or over" today.

Do we have to ban senior discounts to get the them to #staythefuckhome?
posted by snuffleupagus at 11:49 PM on March 16 [7 favorites]


Governors need to be clear on a few things

offering medical advice not from the CDC/NIH/virologists will also result in jail time

This has first amendment problems so long as no one's actually impersonating a physician, misrepresenting sources, or otherwise presenting their own opinion or reaction as some kind of expertise.

And actual doctors certainly have a right and maybe an obligation to disagree with or supplement the announced information.

I don't trust Anthony Fauci, he's too willing to say whatever is required to save face for Trump, and I'm unpersuaded by those trying to sell him playing some double-game. If he can't be honest he should resign, and then be honest.

I'd prefer not to only hear from doctors working within the Federal government, for the time being.
posted by snuffleupagus at 11:54 PM on March 16 [2 favorites]


Sad and ANGRY! Hasting, UK, work for the NHS. With the EU closing it's borders (excellent move) at midday today, saying for 30 days but who knows, especially with the counterintuitive moves of the UK gov at BEST lengthening the wave so probably excluded for much longer, Granny in the Dementia Care home in Hamburg may not recognise us next time. Daughter in Madrid celebrates her 30th birthday shortly and I HATE being away from her.

I''m also beyond frustrated right now, as I'm on a three month notice period due to get ill-health retirement from my NHS job due to spinal fractures that have healed badly and cannot be operated on, but other than pain (which is well managed OH is a pain specialist, luckily) I'm other wise fit & well. I am in touch with the Chief Nurse of our local trust about plans to get staff in my area of the NHS re-purposed to support the frontline activities as we spend 50% or more of our time on training, introducing new models of care etc., none of which will be happening now, but I received an e-mail from HR warning that this activity can be considered work and therefore could jepordise me getting my pension!!!!!!! As anyone who has every worked in healthcare knows, it is agony to watch from the sidelines KNOWING you can help. DAMMIT HR , GET a grip , it has been designated a NATIONAL FUCKING EMERGENCY!!!
posted by Wilder at 2:49 AM on March 17 [10 favorites]


Girlfriend is a teacher so I feel like we're gonna get it at some point now.

Government is saying if a household is symptomatic to quarantine everyone for 14 days. Work says 7 days, but I'm expecting that to change. Lucky to have a job that's unionised and good with sick pay.

Government says to take time off but sick pay is £93 a month, doesn't even cover rent in many places
Government says to avoid large gatherings but won't close schools
Government says avoid pub and restaurants but won't make it official so they can't claim insurance.

Got a feeling there's going to be lots of cheap property and businesses ready to be snapped up by people with a few million lying around in the near future.
posted by Chaffinch at 3:30 AM on March 17 [4 favorites]


I'm supposed to be going on an expensive, week long course in just over 6 weeks time. I think it's almost certain we'll be shutting down like France just did around then. I'm currently playing chicken with them, because if *I* cancel or ask to change the date I lose the deposit, whereas if they cancel they'll have to transfer or refund me. The final payment is due in about a week. I'm not sure whether to just pay it, and continue to wait for them to realise what's going on, or pull the plug and accept my loses. There's a chance they might just go ahead and never cancel, given theres only four or five people involved so it's not a "gathering".

This is a small dumb problem I know but it's significant amounts of money for me.
posted by stillnocturnal at 5:07 AM on March 17 [1 favorite]


I’m trying not to spiral thinking about how, by not delaying the primaries today in Illinois for bullshit inter-party reasons we may see a spike in infections from people just trying to do their duty as citizens.

Trying and failing cause it won’t matter what the political situation is in two months when no one can afford rent and half the countries’ small businesses dry up and Amazon becomes The Only Company just like it always wanted.

You can’t convince me this isn’t deliberate or at least a happy accident in the eyes of the upper class.
posted by The Whelk at 5:47 AM on March 17 [9 favorites]


Government says avoid pub and restaurants but won't make it official so they can't claim insurance.

Apparently most business interruption insurance doesn't cover these circumstances even if it is made official. (This is according to statements from British insurance and hospitality industries today).
posted by atrazine at 6:52 AM on March 17 [1 favorite]


Also going s bit stir crazy cause I’m on my THRID week of isolation cause two weeks ago I got a mysterious fever and dry cough and responded by literally staying in bed for four days so I wouldn’t pass it on , followed instantly by my husband getting it so we both stayed in as much as possible hoping to ride it out.

In retrospect, it hits a lot of the CV symptoms and now that we’re at Official Isolation For God Knows How Long, I feel like weeks ahead on the cabin fever.

If you want to know why my social media presence has ballooned, that’s why.
posted by The Whelk at 7:10 AM on March 17 [7 favorites]


Sparky Buttons, hard same on the ergonomic problems of WFH. Plus I am now getting zero exercise. My household is basically quarantined and I haven’t been outside since Friday except to take out the trash. Everything is stiff and I feel old and creaky (but so far haven’t caught whatever the family has, so far as I know).
posted by eirias at 7:15 AM on March 17 [1 favorite]


I'm interviewing candidates for a summer internship this week, and I've moved to WFH. I sent an email to my internal recruiter on Friday requesting that all interviews be moved to Skype to align with the company's directive to disallow "inessential" visitors from the building and have virtual meetings with external stakeholders. He got back to me today saying that we're still following standard interviewing procedures at this time. Fortunately, in the time between those two emails, the actual HR scheduler already reached out to me to move to Skype since at least one candidate requested it. Ugh.
posted by bassooner at 8:23 AM on March 17 [1 favorite]


Okay so my 11 year old is fine but he is NOT doing well under quarantine - we're up to 3 huge screaming temper fits a day over dumb stuff like "I don't want to eat that" (well, the grocery selection was limited calm down), the zoom won't work so he can't do his schoolwork (chances are it's spotty for everyone, calm down), and my favorite, the old standby "You can't make me read a book why can't I be on screens everybody else is on screens!!!" (you've been on for three hours already, what everyone else is doing is irrelevant, CALM THE F DOWN). I'm sure he'd do better if he could run around outside, but we're in NYC so that's out (plus quarantine).

All I'm saying is that the first covid-19-related death in our family may be by murder.

I'm kidding. But no way would any of us have survived in wartime.
posted by Mchelly at 8:31 AM on March 17 [9 favorites]


My supervisor had a minor victory against the higher ups, and I will now be working home every other day starting tomorrow as we continue to keep the office open but start rotating staff so that fewer people are in the office every day. I guess I'll take what I can get.

My throat feels weird? But my anxiety induced heartburn has been acting up and that often causes throat weirdness that feels just like this. No cough or fever so I'm probably fine? The uncertainty is not helping my anxiety, though.
posted by bridgebury at 8:34 AM on March 17 [5 favorites]


Yeah, I keep having off and on 'OMG AM I GETTING SICK MY THROAT FEELS SLIGHTLY DIFFERENT" moments while I'm at work, then it goes away when I'm home. I didn't have that happen all weekend. Maybe it's just paranoia.
posted by jenfullmoon at 8:38 AM on March 17 [6 favorites]


i keep thinking about that article from last year? the year before? that i saw here which was about a security expert who met with a bunch of billionaires on someone's island somewhere to advise them on things like "how do we keep our private armies happy when money no longer has any meaning in a post-disaster society"
posted by poffin boffin at 8:39 AM on March 17 [5 favorites]


i don't wike it
posted by poffin boffin at 8:40 AM on March 17 [4 favorites]


I've felt like a cold was coming on for like three weeks, but I'm under enough stress that who knows.

My wife's org is currently melting down because it's really poorly run and they have no disaster recovery plan or any system of allowing people to work from home on a global basis. Last I heard they didn't have enough laptops so were talking about sending desktops home lol.

Meanwhile my company is the opposite and just flipped a switch, since we all work in virtual sessions anyway, but I'm still exploding with stress because I'm home trying to work and trying to give my kids some minor education and trying not to sell them on ebay.
posted by selfnoise at 8:41 AM on March 17 [3 favorites]


Oh god my sister is visiting my parents (slightly younger than the high risk category, but still) and my brother who is partially immuno-compromised. Her boyfriend just had to isolate with a cough and a fever. She saw him the day before she came down and has been home for four days. I am freaking out and said she should just leave, but is there even any point now that shes been there a while?

I KNEW I should have told her not to go, and did suggest it, but my parents were pretty relaxed about it and I wasn't prepared to get dramatic but clearly I should have.
posted by stillnocturnal at 8:42 AM on March 17 [2 favorites]


I keep having off and on OMG AM I GETTING SICK MY THROAT FEELS SLIGHTLY DIFFERENT

same.
posted by valkane at 8:46 AM on March 17 [9 favorites]


"how do we keep our private armies happy when money no longer has any meaning in a post-disaster society"

Across the globe, in a thousand tiny secure compounds, the Guinness Book of World Records for mini-coup d'etat's is broken.
posted by valkane at 8:51 AM on March 17 [1 favorite]


My wife's org is currently melting down because it's really poorly run and they have no disaster recovery plan or any system of allowing people to work from home on a global basis. Last I heard they didn't have enough laptops so were talking about sending desktops home lol.

Ditto. One of my coworkers who was allowed to work from home got permission to haul home his desktop. If they ever let me do that I am insisting on doing the same. I have two giant screens at work and it will drive me mad to not have that.
posted by jenfullmoon at 8:57 AM on March 17 [2 favorites]


My BFF went in last night to bring home her monitors etc as things went from "WFH if you can" to "we're closing the facility tomorrow night, get what you need now".

I'm home with the resident teenager having the world's lamest spring break. Word from my lab is no plans for closure yet - the best we can do is probably shift work or alternate days if operations are to continue.
posted by Flannery Culp at 9:14 AM on March 17 [2 favorites]


I’m glad I’m not the only one googling “is this coronavirus or a panic attack?”
posted by itesser at 9:34 AM on March 17 [13 favorites]


Currently hate-reading the company intranet where people are whining about their bonuses going down the drain and then defending their right to whine when others suggest that maybe there are more pressing issues at hand 🙃
posted by btfreek at 9:37 AM on March 17 [2 favorites]


A good test I just figured out: if your throat feels better when you find out other people are worrying about the same thing, it's probably anxiety.
posted by bridgebury at 9:40 AM on March 17 [16 favorites]


I have a sore throat but I'm not sure if it's because I've left the window open all night the past few days (I like it really cold to sleep) or not. No other symptoms except coughing twice when I get up, but that's... also likely the cold dry air, and has always happened to me. Pretty sure it's not anxiety, I'm actually nowhere near as anxious about this as I probably should be? I do have a history of delayed reactions to stress and trauma, tho. I'm the person that will almost get hit by a car, be totally fine until I get home at which point I collapse sobbing.

So expecting the breakdown around... Thursday, maybe?
posted by brook horse at 9:56 AM on March 17


Hey, remember how all the bars are supposed to be shut down? The bar I do karaoke at is STILL OPEN and hosting live events, they say, as of the 14th when they last updated Facebook. They claim "we will continue having live music/events since the recommended protocols are not being violated. We have increased maintenance staff personnel to assure a clean and welcoming environment."

Though I note that the karaoke banner is now off their website. This could be because we got a new DJ recently and the old one moved away and they haven't replaced it with a new one yet...or possibly the new one isn't doing it right now since his daughter has a lot of health issues as is. I have their numbers, but am kind of afraid to ask.
posted by jenfullmoon at 10:03 AM on March 17 [1 favorite]


just met with my flood remediation guy to see if there's some kind of Hail Mary solution to our drainage issues so that a) we never again have another flash flood without b) touching my neighbors' property. Flood season is may, so we've got limited time here.

NOPE. there's some things he can still do.

And when the civil engineer spoke to one of my neighbors' nieces who came out to bring the damn free-range dog inside in Spanish, she insisted she knew nothing about her aunt and uncles' plans and then when he went round the front after checking over our property to see if anyone was home, they hid and refused to answer the door.

fuuuuuuuuu. I just want to have an actual home to weather the immune storm in, goddammit. tell us what your fears are and we will work with you, we just want to not drown again for the love of fuck.
posted by sciatrix at 10:04 AM on March 17 [6 favorites]


I keep having off and on OMG AM I GETTING SICK MY THROAT FEELS SLIGHTLY DIFFERENT

Yeah, I woke up with a funky throat and sent an email to my boss being like 'I'm not going to come in this is too much of a risk please advise me of next steps' and they finally caved and let me work from home. There was zero reason for me to be going into the office everyday but I'm very surprised that they told me to work from home rather than take PTO. Probably gonna get blowback for this in the future.
posted by geegollygosh at 10:04 AM on March 17 [4 favorites]


My first Zoom meeting, before it even started, my cat showed up to stick his butt in the camera
posted by angrycat at 10:12 AM on March 17 [39 favorites]


*applauds your cat*
posted by jenfullmoon at 10:13 AM on March 17 [19 favorites]


I am going shopping today, for a woman who is home bound, but more and more I see, by her own abuses, not drugs, just food, and bad habits. Every time there is a shift in her house of losing cards, she sees a new specialist, and gets medications which nearly kill her. She saw a "Kidney Specialist" who prescribed a vegan diet, with no sodium or potassium restrictions, and gave her a diabetic med, which dropped her blood sugar so low she was sweating, raving, and slipping away. She is back in her best form, again, but that is a wreck. She won't go into an assisted living situation because of her three dogs, and two cats. Walmart cancelled her food delivery due to lack of delivery personnel in this area. She is right across the street from my daughter who is now WFH, after today that family will all be home. So, she will see me go shopping for this old lady, and write me off as her demented mom. At this time, there are no confirmed cases of Covid19 in the county where I live. So I feel relatively safe, especially if I wrap my face in a scarf while I shop. But, when I get back with the goods, I am giving her bags through the door then shutting myself in my house, to make oil paintings, and look out the window. Come to think of it, it is the life I live already. As one family member said, "You are already good at self-isolating," I have had a lot of help with this. I see strangers more than I see family who lives 2 blocks away. Yeah, I may have a financial break, soon, and I may use this to slink off from this broken proximity.
posted by Oyéah at 10:13 AM on March 17 [5 favorites]


I decided to have my first Zoom meeting in my back yard, and my neighbor's cat did the same thing. I can only assume he made some sort of a deal with my cats to cover this service for them.
posted by biogeo at 10:25 AM on March 17 [24 favorites]


my cat showed up to stick his butt in the camera

he's been cleaning it all day and just wanted to show it off
posted by poffin boffin at 11:02 AM on March 17 [11 favorites]


According to telemedicine I have a virus, but it's not coronavirus. My confidence is not at 100%. I feel very worried both about missing work and also about returning to the office within a few days.
posted by bunderful at 11:11 AM on March 17


Maine went from its 1st case Friday, then overnight it was 3 cases, then 5, then 17, today, Tues., 32 cases. The Governor and the Director of the Maine CDC did a press conference together to announce case 1. That was my personal circuit breaker, and I stopped going out. Yesterday, Monday, the Maine CDC Director did his first daily briefing. Such a contrast to the Inept Corrupt Lying Denier-In-Chief. Very informative, full command of facts and details, and a healthy serving of compassion. Governor Janet Mills has been her competent, common-sense usual self,also obviously caring about Mainers. They're trying to test as much as possible, so that may explain the jump in cases.

There's a new community support group on fb. Also, enough speculation, rumor, conjecture drive me fairly nuts. My friend's Mom is 91, has become my good friend, and there are 2 cases in her elder community, where another, less old, friend lives. They are in townhouses, able to stay in; that will help. It just got so close to me, so fast.

I have moments of deep anxiety, which I do anyway, and even though I live alone and spend time alone as a matter of course, I have moments of sharp loneliness. All y'all are a huge help, thank you.
posted by theora55 at 12:07 PM on March 17 [9 favorites]


I love this poem.

Good Bones
Maggie Smith

Life is short, though I keep this from my children.
Life is short, and I’ve shortened mine
in a thousand delicious, ill-advised ways,
a thousand deliciously ill-advised ways
I’ll keep from my children. The world is at least
fifty percent terrible, and that’s a conservative
estimate, though I keep this from my children.
For every bird there is a stone thrown at a bird.
For every loved child, a child broken, bagged,
sunk in a lake. Life is short and the world
is at least half terrible, and for every kind
stranger, there is one who would break you,
though I keep this from my children. I am trying
to sell them the world. Any decent realtor,
walking you through a real shithole, chirps on
about good bones: This place could be beautiful,
right? You could make this place beautiful.
posted by theora55 at 12:09 PM on March 17 [52 favorites]


As always, Gritty gets it.
posted by Mchelly at 12:19 PM on March 17 [8 favorites]


Ah- and if you're in need of help, beware that depending on the political affiliation of your first responder- they might not have washed their hands. Pro-Publica published some screenshots of Firefighters on a private group gossiping about how this is all a hoax. De-fucking-lightful.
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 12:47 PM on March 17 [10 favorites]


man it's real depressing to see somebody I follow (or used to follow) for reasons of creative respect reasons on Twitter comparing the risk of going to work to the risk of driving a car
posted by angrycat at 12:51 PM on March 17 [2 favorites]


My office is now trying to make arrangements for people to take home their computers and work from home (though one person came back in today saying her ethernet cable wasn't working and hadn't been able to), but say they will only do it if "shelter in place" is happening. I read online that the City Council was meeting about that today, so it might. The entire "mailing" portion of my job will be shut down for the foreseeable future because ain't no way I can do that from home, I guess.
posted by jenfullmoon at 1:03 PM on March 17


I just saw my girlfriend for what will probably be the last time in person for.... well, however long it takes for this to pass. Three-feet rule, and no touching.... and damnit, all I want is HUG!

I don't do well with extended periods of no human touch...
posted by MuChao at 1:22 PM on March 17 [4 favorites]


Oh, even worse: my therapist is in NYC for the duration taking care of her 97-year-old mother....but her husband had to come back here because of work and they would not allow him to work from home. Of course they've changed their minds on this, but it's not exactly safe any more for him to fly, so...they are separated for the duration. Horrifying.
posted by jenfullmoon at 1:30 PM on March 17 [3 favorites]


god i've been stressing all fucking day over how sore and horrible my throat has been feeling and iT'S JUST FUCKING HEARTBURN

i mean yay it's only heartburn but god can something please work right in this disgusting flesh prison
posted by poffin boffin at 2:07 PM on March 17 [13 favorites]


I mean I know I'm supposed to tell you "hope you find peace" and "positive self talk" and I love my body and am grateful to draw breath and blaaaahblahblah, but I can't deny it, I felt carried away on an overwhelming wave of solidarity when I read "disgusting flesh prison."
posted by Don Pepino at 2:13 PM on March 17 [9 favorites]


No worries, Don Pepino. That's a different thread.
posted by Too-Ticky at 2:22 PM on March 17 [1 favorite]


In Germany the response is pretty good so far, but the healthcare system isn't having an easy time either. I work from home now and I can do it (my thoughts to everyone whose physical presence is needed at work) even though it's not fully smooth sailing. Almost all my close family members, in other countries, are in high risk categories and it's kinda killing me.
posted by ersatz at 2:27 PM on March 17 [1 favorite]


We just got the shelter in place notice for the town I live in.
posted by jenfullmoon at 2:29 PM on March 17 [2 favorites]


I think Americans are taking this seriously now and that gives me hope.

I say that as a case was just diagnosed at a big employer about 3 blocks from where I live/work... but I have hope.
posted by OnTheLastCastle at 2:31 PM on March 17 [2 favorites]


also for anyone else who gets chronic heartburn or gerd or anything similar, definitely be aware that one of the side effect symptoms can be TROUBLE BREATHING and asthmalike things happening when you aspirate tiny bits of stomach acid, which is obviously suboptimal right now. i have known this for ages and it still always confuses/upsets me when it happens.
posted by poffin boffin at 2:36 PM on March 17 [9 favorites]


Oof, yeah, I ate a bigger serving of cherry tomatoes than usual a couple nights ago and the resulting reflux gave me a scratchy throat and some weird chest tightness that freaked me out and created a wonderfully anxious feedback loop for practically all of the next day.

And I've even had pneumonia before so I know what real chest pain and shortness of breath is like. This wasn't that at all! Lizard brain does not realize this! LIZARD BRAIN PANICS.

Of course, today my worry is totally different -- feeling hot but not having a fever despite checking my temperature 20 times. I slept with too many blankets on, was mildly dehydrated, and am having a normal hormonal shift, but lizard brain thinks acid reflux one day + feeling hot the next = THE VIRUS.

Right now I've calmed lizard brain. But tomorrow it will be back with something new, I'm sure.
posted by phatkitten at 2:48 PM on March 17 [4 favorites]


Not COVID-related, but I need to register a hearty "FUCK" at

1) my dental appointment this morning
2) the amount of medical debt I'm about to get into
3) Seriously, do you have to try to sell me on Invisalign while I'm still trying to process everything on my disposable-income-wishlist that has now been canceled.
posted by Jeanne at 2:49 PM on March 17 [2 favorites]


I live in an area where there hasn't been a single infection reported, and yet the stores are denuded of all the things. No dairy, no meats, no frozen, no paper products. There was a lonely partially rotten organic onion, about 30 frozen corned beef briskets that had just rolled off a truck, and dust bunnies. It was kinda scary. I have pictures because it was just unreal. Like a vacuum had just emptied this massive, massive store. They didn't even have flour or sugar. I've lived in hurricane country, and I've never seen anything like this, people hit this place like they were locusts. After five stores, I still haven't found any flour, eggs, or toilet paper in any of them. I've left my town and gone as far as two towns over. I did an online pickup order with walmart...walmart of all places, I figured would have stock, and they couldn't fill any of the order except, and I'm not kidding here, honey, whole milk, and coffee filters.

And the restaurants are being closed, so...if there's no groceries, and there's no prepared food, are we supposed to eat our neighbors? What if they have the virus. Is this how we get zombies? I'm pretty sure this is how we get zombies.

But seriously, most people don't have mormon style pantries. I grew up in a disaster zone, so I always have beans and rice stockpiled, but most people don't even have that. People are going to go hungry soon if the stockpilers are allowed to continue buying all the things. And in a place as heavily armed as Texas, I do not see that going well for anyone.

Seriously, without some serious government intervention to keep the wheels on the bus; nationwide testing, food deliveries to quarantined houses, guaranteed income to keep rent paid and lights on, nationalized and free broadband access to keep students in school and workers that can, working, I don't see how we don't fall into absolute fucking chaos within weeks.

This last couple of days, just seeing how panic buying happened, I was like; there is absolutely no way this culture is going to pull together like the Brits in WWII, this is Mad Fucking Max, and I'm unarmed and surrounded by maniacs with guns.

So. Fuck.
posted by SecretAgentSockpuppet at 3:06 PM on March 17 [16 favorites]


Melbourne panic buyers hit regional towns

THIS MAKES ME SO ANGRY. SO ANGRY. BLOCK THE HIGHWAY OR SOMETHING.

No wonder our supermarkets went from OK (just the odd run on TP, tissues a bit low) to totally stripped.

SO ANGRY.
posted by freethefeet at 3:11 PM on March 17 [10 favorites]


I just tried to go for a run and, upon seeing the packed Schuylkill River Trail, aborted. And at that point I realized that I am now just straight-up afraid of everyone. Every. One. Except my wife. Like, I hold my breath while walking past people.

So, running is dead to me until this is over, which fucking sucks shit. Big steaming globs of fucking shit. Fuck this shit in the fucking face.
posted by grumpybear69 at 3:26 PM on March 17 [12 favorites]


My sister called me a little while ago. She (63, diabetic) and her husband (65, hypertensive) recently bought a house together with my nephew and his wife, on Long Island. They live on different floors but share a front entrance and stairs, and are of course in and out of each other's spaces all the time. They also have a communal basement laundry.

Friday night, my nephew (34, idiot) thought it would be a good idea to have some friends over and share a bong in the middle of a pandemic. The next day, the wife of one of the guests tested positive for coronavirus. Now the husband, one of the bong-sharers, is running a fever.

No one is freaking out just yet, but even just trying to navigate the system and get tested appears to be challenging. When my nephew called the official state line, they told him not to worry about anything unless he starts coughing or has a fever. Considering everything I've read about asymptomatic transmission, that seems... short-sighted. My sister isn't sure whether her exposure has been direct enough to start worrying.

I wish I had some wine right about now.
posted by Superplin at 3:42 PM on March 17 [12 favorites]


there is absolutely no way this culture is going to pull together like the Brits in WWII, this is Mad Fucking Max, and I'm unarmed and surrounded by maniacs with guns.

It's amazing, you teach people that selfishness and greed are virtues for 40 years and a lot of them believe it
posted by benzenedream at 3:44 PM on March 17 [24 favorites]


I don't know. I've repeatedly seen the best of human nature come out in extremis, so I still have some hope. We'll see some bad stuff, too, of course. We already have. But there's still a lot of good in people.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 4:09 PM on March 17 [10 favorites]


I can't help but think that Trump has done an about face on his tone because smarter people have explained to him that a pandemic is a good reason to indefinitely postpone the election.

It's important now that they don't actually fix much, just talk tough, jack up anxiety and do absolutely nothing to strengthen or build infrastructure for remote voting, except for some half privatized, rickety-shit system that Vladimir has the keys to.

Also, an 82 year old loved one went to get groceries for her daughter & grandson, and insists on going to the hair dresser for a perm....and THEN promises not go out any more.
posted by bonobothegreat at 4:28 PM on March 17 [4 favorites]


I found a case of baked beans in a cabinet and my first thought was I should tell my partner and then I thought "No, I should wait until things are more dire and then show him surprise beans, it will good for morale!" which is why I'm going to tell him right now because that is not the attitude I want to go forward with.
posted by lepus at 4:30 PM on March 17 [22 favorites]


Well shit. I had a sore throat this morning, which per agency policy means I’m home until I test clear for covid. Which is great, because I just heard my direct supervisor and one of my coworkers bitching about how the pandemic is all made up to get trump. Sure hoping I don’t get retaliated against for staying home.
posted by LastAtlanticWalrus at 4:35 PM on March 17 [2 favorites]


Ok. This is the pettiest thing in the whole entire world, but here it is: it's a fucking pandemic. We're going to talk a lot about data. So let's do this right. The word data is a plural noun. It's the plural of datum. So it's not "New data is now available," it's "New data are now available." Don't lecture me about being a prescriptivist, because this is the fucking fuck thread. Just fucking use a plural verb. Ok? FUUUUUUUUUUUUUUCK.
posted by medusa at 5:03 PM on March 17 [18 favorites]


Could you be more specific?
posted by valkane at 5:07 PM on March 17 [1 favorite]


Hey, remember how all the bars are supposed to be shut down? The bar I do karaoke at is STILL OPEN and hosting live events,

I heard a radio ad yesterday for some promotional event for seniors with FREE FOOD! AND LIVE MUSIC! while they sold whatever they were selling.

I was standing in line for the market this morning as it was metering entry* and overheard a clerk telling an older person standing in line to come at 7AM the next morning, as they had a "seniors only" hour. Doesn't really seem optimal to concentrate the most vulnerable people?


*that is, literally until just before they let me in, because that was when the TP ran out and then it was a free for all. At least I got some frozen chicken.
posted by snuffleupagus at 5:08 PM on March 17 [1 favorite]


One of the grocery chains here is doing the 7-8 am opening for vulnerable populations. They're also closing at 9 instead of midnight to allow time for extra cleaning and sanitizing, so it makes sense to get in early the next morning while everything's fresh before the general horde.
posted by Flannery Culp at 5:12 PM on March 17 [6 favorites]


That makes sense!
posted by snuffleupagus at 5:36 PM on March 17


My children are roleplaying video games. They have never played console video games, it's all pretend. As in, they are miming holding a controller in both hands and walking around the house yelling things like "Pew pew pew!" and "Now I need to harvest the onions!"

SEND HELP
posted by medusa at 5:57 PM on March 17 [35 favorites]


Doesn't really seem optimal to concentrate the most vulnerable people?

They're not restricting the seniors to only those hours, they're just offering them a chance to shop without a bunch of younger people (who, it appears, are more virulent spreaders) around.
posted by Etrigan at 6:33 PM on March 17 [3 favorites]


So I have a low-grade fever, sore throat, swollen lymph nodes, and the kind of deep cough that makes me cough until I literally vomit from coughing too hard. I did a virtual visit with my doctor’s office and they told me I have a cold and sent me a note that says it’s fine for me to be at work. I’ve had the cough for a month so it’s probably nothing scary but fuck I’m scared anyway.

I’m trying to do the math of my husband and I both working full time from home, caring for two little kids, and homeschooling the kindergartener. It just feels like there aren’t enough hours in the day and I’m already so tired. Fucking fuck.
posted by beandip at 6:41 PM on March 17 [10 favorites]


Well, I have a job still. I'm Capt. Takeout! And people are tipping big cuz national emergency and if that keeps up I could end up making slightly more than I did as a salaried service director and that is FUCKED UP.

I had people calling on the phone asking if they could bowl. WHAT THE FUCK

Tomorrow night would be Indian night, so we are going to make a shitton of chicken curry and I think that will be a bright spot for a lot of people. We're doing everything we can to keep things clean and safe, curbside pick up, online ordering and payment, and really there is no way we can pay our bills on just takeout, but we want to be a tasty respite from the boredom and fear.

I'm no fan of 12 step programs but right now, for the whole world, it is one day at a time.
posted by vrakatar at 7:32 PM on March 17 [20 favorites]


Dan Lipinski finally lost tonight. And normally I would be elated. But everything else is just so wrong that all I feel is sad.
posted by great_radio at 8:42 PM on March 17 [6 favorites]


Well, it's easier to stock up on food if you're too anxious to feel hungry.
posted by Marticus at 9:05 PM on March 17 [9 favorites]


Having my first crying breakdown tonight. I can't even figure out how to open a booze bottle (but can still type?).
posted by jenfullmoon at 9:36 PM on March 17 [6 favorites]


Once you figure out how to open it, it will soon become harder to type.
posted by Marticus at 9:43 PM on March 17 [8 favorites]


I love my boss, but she was lightly pressuring me to be less indulgent on letting my team work from home. Fuck that. I'm working from home and I think we all should be. Anyone on my team who wants to I'm saying yes. I wish I could force them all to.

Her worry is that as a company we can't handle the digital strain. Well fuckers, throw some fucking money at that, buy more bandwidth, cause shit is gonna get shut down and I'm not telling anyone to risk infection for a lower bandwidth bill.
posted by emjaybee at 9:44 PM on March 17 [21 favorites]


Also, the note below the comment box is ironic.
posted by Marticus at 9:53 PM on March 17 [9 favorites]


Note: Everyone needs TO STAY THE FUCK AWAY.
posted by tonycpsu at 9:58 PM on March 17 [5 favorites]


Please spread the story of SARS patient B to bosses who don't get it yet: Link

"Case B became febrile on March 10, 3 days after exposure to case A in the emergency department and discharge home. Respiratory symptoms evolved over the next 5 days. He was brought to the index hospital on March 16 by two Emergency Medical Services paramedics, who did not immediately use contact and droplet precautions. After 9 hours in the emergency department, where airborne, contact and droplet precautions were used, case B was transferred to an isolation room in the ICU. His wife became ill on March 16. She was in the emergency department with case B on March 16 (no precautions used) and visited him in the ICU on March 21 (precautions used); he died later that day. The infection also spread to three other members of case B’s family. SARS developed in a number of people who were in contact with case B and his wife on March 16, including the 2 paramedics who brought him to the hospital, a firefighter, 5 emergency department staff, 1 other hospital staff, 2 patients in the emergency department, 1 housekeeper who worked in the emergency department while case B was there, and 7 visitors who were also in the emergency department at the same time as case B (symptom onset March 19 to 26). The 16 hospital staff, visitors, and patients transmitted the infection to 8 household members and 8 other family contacts. In the ICU, intubation for mechanical ventilation of case B was performed by a physician wearing a surgical mask, gown and gloves. He subsequently acquired SARS and transmitted the infection to a member of his family. Three ICU nurses who were present at the intubation and who used droplet and contact precautions had onset of early symptoms between March 18 and 20. One transmitted the infection to a household member."

These viruses are incredibly contagious. It is a joke to think sitting two tables apart is adequate.
posted by benzenedream at 11:09 PM on March 17 [7 favorites]


My mum and pregnant sister are asking us to go over for dinner on Sunday. My girlfriend is a teacher too. Is this a bad idea? Am I overreacting by suggesting we don't?
posted by Chaffinch at 3:24 AM on March 18


My college is astoundingly unprepared to meet the needs of its low-income students, many with limited internet access, many of whom are now involuntary babysitters. I guess it has its hands full with adjuncts who have been avoiding many of the online system and are now being forced to use it. Well, that's what happens when you half-assedly employ a lot of people.

But the people who will be hurt the students, and it will be such a disparate impact. I could easily teach my course to a Main Line kid with cable internet access, her own computer, and unlimited data.

But several of my students write papers on their phones and then transfer it to school computers. Or use work computers, which they now no longer have. I mean, on the one hand, I'll be damned if I want to penalize them for being poor. On the other hand, how the fuck do I teach them?

Fuck.
posted by angrycat at 4:19 AM on March 18 [9 favorites]


I'm also going to have to figure out how to make the non-butt-sticking cat stop making sweet love to the blanket behind me in my home office. I can't close the door because that causes an ecstasy of meowing. I guess I'll have to desexify my office and he can horrify my SO by pleasuring himself in the living room or elsewhere
posted by angrycat at 4:46 AM on March 18 [9 favorites]


Let Him Hump
posted by poffin boffin at 4:55 AM on March 18 [8 favorites]


Eurovision has just been cancelled, dammit. Which means we don't get to see Little Big possibly winning it for Russia. Oh well.
posted by Wordshore at 6:55 AM on March 18 [4 favorites]


Woke up to an earthquake. This being Utah, a bunch of people immediately went outside to discuss it with strangers.

The weird thing about feeling powerless is realizing you’ve never been anything else.
posted by armeowda at 6:58 AM on March 18 [19 favorites]


Dow Jones looks to be headed to under 20K. I'm worried about a psychological inflection point combined with small business and household's projected needs for cash in coming months leading to a further capitulation and sell off.

I don't even do with the stonks.
posted by snuffleupagus at 7:00 AM on March 18 [1 favorite]


My day today: a bunch of people at my job including a coworker I like a lot and work closely with were unceremoniously laid off. Then when I got home my boyfriend and I broke up.

*screaming forever*
posted by Panthalassa at 7:17 AM on March 18 [34 favorites]


I do work that could easily be done from home and live in a state where everything has closed. Our work is on pause, we have no meetings scheduled. We are all still expected to come in. We just received an email telling us we had to keep our doors open.
posted by geegollygosh at 7:51 AM on March 18 [1 favorite]


This is so minor, but it's the last day before everyone at my office will be working from home and my coworker is clipping their nails at their desk.

Like you can't wait a fucking day!?
posted by ODiV at 8:01 AM on March 18 [9 favorites]


I'm working from home in rotation with one of my coworkers, and today is my day to work at home! It's amazing how much better my mental health is when I'm not constantly having to be on guard against the other people that work in my office. Likely working from home will get old, but for the moment I'm not hating it, given the alternative.
posted by bridgebury at 8:07 AM on March 18 [3 favorites]


We just received an email telling us we had to keep our doors open.

Unreal.
posted by great_radio at 8:20 AM on March 18


They fucking gave us 20 minutes notice to ask if we'd prefer to do a morning shift or an evening shift. Because the office needs to be isolated, and shift work is their solution. I fucking can't MAKE A DECISION like this in 20 minutes. Why are we being so damn squirrely? Just let people work from home.
posted by PearlRose at 8:35 AM on March 18 [6 favorites]


We just received an email telling us we had to keep our doors open.

Unreal.


I initially copied and pasted the whole email into the comment but then I decided I wasn't ballsy enough to do something that would be googleable/identifiable. :/ But the email ended with "appreciate you all."

fuuuuuccckkk this place
posted by geegollygosh at 8:48 AM on March 18 [4 favorites]


I initially copied and pasted the whole email into the comment but then I decided I wasn't ballsy enough to do something that would be googleable/identifiable. :/ But the email ended with "appreciate you all."

fuuuuuccckkk this place


The big boss in my office who has the power to move us all to WFH has started thanking people for coming in to work, and it's really hard to respond civilly when I'm literally just waiting for him to let us WFH full time.
posted by bridgebury at 8:57 AM on March 18 [6 favorites]


Schools in my small rural state are finally closed for students today. I've been busting my hump getting ~350 devices ready for students to take home. Having worked in a DC-area school on both 9/11 and during the DC sniper incident, I can tell you this ranks right up there with those events in terms of stress levels. I feel like I've packed a parachute for the first time, as best I could, and now we're jumping out of an airplane.

This morning I was finishing configuring a last batch of iPads to go home for Kindergarteners when I was informed that school buildings are now closed to all non-essential personnel and that I was to leave the building forthwith, return home, and await further instruction.

So in one breath we are saying,
"We are embarking on a new era of tech-assisted remote learning."

and in the next,
"School tech people are non-essential employees."

DOES NOT COMPUTE
posted by The Nutmeg of Consolation at 9:25 AM on March 18 [16 favorites]


Fucking hell, even in a life-threatening crisis, some people just can’t let go of their shitty little bit of power over others.
posted by skybluepink at 9:26 AM on March 18 [8 favorites]


Dow Jones looks to be headed to under 20K. I'm worried about a psychological inflection point.....

I hear you - what a shit show. But it did bring a smile to my face thinking about Trump realizing the Dow (as of a few moments ago) is now lower than on his Inauguration Day.
posted by inflatablekiwi at 9:49 AM on March 18 [3 favorites]


My work involves living plant tissue and specialized equipment so WFH isn't an option. Today there was an announcement that one of the techs who returned from travel recently had symptoms consistent with covid.

We're already shorthanded as it is and can't afford to bring on more people, not to mention training.

We could potentially lose our entire genetic stock through inability to maintain them.
posted by porpoise at 9:52 AM on March 18 [8 favorites]


This is a really minor fucking fuck, but...

Now that most of my company has moved to WFH, more of us are in our new-ish Slack instance. We allow people to upload their own custom emoji. It's been discussed over and over again that, because of its use by white supremacistis, Pepe-based emoji are not acceptable. Our own Slack admin team is on board with this and take them down when reported, but no one has bothered to try to actually document this on the "Upload Your Emoji!" page or to vet new emoji before they become 'public', so every few days someone uploads a ton (sometimes without even having 'pepe' in the name), and then one gets used and people get angry and the arguments start again.
posted by hanov3r at 9:57 AM on March 18 [5 favorites]


Also, I woke up this morning with a sore throat (100% caused by dust in my room - I was moving things around before bed last night) and had a real panic moment.
posted by hanov3r at 9:58 AM on March 18 [3 favorites]


We’re in Tacoma, Washington, where a school five minutes away from us was closed ten days ago for a confirmed case. My nearly-3 year old has been running a low grade fever for three days, which spiked at 103 this morning, and he’s got an intermittent cough. Did a virtual doctor’s visit and someone will get back to me today or tomorrow. Theoretically.

In the meantime, I started running a low grade fever.

When I think about how Hillary would have handled this I want to cry.
posted by shirobara at 11:05 AM on March 18 [21 favorites]


I don't know if I've ever posted in one of these threads before but if not now, when?

I need to vent about some decisions my colleagues are making. I teach at a community college which has closed for a few days to give instructors a chance to switch to remote teaching. In-person lectures are no longer permitted. There may be some exceptions granted for project work which involves plants, etc. but we're all supposed to stay away from campus as much as possible. Yesterday, there was a faculty committee meeting where my colleagues from another department asked how they could still hold their practical lab exam.

The official response from the head of the COVID-19 response committee was "if you can maintain 2 m between students it's probably okay" (and then suggestions on how this might be possible.)

It was lucky my camera wasn't on (this was a remote meeting, of course) because I nearly flipped my lid.

In what fucking world is your practical lab exam more important than public health measures? Are you going to disinfect the microscopes between every student? How will you enforce the 2 m separation if students need to walk around? How will you deal with students who are ill and can't come to campus? How will you deal with students who take public transit to school and can't guarantee they can stay 2 m away from everyone? How will you deal with students who are immunocompromised? How about the students whose kids are now home from school, because K-12 has been suspended indefinitely, and can't come at the very specific time you set for them? How about the ones who care for elderly relatives, and can't risk becoming a carrier of this virus?

If they answer, "oh well, we'll provide an alternative" then why can't you fucking give everyone that alternative exam in the first place?

I have a person in HK who is taking a course and I asked him what screening was like for his in-person exams. He told me everyone wore a mask and there was a temperature scan at the door. Canada has more cases now than HK has had. Asymptomatic carriers are thought to be very common in the population. Why would you bring people together just for a fucking exam?

My own department is meeting on Friday to discuss this semester and I am ready to bite off the head of anyone who suggests we do in-person lab exams.
posted by invokeuse at 11:34 AM on March 18 [13 favorites]


I spent too much time last night telling some dude who takes language classes at the same place as me, albeit in a different group, that it's bullshit to call the coronavirus the "Chinese virus", that it isn't a fucking Chinese biological weapon designed to give them more leverage against the US (I pointed out that some Chinese sources are claiming it's American, but he didn't have anything to say about that), and that conspiratorial thinking is just another way of not facing reality.

He said "if the Chinese didn't know about the virus [i.e., that it's some sort of virulent weapon], how did they manage to build a hospital in ten days?" Are you fucking kidding, dude? The same country that can put up a skyscraper in a month? The abysmal level of critical thinking was appalling. I guess he thought he won the argument, though, because he said it's all about power, and I said that yeah, it is a matter of power, thinking in terms of the response to the coronavirus and the position it'll leave governments in. He must have thought I was conceding that he was right and the virus really is a fucking bioweapon, i.e., a method of projecting power. What the fuck.

Needless to say, I dropped the fuck out of that group chat and will not be going back.

And then more shit happened today in a different context, but I'm already worn out thinking about that crypto-racist and his finger-pointing bullshit, so I'll ramble about that later, maybe.
posted by heteronym at 11:38 AM on March 18 [4 favorites]


Oh, hooray. After posting a public complaint in our Slack about the (continuing) lack of actual documentation about the use of Pepe, some rando just DMed me to debate.
posted by hanov3r at 11:46 AM on March 18 [6 favorites]


Oof on the Pepe emojis. My new Slack is going fine but everyone is using childhood pictures, so I'm discussing reality tv post production with a bunch of babies and toddlers. Life is extremely normal right now.
posted by yellowbinder at 11:49 AM on March 18 [9 favorites]


England has just announced schools are closed from this Friday, apart from children of key / NHS staff and children on EHCPs. It feels as if we've just decided we are no longer a society. I know that's not entirely true; we are very fortunate to have social provision in the form of the NHS. But children on child protection plans, for instance, or the larger group of children in need. If they are out of school, their already worse educational outcomes will fall further behind, and some of them will be less safe. Local authorities have had emergency planning staff for decades. I used to be aware of them in a previous job, occasionally having lovely days of trial flooding or major incidents with actors in bandages. It doesn't appear that they have planned for this.

Children whose families are well-off or have social capital will be a lot less affected than children from poorer families or who have parents with physical or mental health problems. It may affect outcomes between the most and least deprived for some time.

I realise this may be unfair to LAs, who have experienced brutal cuts over the last decade. But it just makes me think what kind of society are we if we can't find a way to educate children, even in these very difficult circumstances. What with that and the widespread hoarding. Unless it's not widespread but just a few people Very Well Organised.

All my family are well and at the moment most of us are working from home so still being paid. I'm worried that a freelance client may cancel a project supposed to start in April and go through to July, but apart from that anxiety I'm very fortunate. But I have despair and rage and weariness. And I can't think of anything I can do to help.
posted by paduasoy at 11:52 AM on March 18 [7 favorites]


My entire county and the county next door are now "shelter in place," my org is now going into "suspended operations." I don't know what the heck we will do about our student employees since anyone living in a SIP region isn't allowed to come into work and students aren't allowed to work from home due to, you guessed it, security reasons. I hate to lose them, ours are really great.
posted by jenfullmoon at 11:57 AM on March 18 [1 favorite]


Our society is doing very well, so well, the bell has to continuously ring, loud and hard, to keep people from doing business as usual. In my county every kid under 18 can have breakfast and lunch courtesy of the schools. Yay California! One friend called me at 06:30 AM, or so, about the earthquake in Salt Lake City. She feels we are falling into chaos, but we are doing very well, except for lot of folks are nervous, and I can understand that. We are far from chaos. However I went shopping yesterday, lots of bare shelves, then rumors, such and such a retailer has restocked, etc. OK then, these are interesting times, a whole new spirit of cooperation in the world. Best to everyone.
posted by Oyéah at 11:58 AM on March 18 [3 favorites]


But it did bring a smile to my face thinking about Trump realizing the Dow (as of a few moments ago) is now lower than on his Inauguration Day.

I have major schadenfreude about this.
posted by medusa at 12:05 PM on March 18 [7 favorites]


The play I wanted to get into has now been canceled, of course, like everything else. I did write the director back suggesting that maybe we try to do a podcast or something?

I dunno, I've tried suggesting "hey, let's get together and do a show!" stuff before and gotten big bunches of nothing in response from the gang (grr), but maaaaaaybe this time? It's not like anyone has any other options?
posted by jenfullmoon at 12:08 PM on March 18 [1 favorite]


A podcast LA Theatre Works style would be really fun! People could record their parts remotely or in a theater/studio large enough for physical distancing and no microphone sharing. I'd tune in.

I was going to email our school to ask if there was any news, plans for 2 weeks homeschool quarantine after spring break, etc when I realized the last update was on Friday and it's only Wednesday. As I said to the resident teenager last night, this week has been a really long month.
posted by Flannery Culp at 12:17 PM on March 18 [5 favorites]


ppl in riker's are testing positive and there's no way. uh. anyone is gonna like. live. right. christ.
posted by poffin boffin at 1:49 PM on March 18 [12 favorites]


Angrycat, my two neutered boy cats are (apparently) in a relationship and they started 69ing on my desk today while I was trying to work. Also one of them is a blanket humper too.

Little horny jerks go somewhere else with that!
posted by emjaybee at 2:32 PM on March 18 [12 favorites]


The Met just announced it expects to be closed until July. Across my sector, people are already not getting paid, furloughed or fired, and the real impact has yet to hit. With so much lost income through visitation and investment, there are going to be massive layoffs. Institutions of arts and culture will be - not decimated, worse than decimated. All but annihilated. Our messed-up funding model also means that boards may be happy enough to shutter the doors and fire everyone if the objects/spaces remain; the people are beside the point for many.

Also that means no Met Gala for those who've come to look forward to that.
posted by Miko at 2:38 PM on March 18 [11 favorites]


my two neutered boy cats are (apparently) in a relationship and they started 69ing on my desk today while I was trying to work. Also one of them is a blanket humper too.

emjaybee: please take pictures/video of this. Asking for a "friend."
posted by jenfullmoon at 2:43 PM on March 18 [5 favorites]


Starting to lose my mind a little. I get outside to walk the dog but I've been working from home for years now, and rely on all kinds of extracurriculars in the world to keep my spirits up, and now... No climbing, no bar trivia, no board game parties, no going to public lectures at the local unis, no date nights. And a constant anxiety coming in and out of my apartment, counting all the times I touched something in the shared entrance. I had an itch in my eye for the whole walk and had to power through until I could get home to wash my hands to deal with it.

The world just has a different texture now, everything feels more dangerous and nothing feels possible. The pandemic has stolen peace of mind and freedom from us, perhaps we were fools to ever think we had them
posted by dis_integration at 2:47 PM on March 18 [14 favorites]


I remember musing somewhere last December that 2019 was so epically, comically terrible, but that maybe complaining about it just meant 2020 would be much worse.
Man did 2020 take it as a personal challenge.
posted by Nieshka at 2:55 PM on March 18 [20 favorites]


We all knew 2020 was going to suck, we just didn't imagine how WHOPPINGLY BAD it could get.

I have been emailing my former director to discuss trying to turn the show she was going to do--which it turns out she wrote herself, so no copyright issues!--into some kind of podcast/preview for the time being. I don't think either of us knows much on the technology, but she sounds interested, so fingers crossed.

I am actually enjoying the quiet of working from home, not having to use headphones while I listen to podcasts, not getting shamed if someone sees me checking a news site, etc. And while I miss my officemate, I do not miss her getting anxious at me, asking what I'm doing, trying to get me to do other stuff, "can you work on the emails AGAIN," etc. So that's nice.
posted by jenfullmoon at 2:57 PM on March 18 [3 favorites]


Is it time to take torches and pitchforks to the Large Hadron Collider again?
posted by Marticus at 2:58 PM on March 18 [1 favorite]


As for face touching, does no-one else have a face-scratching-stick?

I have a nice oversized (lacquered) wooden chopstick in my back pocket; the thick side deep inside a pocket and I only touch the skinny end (sticking out of pocket) with my hands.

Gets washed when I wash my hands.
posted by porpoise at 3:08 PM on March 18 [5 favorites]




Fuck all the nonchalant dudebros out spreading their spittle and telling people to quit being "little bitches" while presuming to have an innate grasp of epidemiology.
posted by Burhanistan at 3:11 PM on March 18 [4 favorites]


I have been emailing my former director to discuss trying to turn the show she was going to do--which it turns out she wrote herself, so no copyright issues!--into some kind of podcast/preview for the time being. I don't think either of us knows much on the technology, but she sounds interested, so fingers crossed.

AskMe can assuredly help you with that, when you're ready.
posted by snuffleupagus at 3:28 PM on March 18 [1 favorite]


:)
posted by jenfullmoon at 3:30 PM on March 18


Is it time to take torches and pitchforks to the Large Hadron Collider again?
posted by Marticus


Oh I’m so glad it’s not just me that blames CERN.
posted by SecretAgentSockpuppet at 3:36 PM on March 18 [2 favorites]


As for face touching, does no-one else have a face-scratching-stick? I have a nice oversized (lacquered) wooden chopstick in my back pocket; the thick side deep inside a pocket and I only touch the skinny end (sticking out of pocket) with my hands.

ahahahahah. yeah, and then my housemates could haul me and my eyeball-on-a-stick down to the ER where all the coronavirus lives..... ;D
posted by invincible summer at 3:44 PM on March 18 [11 favorites]


you get that if you're staying inside your home, without constant contact with the outside world or outside people, and maintaining normal standards of hygiene, you are allowed to touch your face whenever you want and no one can stop you, right.
posted by poffin boffin at 5:17 PM on March 18 [13 favorites]


frex im touching my face with BOTH HANDS right now

not right then, i was typing, but right after
posted by poffin boffin at 5:18 PM on March 18 [8 favorites]


I'm not actually worried about it. My hands are so perpetually clean these days, most people would be safer asking ME to scratch their noses.
posted by invincible summer at 5:27 PM on March 18


You can pick your friends, and you can pick your nose...
posted by Marticus at 5:41 PM on March 18 [1 favorite]


So… what are you all drinking tonight? #COVIDWineClub
posted by Ahmad Khani at 5:47 PM on March 18 [2 favorites]


i'm 62, have had heart failure, high blood pressure and borderline diabetes

my factory is not shutting down

if i get symptoms i am supposed to stay at home for two weeks and can either be given an fmla if i test positive, as if anyone's getting tested or can take 2 occurances and come back with a fit for duty form

i also have an autistic daughter who wants to go places every day

if the 100 or so people i work with are very thorough about sanitary procedures outside of our factory, i'd be suprised, as they're not that great here and they're required to ...

and so i go to work tomorrow, singing like mehitabel the cat, toujours grincheux

hmm, more like simon blanco, el gallo en la raya ...
posted by pyramid termite at 5:52 PM on March 18 [24 favorites]


Irish whiskey, same as always.
posted by vrakatar at 6:16 PM on March 18 [2 favorites]


My usual wine club sent me my offerings this month so I don't have to traipse to Sausalito- They're still open but doing orders only of very nice CA wine- if you'd like their info to support a small local business (to me) wine club in this trying time memail me, they ship all over the states. Their offerings this month include a 2016 sonoma Cab that I'm dying to open. #COVIDWineClub
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 6:23 PM on March 18 [3 favorites]


poffin boffin, I live alone and as long as I'm not going outside, I can stick my hands wherever the hell I want, muahahahah.
posted by jenfullmoon at 6:28 PM on March 18


Oh I’m so glad it’s not just me that blames CERN.

No, I'm completely with you guys on this too! I have this theory, only half-jokingly, that we're cascading through bad action movie universes ever since 2001. And they did accidentally fry a weasel or something the first time they tried to fire it up ...
posted by WCityMike at 6:29 PM on March 18 [3 favorites]


I want to see someone type a comment with both hands on their face. Send video.
posted by medusa at 6:33 PM on March 18


I want to see someone type a comment with both hands on their face. Send video.

It'll look like the Ukrainian president playing a piano.
posted by paper chromatographologist at 6:36 PM on March 18


@medusa: alternately
posted by itesser at 6:48 PM on March 18 [1 favorite]


My smallest has had a fever for three days now. Tomorrow we go to the clinic to get checked. I've got a dry scratchy throat but I'm not coughing if I drink enough liquids. She gets a little sick here and there but not for so long. My two in Cambodia and Costa Rica refuse to come home yet, while the news gets grimmer there. I'm ordering doorstop drop-off delivery to keep our groceries up. We did handout the flyers and a few people are on the whatsapp chat group, and I have contingency plans, but either way, it sucks. A friend helpfully sent over a new medical report that people with type A blood get the virus worse, so that was cheering, because I am type A.

I want all my kids home and safe with me.
posted by dorothyisunderwood at 7:03 PM on March 18 [10 favorites]


ONLY USE FACE-PARTS
posted by medusa at 7:05 PM on March 18


So we decided today that we're shutting down the school where I work on from Friday, a week early. I say we, of course, but most of us found out this morning. This afternoon the gov announced all schools are shutting from Friday and May/June exams are cancelled, so at least that's good timing.

Of course, 'shutting down' only applies to the academics and students for us. The rest of us are still expected to come to site, since 'the risk will be lower'. And we need to do all our usual work to support the admin staff, and to be ready to re-open after Easter 'as normal', even though it's blatantly obvious this is going to last far longer and we'll probably be shut until September. Academic holidays are when we get all the big maintenance done, yet we're already down over 1/3 of staff already staying home because they or dependents are vulnerable. I could stay home, because I have asthma (plus a stinking cold for the last 2 weeks) and am vulnerable myself, but then I won't get paid, unless I'm actually quarantined because we're sick.

My wife is also a teacher. This means from this weekend, she'll be at home with our 4yo twins. And of course, she'll be expected to teach remotely for however long this lasts, and look after the girls at the same time while I'm still in the office being potentially exposed every single fucking day.

Yet schools will apparently still be open to look after vulnerable kids and children of keyworkers. Of course the gov hasn't listed what categories are 'key workers', but they haven't included teachers so far, so how the fuck they're supposed to provide basically free daycare while also looking after their own kids AND teaching their usual classes remotely is beyond me. Supposedly they've been planning this for weeks, but of course we get only the absolute basic announcement at press release with no follow up detail of any kind of how any of it's supposed to fucking work.

My parents are over 70, both with health conditions that make them super-vulnerable. They did used to do some childcare to spend time with the girls, but obviously that's off the table for the indefinite future. They're already effectively shut-ins for the last couple of weeks, but supplies of food are becoming a problem for all of us because the local supermarkets are stripped to the bare shelves for all sorts of fresh and dry goods by hoarders every morning so normal people like us who do a bi-weekly shop are completely fucked.

I've had a hacking cough for two weeks (but a runny nose and no fever means it's probably not covid) but I basically feel like shit all the time. Plus working in IT, every teacher and admin staff is in full panic mode on how they're going to work from home, so we're in full 'prep every really ancient shit laptop' we can scrape together for them, PLUS instructions for staff on how to use all the remote tools we've had setup for years they never bothered to use, PLUS helping parents who can't figure stuff out, PLUS trying to beef up our servers to handle the load of hundreds of new remote users with basically no money PLUS try and keep my own team from disintegrating under the pressure, PLUS at least three different meetings a day...

My were planning on selling our flat this easter, which is off the table, my wife normally goes down to spend a couple of weeks in France with her mother and that's looking impossible but she's still half considering trying to drive down the whole length of France!! so she and the girls don't go insane stuck in the flat for weeks on end, even if it means she can't come back...

My planning horizon basically ends at Friday, I can't even consider trying to solve problems that are beyond the the next couple of days, I'm exhausted, I think I'm developing a stress ulcer, I can't stop coughing yet have to keep going to the office anyway and trying to keep all the plates spinning is just oh so exhausting I pretty much collapse when I get home, yet my family needs me too and I'm being a shit husband and dad and son and not much of a line manager either and I can't even think about what might happen if me or my parents end up in hospital if we catch it, and fuck with a cricket bat wrapped in rusty barbed wire all the fucking food panic buyers, yet I'm still so much better off than the poor bastards on 0-hour contracts or who have just been fired because I'm at least working and getting paid, so I'm feeling guilty that I'm not more grateful, and did I mention I have chronic depression for years and I'm almost out of pills and I need to leave early to get my prescription from the pharmacy but I'm working deep into the evening to try and keep the plates spinning...

I just don't know how long I can keep this up, I'm almost looking forward to catching it just so I can stop stressing about it, as long as i'm not in the 15% of 'pre-existing condition' people it kills... Just FUCK this virus and FUCK my useless fucking government who are making this up as they go along and insisting crash-out Brexit will happen on schedule and wasted the months the Chinese bought us and just fuck my stupid country for voting for them and panic buying fucking everything. 'Keep calm and carry on' what a load of old bollocks.

*breathe* Thanks for letting me vent, that helped a bit. It's 3AM here, I should probably try and get back to sleep. If I can.
posted by Absolutely No You-Know-What at 8:14 PM on March 18 [18 favorites]


Miko, I’m in the same field, and that article about the Met is so, so terrible. Museum folk are used to dealing with budget issues, but usually in the context of a single institution. But to see how fragile the entire field is? It’s so depressing. My institution was already facing a budget shortfall before this, and while they’re not talking layoffs now, I don’t see how we avoid a giant hit from this.
posted by heurtebise at 8:50 PM on March 18 [2 favorites]


This is totally First World Problems but...
Then: Go to work, come home, cook some food, watch a little tv, get into bed with laptop and read (Metafilter), turn off light, go to sleep.
Now: Get into bed with laptop and read (Metafilter), turn off light, go to sleep. Wake up, move laptop to dining room table, make coffee, pretend to work from home.

My job is 100% in-office work, so I'm making up shit to do. I AM NOT DIGGING THIS.

Sorry. Rant over.
posted by sundrop at 8:53 PM on March 18 [6 favorites]


To add to the above about the earthquake in Utah. It’s not a small thing. It was a 5.7 with over 100 aftershocks. The biggest one in 28 years. I’m about 17 miles away and it shook the entire apartment building and left me crumbled in the doorway cursing and shaking because I’m very prone to vertigo. Last I saw about 100 people were estimated to be displaced. At one point over 55k without power. The airport shut down for passenger travel. The state lab testing C19 samples was closed for the day. The Trax (train line) was offline for most of the day. And part of the highway will be closed for days, last I heard.

We are safe. Nothing even really fell but I also try to make sure things are safely secured and we are on the top floor of a 3 story building. But it felt awful. And we felt at least 5 aftershocks which may continue. On top of everything right now with the virus spreading it’s honestly a really big mess. Some people near the epicenter have lost their shelf stable foods because they fell and broke open. It’s really a lot to handle.
posted by Crystalinne at 8:54 PM on March 18 [12 favorites]


The alt-weekly I used to work for has laid off everyone but two staff members, who will keep the website going, and suspended its print edition. I freelanced for that publication for 3 years back in the day, as one of my first gigs in the field. It's hard to believe it's basically gone, at least for now. I read on Twitter that some writers and editors working for the company's publications only found out when they started off the day simply locked out of their accounts.
posted by limeonaire at 9:51 PM on March 18 [8 favorites]


Last week I was finally diagnosed with Hashimoto’s.
We’re trying to fix my mental health medications.
My current job is a headache and directionless.
My therapist is moving out of town in two weeks.
Got kicked out on one hiring process for bullshit reasons and I filed an appeal.
Other hiring process is on hold due to the zombie apocalypse.
A third hiring process that was coming up is now postponed.
Found out tonight that my friendperson of 10 years was offered a job an hour and a half away and he will be taking it. And while he says I’m a priority, he is in need of restarting his career (and so am I, probably 3 hours away from where we both are now, and we know this). But he’s unsure how much time he is going to have for anything other than his new job, at least for a little while (we're both in public safety, so yeah even now we’re all kind of scrambling). He’s arguing that it’s not a black and white situation and we just don’t know what’s going to happen and and and it’s been a thing that has mostly worked for us (and the past few months we’d really taken steps to improve our friendship - he’d finally started therapy and he’d worked on getting himself healthier and he is almost done with graduate school) so I am hoping I won’t be judged too harshly, or at all (please? I may look like a big tough fireman but I’m really a teddy bear). It’s really painful because I love him so much and I want to be happy and proud of him because this opportunity is so good for him...but man is it a kick in the gut. The only thing I've ever loved more in my life is my pup, and my nugget adores the human him too. It’s a long and jacked up friendship tale, but he's been my best friend for a decade and I’ve been one of if not the closest friend he’s ever had in his 52 years. I’m going to miss his physical presence so much. He says everything will work out when we are happier, but of course he’s a commitment-phobe. This is not a dealbreaker for me; I am also a commitment-phobe but I have irrational (maybe) fears that he will forget me or not have time for me or replace me. He says that he is not going to forget me, he is not going to replace me, we will be in contact, he will visit me when he has time (within reason), but he just doesn’t know how much time he will have, especially at first (think director-level/department head executive position).
And then all of the other things. I can’t look at my retirement accounts. I can’t go walk around to get out of the house. All of my other friends live out of town. All of my family also lives out of town and they’re over 70 years of age. I don’t drink due to issues with alcohol in the past and my current medication regimen. We aren’t getting raises at my current job this year. I’ve spent the last several years being unfairly targeted by my boss, and that resulted in a major disciplinary action in January despite the fact that my words worth truthful. And I was told that the current administration had no interest in replacing him so it would be in my best interest to find another job. I am currently making my first C in graduate school and I cannot get motivated to do schoolwork because of all of the other things that are going on in my life. I was supposed to hopefully be able to graduate in December, but based on course offerings and my job situation being up in the air it looks like it will be at least May 2021 if not later. I am nervous about potentially getting one of the jobs that would lead me three hours away because I would have to try to put my house on the market and buy another house in the economy that we’re getting ready to inherit. The things that usually help me dissipate stress are unavailable to me at the moment because of the virus.
I am unsure what I am trying to get out of this conversation but thank you all very much for listening.
posted by sara is disenchanted at 10:36 PM on March 18 [18 favorites]


The newsweekly in my town just died too. They have a blog left over done by a few people and that's it. No advertising or events = no paper.
posted by jenfullmoon at 11:01 PM on March 18 [3 favorites]


As somebody who's medical condition is on that dreaded list, it's really a mindfuck. I spend a tremendous amount of physical and psychological energy trying to interact with the world as normally as possible. Thank fucking God I work for a school that went online. If I worked for a place that was being ambivalent about closing, I know I would keep on going in, knowing I was doing the wrong thing but too hung up on my I guess internalized ableism to stop.

And I think about getting it and being hospitalized where there's a shortage of respirators. If there's a choice between an otherwise healthy fifty-year-old and fifty-year-old disabled me, what choice are they going to make? I mean, I don't say this with self-pity, really, I get it. But wow, what a thing to contemplate.

Finally, there's the whole thing of this virus affecting the old and disabled disproportionately. I saw a facebook post from a friend complaining that the gyms were closed; can't they just sanitize the machines? Somebody writing that is not scared of dying. They want their work out. I get it. Humans are social animals: what this disease does is to make the lands of the healthy and the sick further divorced.
posted by angrycat at 3:35 AM on March 19 [20 favorites]


My town just on the boarder of Chicago just instituted a two week shelter in place order beginning this weekend. This is the only way my work will shut all the way down (but, who knows, maybe they will ignore the order). To read some people's comments about it this morning at various websites, twitter, etc is surprising to me - so many people are not taking this seriously and are upset.
posted by marimeko at 4:01 AM on March 19 [2 favorites]


I just wanted to drop by and mention that a mindfulness ebook is now available free of charge from ADDitude, a magazine/website for those of us with ADHD. Mindfulness, like exercise, is one of the few evidence-based treatments for many things that ail us. Not everyone can exercise; not everyone is helped by mindfulness exercises and practices. Still, if you have been meaning to start, this may be a good place. I have no idea. I have not yet downloaded the e-book but I am about to because I’m not getting out much these days.

Hugs to everyone who wants them. I hear that many of you are suffering. I am sorry for your suffering and grateful for your company.
posted by Bella Donna at 4:12 AM on March 19 [6 favorites]


On the bright side, the crisis is making it abundantly clear which businesses I will be supporting with my custom when this is all over. The fucks that instantly laid everyone off and shut everything down without bothering to even try through the end of the already-paid-for month can go fuck themselves.

Yeah, maybe you'll preserve enough of your precious capital to make a quick start later, but your cowardice will be remembered. And hopefully be amply rewarded by missing out on any assistance that might otherwise have been available to you. If you're a business owner that no longer has any employees, why should you get anything more than any other individual would get? You aren't supporting others any more, so propping up your business no longer serves any purpose to society at large, sorry.

Fucking assholes can't even avoid whinging to reporters about how things suck for them after summarily dismissing their entire staff. Shitheads.

You're as much on my shit list as the assholes who were conducting business as usual even after being ordered to reduce capacity sufficiently to avoid crowds who, along with the self-centered asshats that showed up to get their party on, are responsible for such widespread shutdowns as we are seeing. You're supposed to be leaders according to your myth, so why aren't you leading?

(Sorry, rant over. Fuck.)
posted by wierdo at 5:02 AM on March 19 [11 favorites]


My mom just started rehearsals for her first role in decades. Getting back on stage was always her retirement dream but her anxiety and dad's final illness kept her from auditioning until recently. The plan was for me to drive up the 2300 miles to Washington in May to see the play.

Her phone line is terrible and she won't use a cell phone (the one I bought her is in a drawer and hasn't been charged since she moved away in 2016 because I'm not coming over to charge it every week) so it's really hard for me to figure out what's going on. Sounds like as of Sunday they are continuing with rehearsals and mom's afraid that if she complains or doesn't go she'll never get another chance at the only theater she can get to. And she's desperate to get me up there for a performance.

This is all she will talk to me about before her phone cuts off. I don't know if she's isolating like the agoraphobic introvert we both are, or hanging out with all her hyper-social siblings and their kids and grandkids. I know she's upset that her health-conscious sister has cancelled their weekly diner brunch date, and mom's taking that as rejection.

Damn dad for wanting to die in the mountains surroundied by trees and convincing mom to go with him. He would probably have handled this with more reasonable paranoia rather than her "it's too scary so I won't think about it and anyone who does is is overreacting. "
posted by buildmyworld at 5:34 AM on March 19 [5 favorites]


You're right, weirdo. The r/myneighborhood has been taking note of which local businesses, like, taunted the pandemic with drink specials or bar crawls and which ones shut down in a responsible way before they were ordered. Lists are being made.

On the fucking fuck front, I woke this morning to my partner human waking me up with my own alarm clock, since I came down with suspicious stuff (that couldn't be tested because no tests) last week and we haven't touched since then. The rain that hit NYC this morning apparently was coming all the way down through the walls of our building. The kitchen light fixture filled with water. The landlord was on his way over. This was 5:30 a.m. The kitchen ceiling below ours crashed down at about 6:30, after major mitigation work from my dude. We have landlords that are brothers, and usually pretty decent about stuff, but having them tromp in and out when we've been so careful to keep my germs separated was frustrating. I hid away in another room.

Anyway, my cough is gone and the muscle ache and malaise carry on. We shall never know if it was Covid or not. Everything that had been in my kitchen is in other parts of the apartment, including the living room where I've been sleeping apart. I am tired and yet have it so much easier than so many other people. The rain is coming again late tonight and we'll be ready with buckets and garbage cans again, I guess. I'm tired.

If it helps anyone, I was the alarmist at my TV production job, encouraging my manager to push to postpone. I was texting her last Wednesday night. The production shut down last Friday. If you are feeling weird and alarmist, you are being correct. You are in the right. If you have a sick day to use, it might well be worth it.

Keep it up, everyone. We're in pass/fail mode for a while, and you can pass. I keep calling this whole thing The New Big C, which so far has only amused me. Love to everybody.
posted by lauranesson at 5:47 AM on March 19 [11 favorites]


The Red Cross is saying that there is a severe blood shortage because of cancellations of blood drives. I've been struggling with anemia due to cancer. This is not "I feel tired" anemia. It's "I might die" anemia. I have had two blood transfusions already this year, and even though I'm in treatment again, my hemoglobin is still going down. It's at 8.3 now. They recommend transfusions when you hit 7. This may actually be what kills me. Fucking fuck.
posted by FencingGal at 5:59 AM on March 19 [10 favorites]


FencingGal, I ask instead of searching just because I'm guessing you know: how can people donate blood apart from a blood drive? Feel free to tell me to fucking fuck off. I'm thinking of you and will follow up with proper research on how to donate blood in pandemic times.
posted by lauranesson at 6:07 AM on March 19 [3 favorites]


The shoe finally dropped on my next contract - pushed a few months at least. Which will put it in a few months of conflict with the contract booked after that, if either goes at all. I had such nice cycle of two repeating productions too... It's right and I'll be fine, my societal and familial safety net is such that as long as society in general exists I'll always have food and roof and I am grateful for that. But I'm tired and lonely and scared and I can't believe I got caught single in a plague. Ah well time to work on that prison body.
posted by yellowbinder at 6:08 AM on March 19 [2 favorites]


Thank you lauranesson for asking. If you are in the US, put your zip code into this site. You can also call your local Red Cross office.
posted by FencingGal at 6:12 AM on March 19 [11 favorites]


Thank you! Putting the word as far as my little voice carries.
posted by lauranesson at 6:16 AM on March 19 [2 favorites]


Thank you so much. You literally brought tears to my eyes.
posted by FencingGal at 6:21 AM on March 19 [1 favorite]


My cousin has worked for the Red Cross for a good long time, and she gave the same advice. So cry it out, you lovely human, we're gonna get some word spread. I love you.
posted by lauranesson at 6:25 AM on March 19 [5 favorites]


Fuck - I'm O negative and just realized I could have made blood donations when this first came on the radar. Thank you for raising the subject FencingGal, I've made an appointment for this morning.
posted by bonobothegreat at 6:31 AM on March 19 [8 favorites]


Thank you so much bonobothegreat. You will save someone's life.
posted by FencingGal at 6:35 AM on March 19 [1 favorite]


I’m sending my best thoughts your way FencingGal. Thanks again.
posted by bonobothegreat at 6:45 AM on March 19 [4 favorites]


I met some teachers from the same county as me complaining on reddit about the district's completely inadequate response to our request to work from home this week. We were finally approved for WFH, but only as of today. And we've been told we had to be available from 8-3 with no flexibility in hours. And literally no work to do, as we've been told not to plan lessons or post anything for students.

I told my 19 month old that she cannot have any needs between 8-3. She is currently climbing me and dropping her dad's headphones behind the couch, so she is totally on board.

I know we're fortunate in many ways, and three unpaid days won't kill us. I also want to acknowledge that I'm reading all of the comments and even if no one responds to you individually, I know that I'm thinking about all of you and hoping for the best for you in your various situations.

This really is the darkest timeline in so many ways.
posted by guster4lovers at 7:25 AM on March 19 [11 favorites]


So I just asked a Detroit-area doctor who is kind of internet famous (has appeared on Joe Rogan and The Doctors) to use his platform to encourage blood donation. He wrote back and said there's some risk in a Red Cross office and "each person has to decide." In other words, no. Meanwhile he's tweeting for people to patronize the restaurant he owns for carryout and delivery.
So fucking fuck him.
posted by FencingGal at 8:32 AM on March 19 [18 favorites]


You know, I'm beginning to think that people who have enough money to be comfortable suffer from the inverse of the cognitive bias that makes low probability high risk events evaluate to zero in the human mind. Given sufficient money, the possibility of losing a large amount of it seems so catastrophic as to justify nearly anything, even if what remains would be sufficient to feed and shelter oneself and one's family. The large numbers involved make risk seem far higher than it really is.
posted by wierdo at 8:52 AM on March 19 [8 favorites]


Maybe the people who are so keen to show they don't need to stay home could be the ones to donate blood, while they're out and about. Since they're so brave and healthy.

Maybe someone less angry than I am right now could come up with a good, catchy, slightly diplomatic way to say this on social media? I need to go hide in a closet for a while
posted by tomboko at 8:58 AM on March 19 [6 favorites]


I've not given blood for years but this thread inspired me to sign up again.
posted by Too-Ticky at 9:01 AM on March 19 [10 favorites]


In the end, my sister's immediate family decided against any funeral services. She has left this world with very little fanfare. Covid 19 fears have closed down most everything associated with the death industry where she lived. At one point in her life, she was a hospice nurse, so she knew how much the rituals surrounding death mean to those left behind.

Of course, social media is delivering it's own sort of memorial, which is equal measures hard and comforting.

I'm going to post a poem that she loved, which feels rather suitable right now (I think she got it from Four Weddings and a Funeral):

Stop all the clocks, or Funeral Blues
W.H. Auden

Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone,
Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone,
Silence the pianos and with muffled drum
Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come.

Let aeroplanes circle moaning overhead
Scribbling on the sky the message He Is Dead,
Put crepe bows round the white necks of the public doves,
Let the traffic policemen wear black cotton gloves.

He was my North, my South, my East and West,
My working week and my Sunday rest,
My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song;
I thought that love would last for ever: I was wrong.

The stars are not wanted now: put out every one;
Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun;
Pour away the ocean and sweep up the wood;
For nothing now can ever come to any good.
posted by msali at 9:11 AM on March 19 [47 favorites]


So I just asked a Detroit-area doctor who is kind of internet famous (has appeared on Joe Rogan and The Doctors) to use his platform to encourage blood donation. He wrote back and said there's some risk in a Red Cross office and "each person has to decide." In other words, no.
Surgeon General Jerome Adams has called on Americans to give blood to support efforts to treat coronavirus patients.

"Donated blood is an essential part of caring for patients and one donation can save up to three lives ... I want Americans to know that blood donations are safe."

He adds that blood donation centres are taken extra measures to prevent infection.

"Social distancing does not have to mean social disengagement, so give blood today."
posted by Ahmad Khani at 9:13 AM on March 19 [6 favorites]


I have never wanted the Hong Kong government to deport someone more than Joel Werner, the chief investment officer of Solitude Capital Management, who went viral over the last 48 hours for wiping his saliva on MTR fixtures inside a train and filming himself doing it.

According to the linked article, he seemed surprised when his HILARIOUS JOKEY JOKES LOL YOU GUYS IT'S JUST SATIRE STOP BEING SO SERIOUS video left the group chat and made it onto Facebook. His LinkedIn says he's a graduate of the University of Illinois and Stanford Business School - it's not like he doesn't know what viruses are or how they work; he's even wearing a mask in the video. I just...I just can't handle this.

LITERALLY EVERYTHING about our system that lets Hong Kong be 'the world's freest economy' or 'Asia's world city' or whatever nonsense they market us as is EXACTLY why he feels comfortable doing this here. In the other thread destrius pointed out a related thought on colonialism.

I'm actually so angry about this that I'm going to wear a mask tomorrow, just in solidarity with my neighbours. I have a few spare and there are some appearing in the shops now; even if the effect is minimal I want them to KNOW that I am not on Team Joel. UGH.
posted by mdonley at 9:28 AM on March 19 [13 favorites]


Christ, what an asshole.
posted by tobascodagama at 9:51 AM on March 19 [10 favorites]


FencingGal, is there any mechanism for people to donate blood in your name even if they are outside your area to help you get the blood that you need where you are?
posted by Bella Donna at 10:58 AM on March 19 [2 favorites]


msali, my condolences on the loss of your sister. I am so sorry.
posted by Bella Donna at 11:00 AM on March 19 [4 favorites]


Hugs (((msali))). It sounds incredibly difficult to say goodbye from afar. Sympathies to you and loved ones.
posted by mightshould at 11:11 AM on March 19 [3 favorites]


I've not given blood for years but this thread inspired me to sign up again.

Ditto. God knows where my old donor card went, but I've registered on the NHS website and booked myself in for the next appointment in doable travelling distance. Turns out steroid inhalers are fine (I thought it made me ineligible), and it's been long enough since my surgery so screw it. IIRC I'm AB- so always needed.

Also, so sorry to hear about your sister msali.
posted by Absolutely No You-Know-What at 11:57 AM on March 19 [7 favorites]


(also good to sign up for the bone marrow donor database, esp if you are of a nonwhite background. the test kit is free now.)
posted by poffin boffin at 12:17 PM on March 19 [3 favorites]


FencingGal, is there any mechanism for people to donate blood in your name even if they are outside your area to help you get the blood that you need where you are?

No, there is not. To be clear, it's possible I won't need blood. I just don't know yet. I see my doctor next week, so maybe he can figure out a way to get a handle on this.

My roommate, who is a doctor, has said that she might be able to donate for me if it gets to be an emergency - but she said they don't normally do donations between individuals like that. She is my blood type though.

I am very touched by the people on this thread who are willing to donate. If you are able to do so, you will save someone's life. And please get the word out as much as you can.
posted by FencingGal at 12:27 PM on March 19 [11 favorites]


I'm off and on crying all day. I cried through one work meeting but that one we were all told to stay on mute, so that was fine. I have two more fucking meetings today and I can't be mute and have to talk through them and I'm afraid I will cry and get in trouble (I absolutely would get in trouble for that).

Also I normally leave when the Lawn Guys are here on Saturdays, and for some reason they are here days early AND I CAN'T GET AWAY FROM THE MOWING.
posted by jenfullmoon at 12:50 PM on March 19 [4 favorites]


I'm not going to post the whole thing, but this reflection from a local writer took my breath away.
posted by vrakatar at 12:52 PM on March 19 [4 favorites]


Thank you for the prompt, FencingGal. Like TooTicky, I haven't donated for years (decades) but have just booked an appointment to do so. I will also nudge my sister, who is a universal donor, to see if I can get her to do so again. We are in the UK, so not directly helpful to you, but I am grateful for the reminder.
posted by paduasoy at 1:00 PM on March 19 [4 favorites]


On blood donation, I recently posted an AskMeFi about tips for giving blood because I wasn't able to ten years ago due to what I have learned is called vasovagal response. I got incredibly useful answers if anyone else could use them. I plan on going as soon as I can, unfortunately I had a fever last week, it’s gone now but my partner has it so I assume we both need to self-quarantine for another two weeks before we can donate (will confirm this timeline).

I’m so sorry to everyone who is having a hard time right now. The news about Powell’s laying off most of their workers left me unglued yesterday, which was probably good because I haven’t been able to mourn some really horrible personal things happening as a result of all this. I don’t know why that in particular was what finally allowed me to let some raw emotions out for a much needed release.

In other Portland company news, a friend works for Keen Footwear, and while she isn’t sure if she’ll keep her job after this is all over, they are giving away shoes right now. You provide a name (of an individual or family) and email address and apparently they send a voucher for a free pair right away. My partner sent an email to some friends of ours with two kids who are totally fucked right now and I sent one to my friend’s sister who is a nurse, a strange and small thing but I guess it’s something. Even though for my friend’s sake I think it’d be nice if they skip PR and provide more reassurance of job security, sick leave, etc.
posted by the thorn bushes have roses at 1:03 PM on March 19 [8 favorites]


In Israel this evening: Neighborhoods took time out to go onto their balconies to cheer for medical and emergency workers
posted by Mchelly at 1:43 PM on March 19 [8 favorites]


I needed that. Leaving work felt so damn bleak.
posted by aspersioncast at 2:24 PM on March 19


I work at a big home improvement store which is deemed ok to remain open. They called 2 hrs ago soliciting any worker who was willing to come in extra hours and "clean" (however that would work. )

Hell! WTF! Is the almighty profit that much more important than employee lives??? (Why, yes, of course.) Just close the effin store. Temporary interruption in employment is better than spreading the death plague.

I,... I may be forced to quit.
posted by mightshould at 2:40 PM on March 19 [9 favorites]


I AM SO ANGRY!
posted by mightshould at 2:41 PM on March 19 [14 favorites]


My local grocery store had a service that was perfect for reducing social contact: curbside grocery pickup. I use it constantly. Except that because everyone is bumrushing the stores non-stop they apparently don't have the capacity to provide it anymore and as a result are discontinuing the most socially-valuable service they had. And now I have to go into the store to shop empty shelves and increase my infection risk.

In short, fuck both Hannaford's and America.
posted by selfnoise at 2:51 PM on March 19 [6 favorites]


FencingGal: please get the word out as much as you can.

Aye aye, ma'am. I've posted on LinkedIn and elsewhere.
posted by Too-Ticky at 3:28 PM on March 19 [1 favorite]


Oh and: here in the Netherlands, the blood that's donated is also used for scientific research on the spread of COVID-19 antibodies in the blood of healthy donors. In other words, donors are helping map the spread of the virus, among people who aren't sick or not sick anymore.

I say win-win. Donating to help someone in need, and at the same time: FOR SCIENCE!
posted by Too-Ticky at 3:32 PM on March 19 [8 favorites]


Just got a reply to my Next Door post on blood donations saying that many people in my area have stepped up. The poster said her friend just made an appointment to give, and it’s April 1. I’m just so pleased and grateful to everyone who is taking this on. And you guys here helped me get through an exceptionally shitty day fretting about this issue and just so fucking angry at the Detroit doctor who’s pushing his restaurant but won’t suggest blood donation to his Twitter followers.

But you guys rock!
posted by FencingGal at 4:42 PM on March 19 [16 favorites]


My university just moved classes online for all of spring term and also put a hiring freeze on any new jobs or jobs that weren't offered yet. Annnnnd I wasn't before but now I'm panicking they will decide "what do we need all this office staff for if classes are online?"
posted by nakedmolerats at 4:57 PM on March 19 [3 favorites]


My university just moved classes online for all of spring term and also put a hiring freeze on any new jobs or jobs that weren't offered yet. Annnnnd I wasn't before but now I'm panicking they will decide "what do we need all this office staff for if classes are online?"

I'm starting to plan now for the possibility that enrollment at my university might crater next fall if we can't continue in person then. Why pay big bucks to send your student to our virtual university when lots of other places offer lower-cost online classes? It's not clear to me what the university would do then, but unpaid leave or outright layoffs of faculty and staff seem like possibilities.

For me personally having a plan for something like this is helpful, so I'm making a layoff/won't be paid for a while financial plan.
posted by medusa at 5:23 PM on March 19 [7 favorites]


Oddly enough, my particular dept gets constant requests for online classes/programs already, which we didn't offer before, but we might actually get more applicants if we could figure it out...
posted by nakedmolerats at 5:50 PM on March 19


Same story at my college - the library (still open!) wasn't particularly busy or well-used even before covid-19 (because we don't have a budget!), and now it's downright deserted. We're losing money on a ton of continuing education courses that had to be canceled, and who knows if anybody's going to register for the fall semester? Pretty soon the administration are going to start asking themselves why they're paying a librarian's salary when they could pay a work-study student $10 an hour to put paper in the printer and make sure no one steals a computer.

Anyway, I might be working late nights for the foreseeable future (hah!), so that's fun.
posted by Jeanne at 6:11 PM on March 19 [2 favorites]


Notes from my far flung corespondents:

old friend in Brooklyn is bugging out to western mass with wife, teen, and toddler.

Pal in Atlanta left there en route to nyc yesterday. Spent the night in a hotel in Richmond VA and felt sick, woke up feeling sick, heading back to Atlanta to isolation. What the fuck he was thinking I have no idea.

All I can do is hit it like a swat team tomorrow. I'll borrow your courage if I run out. But I got a reserve tank, so we can share.
posted by vrakatar at 7:14 PM on March 19 [5 favorites]


I had to log off Facebook for an indeterminate amount of time because people I normally like whining about being bored is making me want to go apeshit on their profoundly fortunate asses because my main emotion right now is trying to stave off a panic attack worrying about my elderly and somewhat frail father in a locked down assisted living facility and wondering if I will ever see him again face to face, or if we're going to be in an Italy situation in several days. Meanwhile my friends are losing their jobs left and right and I'm fortunate enough to still be employed and working from home but can barely do anything.
posted by mostly vowels at 8:24 PM on March 19 [14 favorites]


Notes from my homeschooling 5-year-old:

He got frustrated that the homeschool schedule has lessons he doesn't like, such as the inconvenient writing and math. The negotiated compromise was that for his writing lesson he could write his preferred homeschooling schedule. I provide it here as an educational resource for the world at large. As a daily schedule it sounds pretty fucking appealing right now.

Mini-medusa's homeschool
1 Crafting
2 Coloring
3 Legos
4 Audiobook listening
5 Recess
6 Candy
Free time


We're still waiting for my partner's COVID-19 test results. It's been a week. They don't know when the test results will be back. Wheeee!
posted by medusa at 8:37 PM on March 19 [23 favorites]


I keep arguing with my brother about politics and for the first time in my life I understand why all my aunts and uncles always wound up screaming at each other about politics at family parties. I get it.
posted by bleep at 11:26 PM on March 19 [10 favorites]


Finally got my meds for the next month and got out to go grocery shopping at the same time. Store was out of razor heads, bleach, turnips, many kinds of canned goods but not the ones we wanted, as well as frozen corn and yeast.

I wondered about the yeast; how much of it will actually get turned into baked goods vs sitting somewhere lonely in a cupboard? It seems aspirational, buying yeast. “I will bake my own bread!” (I personally only had a plan to make my family cinnamon roll recipe, nothing so grand as bread.)

And then I ended up in a wikipedia hole about yeast sex. And was so tired after the stress of shopping I got nothing done for the rest of the day; well, nothing except learning about yeast sex.
posted by nat at 12:01 AM on March 20 [6 favorites]


I don't know, I think you might turn the yeast sex thing into an essay for McSweeny's
posted by angrycat at 12:20 AM on March 20 [4 favorites]


I got furloughed/laid off from my brand new job yesterday. I kind of knew it was coming; all the branches closed, all part-time staff were let go the day before. Half the exempt staff got the call yesterday (including me), and my boss expects that by next week or the week after the only ones who will be left will be the executives. They'll lose $3mil by the end of the month.

I'll get an invitation to return if/when things get back to normal.
posted by cooker girl at 7:44 AM on March 20 [8 favorites]


We regret to inform you that the hamster is racist.
posted by snuffleupagus at 8:14 AM on March 20 [1 favorite]


Comment seen on NextDoor: "Home schooling is going well. Two students suspended for fighting, one teacher fired for drinking on the job."
posted by valkane at 8:24 AM on March 20 [41 favorites]


One of my favorite local Twitter people had something similar.

Needed a good laugh.
posted by OnTheLastCastle at 8:38 AM on March 20


The rather glamorous Shiri Koenigsberg Levy: Now our children will find out how dumb we are. It's not right. Really. Wasn't there an fpp saying more or less the same thing?
posted by glasseyes at 8:49 AM on March 20 [1 favorite]


Me to the resident teenager Sunday evening, after lugging in the fourth and last pre-isolation shopping haul: "This is not the world I wanted for you. I'm sorry."
posted by Flannery Culp at 9:00 AM on March 20 [7 favorites]


Trump's giving a press conference where all his lackeys get up and praise him, once again making this all about him and what a great guy he is. Un-fucking-believable.
posted by valkane at 9:16 AM on March 20 [3 favorites]


Honestly, the worst thing about trump's insipid little press conferences this past week is that they've preempted EVERY FUCKING EPISODE of Jeopardy!
posted by Burhanistan at 9:17 AM on March 20 [9 favorites]


Here is the press conference I would prefer.
posted by snuffleupagus at 9:25 AM on March 20


Hey - blood donation question. Here in DC, none of the sites on the Red Cross site have appointments and there are 100 people in line on the phone. A lot of the permanent offices normally can do drop in. Anyone know if that's true now?
posted by mercredi at 10:38 AM on March 20 [1 favorite]


Man I am so damn thankful I managed to get out of multiple low paying job hell into something where I can work remotely and do overtime on top of that. I wish I could do something to help everyone who is out of work or can't work due to disability, various life situations, etc. I can't even volunteer right now.

I am in a loving new home with an great friend and her family but I still feel a little lonely. I wish I had more text buddies! I'm not very interesting though.
posted by Freeze Peach at 10:39 AM on March 20 [4 favorites]


In Israel this evening: Neighborhoods took time out to go onto their balconies to cheer for medical and emergency workers


Also, in Jordan this evening: Jordanians from all governorates took to their balconies to applaud the efforts of the medical staff, doctors and armed forces 🙌
posted by Ahmad Khani at 12:15 PM on March 20 [3 favorites]


For those looking to give blood in Chicagoland, Vitalant (formerly LifeSource) is still accepting donations at all locations, including the otherwise closed Thompson Center. If you've successfully donated whole blood in the past, consider donating platelets this time. The need for them is just as great, and there has likely been a steep drop off in regular platelet donors - they tend to be in the older age groups that are at greater risk for COVID-19. The apheresis process takes considerably longer (about 2 hours) but it literally takes less out of you: you get most of your blood (corpuscles, plasma) back. That makes for easier, faster recovery. So much so you need wait only one week between donations. One warning: the process, and the Vitalant website, but demand patience.
posted by kgander at 12:30 PM on March 20


My mother went in for a non-emergency MRI on Tuesday, and now she's coughing and hard of breath. Her doctor told her to double her asthma medication and he will check in on her tomorrow. Yeah, and she's quarantined now, of course. Needless to say, I'm not happy at all. Trying to keep positive, though, as I've got three kids who need that now. Luckily our distance learning experiences so far has been better than the lady linked up-thread, so the days been fairly good.
posted by Harald74 at 1:26 PM on March 20 [5 favorites]


I wanted to just put on record. For all the companies sending me your covid-19 support emails. Now is not the time to build your brand you stupid FUCKS.
posted by mrgroweler at 2:08 PM on March 20 [31 favorites]


Cost Plus was constantly sending me SALES and then stopped for two days. Oh goody, they're texting me again.
posted by jenfullmoon at 2:22 PM on March 20 [1 favorite]


I don't know anymore. Everyone in my office was put on furlough yesterday except me. Now with shelter in place in effect, our door is locked. It's been incredibly quiet; incredibly overwhelming. I was socially distanced, as always, but now doing business through the mail slot. My cell phone has been pinging every 15 seconds since 7am.

It's not quite chaos at this point, but that thing right before chaos. Everything in the world has changed in less than a week, and each day is now four days long. It's Friday but it could be any day anymore. I think I'm panicking, only just barely. I feel very weird.
posted by marimeko at 3:58 PM on March 20 [16 favorites]


First confirmed case on our little island reported today Fuck.

And tomorrow is that last day we're doing takeout at work. I'll be headed to unemployment like the rest of the staff, and millions of other Americans. Fuck fuck fuck.
posted by vrakatar at 6:15 PM on March 20 [5 favorites]




There's a clarifying follow up tweet to that which should be read also.
posted by jessamyn (retired) at 7:05 PM on March 20 [8 favorites]


I finally went into the dentist last month after putting it off for several years. I needed three cavities filled. I got two filled last week and was supposed to get the last one filled today. They called me yesterday to say they're closing for several weeks and now I can't be seen for at least a month. The pain isn't excruciating but it is annoying. Also my wisdom teeth are impacted and decaying and I had finally gotten the referral sent over to the hospital (because I need to be in-hospital for the surgery due to my chronic illness) but now that's not happening, obviously. At least no pain there but I've been told it's why I'm getting so many cavities so I'm just sitting here waiting for cavities to develop. Ugh.
posted by brook horse at 7:44 PM on March 20 [3 favorites]


My dentist shut down until the first week of April...at least. I have a dentist appointment at the end of April, but I don't think that is happening.
posted by jenfullmoon at 7:57 PM on March 20


I have early-onset incipient osteoporosis, so last August I had the first of what is supposed to be a series of five annual infusions, a treatment to at least try to slow the progression and keep me from crumbling to dust. I have to have a bone scan done within six months of the treatment to check my results.

I was scheduled for my bone scan this coming Monday, an appointment I booked in late December, because that’s how far ahead they fill up. Today the lab called to inform me that all non-emergency imaging is canceled for the foreseeable future, so I couldn’t even rebook the scan.

Not sure what that means for my treatment, and thus my odds of not crumbling to dust in the near future. I guess I need to call my rheumatologist and find out. Adding that to the list of tasks I don’t really feel like doing. (What I feel like doing: eating and watching mindless TV.)
posted by Superplin at 9:33 PM on March 20 [8 favorites]


Weight gain during self quarantine. Con, weight gain. Pro, I can be a Power Red blood donor now.
posted by soakimbo at 9:49 PM on March 20 [1 favorite]


My father is in a long term care facility here locally, and over the last few days he's been going down hill sharply. The nurses, who have reason to know, have used phrases like, "declined so much today" and "not much time left". Nothing Covid-19 related on his end, but despite following good practice I have picked up cold/flu symptoms over the same timeframe.

This means I can't visit, and I'm pulling my hair out over the fact that he's minutes away and right now it looks like I won't be able to see him before he dies. Just hung up the phone with him now, he's much less coherent than he was even 3-4 hours ago. They are 100% doing the right thing to not let anyone with my symptoms in the door, but fuck, fuck, fuck!
posted by bcd at 9:53 PM on March 20 [41 favorites]


bcd, I'm so sorry.
posted by paduasoy at 2:12 AM on March 21 [2 favorites]


I'm so sorry bcd
posted by daybeforetheday at 2:27 AM on March 21


Sorry bcd.
posted by bonobothegreat at 5:10 AM on March 21


How horrible bcd. I’m so sorry.
posted by FencingGal at 5:23 AM on March 21


I'm so sorry BCD.

There's a clarifying follow up tweet to that which should be read also.

Good to be clear that this is an emergency receiving area rather than a substitute for hospital rooms, but it still seems like a form of overflow capacity.

I know the photo looks scary, but I found it sort of reassuring. Either that drop ceiling was already there, and they're activating contingency planning that's literally built in, or else it was just installed and that's impressive too.
posted by snuffleupagus at 5:51 AM on March 21 [4 favorites]


I am so sorry, bcd.

My state (IL) is shelter-in-place starting at 5 p.m. today. My work is considered essential manufacturing (our products go into a lot of things that you do not want to see disappear), so life won't be changing much for me, which is a blessing. I've had 2 minor anxiety attacks in the last two days, still.
I miss my boyfriend, i could use a hug from him desperately, and I'm so jealous of those who live with loved ones. But, I know that a lot of people are also struggling with being cooped in with a small handful of others, so, I try to remain grateful for my independence and self-sufficiency.

We're all suffering in so many different ways, and so alone yet together. It's such a weird time to live through with so many unknowns. Sending love to all of you folks.
posted by Sparky Buttons at 9:00 AM on March 21 [13 favorites]


My college town just had a coronavirus-related shooting that started as an argument between roommates about restrictions related to the virus. The victim first attacked the shooter with a crowbar. I’m guessing that’s why they’re not calling it a homicide at this time - it might be considered self-defense.
posted by FencingGal at 10:05 AM on March 21 [4 favorites]


I'm really sorry, bcd.
posted by HotToddy at 10:37 AM on March 21 [1 favorite]


bcd, I'm so sorry this is happening to you.
posted by marimeko at 10:41 AM on March 21 [1 favorite]


Man, you guys, I’m so sorry about everything we’re all going through. My bestie developed a DVT, and is scheduled for emergency vascular surgery and then at least three days in hospital, and I am freaking out about it, especially since he’s four states away, and alone, and I can’t get there.

I have lupus, but have still gone to about 11 stores so far trying to find basic staples like flour, sugar and eggs. I’ve decided toilet paper was just a fever dream and no such thing has ever existed. We’re our of fresh veg and fruit, but there’s none to be found. Frozen veg and meat are gone, no unfrozen meat, just deli stuff. Sandwiches it is, I guess.

My sister is in Austin, and majorly at risk, having just come out of chemo, and I can’t get there either, my parents are elderly, but we’re not speaking, so I’ve no idea what’s going on ther. Just fuck.
posted by SecretAgentSockpuppet at 11:04 AM on March 21 [9 favorites]


the ppl hoarding fresh food are driving me insane. how are they going to eat all that before it goes bad?!? THEY WON'T. i hope locusts eat their faces.
posted by poffin boffin at 11:09 AM on March 21 [11 favorites]


If your sister needs help, tells us in Austin. I bet you someone will be able to help on the site.

I've got a nascent Austin TX MeFites IRL put together so that MeFites in the same local areas will be able to help each other out. I don't see any reason why that should not expand to friends and loved ones.
posted by sciatrix at 11:11 AM on March 21 [4 favorites]


the ppl hoarding fresh food are driving me insane. how are they going to eat all that before it goes bad?!? THEY WON'T. i hope locusts eat their faces.

FWIW, here the frozen meat (all types) sells out first, and then people buy whatever fresh stuff there is to freeze.

I had to keep going back every day last week until I managed to snag a bag of frozen chicken breasts, but there was ribeye in the butcher case every day.

Not sure what things look like now, I've stayed at home since that order came down.
posted by snuffleupagus at 11:18 AM on March 21


bcd, I am so sorry.

Re shopping, our local Facebook and Nextdoor groups have been posting and sharing about which stores have what supplies available on particular days. Also, if someone needs toilet paper, the person will ask there if people know of a store that has it, and people will give replies with places they know about.

This is not an option everywhere, but with farmer's markets and such shutting down, people in my area have been contacting farms that sell at the local ones to see if there is some way to get things from them directly. Most of the farmer's markets have websites listing who the vendors are, so you can get contact info. There are also some farms that have always delivered in this region, and our friends were able to get a delivery of eggs from them.
posted by gudrun at 11:47 AM on March 21 [3 favorites]


Why wasn't there any leadership to tell people to eat like normal and save their money on takeout to support restaurants.
posted by bleep at 12:17 PM on March 21 [2 favorites]


Love to have another reminder that we could actually house, feed, and clothe everyone no problem, but nah let's just let some people have fucking yachts instead, that seems reasonable.
posted by ODiV at 1:33 PM on March 21 [6 favorites]


My bloody stupid fucking neighbourhood has been busy all day with people visiting. I was sitting upstairs in my husband’s home office, looking out the window, and just gobsmacked to see the woman across the street from us evidently having a party. Next door they have been blithely coming and going, grandkids running about, etc. I am terrified of these people.
posted by skybluepink at 3:45 PM on March 21 [9 favorites]


"My bloody stupid fucking neighbourhood has been busy all day with people visiting."

Here in Kansas City, the mayor just announced we're going into the shelter at home mode Tuesday because people here haven't been taking this seriously enough. Violation will be a misdemeanor.

It's best that I've been ignorant of people being irresponsible because it just makes me so angry. Between the people in the Fox bubble and kids on spring break, sometimes I feel like I want to throttle someone.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 4:06 PM on March 21 [5 favorites]


I was whining at my SO that I wanted to go to the park and then when he was all 'let's see if we can do that' I was all 'WE'RE SUPPOSED TO STAY AT HOME" so I'm a bloody delight
posted by angrycat at 4:13 PM on March 21 [8 favorites]


It's probably not the best idea to spend most of the next few weeks apocalyptically drunk, is it? It's sorely tempting, though.
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 4:23 PM on March 21 [6 favorites]


Am drunk right now from video happy hour. I haven't been in a room with a person I know in four days, nor touched another human being. It's going to be interesting, finding out just how long not touching anyone takes to make me completely unglued.
posted by wellred at 4:26 PM on March 21 [11 favorites]


It depends on the kind of person you are, but as someone who lives and works alone -- it kinda sucks but you do get used to it. Having a pet helps quite a bit.
posted by snuffleupagus at 4:31 PM on March 21 [5 favorites]


I really wish we could collectively demand access to pets in rental complexes, even just indoor-only cat access. I think pets are a really good idea for an awful lot of people who live alone right now. Touch and interaction is really important, especially if we're going to be confined to our homes and trying to stay away from other people. Access to animals is going to be an important mental health coping mechanism.
posted by sciatrix at 4:45 PM on March 21 [14 favorites]


so many years of severe chronic pain made it p close to impossible for me to deal with being touched so i'm fine with the no-contact rule with humans but i would definitely like to snug a fat lil puppy

not a cat though, bc if i sneeze unexpectedly one more time i will lose my fucking mind. i'm paranoid enough right now, cats! cease your adorable antics, you cannot tempt me!
posted by poffin boffin at 4:51 PM on March 21 [10 favorites]


Thank you all for the condolences. I have an update with mostly good news. One of the nurses that's been so great with him/us over the last year was on duty last night. She advocated with the Director of Care and got permission to meet me at the entrance and gown, glove, mask, plastic face shield, etc me up so I could spend a while with him last night after things were quiet and no one else was in the halls. We had a good visit and then I held his hand while he slept till morning. He's relaxed and pain is being managed.

The less good news: just now, as I was getting ready to head back in for tonight, they called and the nurse who advocated for me now has respiratory symptoms herself and won't be in tonight. The new one, very gentle and understanding on the phone, but no one I know, relayed they had decided not to permit that anymore. So, in a way, we're back to where we started and I probably won't be with him at the end, but we did have one more time and I'll take that win.
posted by bcd at 5:37 PM on March 21 [52 favorites]


It's been so difficult to clearly know what's going on. The list of symptoms keeps changing every day to encompass symptoms of a bunch of different ailments. Back when they were saying dry cough, fever, shortness of breath, I got a sore throat and called in sick to work, had no fever and a wet cough then returned after a few days. Now they're saying sore throat, runny nose, wet coughs, even digestive issues and I wonder if I had it, if I still have it. There aren't enough tests to go around and my symptoms don't even qualify for them, so it's like Shroedinger's disease. I check my temperature everyday waiting for the other shoe to drop...
posted by Selena777 at 5:43 PM on March 21 [2 favorites]


These is no good way to self-diagnose and RT-PCR tests are in short supply. You just have to assume everyone is infected, including yourself.

Some places in Canada are imposing $2000 fines for violating quarantine orders, which is about the level of deterrence that will make even selfish fuckers think twice (if enforced).
posted by benzenedream at 6:17 PM on March 21 [1 favorite]


the ppl hoarding fresh food are driving me insane.

Last week the entire bags of lettuce plus apples section were wiped out at Whole Foods. I get dry goods, but this was sheer panic. Although I appreciate how healthy it was.

I will say, this has betrayed what people really want and need. Soap? Gone. Bread? Gone. Doritos? Gone. What I noticed is we want pasta, just not lasagna right now. We want hummus, but not the chocolate hummus. And we want our bread, all kinds of bread, but not the strawberry swirl bread - it's probably fine, but not right now, thank you.
posted by marimeko at 6:25 PM on March 21 [5 favorites]


Some places in Canada are imposing $2000 fines for violating quarantine orders, which is about the level of deterrence that will make even selfish fuckers think twice (if enforced).

FWIW, violating the statewide order in CA carries a $1000 fine or up to 6 mo. in prison.

So...yeah. However you want to feel about that.
posted by snuffleupagus at 6:26 PM on March 21 [3 favorites]


Partner, to MIL: You know, the longer you don’t do social distancing, the longer before we can see you again.
MIL: I think three days was about my limit, hun!

Well. Guess we’re not seeing her for a long, long time.
posted by brook horse at 6:43 PM on March 21 [8 favorites]


I got real real cold tonight; I felt like shivering. I was on the edge of a panic attack thinking I had the virus and how was I going to self-quarantine away from my husband and how would he manage caring for our two small children without me etc etc. Then I realized our new TV, which is installed on an arm so it hangs about 4” in front of our thermostat, had been on all afternoon. The warm TV tricked the thermostat into thinking the house was too warm, so the furnace didn’t kick on, so the house got super cold, so I got super cold. We’re all fine, no high fevers around here, just me slowly losing my mind.
posted by beandip at 8:18 PM on March 21 [15 favorites]


Yay, it looks like the government is shutting things down properly after the Bondi Beach fiasco - "shows that too many Australians aren't taking this seriously"

BOO now I'm weighing up whether my up-coming Melbourne trip can be classed as essential. There's a part of me saying no, no, it really isn't, but another part of me is desperately trying to rationalise.

1) I had a haircut scheduled. My hair is short, curly, and I have not broken up with my Melbourne hairdresser yet, because it is hard, yo, to find a hair dresser who gets my hair. The mental health benefits of a decent hair cut are big. I know it sounds really trivial but I'm gutted.

2) We're expecting. We live in the Wimmera about 4 hours away from Melbourne, and we don't have all the shops etc that Melbourne has. This upcoming school holidays period was one that I had planned to go to Melbourne, hit up Baby Bunting, get a car seat properly fitted, look at other baby products. (I know that I can order stuff online and I am, but surely the in-car safety of my bub is important?)

3) Boobs. Buying bras online is a real MEH experience and I just wanted to be able to try on a decent maternity/breastfeeding bra and find some that FIT. I'm one of those small chest, big boobs gals, and it's been a challenge finding bras pre-pregnancy, and those pre-preggo boobs feel small now.

4) Baby is due in July. My sister is due in June. (both winter babies, here.) I just feel a growing sense of dread that we won't be able to meet each other's newborns until they're much bigger. This is devastating to think about so I don't, often.

5) So this trip was going to be a really good chance to see my immediate family who live in Melbourne, maybe for a little while.

ARGH. I still really really want to go. We were going to be cautious. Only interact with our family who themselves are social distancing. Is it enough?

Bringing myself to watch the updates from the PM and Health minister so I can actually get the information direct. It's tough.

Also, on the other side of the family, my sister in law and her family are looking at moving from interstate in May- will they even be able to? We have no idea.
posted by freethefeet at 8:19 PM on March 21 [6 favorites]


Crazy takeout biz today. People are spooked but also tired of cooking. My boss is calling us closed tomorrow, and thinking about if we try to keep doing takeout. I think we should go wed-sat, dinner only, simplified menu, online payment only, cashless and touchless.

Three of my servers came in tonight for free food (all laid off employees can get free food as long as we have it) and told me they miss me, they miss work, and when we get open again it is all about love teamwork and cooperation, things I'd been trying to drill on. I hope they meant it. I miss my crew. Lunatics all of em.

I'll not stop fighting. My courage tank is FULL. Help yourself to some if you need it!
posted by vrakatar at 9:37 PM on March 21 [20 favorites]


In Montgomery Co, where I live, where the last three days the new cases reported have been something like 13/13/9, I live next to a hospital.

Hospital employees in Montgomery County are being told to store their masks in a paper bag and reuse it until it is visibly soiled.

So, we're fucked, is what I'm saying
posted by angrycat at 2:41 AM on March 22 [8 favorites]


My neighbours haven’t got any smarter in the last 24 hours. It’s a gorgeous sunny day, so everybody’s having garden parties. I had to quit working in my back garden because it was making me furious and I was going to start screaming at them. Thanks for the dilatory approach until Friday, Boris. Thanks a lot.
posted by skybluepink at 10:29 AM on March 22 [6 favorites]


can you turn the hose on them like they're feral cats fucking loudly in the night
posted by poffin boffin at 12:29 PM on March 22 [14 favorites]


gather ye hosebuds while ye may
posted by poffin boffin at 2:13 PM on March 22 [1 favorite]


The hospital next to my apartment complex has set out tents.

I'm wonder what the flock of like twenty black vultures who roost a stone's throw a way make of this development.
posted by angrycat at 2:21 PM on March 22


Hey, I got some jackbox games if anyone's feeling techy and lonely and wants to play. Hit me at my username at gmail.
posted by lauranesson at 2:38 PM on March 22 [1 favorite]


My neighbours haven’t got any smarter in the last 24 hours. It’s a gorgeous sunny day, so everybody’s having garden parties.

I saw my neighbors having a barbecue yesterday, *despite* the shit weather and the pandemic. They had 4 or 5 people over! They're all in their 20s so they think they're invincible I guess. But I just don't understand it. Wonder if I should have yelled at them. Certainly they would have thought I was nuts.

How long can this go on? My horizon has been so foreshortened. Is there a future anymore? I keep thinking about what I'm going to do when it's finally passed over us but I can't even picture it anymore.
posted by dis_integration at 4:54 PM on March 22 [7 favorites]


Does anyone feel this feeling that's not-quite-panic or like they are just slightly dissociating and kind of fighting off that kind of spaciness all the time? I feel like I'm losing some battle all of a sudden. It's subtle but it's like I can't concentrate and I don't know where to begin with anything. I'd really like to get ahead of this feeling but I don't know how. It's definitely a reaction to recent COVID-19 developments starting a couple weeks ago. I feel like if I concentrate on other people it's helpful, but it's like my brain is running at 40-60%. I work tomorrow. I'm not freaking out, I'm just 'powered down' or something.
posted by marimeko at 5:58 PM on March 22 [21 favorites]


marimeko: That's where I'm at right now. We just had book club and everyone agreed "yeah I dissociated through the whole book, sorry." There's so many things I want to do but I can't figure out where to start on any of them. I'm very adrift right now.

I've found really sticking to my self-care routine helps. Trying not to force myself to get work done, too. Often I'll find once I do all my self-care stuff I have an hour or two where I can work, and then after that I'm out. I'm trying to get better at recognizing that point and just shutting off and doing something I enjoy, like reading or video games or TV with my partner. Otherwise I spend the whole day on my computer doing nothing, not even anything fun, because I can't get myself to focus on my work.
posted by brook horse at 6:07 PM on March 22 [10 favorites]


Yeah, it's a weird type of cognitive fatigue, probably from too much low grade anxiety; I was sitting around at home on the weekend and couldn't concentrate on anything, but then I realized I could watch Futurama.
posted by Marticus at 6:08 PM on March 22 [11 favorites]


Yes I have been feeling the same way. I've been having a tightness in my chest that felt at first like sickness then like an all-day panic attack so I've been feeling like I'm getting .05% less air than I need & it's been showing in my work output. Oh well what are ya gonna do. My job is definitely not essential.
posted by bleep at 6:22 PM on March 22 [2 favorites]


The tightness in the chest is fun, especially how it makes you feel like coughing to get enough air. Gallows humour at work here "*cough* *cough* ah! corona!", repeat ad nauseum.
posted by Marticus at 6:27 PM on March 22 [3 favorites]


I'm still figuring out what my shit is and I don't feel like I can really confidently name-check the concept of dissociation per se but...that's kinda been my whole last year, is sort of where I've been at? It's a weird aspect of how much what a lot of people are dealing with right now in terms of anxiety and executive dysfunction and, for that matter, the weird adjustments of work-from-home lifestyle being kind of my normal for a while now. Which feels like overstating the case somehow, but maybe not?

It's a very weird time, and it weirds me out a little bit to realize how much less has shifted for me as a result of all this than for a lot of people. Comforting in a way to feel more like people are coming down my rabbit hole than like I'm falling down someone else's, like, come on in, the water's meh?
posted by cortex (staff) at 6:30 PM on March 22 [25 favorites]


For the past week or so I haven’t been able to concentrate enough to read for any length of time—which is troubling because I normally love to read and it’s...what I do. I work at a public library and when we found out we were closing down we all checked out tons of books. I haven’t been able to get past the first few pages of anything.

I am so grateful that I have my lovely cat because I really don’t know what I’d do without her right now.
posted by bookmammal at 6:40 PM on March 22 [7 favorites]


Seriously folks, get Futurama. There's a lot of it, and it's soothing to the brain.
posted by Marticus at 6:43 PM on March 22 [4 favorites]


Every approximately seven minutes I pull up short and say to my self, "Hold on a minute... is that a strange feeling in the back of my nose? Do my lungs seem to hurt? Does my head ache? Is that a sore throat or have I just been sitting in a chair for six hours refreshing WaPo live updates and not remembering to drink anything but superhightest coffee, speaking of, how long until the coffee runs out? What happens when there is no more coffee in the store? What happens when the coffee producing countries can no longer produce coffee?" Then I sit shuddering thinking nothing in particular for a minute or two and then I text horror stories from my week to everyone I know and read the texted horror stories about their weeks that they send back. Then I think, "My heart is pounding nonstop!" And then I yell "Corona VIIIIrus" like Cardi B.

It's exhausting and I would like to take a day-long nap. Or Futurama. Futurama waking coma stat.
posted by Don Pepino at 6:48 PM on March 22 [11 favorites]


I am so, so, so tired. So tired. I have not had a full day off work in weeks, not since before Ill-Fated Conference of Disease Spreading, and now work has decided my team is, like, personally responsible for the success of the stimulus bill. I think my boss is coping with stress by working 24/7, which is trickling down to expecting all of the rest of us to work 24/7, and I just can't get things done fast enough or long enough. And I don't even have kids! I had the gall to go into my yard and dig in the dirt and plant flower seeds for a few hours this afternoon, and when I got back inside there was this huge pile of work that I was somehow already behind on, and I just can't. I'm burned out and I was sick last week with a fever and a cough, which led to the kindest, most overwhelmed doctor offering to call in some cough syrup because there was literally nothing else she could reasonably do, and me declining because it seemed irresponsible to go to the pharmacy if I didn't really, really have to. Meanwhile, working working working constantly. I can't get away from the horrible news and the knot in my stomach because it's my job to be on top of it and help other people figure out solutions to weird problems nobody could have imagined us having even two months ago.

And when I called my folks, they were bickering and my dad's abuse seems to have ramped back up to eleven and they asked if I would take care of their cat if they both got sick and died. Whee.

I don't know what to do and I don't know when it will end and everything is terrible and I can't even have a few hours off to think about literally anything else in the world. Fork, man.
posted by bowtiesarecool at 7:03 PM on March 22 [15 favorites]


Go get the cough syrup. You need it and it's important.
posted by bleep at 7:08 PM on March 22 [4 favorites]


Don Pepino: What happens when the coffee producing countries can no longer produce coffee?"

Wow I hadn't thought of that! And then there will be no aspirin for all the caffeine headaches.
posted by marimeko at 7:21 PM on March 22 [2 favorites]


I find it interesting and worrying that the commenting here has slowed. Is it site-wide?

As sad and upsetting as they sometimes are, I take a lot of comfort in the comments here and elsewhere on the site. MetaFilter is really my only community, online or offline.

I'm neither fatalistic or cynical, but all my life I've been highly motivated to prepare myself for bad news. My aunt always tells this thing about me where, from when I was very young, whenever out-of-town relatives (which was all of them) would visit, the first thing I'd say would be to ask when they were leaving. Despite being introverted (mostly), I've always fallen into a numb depression when company leaves. Asking that question was a means of preparing myself. I think I have a big fear of unexpected disaster or bad news or just feeling bad in general. I want to see things coming and try to adjust in advance.

Because of this, I've followed the news about this very closely for almost six weeks. And because of this, and even though intellectually I tend to shy away from extremism, this has always seemed to me to be bound to be worse than most people were expecting and worse than I could get my head around. I mean, even so, I'm very aware it could have been much, much worse—we've known a pandemic was coming and, frankly, covid-19 is less deadly than was likely. The CFR for SARS was like 20%! But still—this is worse than anyone was emotionally prepared for. It's very disorienting, even to me although every day I've said to myself and others, "it's going to keep getting worse".

I feel like I've been shepharding my elderly mother (with whom I live) through this—she's been depressed for two years, anyway, since her husband died. She's also a worrier. And she's fairly social and active. I've felt like I've had to inform her and push her along every day to, well, possibly save her life. I've succeeded in that she's been cautious when her friends have been reckless. Just today, though, I broke the news to her that successfully "flattening the curve" means that this will go on longer, which I think came as a bit of a shock.

My stepsister had a mastectomy last month and has just started chemo. I'm worried about her; not the least because she and her husband live in the Fox bubble. My mom talks to her every other day or so. They haven't spoken of covid-19 and how this may threaten her health.

So many of the stories people have told here have moved me, sometimes to tears, and I care about all of you.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 7:24 PM on March 22 [15 favorites]


The commenting may seem slower because it's spread across at least 5 posts. Or maybe everyone is watching Futurama.
posted by Marticus at 7:27 PM on March 22 [7 favorites]


My love goes out to the Salt Lake Mefites, and Nons, they just endured another aftershock of 4 on the scale. It is unnerving for my friends over there, so I know there are SLC Mefites, best to you! On the other side, the air in my town has been delicious, and the skies so blue, and my neighborhood so quiet, even the air traffic has slowed down. The trains seem super loud as they are not competing with the sirens, sirens, motorcycles, drag racers, cars, trucks, buses. In many ways it is like it might should be. Now there is rain again, since I am doing the great dirt in my cat box experiment, I blew it today, I should have made litter while the sun shone. Oh, well!
posted by Oyéah at 7:49 PM on March 22 [3 favorites]


> How long can this go on? My horizon has been so foreshortened. Is there a future anymore? I keep thinking about what I'm going to do when it's finally passed over us but I can't even picture it anymore.

The End Is Coming
We may not have arrived at the end, but we have certainly arrived at the thought of it. Medical, environmental, political, economic and military problems seem to have joined forces to remind us that the story of humanity is, at some point, going to draw to a close. That’s a very painful thought to have. It also raises a serious philosophical problem.

The philosopher Samuel Scheffler illustrates the problem with reference to the “infertility scenario” in the movie Children of Men... On the face of it, it is incredible that the simple knowledge that “we are the last humans” should lead to complete ethical and political collapse. Scheffler believes this is possible. He explains that so many of our practices—seeking a cure for cancer, building a new building, writing a poem or a philosophy paper, fighting for a political cause, giving our children moral lessons we hope will be handed down again and again—depend, in one way or another, on positing a world that will go on without us. The meaning of our lives, in the here and now, depends on future generations; without them we become narrowly self-interested, prone to cruelty, indifferent to suffering, apathetic.

First personally, I can see Scheffler’s point: it fills me with childlike panic to contemplate the possibility of my sons’ generation as the final one. I cannot allow myself to imagine humanity being snuffed out—not even in the gentlest way possible, by infertility.

The best scene in Children of Men comes toward the end, during a bloody battle in an apartment building: everyone stops what they are doing when they hear a baby’s cry as it is being carried through the carnage. They stop fighting not in order to protect the baby, nor in order to threaten it, but just to look at it—they find it absorbing, wonderful. They would rather listen to the baby cry than dodge an oncoming bullet, or stab an attacker. The baby is the drop of the ethical introduced into a gray and demoralized world; the baby is the glimmer of the possibility that human life might actually be worth fighting for. Future generations matter because they are a condition on the possibility of goodness and evil for every generation in the here and now. So suggests the movie, and Scheffler concurs. But he had better be wrong.

Because here is something we know for sure: there will not always be future generations. This is a fact. If the virus doesn’t do us in, if we do not do one another in, if we manage to make everything as sustainable as possible, nevertheless, that big global warmer in the sky is coming for us. We can tell ourselves soothing stories, such as the one about escaping to another planet, but we are embodied creatures, which is to say, we are the sorts of things that, on a geological time scale, simply do not last. Death looms for the species just as surely as it looms for each and every one of us...

The last generation is the linchpin of the whole system. But how can their lives have meaning, if the mere thought of the abyss sends a person collapsing into panic and depression? The answer is that the last generation is going to have to be composed of people better and braver than we are now—and it is our job to help them end up that way. We must take the first steps toward learning to make the unthinkable thinkable, so that they can take the last ones.
also btw...
Patience - "Terrence Malick's A Hidden Life"
posted by kliuless at 9:45 PM on March 22 [3 favorites]


So most of Oregon's population is in Portland/Salem/Eugene, all of whom have decided now is a great time to go hiking camping etc on the Oregon coast, which is all small towns with limited health facilities. But I'll bring my own food! It's just a day trip! How can it be unsafe to be outside? And so hundreds if not thousands of people are currently telling themselves they are the exception and inundating the coast. Fuuuuuck.
posted by nakedmolerats at 9:47 PM on March 22 [6 favorites]


Yes, and thanks to those people Oregon state parks have now closed, which means the deserted beaches I take my dogs to run on almost every day are now no longer available. I do not know WTF I am going to do with hyper dog, who gets completely neurotic if he can’t run run run. I have been so careful - we rarely even see another person and never closer than about 50 feet - and I feel like I’m in elementary school being punished for something someone else did.
posted by mygothlaundry at 11:27 PM on March 22 [10 favorites]


I'm worried that we'll be put in a strict lockdown over here soon, since people won't follow the social distancing guidelines. It's so, so frustrating. This situation has really opened my eyes to how reckless and selfish people can be.
posted by Mauve at 3:13 AM on March 23 [7 favorites]


Same thing here in the Netherlands. We had a sunny weekend and people started flocking to the outdoor markets, beaches and parks. *mother of all facepalms*
posted by Too-Ticky at 3:35 AM on March 23 [4 favorites]


How long can this go on? My horizon has been so foreshortened. Is there a future anymore? I keep thinking about what I'm going to do when it's finally passed over us but I can't even picture it anymore.
posted by dis_integration at 6:54 PM on March 22 [7 favorites −] Favorite added! [!]


EXACTLY! Thank you for putting it into words. I'm going to try to force insist something good (or even just medium good /neutral) into my brain to look forward to months from now. That might do the trick.
posted by marimeko at 3:43 AM on March 23 [3 favorites]


I woke up from a nap a couple of days ago to have the SO tell me that his son was going to go out to meet some friends but the parents of the friend happened to be doctors and they said no.

The SO didn't know yesterday that only essential services are open here until I told him. I was like why do you think X was closed? It just wasn't computing.

When I got upset when he told me about the kid thing, he told me that he was having trouble adjusting (and he felt really bad about it and has been otherwise excellent in providing for me during the apocalypse)

I think people are animals, mostly? And especially when you have people losing their jobs and spring break and spring-like weather, you have to have a force that herds the animals into compliance.

Otherwise, yeah, they're going to go run around in the grass, even if it's against their interests
posted by angrycat at 3:53 AM on March 23 [3 favorites]


I realize that I'm relatively lucky...I have a job that can be done from home so I still have an income, and I don't have any kids to worry about keeping occupied while the schools are closed. I've got plenty of nonperishable foods like rice and beans in the kitchen to fall back on just in case.

However...apart from one brief grocery trip for a couple of essentials a few days ago, I've been in the house since last Tuesday. I'm starting to go a tiny bit crazy. I'm going to risk another grocery run a little later today just to get out of the house for half an hour or so, but I don't know how much it'll help.

Something else that definitely doesn't help is that Mrs. Example works for the NHS. She's not in a patient-facing position, and her office is separate from the main hospital she works for, but she's out there every single day among other people, and I worry about her. :/
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 4:02 AM on March 23 [6 favorites]


Welp, we've already had a handful of clients cancel on us. I'm already making contingency plans to temporarily (whatever temporary even means anymore) move in with my mother in order to preserve my savings, in case I'm laid off. I did not expect that this would happen in just 2 weeks...
posted by Automocar at 8:56 AM on March 23 [3 favorites]


I haven't gone anywhere, or had to go anywhere, since a brief trip to the pharmacy on the 13th. I'm working full time (gratefully able to) but otherwise I've spent straight 10 days where I don't have to wear a bra, where I don't have to put on shoes, I don't have to walk anywhere or get jostled by a train or have small talk or get interrupted by anyone or do anything at all aside from my job and sitting around.

I feel GREAT. I've got a chronic lifetime health problem (Chiari malformation what up) and I've always known that even just walking around having to hold my own head up is taxing, but I never really realized HOW much. I haven't had to fight to stay awake at 9pm for DAYS now. I'm sleeping much less and eating less but have way more energy.

Lots of people are really struggling now with the isolation but every day I'm finding it harder and harder to extend any kind of genuine-sounding sympathy because every day that goes by I feel better and better. And I can't really share that with people without sounding like an insensitive dick.

I'm going to have a really difficult time when things go back to normal.
posted by phunniemee at 10:27 AM on March 23 [22 favorites]


I don't WANT a webcam at my work, dammit. Please do not send me one. I don't want to get in trouble for spontaneously breaking into tears, and I absolutely will get in trouble if you make me show my face.
posted by jenfullmoon at 10:36 AM on March 23 [1 favorite]


Maybe you could find room in your heart for those of us whose partners got exposed and are now sick and might actually fucking die of this, phunniemee.

I am a chronically ill femme person, and jesus christ, please take this to the disability and accommodations thread.
posted by Laetiporus at 10:42 AM on March 23


I mean, I hear you, and that's why disability thread you know?
posted by Laetiporus at 10:44 AM on March 23


Respectfully, I think phunniemee is solely talking about the stay-at-home aspect. That doesn't mean they don't have sympathy for all the other horrible aspects of COVID-19.

I don't think disability experiences should be confined to the disability thread. People have talked about how they are enjoying getting time to engage in their hobbies, connecting more with long-distance friends, etc. It's okay to talk about one small positive in our changing world, and how it's hard to be sympathetic to people asking to go back to the status quo, when the status quo was actively harmful to your health.

That's not the same as saying you want COVID-19 around or don't have sympathy for people who are sick or might die. Just saying that being able to stay at home is extremely beneficial to many people, and that it's hard to be like, "Yeah, it does suck!" ("it" specifically being staying at home, not COVID-19) when it's doing you so much good. Especially when you know it's very likely going to return to the status quo and you're going to have to destroy your body again when this is all over.

It's a complicated issue.
posted by brook horse at 10:51 AM on March 23 [39 favorites]


I'm pretty sure the freelance work I had booked from April won't go ahead (think the project will be cut under the new legislation - reducing admin burdens on local authorities). So I guess I ... look for work in some way? Presumably cleaners and home carers are still needed ... ? Can't imagine anyone's going to be recruiting data people, which is what I actually do. Sign up for benefits too I suppose.

And it's looking increasingly likely my father will be semi-evicted / semi-choose to leave his supported living because of issues around the virus, which is really worrying. He has a damp, scruffy, full of crap old boat he says he will go back to live in. That's not going to be good for him (dementia plus various health conditions). Aaaaaaaagh all round.

Laetiporus, I'm very sorry to hear your partner is ill.
posted by paduasoy at 11:09 AM on March 23 [1 favorite]


That's not the same as saying you want COVID-19 around or don't have sympathy for people who are sick or might die. Just saying that being able to stay at home is extremely beneficial to many people, and that it's hard to be like, "Yeah, it does suck!" ("it" specifically being staying at home, not COVID-19) when it's doing you so much good. Especially when you know it's very likely going to return to the status quo and you're going to have to destroy your body again when this is all over.

Yes, precisely. The staying at home part entirely.

I am not sure how a comment where the thesis statement is fundamentally "I am a sick person" was read as "fuck sick people though" but I guess that just comes back to my acknowledgement that talking about my own lived experience at all comes off as being an insensitive dick.
¯\(°_o)/¯
posted by phunniemee at 11:10 AM on March 23 [12 favorites]


Taking some advice the mods directed at someone who's not me.
posted by ZeusHumms at 11:11 AM on March 23


[Folks, let's take a couple steps back and try to be generous in interpretation all around. Shitty stressful time, raw edges aplenty. Being kind is work sometimes, but it's necessary work right now.]
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:16 AM on March 23 [12 favorites]


The latest guidance we've had is that my wife absolutely must stay at home for the next 12 weeks because of her extreme vulnerability to Covid-19. We're lucky that we have family nearby to supply us with food as I would feel uncomfortable exposing myself to infection risk, we know that you can be infectious for days before you feel symptoms so even isolating myself elsewhere in our house if I felt ill would be too late.

I'm actually more worried about the economic consequences. I know that we have what it takes to stay safe indoors for as long as it takes and thank god we live on the edge of a village in the green belt so can go on walks while staying far away from others. But... will I still have any kind of job in six months? Government will pay part of my salary if we have to go on temporary hiatus at work but that won't go on forever. I really worry about a full-on recession and hope that we have the economic nous to figure our way out of it as a country and a civilisation.
posted by atrazine at 11:20 AM on March 23 [2 favorites]


Well, the SO and I are sick. Not very, but respiratory symptoms, dry cough. Luckily, we have a hospital next door. With the tents in the parking lot. And the flock of vultures looking down upon it all.
posted by angrycat at 11:40 AM on March 23 [9 favorites]


We had a sunny weekend and people started flocking to the outdoor markets, beaches and parks.

it's so frustrating and it's only going to get worse in the northern hemisphere as the year progresses and the weather gets nicer; i feel like it's going to take a lot of people personally knowing someone who has died to make them stop being stupid and selfish, which is like. fucking yikes, humanity.
posted by poffin boffin at 12:58 PM on March 23 [12 favorites]


It's called denial.
posted by jenfullmoon at 1:32 PM on March 23 [1 favorite]


My boss is trying to get half the lab (not me, thank fuck) exempted from the coming UT Austin shelter in place rules so that research doesn't stop. I still can't focus and I'm trying but I can barely focus on my actual students. I'm on thin ice as it is and I can't even call him out on the bullshit he's pulled here without putting myself at risk for retaliation, and I'm doing everything I can but I'm so fucking angry. I'm so angry at everything.

how do I think about research when I'm so angry?
posted by sciatrix at 1:55 PM on March 23 [13 favorites]


I have been sick since last Saturday (9 days). This weekend my symptoms got much worse, and as of today I’m presumed positive for covid—presumed because they won’t test outpatients in nyc. I have 2 inhalers and a ton of supplies thanks to neighborhood friends who can bring things to me. (We figured out a contactless drop system.) I will probably be fine. In the mean time I’m wheezing in bed just refreshing metafilter. Much love to you all.
posted by (Over) Thinking at 2:01 PM on March 23 [22 favorites]


If pre-traumatic stress disorder is a thing then I definitely have it. I'm not joking. I have intense anxiety just waiting for the other shoe to drop. I really like having a job that I can walk away from for four days a week. I hate that I'm thinking about this constantly. Management is now emailing us multiple times a day at home with updated protocols. We have daily call-in meetings. I know, that's life for a lot of people but I'm a fucking nurse, I do my twelve hours and yes, I get shit on and spit on and sometimes people die but I can get the fuck out and be completely gone, generally.

During today's call in meeting we learned that we are quickly running out of n95s but that's ok because conveniently we now only need to use airborne precautions for 30 minutes or 2 hours after an aerosolising procedure is done, depending on if it's in a negative pressure room. Also, please don't wear surgical masks in the hallway. One of the docs chimed in that he saw a YouTube video where someone made a mask from a HEPA filter and wanted to know if that would be acceptable PPE if it passed a fit test. Answer: probably, bring it in.

I hate this so much.
posted by pintapicasso at 2:54 PM on March 23 [18 favorites]


The anxiety is because I am very comfortable handling unstable patients with MY doctors and MY vents and MY respiratory therapists. I know our RSI kits like the back of my hand. I know my fellow ER nurses know the ACLS algorhythm well enough to crack the code cart and pull up my goodies while we perform a pretty synchronized dance.

I am very very scared that a hospitalist will be tubing someone in a tiny room the ER and I'll be slowly pumping the ambu bag, trying to manage their sedation with one hand while they shit the bed in a very preventable comedy of errors.
posted by pintapicasso at 3:03 PM on March 23 [10 favorites]


I hear you, pintapicasso.

Recent guidance from my hospital's leadership: all posts on social media need to be approved by Communications, unless they say something like "We are doing a great job."

WE ARE DOING A GREAT JOB.
posted by basalganglia at 3:08 PM on March 23 [17 favorites]


I cannot fucking stand this.
posted by great_radio at 4:13 PM on March 23 [2 favorites]


Welp, the UK is now in total shutdown. Finally management have told us we can now work from home, thank noodle.

Sorry essential admin staff that waited until today to get your home working sorted, one part time music teacher managed to drag me, the rest of the IT support department and half of management into trying to solve her home wifi problems all day when she knows nothing about IT, doesn't want to know anything about IT and blames us for loaning her a chromebook that 'doesn't work'*

* It works fine, as proved in the office. Three times.

At least I won't have to deal with her face to face any more and might get some other work done tomorrow, despite orbiting 4 year olds...

Special, special thanks go to all those people who didn't think social distancing applied to them over the weekend so all the parks and playgrounds in the whole country are also now all shut for the next few weeks, so those of us with small children but no garden get to watch them start literally bouncing off the walls.

Just have to grit our teeth and be glad we're not dead, I guess?
posted by Absolutely No You-Know-What at 4:19 PM on March 23 [7 favorites]


Southwest CT: I just made the mistake of checking my town's official FB page to see any updates (small town, 9 confirmed cases - up from 6 on Saturday), and walked into a stupid argument between one rational person and two bloviating, blowhard mid 50s male assholes. These morons were yelling about being told not to take their kids to the playgrounds. You know, the "That Asshole First Selectman thinks he's a KING but he can't tell ME what to do" type of asshole. God, I feel sorry for their wives and kids. I just can't with these kinds of people.

My mom (75) is going on week 2 of isolation. I've been bringing her groceries, and she stays 6 feet away from me when I come in. She looks drawn and diminished - from worry. She's going to worry herself right into the hospital.

My uncle that got tested came back positive. He in his 60s and so far no symptoms other than a low grade fever. Fingers crossed. His wife ( my mom's sister) tested negative, so they are carefully isolating at home together.

In the meantime, my son (21) flew home a week ago and has been staying at his dad's. His job as a tall ship crew member in GA let everybody go and sent them home. I've tried to get him to understand that bopping around visiting his friends is a bad idea, but who knows if he's listening.

I just started week 2 of WFH and it's tiring. There is not a lot to do and my setup is ergonomically challenging, but it's all I have.

I'm normally an introverted hermit but man, I miss getting out. Just going to the grocery store is hazardous because I'm my mom's lifeline to the outside and I can't risk bringing the virus to her.
posted by sundrop at 4:27 PM on March 23 [3 favorites]


Notes from Dukes County. Mass: Gov. Baker ordered shelter in place, still just one confirmed case on the island.

We are going for it. Open for takeout 4-8 pm tomorrow. I'm going to take a long careful look at safety issues, cuz I'll be taking a certain amount of personal risk. No cash, no pens or credit/debit cards. Proximity is the only vector.

I'm going to feed hospital workers, fire, police, emt, and other emergency workers, shut ins, the elderly, and the brave as long as I can.

I'm lucky I can. I gotta use that luck to help.
posted by vrakatar at 4:44 PM on March 23 [18 favorites]


sooooooo, we just learned that covid-19 was found in big purr's grandmother's budget nursing home, and two residents have died already. He's anticipating that his dad will travel up to ny and will bring covid back to his mom, who is about to start radiation. Fuuuuuck
posted by Hermeowne Grangepurr at 9:55 PM on March 23 [6 favorites]


after 12 years of making fun of all your "can i eat this" askmes and related panic-stricken answers, i may have given myself An Ass Demon from eating tacos i left out on the counter for 4h in the DANGER ZONE

i pledge to learn nothing from this act of hubris
posted by poffin boffin at 10:20 PM on March 23 [23 favorites]


That which does not kill us makes us tacos.
posted by valkane at 10:44 PM on March 23 [5 favorites]


Second day of flu-like aches, so tired. But I have chronic pain, hence I am working on my stupid book at 4 AM instead of sleeping. I guess if I was doing coke I might have a different take, but I have absolutely zero motivation to be creative in this situation. But these are relatively minor complaints.
posted by angrycat at 1:08 AM on March 24 [3 favorites]


Reading about how the virus makes your lungs less pliable when your chest is tight is FUN
posted by angrycat at 2:59 AM on March 24 [1 favorite]


I hope situations unfucking themselves are ok for this thread: My mother is a lot better, and thinks her problems might have been spring's first allergy issues for her. But it was a stressful couple of days (for me).
posted by Harald74 at 3:15 AM on March 24 [10 favorites]


I was typing in the covid update thread when I found out my friend may have it and was all yelly over there and now I feel bad.

Woops.
posted by freethefeet at 3:24 AM on March 24 [3 favorites]


JFC!

One of the bad things about this crisis is that a) I've had more time than usual to keep up on the idiocy that is being spouted and b) it seems to have emboldened idiocy in ways that are far from normal.

The latest is the Cheeto in Chief proposing to just let 2.5% of the people die because someone might fall out of the 1% and then other governors just going along with it as a good idea1. Every couple of days this dumbass or one of his lackeys says the quiet parts out loud and I knew people's actions had the effect that they are advocating but I didn't really believe they thought the bad outcomes are good were a thing.

I'm way too old to be having a crisis of innocence and belief in the goodness of my fellow man. Until last week I don't think I really thought that Neutral and Chaotic Evil were philosophies that any significant portion of the population adhered to. Even Lawful Evil was something that I figured was a very small percentage of the population if quite visible because the LE types would seek out positions that would let them be LE and those happen to often be high profile. Now it is becoming plain to me that nope, the evil side of alignments are like 25%+ of the population and Wow the world is a darker place.

You know I'm used to wealthy old people thinking "sacrifice" (IE:other people dieing) is ok when the sacrificees are poor, young and preferably PoC but this horseman isn't going to be discriminating that way. They've shown in the past no problem with having poor 18 year olds get chewed up in a war (especially if their spawn can be assured safety in the national guard). Sure wealthy Americans are going to be able to line cut for a ventilator or whatever but that isn't a get out of death free card. If 2.5% of Americans die that is likely to be three Senators and a dozen Congresspersons, at least, as most are in the demographics that are harder hit.

@SAChakrabooks tweeted "In case you've ever wondered what kind of attitude led to ritual human sacrifice, conservatives arguing that 3.4% of the population is an acceptable price to pay for the hope of a better economy is exactly it." and it is hitting me as as an explainer the same way realizing 3/4 of the unexplainable bad shit you hear about happening is linked to racism (like how bad public transit some places is an intentional feature of racist policy).

And now I'm up at 2:30 in the morning and I have to brave the pharmacy in a few hours to pick up the stuff that keeps me alive and I'm hoping they have some sort of medication I can take to help me sleep because if I don't get at least 8 hours soon I fear my head might literally explode Scanners style.

Which i just discovered is a Canadian film. Do Americans of sufficient age know the movie?

[1] does he really think he'll be re-elected if 100K Americans are dying in the streets every month from a crisis he encouraged just because their stock portfolio is doing well? Maybe he does and maybe he's right and that is just too enraging to think about right now.
posted by Mitheral at 4:11 AM on March 24 [16 favorites]


Mitheral, given that people living in poverty and PoC are more likely to have the sorts of co-morbidities that make COVID-19 so deadly, and given that people living in poverty and PoC already have trouble accessing high-quality medical care ... I think the word "sacrifice" here is doing exactly what you think it is.

We've already seen that the CDC has one set of guidelines for people in power (e.g. test on demand) and another for the plebs (go home and self-isolate, don't call us until you are literally in respiratory failure and we may not be able to test you even then!) and yet another for healthcare workers (no mask? wear a scarf!)

Caveat: this post was not pre-approved by my employer's Communications department. WE ARE DOING A GREAT JOB.
posted by basalganglia at 4:35 AM on March 24 [19 favorites]



I hate Trump so much. SO MUCH.

God, if he ends up firing Fauci, the fuckery will have no bounds. At least Fauci is savvy enough to balance petting the man's ego with speaking scientific truth, but he's walking a fine line.
posted by velvet_n_purrs at 5:38 AM on March 24 [5 favorites]


My neighbours are proving to be lockdown scofflaws, I’m sure you’ll all be shocked to hear.
posted by skybluepink at 5:53 AM on March 24 [1 favorite]


And in case people need something else to stress about, there are reports that white supremacist groups have been discussing using the coronavirus as a bioweapon against the FBI, Jews, and other perceived enemies. (How sensationalized these stories are, I have no idea. It's sad enough I find them believable in this world.)

I have been trying SO HARD not to wish Covid-19 on anyone (even 45), but these fuckers are making it extremely difficult to hold that moral line.
posted by velvet_n_purrs at 6:04 AM on March 24 [4 favorites]


One of my closest friends is planning to drive from NYC to Colorado to be with her elderly parents and I just can't. She's normally smart and kind. I tried to call her and texted her, which texts she deemed "patronizing." Great.
posted by lauranesson at 8:05 AM on March 24 [6 favorites]


My mom is one of those people that think that this is all overblown, and that if she goes out she'll be fine. Her and my dad have haircuts scheduled this weekend, and she's happy they haven't been cancelled (which, a totally different question of how the salon is still open). I'm so mad. I honestly want to block her number until this is over, because every time I talk to her it's something along those lines. Both of my parents are in their 60s and heavy smokers, and she has diabetes. Gahhhh.

I've struggled with a parent / child role reversal with her for a big portion of my life, and this is really digging that up and amplifying it. It'll be good therapist fodder.
posted by Sparky Buttons at 9:28 AM on March 24 [7 favorites]


And in case people need something else to stress about, there are reports that white supremacist groups have been discussing using the coronavirus as a bioweapon against the FBI, POC, and other perceived enemies. (How sensationalized these stories are, I have no idea. It's sad enough I find them believable in this world.)

The headline says Jews. The article doesn't talk about any other minority targeting. Can we not be erased even when actual Nazis are actually trying to kill us, thanks?
posted by snuffleupagus at 9:33 AM on March 24 [8 favorites]


snuffleupagus, I am truly, truly sorry. I had an inexcusable brain lapse. I don't suppose a mod could delete my post, or edit it to replace POC with Jews?
posted by velvet_n_purrs at 9:53 AM on March 24 [1 favorite]


[Made that edit.]
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 9:56 AM on March 24 [4 favorites]


The Premier of Ontario made an announcement yesterday afternoon that all non-essential businesses would have to close by end of day today. Then last night they released the list of essential businesses and as far as I can tell the only things deemed non-essential are stores not related to food, pets, alcohol, or construction and gyms. The list is nicely itemized so I guess they'll be able to remove things next week when the number of cases is still increasing but it feels like a missed opportunity.
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 10:59 AM on March 24 [1 favorite]


And then there's THESE ASSHOLES in my part of town. A decision like that doesn't come from some guy on the floor thinking, oh, look, extra masks. That decision comes from higher up. And Target's mealy-mouthed apology was some serious bullshit. At least most of them got donated when the officials stepped in. Target wouldn't even let the people who wanted to buy them all to give them to hospitals buy them, the fuckers.

And just when I didn't think things could get worse, the moron in charge of Seattle's department of transportation (a white dude who changed his last name to Zimbabwe, which...) suddenly, with four hours warning last night, closed the West Seattle Bridge to all traffic because of cracks they've been aware of for months that have been widening. Months. They've known. And they're supposed to be limiting the low swing bridge to first responders (there are no hospitals here, you have to go across the bridge to get to downtown Seattle), buses, and freight. Which, great, maybe we'll see a few trucks now and again make their way through the miles long backup of semitrucks unloading from the shipping docks, but I bet we never see any real restocking of shelves again. No one will want to come out here. We'll have to drive way south and then north on two-lane roads to get to medical treatment. It's unreal. They say assessing it will be weeks, and then coming up with a plan, and then actually implementing it will take months.
posted by kitten kaboodle at 11:13 AM on March 24 [6 favorites]


right after lunch at work i started feeling shitty, so i left work, managed to get into the doctor's office and now i am quarantined for two weeks as suspect - fortunately, i stocked up over the last week or so

i just knew i was going to get stuck one way or another
posted by pyramid termite at 11:40 AM on March 24 [5 favorites]


oh, yes, those 7 buck digital thermometers - they're trash, don't trust them - they were reporting 96 or 97, but i have a low grade fever ...
posted by pyramid termite at 11:42 AM on March 24 [2 favorites]


Been feeling paranoid about having a mild fever all afternoon - I don't have a thermometer and I feel fine, even went out for my usual 15mi bike ride this morning. But now I look and feel a little more flushed than usual. I had to go into the office to pick something up this morning, security was doing temperature checks at the door and I was waved through, but I don't know what their threshold is vs my usual baseline... I live alone and am low-risk so I feel the worst about potentially having brought the virus into my workplace (which, at least, is mostly dead - I waved to one work acquaintance from across the giant open plan office as I did my thing and left, and he was the only person I saw other than security) Or maybe I'm just worrying myself literally sick.

Either way that's enough to nix my plans to go grocery shopping soon - I've already been hunkered down for over a week and have enough food to probably last another 2 weeks, but that puts me needing to go back out right when folks are saying things will be the worst.. cool.
posted by btfreek at 1:03 PM on March 24 [1 favorite]


Whatever I've got, covid, flu, bubonic plague, has got to my voice just at the point where I'm going to be recording videos for my classes: first up, Emily Dickinson, and her feelings about death (croak) I feel like I'm making some fucked up historical evidence of this shit.
posted by angrycat at 1:35 PM on March 24 [5 favorites]


I gotta get this out…

Donald Trump is not a brilliant businessman. He's a fucking idiot and an asshole. Anyone who doesn't agree is also a fucking idiot who shouldn't be allowed to handle sharp implements, a fucking asshole — ditto — or fucking both. Praise him in my presence one more GOTTDAMN TIME.

Okay. Thank you.
posted by ob1quixote at 1:38 PM on March 24 [25 favorites]


I am so angry that it's making me physically ill. I'm going to survive this virus and die of a fucking coronary.
posted by Two unicycles and some duct tape at 4:11 PM on March 24 [17 favorites]


A really close friend died on Sunday night in hospital. I was in 100% shock and disbelief about this until I sat down tonight to write a condolences email to her family, in lieu a card and flowers. Sending an email felt so unceremonious and unbefitting to what an amazing person she was and how I should be acting toward her lovely parents. And at the same time, the act of emailing -- and especially wavering over that send button for a full minute -- snapped me out of my denial funk somewhat. It was admitting to myself that it actually happened, acknowledging that by sending this I put a message out into the world that no it wasn't a wacky misunderstanding from a dark joke gone awry (I can hear her voice explaining it all now with her incredulous giddy laughter).

There will be no gathering or hugs or crying on shoulders. Which is insane for someone who would draw literally hundreds to her, from every corner of the world. Not to mention that this shouldn't even be happening in the first place.

I don't have many details yet about how or why she died, but I'm wondering if it was coronavirus-related (she has always been severaly immunocompromised and was very strictly self-isolating). Ultimately, it doesn't matter, but my mind still wants to know how to categorise this...was it preventable? Was there enough equipment, staff, time? Would this have likely happened anyway, and it's just supremely shitty timing? I'll know, but not tonight.
posted by iamkimiam at 4:36 PM on March 24 [29 favorites]


Seriously, Ontario's list of essential workplaces is a joke. The construction-related ones start well, dealing with the healthcare sector and critical provincial infrastructure but then goes on to include all construction - "Construction work and services, including demolition services, in the industrial, commercial, institutional and residential sectors" - like are there sectors outside of the commercial, institutional and residential sectors? So all construction is essential.

Realtors are essential too apparently - "Land registration services, and real estate agent services and moving services".

Here is the list of essential retail businesses:
  • Retail and wholesaling
  • Businesses engaged in the retail and wholesale sale of food, pet food and supplies, and household consumer products necessary to maintain the safety, sanitation and essential operations of residences and businesses, including grocery stores, supermarkets, convenience stores, markets and other similar retailers
  • Businesses that provide essential items for the health and welfare of animals, including feed, animal food, pet food and animal supplies including bedding
  • Beer, wine and liquor stores and alcohol producers, and stores that sell beer and wine through arrangements with authorized providers; cannabis stores and cannabis producers
  • Gas stations, diesel, propane and heating fuel providers including providers of motor vehicle, aircraft and water/marine craft fuels
  • Motor vehicle, auto-supply, auto and motor-vehicle-repair, including bicycle repair, aircraft repair, heavy equipment repair, watercraft/marine craft repairs, car and truck dealerships and related facilities
  • Hardware stores and stores that provide hardware products necessary to the essential operations of residences and businesses
  • Business providing pharmaceuticals and pharmaceutical services, including pharmacies and dispensaries
  • Businesses that supply office products and services, including providing computer products and related repair and maintenance services, for individuals working from home and for essential businesses
  • Safety supply stores (e.g. work clothes, Personal Protective Equipment) Like what is left out here? Book stores, video games, and non-work clothes? I guess this will shut down a jeweler too but Best Buy, Canadian Tire, Home Depot, and Walmart can all remain open.
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 6:01 PM on March 24 [3 favorites]


That is a bad list.

We did takeout tonight, 4-8pm online prepay only. It went great. I changed gloves and hand sanitized at least a dozen times. Fish and chips and steak tip dinner lead all scorers.

The guests were mostly brave and optimistic, and really fucking glad we were doing it. Cooking for a family can be a huge pain in the ass, so I'm also lucky it is just me, my Alisun, and the kitties at home.

All island towns now have some form of shelter in place order, except Aquinnah where there is no retail I know of, no gas station, just houses and countryside. And history.

We took orders from laid off staff at 7:30 tonight, one free thing. We had some takers.Plan going forward is to be dark Sunday Monday, 4-8 the other five days, no one comes into the building. and no one has to work these shifts if they do not want to.

We put chili on the menu it is god damn delicious. Sorry I'm all over the map right now.
posted by vrakatar at 7:17 PM on March 24 [13 favorites]


Hey! Hay! I heard from a mutual friend that my buddy is staying the fuck home, not going to Colorado. She's still so mad at me she hasn't talked to me, but she is staying home. This is such real good news.
posted by lauranesson at 11:33 PM on March 24 [15 favorites]


OMG, she's not gonna talk to me for a week but JAZZ HANDS EVERYWHERE.
posted by lauranesson at 11:36 PM on March 24 [14 favorites]


the real pandemic was the systems we made along the way
posted by CheesesOfBrazil at 2:20 AM on March 25 [8 favorites]


Yaaay, go, lauranesson, good friend!

Another friendwin: My friend the essential personnel social worker still must go to work and counsel clients in her tiny office so that the clients can satisfy their parole officers, who are also essential personnel. Impossible to maintain six feet of space: office tiny. All involved are terrified. But no matter: this is all essential activity because the drug war must go on.

To make everything exponentially more stressful, my friend was having trouble getting her elderly mother to understand that NO my friend can't come spend the night at mom's house anymore NO she can't even come in for a minute NO not even if we spray everything with Lysol NO.

Nothing was getting through because her mom just heard "Mom, I'm scared, I need a hug" and kicked into comforting mode--she wasn't taking on that, at nearly 90, she is the one in greater danger and that therefore "comforting mode" is the singlemost terrifying mom mode right now.

But yesterday my friend and I tag teamed her mom. I wrote a completely unhinged e-mail to her mother, who has an e-mail account but doesn't use it, so I sent it to my friend: "Dear my friend's mom, stop it, don't be one of these basic plague moms, you're better than that, you don't need to be giving us migraines!" but more polite and including some stuff about what's going on in Italy and how I spend all day at work writing infographic copy about how to stay home and all night texting friends with parents taking wild risks and not staying home and how terrifying it all is and how very much we need our parents to give it a rest before we lose our minds. And my friend drove over and stood in her mother's front yard and read it to her mother and we got through, finally, and her mom has agreed to stop going to the grocery store and begging my friend to pop over for dinner. Whew!
posted by Don Pepino at 2:55 AM on March 25 [10 favorites]


I got dental work last Tuesday just before the governor shut down the bars and restaurants. I got a "just-in-case" prescription for antibiotics. Yesterday, because I've been in more and more pain, I finally filled the prescription, and if the antibiotics don't work I don't know when I'm going to be able to get another appointment.

(Two conventions I really wanted to go to are canceled and the book I was looking forward to - the ONE thing I was looking forward to that doesn't involve human contact! - got pushed back. I know it's really petty to be sad about any of those things but my mouth hurts a lot.)
posted by Jeanne at 5:56 AM on March 25 [3 favorites]


So a friend of mine just pointed me to this essay, What I learned when my husband got sick with coronavirus [NYT], and now I'm even more freaked out because I always thought of this as "not too bad, like a really bad flu" vs. "really bad, go to hospital and pray for the best" -- I never realized there was a place in between. Was going to post this as an FPP, but nope. Maybe don't click it.
posted by Mchelly at 6:24 AM on March 25 [3 favorites]


Fuck. I woke up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom... and I have a sore throat and very very very slight runny nose in the back. Which is probably nothing, and my forebrain is working hard to make the rest of my brain hear that, but my amygdala is even louder. I'm severely emetophobic, and all the descriptions of "coughing so much I puked" keep ringing through my head. And, of course, the guilt and fear that I may have infected my girlfriend and roommate is super loud, too, but, in this exact moment, the loudest thing I can hear is my own fear for myself.
posted by hanov3r at 7:21 AM on March 25 [2 favorites]


hanov3r, this is me every single morning from 4 to 5 a.m. and then intermittently throughout the day every single day. Drink something comforting like tea. Good luck. Good health. Best wishes. And solidarity.
signed,
low-gradepanickedallthefuckingtime
posted by Don Pepino at 7:28 AM on March 25 [3 favorites]


Me too, and I drink water all day and whenever I get up at night, so I should be super hydrated. But yeah, that "oh shit" feeling. Big fun.
posted by taz (staff) at 7:35 AM on March 25


So, I've been reading these threads but not commenting, but I kind of hit peak stress this morning so ... all along even before coronavirus I have been trying to get Mr. gudrun to up his hygiene and be scrupulous about handwashing when he first comes home. This does NOT come naturally to him, and we have been having some fights about me having to remind him for the millionth time to do that, and all the usual stress of that, since I have some immune system issues and we are both over 60. He is at least working from home now, which helps a bit.

Then this morning he finds a tick on his arm, and it sure looks like a deer tick, and it has been there for at least a couple of days, since he was pulling ivy off some trees. So, call the doctor and they are phoning in a prescription for doxycycline and we will walk to the pharmacy and get that soon. But, this has just stressed me out with that extra special bonus stress. I really hope this does the trick, because if he gets Lyme Disease while coronavirus is going on ...

Between this and my work friend in the middle of breast cancer treatment, down to 95 pounds, with bonus broken bone in her foot, and Mr. gudrun's college friend, cancer survivor with immune system issues, waiting for the results of her coronavirus test, my anxiety level has peaked. Fuck!
posted by gudrun at 8:27 AM on March 25 [8 favorites]


Was going to post this as an FPP, but nope. Maybe don't click it.

My sibling, who is 36 with toddler twins and a 50-something spouse living a bit north of NYC sent this to me and my 70-something parents, who live in LA (about an hour apart).

I thought what Cortex said about "come on in the water's meh" was exactly right about day to day under stay-home.

But what's new is plowing through that meh but with this constant dread about who will get sick when, knowing you won't be able to help, hoping the resources will be there. And a serious, potentially unrecoverable fall off in work means a lot more time for brooding.
posted by snuffleupagus at 8:38 AM on March 25 [2 favorites]


It's prime allergy season here. Plus, people are nonchalant about distancing. #allwaysconcerned

I have a new slogan:
6 feet apart or 6 feet under.

(Maybe it will get their attention?)
posted by mightshould at 8:38 AM on March 25 [9 favorites]


I have a new slogan:
6 feet apart or 6 feet under.


Time for a Gravediggaz/Mathowie collab?
posted by snuffleupagus at 8:41 AM on March 25 [1 favorite]


> Time for a Gravediggaz/Mathowie collab?

OMG that mathowie tweet:
Sittin at home dressed to the nines and still looking fly, my dick’s so long it exceeds the social distance radii
WHAT.
THE.
FUCK.
MATT?
posted by tonycpsu at 8:44 AM on March 25 [4 favorites]


My friend and coworker's cat suddenly became very ill, and it might be cancer. The cat is at the vet right now for tests, and my friend can't even be there with him because vets around here are only doing pickup service because of social distancing/lockdown. Of all the fucking times, this is the worst; I'm just heartbroken for her and praying for her boy to be OK.

Fuck this year sideways.
posted by velvet_n_purrs at 8:55 AM on March 25 [11 favorites]


The Bloggess Speaks
posted by snuffleupagus at 9:55 AM on March 25


I made the dubious decision to watch Twelve Monkeys, (I'm writing something set in City Hall and the Eastern State Penn) and all I can say is that Brad Pitt's performance is somehow in sync with my mood.
posted by angrycat at 1:17 PM on March 25 [3 favorites]


Can I ask what the point is of making an office chair where the back reclines but the seat doesn't tilt? FUCK OFF CHAIR DESIGNERS!!!
posted by bonobothegreat at 7:38 PM on March 25 [11 favorites]


Solid takeout biz tonight with all the caution. Driving home eerie quiet and the few other cars driving extra slow. Is that a thing? are people driving extra slow where you are?

Last night I had a skunk come right up the front porch steps and not run away when I told him to fuck off. He ran off eventually and I thought, so many hotels and restaurants closed so less overflowing dumpsters for skunks, gulls, raccoons...ripple effects on micro systems, economic and biologic and all points in between.

Stay frosty. We can manage, mitigate, and mediate this damn thing.
posted by vrakatar at 9:06 PM on March 25 [11 favorites]


are people driving extra slow where you are?

Nobody wants any unforeseen contingencies right now.
Even the paranoid/prejudiced preppers only want foreseen contingencies.
posted by snuffleupagus at 9:21 PM on March 25 [2 favorites]


I keep thinking about how I broke my leg chasing a cat a couple of years ago.
posted by angrycat at 9:29 PM on March 25 [3 favorites]


Saw my doctor today- prenatal appointment. He said that while telehealth is available for other things, he needs to keep seeing me in person.

An old friend posted about his counselling practice doing sessions via Skype and you know what, I'm going to sign up.
posted by freethefeet at 3:40 AM on March 26 [3 favorites]


Nobody wants any unforeseen contingencies right now.

I wish. We had a person on NextDoor trying to arrange a "county-wide scavenger hunt." The idea was for people to make teddy bear tableaus at their houses, and then people were supposed to drive all over hell looking for them. The person who was trying to set it up insisted it wasn't in violation of the statewide lockdown order because people would stay in their cars and we're allowed to leave our houses for recreational purposes (taking walks and cycling). Lots of people tried to explain why this is a very bad idea and a violation of the order, but she was absolutely not having it. The post was gone this morning though, so someone developed some brains.
posted by FencingGal at 6:42 AM on March 26 [3 favorites]


We had a guy on NextDoor who said he didn’t want any lectures, but did anyone know if any of the hand car washes were still open.
posted by skybluepink at 6:56 AM on March 26 [1 favorite]


I’ve realized one of things that’s been disturbing me the most is that we can no longer trust the CDC. Something is deeply wrong there. It seems like it has to be more than underfunding, understaffing. Were the bureaucratic positions filled by Trump loyalists? WTF is going on?
posted by Waiting for Pierce Inverarity at 7:55 AM on March 26 [2 favorites]


we can no longer trust the CDC.

What makes you say this?
posted by Miko at 8:50 AM on March 26


What makes you say this?

They botched testing, have claimed in a public statement to the New York Times that reducing their staff in China from 47-14 since 2017 did not hinder their response to the pandemic, initially told people masks were ineffective for the public (meanwhile mask wearing cultures like Taiwan have had less steep rate of infection) instead of being honest that we have a shortage and need them for healthcare providers, and now they are telling healthcare providers it is acceptable to use a bandana or scarf when masks are not available.
posted by Waiting for Pierce Inverarity at 9:15 AM on March 26 [13 favorites]


They also just sent out a taxpayer-funded Trump campaign postcard. We can't survive this without the CDC, but it's not clear that we can survive it with the CDC as presently constituted, either.
posted by tonycpsu at 9:17 AM on March 26 [9 favorites]


I woke up from a nap to hear this toddler in an apartment below me belting out rap tunes. It was like a three year old yelling

Let me welcome everybody to the Wild Wild WEST
A state that's untouchable like Eliot NESS
Hits your eardrum like a slug to your CHEST

I just imagine a parent, hiding
posted by angrycat at 11:17 AM on March 26 [13 favorites]


we regret to inform you that in this year of our lord 2020, the parent was filming
posted by snuffleupagus at 11:54 AM on March 26 [23 favorites]


[the CDC] initially told people masks were ineffective for the public (meanwhile mask wearing cultures like Taiwan have had less steep rate of infection)

It's still WHO advice that
If you are healthy, you only need to wear a mask if you are taking care of a person with suspected 2019-nCoV infection.
Further reading from the BBC today: Coronavirus: Why some countries wear face masks and others don't
posted by XMLicious at 2:10 PM on March 26


Speaking of that... Even if it's true that there's no need for asymptomatic people to wear masks (which no longer seems certain, given the latest research), it's easier to convince coughing people to wear masks if everyone is wearing masks. If mask-wearing is stigmatized then symptomatic people will resist it.
posted by mbrubeck at 2:41 PM on March 26 [10 favorites]


I'm considering making a yarn mask just to remind me to not touch my face if I go outdoors. Which so far I am NOT DOING.
posted by jenfullmoon at 5:23 PM on March 26


If you are healthy, you only need to wear a mask if you are taking care of a person with suspected 2019-nCoV infection.

This is dumb advice based on the original SARS infection. With SARS-CoV-2, nobody except people who have already had the virus knows for sure if they are healthy. 1/3 of infected people show no symptoms, and they would be the ones not wearing masks by following the CDC advice, then infecting everyone else.
posted by benzenedream at 6:21 PM on March 26 [5 favorites]


Fuck fucking fuck.
I'm lucky compared to most people- I can work from home, I've got some savings, and I'm reasonably healthy after being really sick last year. But this social isolation and stress is fucking with my head.
posted by daybeforetheday at 1:52 AM on March 27 [2 favorites]


This morning I laid in bed and I could swear that I felt the cortisol physically travelling through me like electricity. Tight chest. My hands won't stop sweating. I haven't felt this particular brand of physical anxiety so consistently in a while. It reminds me of being a teenager and dealing with untreated panic disorder except all my fears are for sure real this time.

It's very hard to concentrate. I thought I had CBT'd my global catastrophe fixations into submission - though generally my obsession was nuclear fallout - but I've got validation in some way now. I'm also trying to deal with the death of a loved one while being isolated from my family and that has been truly terrible. Then just two days ago 25% of my company lost their jobs due to reverberations from a badly-timed merger (I think this is morally monstrous but I can't think about quitting right now). So there's that to worry about, which is further impeding my ability to do my job, which of course makes me worry more about losing it on top of everything else.

I am thinking lately about the time I had bedbugs. I had bedbugs for months, and then, for a year or more after their assured extinction, I had ghost bedbugs. I had phantom itches and every time I felt the smallest tickle I would leap out of bed, ripping off my covers and looking for the bugs. I don't know if I'll be OK for a long time.
posted by one of these days at 5:19 AM on March 27 [6 favorites]


my friend's test came back negative! A small glimmer of hope.
posted by freethefeet at 5:27 AM on March 27 [11 favorites]


I thought I had CBT'd my global catastrophe fixations into submission - though generally my obsession was nuclear fallout

I hear you here.

I realized yesterday that "unprecedented global pandemic shuts down entire countries and forces me and everyone I know to stay indoors and possibly lose our jobs while Donald Fuckin' Trump is president" is exactly the sort of plot that my hyperrealistic stress dreams have often had.

So, tl;dr, it's a literal living nightmare. Fffffffffffffuuuuck
posted by CheesesOfBrazil at 8:55 AM on March 27 [14 favorites]


There's a new Biden thread, and I don't want to import that trouble into this one. However, FUCK!
posted by paper chromatographologist at 10:30 AM on March 27


1/3 of infected people show no symptoms, and they would be the ones not wearing masks by following the CDC advice, then infecting everyone else.

i'm now wondering if i was exposed when i was in the ER last month, sharing a room for 6h with a woman who had the most terrifying cough i've ever heard and who was there for the second time that week for not being able to breathe. i think i had a day or two of low-grade blahs after that? like i slept 17h one day and then 14 the next, and felt great afterwards.

how many ppl did i give that to. god.
posted by poffin boffin at 11:41 AM on March 27 [2 favorites]


The fatigue is really incredible. I was having trouble staying hydrated just because I would be awake to drink my coffee and then back to bed.

I'm on day four or five of this
posted by angrycat at 12:15 PM on March 27 [7 favorites]


Now it appears the simple act of going for a walk is off the table. Tried it, could not deal. This is seriously fucked up.
posted by grumpybear69 at 1:02 PM on March 27 [7 favorites]


i'm now wondering if i was exposed when i was in the ER last month, sharing a room for 6h with a woman who had the most terrifying cough i've ever heard

I keep thinking about this woman who was letting her early elementary school age son wander around the Sprouts near me with a hacking bronchial cough after public awareness had arrived and people were buying up provisions. Too young to have any presence of mind about covering his mouth. I kept trying to get away from him and he kept coming down my aisle somehow. My favorite part was when he started sticking his hands into the produce displays. While coughing.

That's getting close to ten days ago now, but just yikes.
posted by snuffleupagus at 1:03 PM on March 27 [3 favorites]


I realized yesterday that "unprecedented global pandemic shuts down entire countries and forces me and everyone I know to stay indoors and possibly lose our jobs while Donald Fuckin' Trump is president" is exactly the sort of plot that my hyperrealistic stress dreams have often had.

Gonna be really wild to see the long-lasting mental health effects of this. I'm trying to figure out if I'm going to swing towards, "Aaaand now every decision I make will need to be global-pandemic-proof too!" or if my brain is going to go, "Huh... we had a global pandemic and I didn't die? Maybe I don't need to be so anxious about all these little things." This is the theory behind exposure therapy, after all: face your fear long enough for your brain to regulate your emotions and realize that actually, you can do the thing and the world won't end.

Of course this relies on me actually not dying and the world actually not ending. But if either of those happen I suppose I won't have to worry about my mental health.
posted by brook horse at 3:52 PM on March 27 [10 favorites]


On the one hand: crafting is going well, and blogging is going well. On the other hand, I burst into tears 8 times today, which is doubling my previous quarantine record.

I tried going outside today, by which I mean, pacing back and forth on my patio in an attempt to get 10000 steps in like usual. This took a lot for me to do, y'all. And then I got interrupted in this after 13 minutes when my neighbors started smoking, and smoking, and smoking, and then pot smoking, through their screen door for hours. Blech.

I am watching a variety show online and I am tired of being encouraged to turn on my camera and un-mute myself so I can be seen and be chatty. I don't want to show a bunch of strangers my unexpected crying snotface, thankyouverymuch. I think hearing me bursting into sobs might ruin the mood, somehow. Why can't I just quietly watch from the back of the room?
posted by jenfullmoon at 7:28 PM on March 27 [6 favorites]


Cry and vent it out, you might find a little courage in the dry crust in the corners of your eyes later.

Takeout at work remains consistent. Everything remains eerie still otherwise. Still only two confirmed cases here on the island. Supply chain seems to be fine. we are getting orders from Sysco, webstraunt, even sid wainer.

Traffic on the ferries is way down after the initial big bug out response, so that's good. My SO is starting to feel the stress. Fortunately I have a folk remedy for that.

Get tough, metafilter. Stay smart and safe and help where you can. We can get thru this.
posted by vrakatar at 8:29 PM on March 27 [5 favorites]


A spot of good news for those of us contending with no car, shortened grocers' hours, useless overnight curfews, and the mostly nonsensical ordering of citibike, lime, revel, etc. to stop renting vehicles making it difficult to make a real grocery trip: The delivery services are finally getting back to the point where you have a decent chance of having an order accepted and fulfilled.

While I don't feel great about someone else being out there on my behalf, I am quite happy that they are still able to make money. One nice thing about Prime Now in a situation like this is that the driver's have very little personal interaction with the warehouse people and vice versa, they pull up to the dock, find a cart, scan it, and do their thing pretty much on their own. I fear for the warehouse workers almost as much as the folks working at the grocery stores. Speaking of which, Florida's largest chain is installing plexiglas shields between the customer and checker in an attempt to reduce the risk of spreading the virus. It will be interesting to see which stores keep them after the crisis.
posted by wierdo at 11:15 PM on March 27 [3 favorites]


I had a similar thought, wierdo. Like, why have they not had these shields all along?
posted by skybluepink at 2:15 AM on March 28 [6 favorites]


I'm guessing that the sneezeguards at checkout hadn't taken off before because most grocery stores pride themselves on the "hello, dear customers!" kind of friendliness (along with forcing the checker to greet and ask if you found anything, etc.). The sneeze guards are unfriendly, but they do make a ton of sense.
posted by TwoStride at 8:07 AM on March 28


I've seen a lot of fat-phobic posts on various social medias, especially this week, and it's getting to me. Fuck that noise.
posted by Sparky Buttons at 12:41 PM on March 28 [13 favorites]




Ugh, he's a national treasure.
posted by wierdo at 6:26 PM on March 29 [3 favorites]


The other shoe has dropped. 3 of my ER coworkers have tested positive, 5 more are awaiting result. Our hospital is turned inside out with all these vents but we are getting by. Right now we have enough PPE to work safely. That is going to change and I will need to check in with myself to make sure I'm not getting swept away with the storm. This is the very tippy top of the iceberg and it is already much more chaotic and macabre than anything I have experienced. It is very odd to be cutting away at the little niceties that I've always thought were priorities of patient care. Also it's very uncomfortable to wear that gear for 12 hours but thank god I have that gear, but also fuck this all to hell and fuck this gear.

I really hope everyone is doing okay. I'm so sorry to those with sick loved ones. This is a terrible thing that is happening.
posted by pintapicasso at 6:55 PM on March 29 [37 favorites]


All of this is so terrible and I'm so tired of being told how easy it ought to be.
posted by We put our faith in Blast Hardcheese at 11:13 AM on March 30 [4 favorites]


It is NOT BETTER to catch the virus so you can get employment insurance benefits than to figure out alternatives. Fuuuuuuuuu
posted by wellred at 11:49 AM on March 30 [3 favorites]


This week's This American Life is super hard to listen to this week. Just a warning.
posted by jenfullmoon at 11:51 AM on March 30 [3 favorites]


Okay, this is the firstiest of first-world-problem fucks, and it's really a minor thing, but...there's this annual conference I attend for work. I usually go to the European one, but last year I got to go to the European one and the North American one because I was presenting at both, and it was amazing.

This year, though, both have been moved to online-only because of the coronavirus, so I'll still be attending both, but it won't be the same. I'll miss out on all the networking and the wandering around between sessions running into people I know from previous years and the social events and even the stupid little conference swag things like free pens.

I get the necessity of it all, and it's absolutely the right thing to do, but I'm still really disappointed. The European one this year was going to be in Amsterdam...and I've never been. :(
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 5:21 PM on March 30 [5 favorites]


I had today and yesterday off, Capt. Takeout resumes tomorrow. 8 cases confirmed on island, and a scare at the ferry terminal in Woods Hole, closed early tonight for decontamination. Boats should be running tomorrow.

Drove into Edgartown today it it was ghostly. Saw some old industry friends outside their pub. They are doing takeout. Drove home the long way along state beach, green waves with frosty feisty whitecaps.

This is a fine world and worth fighting for.
posted by vrakatar at 8:04 PM on March 30 [4 favorites]


The Atlantic: The Social-Distancing Culture War Has Begun

Really, people?!? The virus is political now? That is the hill you'll (literally) die on?
posted by Harald74 at 1:36 AM on March 31 [5 favorites]


Over here in the UK it does feel like our right-wingers see social-distancing as political, as if it's the state being heavy-handed. The people I know personally who aren't taking the guidelines seriously are the same ones who think the risks of Brexit are overstated. Definitely a kind of "you can't tell me what to do" attitude on show around here, sadly.
posted by Mauve at 1:51 AM on March 31 [9 favorites]


At the driving range, while Frost and his like-minded friends slathered on hand sanitizer and kept six feet apart, the white-haired Republicans seemed to delight in breaking the new rules. They made a show of shaking hands, and complained loudly about the “stupid hoax” being propagated by virus alarmists. When their tee times were up, they piled defiantly into golf carts, shoulder to shoulder, and sped off toward the first hole.

The nineteenth hole will be six feet deep.
posted by snuffleupagus at 7:16 AM on March 31 [3 favorites]


JFC! Jason Kenny is out there bragging about creating 7000 (temporary) jobs by funding a $7.5 billion dollar subsidy to Keystone XL when just 4 days ago he laid off 25K workers. On a day where for $5 you can get a couple double doubles and a doughnut or a barrel of western canadian select. That's chutzpah there.
posted by Mitheral at 8:28 AM on March 31 [8 favorites]


A friend's daughter is in a NY hospital with it and isn't doing well... he recorded a song and sent it out to her via facebook because he cannot go up there to be with her.....this is the new reality.

Stay home and stay safe.
posted by mightshould at 9:37 AM on March 31 [8 favorites]


Just officially got word that my summer fellowship is cancelled because the lecture I was supposed to help organized was also cancelled. My boss ain't going to pony up for me, so maybe I can TA remotely to earn a salary over the summer. Or go without, I guess, like half of the rest of the world.

Fuck everything. At least I get the CV line, I guess.
posted by sciatrix at 10:17 AM on March 31 [10 favorites]


So, I have lupus. I can't get plaquenil, because it's being horded by people with enough money to pay doctors to write scrips to people who don't have lupus or malaria. Also, because of hoarders, I've had to go to the store almost every day, trying to find basics and loo roll.

Today I woke up with a fever, a sore throat and mild flu symptoms. I'm sure it's just a cold, but I'm suddenly terrified. I thought about things like, my will isn't updated, what would happen to my kid if I have corona and have given it to my husband and we both die? Who in my family could even understand what I've done financially so that they could untangle the web and settle the estate? I mean, I'm sure it's just a cold, and I'm overreacting, because catastrophizing is what I do, but none the less, I hate this damn timeline.

Fucking CERN. Also, fuck those people that opened the dark sarcophagus and unleashed whatever curse that was. And fuck President Brainworms for being the antichrist and the so-called Christians that praise his rise. And fuck the Republicans for drowning the government in a bathtub. Well done, assholes. Fuck the billionaires hiding on their yachts and mansions, rather than spending some of their stolen labor donating PPE to the front line. No, you know, fuck the billionaires, period. Fuck the covid virus right up it's happy fun ball butt. Fuck the people that think it's funny to lick elevator buttons and sneeze on produce. Fuck the justice department and state department for using a pandemic to push through detrimental and destructive policies. Fuck the doctors who prescribe dangerous untested meds to Karen and Chad, making it unaffordable or unavailable to people who need it for what it's actually used for. Fuck the CEOs who stand behind Trump like hostages, afraid of losing their millions. Pretty much fuck. Just. Fuck.
posted by SecretAgentSockpuppet at 10:28 AM on March 31 [30 favorites]


Just had a bad experience at the dispensary:

Called customer service, told them I had Covid symptoms, what precautions should I take to not infect the dispensary, was told to arrange a curbside pickup.

I spent about an hour assembling a curbside order for two month's worth of medical marijuana, to be told they were declining service because I'd noted in the order I had Covid symptoms.

The head dude of the dispensary called with notes of panic in his voice. Absolutely no way, he said. If any of my staff get sick, we shut down. Okay, reasonable fear.

But this is in Montgomery Co PA, second to Philly in cases--WTH--they have no protocol at all.

Not sure what I'm going to do. First world problems, I know. But I have my card for Reasons, and these Reasons will be difficult to deal with if I don't have product.

I asked the guy if foresaw any supply chain problems that would close them down next week and he was all "I don't know what's going to happen five minutes from now!"

This is akin to the rumblings I hear in PA about not telling people you're positive, people will freak out.

It's the wasted time, my dependency on something that might be hard to get, but it's also this weird GO AWAY vibe in every syllable of the head dude's voice that freaks me out.

And you know what, the quickest way to get your employees sick is to discourage people from reporting their symptoms.
posted by angrycat at 1:06 PM on March 31 [10 favorites]


That doesn't seem quite right to me, if they're licensed in part as a medical provider. They should be able to arrange some kind of contactless curbside protocol. You could hold a sign to your passenger window and then they could deposit the bag on the hood of your car. Then they go back inside before you get out to take it.
posted by snuffleupagus at 1:37 PM on March 31 [6 favorites]


My poor SO is walking around dejected, because I was just going to mask up and alcohol wipe the money, and he insisted that we be responsible and call.
posted by angrycat at 1:48 PM on March 31 [3 favorites]


Oh, I've very much seen the social distancing thing turning political. My town Facebook page (my barometer for these sorts of things) has a vocal resistor minority who can't pass up any opportunity to say "BUT HOW MANY HAVE RECOVERED" any time anyone mentions the rising number of cases. As if that matters. However, this doesn't bother me as much as most right-wing pushback does, because in my view, this is going to very swiftly take care of itself as these people, and people they know and care about, get sick. Which will happen.
posted by Miko at 4:16 PM on March 31 [4 favorites]


First week of online learning in Philly area:
1) Student #1 had worked at a local hospital eighteen hours the previous day. She said there are three more ventilators in the hospital and that's it. She also said, with a great degree of seriousness, that if you're not dying, you should not go to the hospital. She said they had PPE rules to change masks after being in COVID-positive rooms, but that order had only come down a few days ago. They're running out of everything.
2) Student #2 works at a long-term health care facility. He said they've been reusing the gear and putting it through some sort of ultraviolet light process to sanitize it. It sounded like a process Trump was trying to describe a few nightmare pressers back.
3) Student #3 works for an infectious disease doctor, who cannot take new patients because he/she is overwhelmed
4) Student #4 was laid off, filed for unemployment, talked about the mechanics of making sure automatic bill pay for everything is turned off, didn't know she'd be getting retro unemployment until somebody in class explained it for her.

It made my complaints of They won't sell me MY WEED pretty silly (not that I mentioned that)
posted by angrycat at 5:06 PM on March 31 [15 favorites]


WTH--they have no protocol at all.
Not sure what I'm going to do.


Meanwhile, the actual Latin King affiliate drug dealers across the street from me have started offering curbside service via a honk system.
posted by phunniemee at 6:02 AM on April 1 [14 favorites]


My dispensary called to arrange a caregiver delivery, saying state had loosened restrictions to make it possible, so yay and good for them. That particular situation is unfucked.
posted by angrycat at 9:43 AM on April 1 [27 favorites]


I'm very pleased for you, angrycat!
posted by jenfullmoon at 9:58 AM on April 1 [2 favorites]


curbside service via a honk system.

They are doing it wrong! That is what phones are for! GHAHH SO STUPID! I know phones are traceable but keep it down with the honking!

Moderate takeout tonight, we invited the police and fire departments to come pick up free dinner. morale within our skeleton crew is good. Cleaning is good, however tonight I thought to myself " I wonder what has become of the limes and lemons pre-cut for garnishing drinks that have been sitting in the service fridge since March 15th?" and it was ugly and moldy and tomorrow I got some cleaning projects/winding down work to do. I have no idea what to do about the tapped kegs besides drink them. I've been in this industry for almost 30 years so I should have a better idea than that.

Had a thought, here on mv we are very lucky this did not unfold in early July, imagine 150 thousand people here with scant incentive to leave. Feb and March are the deep off season, so we get a force multiplier there.

Spoke with my folks in Sturbridge MA tonight, my mom was pushing me to start wearing a mask. My dad is 82 and has:diabetes, heart problems, stroke risk, dementia, and 3 or 4 other conditions. They are playing it safe and smart.

We can make it. Help each other. Be brave and be smart.
posted by vrakatar at 7:31 PM on April 1 [9 favorites]


So, without ripping the entire fabric of privacy into shreds or whatever, an older family member of mine is a presumed positive, though currently holding their own. They are now quarantined with their spouse. I am far. This is bad and good.

I am (physically) alone and I hate everything right now.
posted by wellred at 4:58 AM on April 2 [9 favorites]


^^vrakatar, hereabouts on the southeast NC coast the beaches closed and sent non-residents away.

I am trying to not think about going to work on Saturday at retail but all of my other work has abruptly ended. I have been forced to work on an hourly basis since the last recession and so don't think I qualify for any unemployment subsidy. Architcural drafting isn't very well paid in good times.

I am so demoralized and frightened of going in to work. It's our largest sale of the year in the garden center. At least they've finally started the 100 person limit. I am hoping a 2 foot distance will ensue. There is no way we can have a 6 foot distance due to our job. There is no PPE. I will try a homemade mask if management will allow it. (It will not be "customer friendly")

I need to get my handwritten will updated. But I don't know who to burden with all my mortal goods (and the stuff still left from my husband that I don't have the resources or emotional resilience to make gone.)

I need to have a conversation with my distant brother about what happens for mom if I am too ill. I have supplied her with 3 weeks necessities. The real problem is that they will make it my job to figure it out and I just can barely function mentally. I am mentally already dead and walking through purgatory as is.

I see others struggling so very hard just to survive and it doesn't seem we care about them at all. Folks will still come to the store for their social gatherings; people's loved ones will die. Healthcare workers will be faced with the unthinkable; lack of resources will cause them great pain and people will die. Capitalism will win in the end.

Hugs to all of you. Know that somewhere out there, this one person loves and cares about you.
posted by mightshould at 5:04 AM on April 2 [12 favorites]


goddamn big box stores are going to kill people. I'm so sorry, mightshould. Why the fuck can't they do curbside with plants the same way they do curbside with groceries? No reason whatsoever. You call in your list of whatever, you stay in your truck with the windows rolled up, somebody comes out and throws your snapdragons in the back, wave goodbye, GTFO. WHAT. Is so hard.

Meanwhile, my town had their weekly telephone town hall last night and the mayor assured every retail person who called in--most people who called in were "essential" employees who were terrified for their lives--that their employer was not allowed by law to prevent them from wearing PPE. Can you rat your ass employer out to your county codes enforcement?
posted by Don Pepino at 5:20 AM on April 2 [8 favorites]


I have been forced to work on an hourly basis since the last recession and so don't think I qualify for any unemployment subsidy

Eligibility can vary a lot from state to state, but you definitely need to look into this - "hourly" shouldn't matter (unless you were/are paid as a contractor (1099 form)), if you get a W-2 you should be eligible in the normal run of things. And the CARES act that just passed expands unemployment to cover 1099 folks. (Big generalizations, of course, but please DO NOT just assume that you can't get any assistance, check with the relevant state agencies.)
posted by soundguy99 at 5:35 AM on April 2 [6 favorites]


I'm 1099, but will check. My state, NC, is overwhelmed and cannot handle the online unemployment claims from all the restaurant and nonessential employee claims.

And good to know that I can wear a cloth over my face by law, because I'm sure to get censured, at least.
posted by mightshould at 6:28 AM on April 2


goddamn big box stores are going to kill people.

I drove past the nearby Home Depot yesterday afternoon, and it was absolutely packed. The parking lot was full all the way out to the end, like you see on a three day weekend sale or ahead of the holidays. I get it, people who are stuck at home are wanting to take care of projects that they have been putting off, but geez. I really hope that they are limiting the number of people inside at a time and taking other steps to help protect both customers and workers, but...

In contrast, the parking lot at the grocery store I passed was not full at all.

(I didn't go into any stores; I just realized that I hadn't driven anywhere in three weeks and wanted to make sure the car battery wasn't going dead.)
posted by Dip Flash at 6:47 AM on April 2 [7 favorites]


My friend’s dad died from coronavirus today, fuck everything.
posted by ellieBOA at 7:30 AM on April 2 [28 favorites]


Informed yesterday that my PI is being "recalcitrant" about demanding that I graduate this summer come hell or high water, so I'd better the fuck buckle down and be productive viral pandemic or no viral pandemic. My third chapter will just be a write-up of why my final experiment failed so someone else can try it again later. (I am 100% sure that the reason it failed boils down to "was not given resources to do it right the first time.") And not only is the fellowship I was counting on for my salary this summer rescinded, my hail-Mary application for a more impressive fellowship didn't succeed--which, it's stupid, it was always a long shot, but just-world fallacy made that hurt even more. Got all that news at once yesterday.

I'm so tired and angry and not sure my career is even going to exist in a year or so. It's going to be a wild, wild ride this summer.
posted by sciatrix at 7:38 AM on April 2 [20 favorites]


Pro tip: do not fall and shatter a tooth during a lockdown. Half of the dentist's emergency numbers do not work, likely because they were only set up for weekend calls, not multi-week outages.
posted by benzenedream at 8:54 AM on April 2 [13 favorites]


Re: dispensaries

South Bay cannabis shops can no longer sell recreational weed on-site under new order
Santa Clara County’s cannabis dispensaries will no longer be allowed to sell recreational marijuana at their shops under a new stay at home order issued by top health officials this week.

It’s a reversal from a decision a few weeks ago that allowed the shops to stay open for both recreational and medicinal customers — deeming both an “essential service.” Now, medical marijuana can be dispensed inside the stores or curbside. But recreational users must use a delivery service to receive their cannabis while they shelter in place.
posted by hanov3r at 9:42 AM on April 2 [1 favorite]


All my province's dentists have been mandated to only have contact with patients requiring grave emergency service IE: an infection that is spreading. Prompted by most of them attending a conference just as things were ramping up in BC at at which COVID-19 positive person were found to attend. They wouldn't be able t look at a shattered tooth unless it was in some way life threatening.
posted by Mitheral at 11:21 AM on April 2 [2 favorites]


I am becoming increasingly annoyed by the raft of stories about the poor beset small business owners who just had to lay off their employees. No guys, starting today you can walk into a bank with some paperwork and walk out with a check or new bank account with enough money to pay your payroll for the next two and a half months. And you don't have to pay it back!

Stop complaining, stop forking your employees, and take the money, assholes!
posted by wierdo at 7:27 PM on April 2 [4 favorites]


This is awful. One of my co-workers died of it....or complications from it. He was hospitalized for covid and had a pre-existing heart problem. The store is saying that he had a heart attack, which maybe is true? I feel hollow. He was such a good person....
posted by mightshould at 7:49 PM on April 2 [13 favorites]


I am becoming increasingly annoyed by the raft of stories about the poor beset small business owners who just had to lay off their employees.

The way it is shaping up my former employer could have had me doing electrical work about $6 an hour. It's all solo stuff, I could have literally seen no one else for the whole 40 hours a week if I made a minor effort to structure to that way. I'm glad to be at home though rather than 250 kilometres away.
posted by Mitheral at 8:14 PM on April 2 [1 favorite]


All my province's dentists have been mandated to only have contact with patients requiring grave emergency service IE: an infection that is spreading. Prompted by most of them attending a conference just as things were ramping up in BC at at which COVID-19 positive person were found to attend. They wouldn't be able t look at a shattered tooth unless it was in some way life threatening.

I was intrigued enough to look into this, and "acute pain" qualifies. (Towards the end, CTL+F will find it.)

The trick is probably finding one of the few dentists who didn't attend. (And then there's the irony of the less motivated clinicians becoming the sole providers.)
posted by snuffleupagus at 8:19 PM on April 2


This is how my dentist, who ironically didn't attend probably because he was the on call ER dentist, phrased it when they were cancelling my appointment:
As dentists, we have been instructed to treat as much as possible over the phone with pain medication and/or antibiotics and only life-threatening problems will be treated in person and this treatment has to be in a hospital setting (I know who to call if this is needed). If you are unsure please call or text me.
So if you are in pain that OTC stuff isn't handling they write you a script via a telehealth appointment but actual tools in mouths won't be done in office.
posted by Mitheral at 8:41 PM on April 2 [3 favorites]


That is really unreal...when you have a dental emergency, it's a legit emergency even if it's not life-threatening. That's a lot of pain to try to manage with OTC scripts, and how are you supposed to eat?

One more impossible thing that happened this week, I guess.
posted by snuffleupagus at 8:50 PM on April 2 [4 favorites]


No guys, starting today you can walk into a bank with some paperwork and walk out with a check or new bank account with enough money to pay your payroll for the next two and a half months.

The literally five hours I spent on hold with the bank today tell me it’s not going to be that easy.
posted by bq at 10:59 PM on April 2 [10 favorites]


That is really unreal...when you have a dental emergency, it's a legit emergency even if it's not life-threatening. That's a lot of pain to try to manage with OTC scripts, and how are you supposed to eat?

The way it was explained to us (in CA) was that a chip or crack would not be treated if it was cosmetic but if pulp or the nerve was exposed they would treat it. I am not a dentist, but I expect having exposed pulp in a shattered tooth sitting there for weeks might lead to complications that would be life threatening.
posted by benzenedream at 11:15 PM on April 2 [2 favorites]


The literally five hours I spent on hold with the bank today tell me it’s not going to be that easy.

Being early days, a lot of folks haven't gotten the message yet. A pre-existing banking relationship with someone familiar with SBA loans will certainly make things easier. I know of a couple of loans that were supposedly approved today (through the grape vine, not personally verified), but I can't say if they have funded.

Point being that, though the law has special provisions allowing any bank or credit union to write PPP loans, many don't do many SBA loans and won't know what the hell they are doing. Things should be better next week after all the memos get circulated.
posted by wierdo at 11:39 PM on April 2 [1 favorite]


I'm so sorry mightshould
posted by daybeforetheday at 3:58 AM on April 3


starting today you can walk into a bank with some paperwork and walk out with a check or new bank account with enough money to pay your payroll for the next two and a half months. And you don't have to pay it back!

As a just-laid-off manager-ish employee of a very small business who is in constant contact with the owner and bookkeeper about this very subject, I WISH it was that simple.

PDF link to Treasury.gov fact sheet on the Payroll Protection Loan

LA Weekly explainer on the PPL

Point being that, though the law has special provisions allowing any bank or credit union to write PPP loans, many don't do many SBA loans and won't know what the hell they are doing. Things should be better next week after all the memos get circulated.

Next week? Best estimate AFAIK is that the actual money doesn't get to the banks until mid-April at best, so you can be sure there's going to be a LOT of variation in who is able and willing to fork over dough when.

Then there are a lot of conditions to the loan and its forgiveness - it's for 8 weeks, not 2 1/2 months, you can't have other SBA loans or even apply for any others through the end of 2020, the loan amounts are based on 2 months of average 2019 payroll costs plus 25%.

That last one means that for lots of businesses - like, say, restaurants, or businesses in my industry (event production) - who can't operate at full capacity while social distancing . . . well, they are looking at using the loan to pay ONLY two months of wages when we don't know how long we will have to social distance for. It actually may make more sense to leave employees on unemployment as a long as possible. Especially since the other aspects of the CARES act - expanding unemployment to 1099 workers and adding $600/week to UI benefits through July - does mean in practice that laid-off employees & non-working contractors can keep their heads just above water for a while. And, yes, they might well be getting more money from this temporary boost to UI than they would in normal wages. (Again, like, say, folks who get a lot of their income in tips, which are supposed to all be reported but ha ha ha we all know they're not (which is fine), so if you're a restaurant owner with servers who "officially" make like $300/week but you know they get another $200+ cash in tips you actually should be considering leaving them on unemployment, 'cause they sure ain't getting $200 in tips on carry-out only orders.)

But then again, there's only 350 billion allotted for this, if a business waits too long to get the PPP it's very possible the money could run out.

Look, I'm not saying it's a bad bill, it's at least a start at keeping workers paid and not over-burdening state-level UI resources, Congress is clearly trying to throw money at the problem, but it is really really really not necessarily as simple as GO GET MONEY AND PAY PEOPLE RIGHT NOW.
posted by soundguy99 at 5:06 AM on April 3 [10 favorites]


Salon.com: As stores shutter, petrified small business owners are in uncharted territory article on how the PPP/PPL is maybe not all that and a bag of chips.
posted by soundguy99 at 5:32 AM on April 3 [3 favorites]


CNBC: White House says small business lending will begin Friday, but JPMorgan says it’s not ready

Hours before the launch of a federal program to dole out at least $350 billion in loans to struggling small businesses, banks interviewed by CNBC weren’t sure they’d be ready.

From massive global institutions with trillion-dollar balance sheets to regional banks and small local lenders, the companies all had one thing in common: They were awaiting key guidance from the Small Business Administration and the U.S. Treasury on exactly how to administer the program.

“They’re not ready at all, they’re desperately awaiting guidance on how to do this,” said Ami Kassar, CEO of small business loan advisory firm MultiFunding. “I think it’s going to be a mess for weeks.”

JPMorgan Chase, the biggest U.S. bank, was the first lender to publicly say what others had whispered: It emailed customers late Thursday to say the company “will most likely not be able to start accepting applications on Friday, April 3rd as we had hoped.”



The article quotes a tweet by @BlockBlake, founder of Lendio:
" What a mess! Just got off a conf call with the SBA. The @SBAgov & @USTreasury are having a power struggle and this is turning into a disaster. Millions of small businesses will be lining up for loans tomorrow, yet those 2 organizations are fighting about process & forms."
posted by snuffleupagus at 7:43 AM on April 3 [4 favorites]


Just thought I'd PSA for anyone else hoping to suspend their loans: apparently the suspension does not apply to Perkins loans held by your institution, or FFEL Stafford loans pre-2010. YMMV and obviously check with your own lenders. My takeaway was that your loan has to say the servicer is the Dept of Ed. Anyway, most of my "federal" Perkins and Stafford loans don't actually apply, so read your fine print.
posted by nakedmolerats at 9:01 AM on April 3 [5 favorites]


Can't you go to IBR to all but private loans? Or are private loans what you're referring to?
posted by angrycat at 9:12 AM on April 3


Yes, I'm already on IBR and I could also consolidate but then I'd lose some other benefits. However, I can't simply stop paying what I thought were my federal loans until September, because #notallfederalloans.
posted by nakedmolerats at 9:21 AM on April 3 [3 favorites]


Yeah, all my loans are in the same boat - a Perkins loan held by my institution and FFEL Stafford loans held by commercial lenders. There is a loud red banner at the top of my loan website reading "You are required to continue making your student loan payments as scheduled."
posted by pemberkins at 9:28 AM on April 3 [4 favorites]


My mom is in a long term care facility in Portland. She's 81 and has numerous health problems, the foremost being heart failure. They started restricting visitors weeks before the general shut-down. Last week they called to tell us that there was a case of COVID-19 in her building, but that they were isolating that floor. This morning I saw a report that there were 29 staff and patients infected. Even without the virus she's near the end of her life and we've been bracing ourselves for it, but I don't want her to die alone.
posted by gamera at 3:04 PM on April 3 [29 favorites]


God damn it, all of this was predictable. All of it. I just fucking hate all of this.
posted by mollweide at 8:20 PM on April 4 [17 favorites]


IS IT JUST ME or does everyone have several moments a day of just blinding, white-light rage at how we have ended up in this place?
posted by Miko at 8:15 AM on April 5 [41 favorites]


Definitely not just you. My current fury is stoked by the way the Tories are trying to blame-shift to the general public.
posted by skybluepink at 9:05 AM on April 5 [4 favorites]


i've been that way every day for the past 4 years so welcome! it's exhausting.
posted by poffin boffin at 9:07 AM on April 5 [10 favorites]


Well, yeah, or for entire semi-adult/adult life, but man is it hyperfocused right now. I feel a tremendous amount of anger a lot of the time but generally try to channel it into practical solution-finding mode. But there are no solutions to some of this.
posted by Miko at 9:35 AM on April 5 [3 favorites]


I can't maintain the rage; I run out of rage-chemicals in my brain and am left teetering on the far edge of rationality, so I have to tap out. Since November 2016 I've been on a no-national-politics, none-of-the-time diet, receiving only carefully curated updates from my housemates on the state of the world. I check in more diligently around state and local elections, but by and large, I have been saving all my rage-chemicals for the run-up to November 2020.

Which is now, so I have recently checked in with my Inner Hulk and hello! Yes! He's still in there. Stronger than ever. SMASH.
posted by invincible summer at 9:50 AM on April 5 [5 favorites]


I can't maintain the rage
Me neither. It devolves into laughter. I try to maintain healthy, sane fury while listening to the governor go on about how there's only so much government can do and thus like so much else this is a matter of people needing to take personal responsibility. He can't close the beaches; we'll just have to rely on Floridians having the simple common good sense Floridians are known for! He's a lil pudgefaced altar boy-looking man standing in front of a microphone with blue cloudless sky behind him and palm trees, but it's hard not to have your vision flip so you see shinyshiny scythe blade where the mic should be and a no-face black hooded robe with bone hands peeping out standing there at the podium. So it feels weird to laugh at him, but at the same time, this shit, and the shithead saying the shit, is hilarious. And Trump! Same thing: Death is standing right in front of you howling and shrieking abominations. But he's orange and he's talking absolute nonsense! How do you not crack up?

Maybe this is hysterics...?
posted by Don Pepino at 10:11 AM on April 5 [10 favorites]


There was a period in the first months after Nov 2016 where I was experiencing genuine unbidden anger at that particular clusterfuck outcome and everything hanging off of it where along with just being an unusually negative conversationalist I took to hammering out a page or so every day on a manual Remington typewriter I'd bought a couple years previous. There was something kind of cathartic in the moment about physically channeling some of that shitty brimming energy into making something, even just a personal journal of how angry and worried and gutted I felt, but I left off of it after several weeks because I found that I wasn't liking being that guy who angrily loudly types any more than I liked being angry in the first place.

I find myself angry now about the dismissiveness and the mishandling of all this from Trump et al and the larger economic fuckery playing into it, but I'm more tired and worried and after years of this Trump shitshow just plain worn out enough from anger and tiredness and worry and my own welling anxiety issues that it's less those bright flares of vibrating fury and more an ache, a low steady throb. Less "I can't fucking believe!" and more "I can in fact fucking believe", maybe.

I haven't and wont accept the normalcy of the fuckedness of so many of these things in a cognizant, rational sense, but there's no denying my brain chemistry is doing what it needs to to tolerate the intolerable and is muting and displacing and steadying the flow of some things, for better and for worse. It's hard to see the better as better when it's such a hard compromise of shifting one kind of bad feeling over another; it's robbing Peter to pay Paul. But if my cortisol is a little lower on average because my body's reworking hot flares of anger for a lower-impact festering unease and disgust, so be it I guess.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:45 AM on April 5 [20 favorites]


I am partially laid off from my main W2 gig and haven't heard a peep from unemployment. Then I had to close my chiro clinic too, so I submitted for the SBA disaster loan advance and have heard nothing but crickets. My clinic is a part time venture and very new so I don't earn much there and I fear my anemic balance sheet is keeping me from getting any help. However, my monthly space rent will still be due eventually as will what I owe my investor. I am ok for the moment, but I am really tired. Cherry to all this is that my main gig is busy as ever and considered essential and I was exposed to someone positive, because of course I was. When you are really busy and easily distracted (thanks adult ADHD) it is hard to remember all the rules to keep yourself safe. FUUUCKKK
posted by doktorj at 7:53 PM on April 5 [8 favorites]


Maybe this is hysterics...?

Nope, you're normal: Gallows Humor Quotes (28 quotes) — Goodreads.
posted by cenoxo at 11:02 PM on April 5 [4 favorites]


Thanks, cenoxo, that's awesome stuff!

“I kept a picture of me kissing my dad’s corpse on the forehead in my wallet for years. I’d break it out any time someone showed me a baby picture, just so they would know how it ends.”
― Doug Stanhope, Digging Up Mother: A Love Story

haaaaar!
posted by Don Pepino at 9:38 AM on April 6 [5 favorites]


Are you fucking kidding me? In one of the more surreal events of the pandemic the Premier of Alberta is acting as a public spokesperson for Shopify.
posted by Mitheral at 11:51 PM on April 6 [5 favorites]


Exercising between 10am and 7pm has just been banned in Paris, I’m chronically ill/limited mobility but have been trying to go for walks, it’s hard for me to get up early and am shattered by 7pm 😢
posted by ellieBOA at 4:08 AM on April 7 [7 favorites]


I'm sorry, ellieBOA, that sucks. Also, this seem sort of illogical? Concentrating the number of people out trying to get a little exercise into fewer hours = more density = more chance of spreading the virus? Maybe I'm overlooking something obvious, though.
posted by taz (staff) at 4:40 AM on April 7 [6 favorites]


Is the thinking perhaps that pushing exercise to the hours when people are typically relaxing and sleeping will result in a lot fewer people will take part? Sort of like how shutting down the parks means that people can still go outside, but they have lost a convenient place to cluster and congregate.
posted by Dip Flash at 6:38 AM on April 7


Thanks taz xx
posted by ellieBOA at 7:47 AM on April 7


Well I got laid off which I didn't really expect but I guess I should've. Our community college is closing all its branch campuses and limiting its offerings through the end of the summer.
posted by angrycat at 11:01 AM on April 7 [10 favorites]


They are closing parks because a small fraction of people are stupid. Saw a bunch of guys working out doing pull ups in close proximity to each other at the lake, in CA where it's week 3 of shelter in place.
posted by benzenedream at 12:24 PM on April 7 [1 favorite]


They just closed state and county parks in New Jersey because of the low-percentage/high visibility/high-stupidity contingent. This is going to be very bad for my mental health. My schedule lets me go on weekday mornings, when no one's there anyway. Ugh.
posted by mollweide at 12:34 PM on April 7 [2 favorites]


They just closed all our county parks too, because of idiots. The parks have been my lifeline and key to sanity these past 4 weeks. I have run and walked in them 3x/week at least. Always observed social distance and started wearing a mask last week. Always went alone. But every time, I'd find groups - 4 guys in their 30s/40s mountain biking together - chances are very slim they all share a house. Multiple families gathering together with some sort of attempt to leave a few feet of space between them, but not very effective. Groups of teens having surreptitious meetups. People whose small kids run up and stumble right into you. People who pass by running, chuffing and breathing, without a mask. Anyway, those folks have ruined it for us all, ruined the chance to walk through the woods and feel the peace of nature for a moment, to go sit quietly on a log somewhere and breathe.
posted by Miko at 12:37 PM on April 7 [13 favorites]




bcd, there is an abortion access and COVID-19 thread here
posted by mostly vowels at 3:37 PM on April 7 [1 favorite]


The sad thing is, I read that thread two weeks ago, and in the decade that's happened since then, I completely forgot about it. Thank you for the pointer.
posted by bcd at 4:16 PM on April 7 [4 favorites]


Hi strip mall that is behind my house, while clattering out your dumpster that lives by my fence at 7am to be emptied into a loud hydraulic garbage truck with a piercing backup beeper was never really necessary for restaurants that open for lunch at the earliest, it is especially not necessary now.

UGH.
posted by snuffleupagus at 8:49 AM on April 8 [5 favorites]


I know I've already said something about it, but I just need to come in here again and reiterate how fucking hard it is to fold one's family's laundry while processing the three existential crises competing for their full attention. Folding laundry gives you time to think and let me tell you, my thoughts are not great.

As always, my condolences to hearts that grieve and thoughts of love and peace to all who struggle with THE WEIGHT.
posted by ob1quixote at 10:56 AM on April 8 [9 favorites]


Laundry folding time is extra podcast time for me.
posted by phatkitten at 1:26 PM on April 8 [3 favorites]


Mort Drucker just died of "breathing difficulties". No test yet for COVID and he was 91 ...but FUCK.
posted by bonobothegreat at 12:46 PM on April 9 [3 favorites]


I've devolved to a state where I'm reading articles as to how to pair the perfect music to tiktok videos of my cats
posted by angrycat at 5:03 PM on April 9 [4 favorites]


As always, my condolences to hearts that grieve and thoughts of love and peace to all who struggle with THE WEIGHT.

take a load off :P
posted by kliuless at 10:04 PM on April 9 [1 favorite]


AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH
FUCKING FUCK FUFKC FUFKALJDFLK;LJA;DLFLAKSJDFL;JALS;F!?@ / FUCKING HATE EVERYTHING
posted by Fizz at 11:27 AM on April 10 [14 favorites]


I am not doing great today, and as soon as I hit post on this comment I'm going to take a lorazepam. I've spent way too much time today reading the Bernie thread on the Blue and becoming convinced that Trump is going to win in November because Democrats are an actual bag of cats who will never get our acts together long enough to stop this country's dizzying plunge from end-stage capitalism into actual fascism.

When I see people online talking about voting for Sanders or not at all, I just want to cry. I think about how November 3 could end for us and it feels like an actual heart attack; it's that bad. The idea that my country that could go through what we're going through right now, this horrifying massive global trauma, and still somehow allow that evil fascist troll back into our highest political office -- it's stomach-turning. So many people would suffer, so many people are suffering because of him, and we can't even get it together long enough to say a loud, cohesive NO to fucking Trump???

My god, the US is out there literally hi-jacking other countries' shipments of protective gear! And there are Trump signs in front of houses on my street in fucking Massachusetts and people in this country are going to vote for Trump in droves and excuse me, I think I need to go vomit.

(And that's not even getting into the question of whether our votes will even matter, or whether we're so screwed by gerrymandering and electoral maps and voter suppression and COVID lockdown and general hacker fuckery that voting is just a nostalgic symptom of a mass national delusion anyway. I know I am one half-step shy of writing a tin-hat manifesto in an off-grid RV, here, but man, there are some days that seems like the only rational response to the national news).

Sorry to dump this all here, but I'm not actually allowed to talk about it at home because "despair is toxic", and I'm not allowed to go anywhere but home these days, and if I just leave it on spin cycle in my brain I will lose it. I know, I know it's toxic believe me, I can feel it. That's why I have to get it out.
posted by invincible summer at 1:12 PM on April 10 [21 favorites]


I've also discovered that while on furlough, even though I am not able to log into my work email/calendar, the work mail app on my phone is thrilled to continue to provide me with 15 minute warnings for all the recurring meetings I have recently been disinvited from attending. So that is awesome. I continue to veer wildly back and forth between hopeful "it's a furlough, not a lay-off" self-talk and mortally depressing "it's a furlough until it becomes a layoff" self-talk. I actually love my job, and this sucks. Not the actual job, which is just a job; but I love all the rhythms and perks of my job, and I love the positive things that come out of having done my job, and I love the people I do my job with. It took me 10 years to build this job into a job I can love, and I am terrified of having to start that process all over again someplace different.
posted by invincible summer at 1:16 PM on April 10 [7 favorites]


Trump is going to win in November because Democrats are an actual bag of cats who will never get our acts together long enough to stop this country's dizzying plunge from end-stage capitalism into actual fascism.

Evil will always triumph because good is dumb.
posted by jenfullmoon at 1:44 PM on April 10 [3 favorites]


Yeah, I mean, I'm speaking my fears here, and I'm not speaking as my better self, but that's definitely the concern.
posted by invincible summer at 1:52 PM on April 10 [2 favorites]


US politics: the best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity
posted by Flannery Culp at 2:03 PM on April 10 [9 favorites]


When I see people online talking about voting for Sanders or not at all, I just want to cry.
invincible summer, right after Elizabeth Warren dropped out I was over on some thread driving all the Bernie supporters to distraction by ranting that I was going to vote for her in the primary anyway so that maybe somebody would look at that and pick her as vice president. I should have had some human decency and restraint but I was really sad. Then of course I voted for Bernie in the primary, and of course I'll vote for Biden in the general. Just one invisibly small anecedatapoint for a tiny tiny increment of comfort; I hope your lorazepam was a particularly delightful one.
posted by Don Pepino at 3:47 AM on April 11 [5 favorites]


This is more along the lines of a grating annoyance than an actual "fuck", but...I've just finished filing our US taxes, taking around an hour and a half to organize our P60 forms and then fill out a 1040, two copies of Form 2555, and so on. Once again, it was an exercise in pointless bureaucratic futility, because we've never earned enough in the UK to actually exceed the foreign earned income exclusion threshold, and almost certainly never will.

At least I managed to find an online filing service that let me e-file for free for once. In past years we've had to pay around $35 for the privilege of telling the IRS that no, we don't owe anything this year, either. Ugh.
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 4:03 AM on April 11 [3 favorites]


One of my dogs, a 10-lb min pin, was attacked by my neighbor's dog, a 45-50 lb pit bull last night. It was horrific. I managed to get her off of him within a few minutes (felt like an eternity), thank god she was wearing a choke collar. He underwent emergency surgery - has deep muscle tears in his chest wall, a broken rib, and one bite punctured his abdomen, but didn't hit anything. The vet put in lots of drains and he's on strong antibiotics, so now it's a day-to-day situation watching for signs of infection. He's going to be at the hospital for at least a few days, if all goes well. The vet repeatedly told me that these are incredibly serious injuries, and he's lucky to be alive, but he's young, very healthy, and a tough little guy so he has a good chance of making it.

This is the last thing I need right now. I'm doing okay (very worried , and one of my hands got roughed up so I hope those don't get infected - there's a few puncture wounds and it's swollen and bruised and sore), but this is a whole new set of stresses on top of wanting my dog to survive and heal. The vet bill estimate is $2-5K. My neighbor said she would pay, but I have a feeling there may be court involved. Sigh. Fuck.

It also happens that yesterday was the 1-year anniversary of filing for divorce. Which is still not over. Fuck April 10 forever (no offense if it's a good day for you).
posted by Sparky Buttons at 6:18 AM on April 11 [23 favorites]


Sparky, I am so sorry about your injured dog. That it happened on the first anniversary of your divorce, wow, talk about adding insult to injury. Hang in there, please. It sounds really hard but we are rooting for you.
posted by Bella Donna at 8:54 AM on April 11 [5 favorites]


Oh, Sparky, that's awful. That happened to our dog a couple of years ago and it was such a stressful and traumatic experience. I was the one with her when she was attacked and it was a horrifying thing to go through. I'm so sorry it happened to you and your pup, especially now in the middle of so much other stress. I'm thinking good thoughts for you and your little guy!
posted by invincible summer at 9:14 AM on April 11 [2 favorites]


Sparky Buttons, that is just horrible in so many ways and I am so, so sorry. I hope you are both ok.
posted by bookmammal at 9:14 AM on April 11 [4 favorites]


Hugs, Sparky Buttons, I'm keeping you and your pup in my heart.
posted by mightshould at 4:19 AM on April 12 [1 favorite]


Oh god, I'm so sorry to hear this, Sparky Buttons! I went through something similar, though way less violent (there was injury and blood, but only required out-care), and it was terrifying. Love and healing to you both!
posted by taz (staff) at 6:04 AM on April 12 [2 favorites]


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