Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘COVID-19’

This afternoon, my wife and I both got our first COVID vaccine shots!  We’re also scheduled for our 2nd shots towards the end of March.  Two weeks after that we should be “fairly” safe from COVID.  So far (after 6 hrs), the only after-effects are a little shoulder soreness at the injection site.
It is important for everyone to understand: the vaccines do NOT prevent you from getting COVID or from developing long-term  COVID related illnesses OR transmitting COVID to others.  The vaccines are only supposed to prevent you from getting “seriously” ill and dying.  We got the Pfizer version which is 95% effective at preventing “serious” illness and was 100% effective preventing deaths during trials.  We still do not know how long the vaccines remain effective and / or if we will need periodic boosters (like the annual flu shots).
The bottom line is that even after we have reached some level of local / state / national / worldwide herd immunity, we will probably need to keep wearing masks and maintaining “some” social distancing.  We just don’t know enough yet and we will have to follow the science / data when it becomes available…
.
On This Day In:
2020 Decide, Support, Vote
2019 Aware Some
2018 Know Any Christians?
2017 The Only Thing I Can Give…
2016 Wiser But Less Cocksure
2015 Not Today
Wicked
2014 …Am Too
2013 Credible?
2012 Both
2011 Risking Hidden Linkage

Read Full Post »

As of today, there have been 378,777 COVID-19 related deaths in the United States.  This post is about one of them…
Last week, while we (the nation) were going through a violent civil insurrection in the nation’s capitol, Joseph Beierly was engaged in his own personal “insurrection” battle.  Sadly, he lost his battle.
I met Joe back in 1962, through his older brother, Ralph Beierly who was in my grammar school class.  Ralph had five brothers (in order: Dave, Frank, Ray, Ralph, Joe and George) he lived with and two half-brothers who were already grown up and no longer living at home.  Joe was the second youngest of those still at home.  Joe / Ralph’s parents took me under their wings and it was not unusual for me to have dinner at their house more than once a week.
At some point, you realize the older and younger siblings of your friends (like your own brothers and sisters) become “real” people, instead of “big” or “little” brother / sister of… (whomever).  Sometimes this realization is sudden.  Frequently, it is not.  For me, this happened with Joe while we were on a “road-trip” to Canada.  Joe and I had gone up to Lake Shasta to water ski and hang out on another friend’s pontoon houseboat for a week.  Unfortunately, my other friend had a family emergency and had to secure the houseboat and return to the Bay Area, so Joe and I were left high and dry for the remainder of the week.
Joe Beierly on our trip to Canada

Joe Beierly on our trip to Canada

At the time, Joe was working for a telephone manufacturing company which was doing something in Canada and offering U.S. staff the opportunity to relocate if they wished to.  Joe asked if I would mind spending the remainder of the week driving up to Canada to “check out” the new location to see if he was interested.  With nothing else to tie us down, I agreed to split the costs and off we went.
Joe drove up to Seattle and then we boarded a ferry to Vancouver.  That’s pretty much it.  We saw a lot of greenery.  Joe and I rode our first car ferry.  (Why a car ferry?  Just because neither of us had ever been on one.  We drove back.)  We listened to a lot of music during the drives.  A couple of nights we camped and a couple we stayed in “inexpensive” (cheap) motels.  We mostly did just enough to keep the trip going.  Then we’d park and chill.  Did I mention we brought along seven cases of beer for the week we expected to stay at Shasta?  As I recall, we got through five of them and I let him have the remainder when we got back to S.F.
What did I learn about Joe?  Mostly he had grown up to be his own man while I was away in the Army.  He was a bit of Dave (he enjoyed working with his hands).  He was a bit of Frank (he could be a charmer when he wanted to be).  He was a bit of Ray and Ralph in music tastes and how he treated other people with respect – irrespective of their job / station.  Like his dad, he had a way of looking at things logically and figuring them out.  Like George, he had a “little brother” attitude: “You may be a bit older, but I’m nippin’ at your heels, and I’ll catch up soon.”  But mostly, what I realize now is that he had what I call the Beierly “give it try” attitude.  “If it doesn’t work out, we’ll fix it or try something different.”

Joe in his Dress Whites

I’m not sure if Joe ever got offered or accepted that job in Canada.  (I don’t believe he did.)  The next thing I heard he was in the Navy.  I was a bit surprised by that because Joe wasn’t one to take “instruction” from his older brothers (a mind of his own), but he took to the Navy like a fish to water.  Joe got married (to Ceal, the proclaimed love of his life).  He made a career of service.  And he raised a family which he openly cherished.  We were both raised Roman Catholics.  I’ve tended to fall off the wagon periodically, but Joe became a working Christian (“by their acts you shall know them”).  Unfortunately, with my living in Europe and his living around the world (and / or way over on the East Coast), I never got a chance to ask him about that.  I would check in with Ray before and after football season and Ray would tell me about Joe’s kids this and Joe traveling there and Joe helping these people with that.  All the things “family” talk about when you’ve known each other long enough to not have to say anything and you’re sure there’s always time to kick-it again in a few months.

Joe and Ceal

And now, Ray and Joe are both gone…
The world is a better place for them having been here.  My world is a little less sunny for their passing.  And once again I mourn the loss of a brother by another mother…
COVID-19 is just a virus.  It doesn’t care about how many lives it takes or the families and grief it leaves behind.  378,777 of our fellow Americans have died…  This post has been about one of them.
.
On This Day In:
2020 Implications
2019 Just To…
2018 Still Going…
2017 Great Risk
2016 Robbery
2015 Humanity Plus
2014 Dinner For Two?
2013 Exercise For Those Over 50
2012 Tearful Joy!!
Except When He’s Left

Read Full Post »

Freedom is not the right to do whatever we want;
It is the privilege of doing what we ought;
It is not private license;
it is public responsibility;
It is not freeing ourselves;
it is binding ourselves for the good of all.
    —    Bishop Robert Brown
.
On This Day In:
2019 A Surprisingly Good Way
It’s Official X-mas (Tree) At Home
2018 Weight / Health Update
What’s Happening With You?
2017 The Great Leveler
Conservative Depressions
2016 Election + 1 Month
2015 Dance And Sing
2014 A Measuring Stick For Progress
2013 Courtly Love Or Victory Over Habit
2012 Have We Met?
2011 Efficiently Useless

Read Full Post »

So far, all our patients are responding to treatment, so people think we are not saying the truth about how bad this will be.  The same happened in the Ebola crisis.  Until people saw that others were dying, they had doubts that the disease existed.  They won’t believe if they are not seeing bodies.
That said, while caring for patients in extraordinary circumstances, you must remember it is God who saves lives.  You may provide the right medications and have the right equipment, but if someone is bound to die, no matter what you do, you will end up losing the person.  For me as a physician, this is the most painful part of my service.
One of the best ways to support frontline health workers is to first appreciate the sacrifices they are making to save lives in the face of limited resources.  It doesn’t have to be by providing them gold or diamonds or even money, but just a word of appreciation and encouragement.  It is an assurance that they are not alone.
The health workers are our soldiers on the front line.  We need to equip them if we want them to fight effectively.  They need a safe work environment and the tools to execute their duties.  As we would do in warfare, we have to look for all available ammunition and sophisticated weaponry so they can win that fight.
This pandemic has proven that no one nation is supreme.  It is time we forget our differences and fight this disease as a united force.  We have to understand that no matter how small or weak a country or person may be, there is something he or she has to offer to the good of the world.  If we think it is a disease belonging to the Africans alone, or the Chinese, we are getting it wrong.  As long as we continue to have COVID-19 in one country, the rest of the world is not safe.  We must work together to defeat it.
—   Dr. Jerry Brown
CEO of JFK Medical Center in Monrovia, Liberia
From his interview / article: “How To Conquer A Pandemic
Appearing in: 27 April / 4 May 2020 issue of “Time Magazine
A similar version appears online (with a different title) at: “I Helped Fight the Ebola Outbreak in Liberia. Here’s What It Takes to Conquer a Pandemic
.
On This Day In:
2019 It’s Obvious
2018 Passed Too Swiftly
2017 On Our Wall (Part 1)
2016 Or The Ripples From A Good Life
2015 Titles And Reputations
2014 Unfolding
2013 Again
2012 Needs
Damned
2011 Potter & Prejudice
Blink, Blink

Read Full Post »

Several years ago, I was riding home on our BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) system and I looked out the window at the memorial to those lost in Iraq and Afghanistan.  It moved me deeply.  These lives lost are a far greater treasure lost than the “mere” trillions we’ve spent on fighting these conflicts.  Our military forces are still present in both countries with no real (IMHO) hope of any “victory” in any normal sense of the word.  The best we can hope for is that whatever government we leave in place when we finally withdraw is not slaughtered within the first two years of our “escape” – as happened in South Vietnam.
Anyway, I was watching the Presidential debate and listening to President Trump tell us how (once again) we’ve “turned the corner” on the COVID pandemic, while former Vice-President Biden was telling us under President Trump’s continued “leadership”, we stood to lose another 200,000 American lives by the end of the February.  This morning, I was looking at some news sites and I saw an image which stopped me.  It was an image of small flags, one for each American death from COVID.
Here is an update on the image of the lost military lives over the last 20 years:

Lafayette Hillside Memorial

And here is an image of Americans lost to COVID in less than nine(9) months:

Flags representing individual American lives lost to COVID so far in 2020.

Remember these flags are “expected” to double by the end of February 2021 if we don’t increase our efforts to stem this terrible pandemic.  Today’s current death count:  227,107.
Please:  1)  WEAR a mask;  2)  wash your hands frequently;  3)  practice social distancing (stay a minimum of six feet apart);  4)  avoid large (more than 10 people) gatherings;  and, 5)  if you must gather (even with 10 or less), do it outdoors.
This predicted loss of life doesn’t HAVE to happen.  Our losses over the last four months could probably been halved if we (90% of us) had simply followed these five simple rules.  We cannot prevent all of the losses over the next four months.  But estimates are that we could halve those predicted losses if we act based on science and not politics.  The question is:  What have we learned America?
.
On This Day In:
2019 Can I Get A Witness?
2018 I’d Still Like To Try It Out
2017 In Every Thing
2016 Future Halo
2015 The Hard Way Every Time
2014 Indispensable Wits
2013 I’d Like To
2012 2012 National League Champions – San Francisco Giants!!
2nd Viewing – No Change
Light Shining Out of Darkness
2011 Just Kickin It
Are These The “Real” Protectors Of America’s Constitution?
2010 Giants Advance To 2010 World Series!!!

Read Full Post »

If I have learned one thing in this life, it is that God will not tie my shoes without me.
   —   Doug Boyd
[Vote like YOUR life depends on it.  With 200,000 more predicted COVID-19 deaths by the end of the year – YOUR life may BE dependent on it!!
My thoughts about re-opening “the economy” and K-12 schools:
America has less than 5% of the world’s population, but it has over 20% of the world’s COVID deaths.  Over 20 million workers were laid off in this year’s shelter-in-place.  There are estimates of 130 to 150 million workers in the United States.  This was when “all” / most of the country was supposed to be on a “shelter-in-place” order and the economy was “shut-down“.  This means over 80% of the workers were STILL employed / working.  Let’s be generous and say 75% of ALL the remaining workers were able to work from home.  That means we still had over 25 million people working outside of their homes and exposed to others.  That was “considered” a FULL shutdown…  It is simply NOT possible to have a FULL shutdown of a modern economy.  In the U.S., over 20 million are employed in health care alone.  Granted a fair number of those may be in administrative roles and not actually care providers.
Again:  We did NOT and have not been able to shutdown the economy and we will never be able to.  The only way to get to 2022AD with the minimum number of deaths is strict adherence to:  1)  Wear a MASK;  2) Wash your hands frequently;  3)  Practice social distancing when out in public (a minimum of 6-8 feet apart);  4) Avoid large gatherings (more than 10 people);  5)  re: #4 – particularly when the gathering is planned to be indoors;  6) and take the vaccine as soon as it is “reliably” certified by the CDC.  (This means after Trump has been removed from office.)
A couple of years ago I opined that youth exposure to internet pornography was the “greatest / worst” social experiment of our time.  My opinion has changed…  We are, as a nation, committing to sending millions of OUR children under the age of 12 years old back to school where they will almost certainly be exposed to COVID.  It is being stated the young are the least susceptible to fatal exposure and, therefore the “risk” is their spreading COVID to others (parents / adults).  This is not entirely true.  We have no idea what the long term effects of COVID exposure are to children or if prolonged or repeated exposure will have any effects later in their lives.  And we can’t know either of these things for multiple years.  We are not just risking the current economy.  We are risking the health and future of OUR children.
I know there is a lot going on now-a-days.  I just wish someone (journalist / broadcaster / doctor) was taking a lead in raising this concern.  I feel like a voice in the wilderness…
And now I will climb down from my soapbox.  —  KMAB]
.
On This Day In:
2019 Love And Leave
2018 Smiling If Not Laughing
2017 Chilled And Smooth
2016 But Sometimes You Have To Stand In Front
2015 The Key Shift
2014 Remember ISIS / ISIL?
2013 What Have You Done Lately?
2012 B8
2011 I’m Definitely Not In Control

Read Full Post »

If we take people as they are, we make them worse.  If we treat them as if they were what they ought to be, we help them to become what they are capable of becoming.
  —  Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
[In 2016, although we had our strong opinions (and a three million majority voted against him), we weren’t positive what candidate Trump would be like as President.  Four years later, we now KNOW what he has been like and will continue to be:  He is a tragically divisive and incompetent President who has failed the country.
What have you got to lose?” —  Candidate Donald Trump.
With over 180,000 dead from COVID-19, we now have 180,000-plus families who can answer his question.  If YOU take him as he is in 2020, he will get worse and America will continue its current decline.  If you vote #DonTheCon out of Office, you will help him become what he ought to be:  unemployed.  And, if the State of New York has anything to say about it, he may become what he IS capable of becoming:  a convicted felon.  —  KMAB]
.
On This Day In:
2019 Cash Only, Please
Day 14: End Of Week 2
2018 House To Home
2017 Got Education?
2016 Necessary Company
2015 Reality Vs Imagination
2014 Penalty Period
2013 Theft
2012 Cranky Old Man
2011 A Man’s Got To Know His Limitations

Read Full Post »

Yes, in this country we have freedom, we have rights, but our rights end when they infringe on the health and safety of others.
We have rights, but we also have responsibilities.  When did we forget the responsibility side of the equation?
Our love of freedom causes us to make wise choices to keep each other safe.
Our freedom engenders concern and compassion.  Our freedom gives us strength, not weakness.  Our freedom makes us bold.  Our freedom gives us dignity.  Our freedom causes us to protect the most vulnerable among us.  Our freedom generates in us the desire to do the right thing.
Our freedom prompts us to wear a mask.
From the site:   Meditations in Motion
Located at:  https://meditationsinmotion.wordpress.com/
The specific post is at:  https://meditationsinmotion.wordpress.com/2020/08/16/wearing-the-masks-of-freedom-and-love/
[Please visit the original site if you have a spare moment.   —   KMAB]
.
On This Day In:
2019 Define Your Life…
2018 It Is No Secret
Day 25: When 4 or 5 equals 2
2017 Cowardly Defamation
2016 With No Allowance For Chance?
2015 Details
2014 Here’s One…
2013 Non-Fungible Commodities
2012 Hope And Tears
2011 Just Long Enough
Meaningful Thoughts

 

Read Full Post »

In November remember – DO NOT flip a coin, throw a dart at the ballot, or close your eyes and pull any lever your hand rests on.  And DO NOT vote for a President and then skip the rest of the state and local candidates and issues on your ballot:
1. You’re not JUST voting for President
2. You’re voting for Democracy and you’re voting against allowing the USA to become yet another authoritarian regime.
3. You’re voting for Federal leadership to combat the COVID-19 pandemic.
4. You’re voting for who replaces Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the Supreme Court.
5. You’re voting for the appointment of a qualified Secretary of Education and getting rid of the unqualified Betsy Devos.
6. You’re voting for federal judges.
7. You’re voting for the rule of law.
8. You’re voting for saving national parks.
9. You’re voting for letting kids out of cages and reunited with their families.
10. You’re voting for clean air, clean water and more sustainable energy resources.
11. You’re voting for scientists to be allowed to speak about climate change and for rebuilding the CDC.
12. You’re voting for what a President says and does on Twitter.
13. You’re voting for housing rights.
14. You’re voting for minorities to be treated with dignity by those who are supposed to protect and serve all people under the Constitution of the United States.
15. You’re voting for non-Christians to be able to adopt and to feel like full citizens.
16. You’re voting for Dreamers.
17. You’re voting so that there will be Social Security and Medicare when you retire.
18. You’re voting for veterans to get the care they deserve.
19. You’re voting for rural hospitals.
20. You’re voting so that everyone can have health insurance without regard to employment status or income.
21. You’re voting for the preservation of PBS.
22. You’re voting to have a President who doesn’t embarrass this country every time she or he attends an international meeting.
23. You’re voting for sensible gun laws.
No Democrat is perfect.  They won’t pass your purity test.  And yet every single one of them will be better than four more years of Trump!!!  Please be reasonable and STAY FOCUSED!
.
On This Day In:
2019 Always Surprises
2018 You’ve Got To Stand For Something
Day 24: Hand Touching Hand
2017 The Tide Will Turn
2016 Dreamers
2015 Three Roars
2014 Be R-E-L-E-V-A-N-T
2013 Lacking
2012 So Small A Thing
2011 Is Your Time Valuable?

Read Full Post »

Science should not stand in the way of this.
  —    Kayleigh McEnany
[The “this” which McEnany is referring to is re-opening schools.  She then went on to claim “the science” is actually on their (the Administration’s) side.  The problem is:  the “science” is NOT on their side.  It does seem children (5 to 12 yrs old) are less susceptible to severe impact of the COVID-19, but there is little to no evidence they are any less efficient as asymptomatic carriers and transmitters.  There is also no proof they will not be impacted by future exposures or if there will be any long term effects to what appear to be non-significant exposures.  The virus is simply to new to know any of this.  We are beginning to find out if the antibodies are lasting.  They appear to not be.  And, significantly, we don’t know if re-infections will result in less significant or worse effects than the initial exposure.  The bottom line is that opening schools without masks, personal protected equipment for students, teachers and staff, and social distancing will be exposing our teachers, school staff, families and children to significant health risks.  My question:  “Why is the Administration willing to endanger Americans this way?”  —  KMAB]
.
On This Day In:
2019 Slow Wisdom
It Is A Start…
2018 Young, Fun And Playing Well
2017 Earning Your Blessings
2016 A Suggestion…
Capable Of Being
2015 Looking For The Needles In The Haystacks
2014 The Definition Of A Gentleman
2013 Thar She Blows (Not)!
2012 Naturally
2011 Been Here, Done That
Remember
2010 Timeless Classics

Read Full Post »

The society which scorns excellence in plumbing as a humble activity and tolerates shoddiness in philosophy because it is an exalted activity will have neither good plumbing nor good philosophy: neither its pipes nor its theories will hold water.
  —   John W. Gardner
[Nationwide, we have lost (deaths) over 1,000 medical staff to COVID-19.  With only 4% of the world’s population, we have over 25% of the world’s confirmed cases and over 25% of the COVID-19 deaths.  We are the only major industrialized country in the world without universal health care.   I (for one) put it all down to poor leadership – starting at the top.  Remember how we were promised “better than Obamacare, and it’ll cost less”?  That was before our #IdiotInChief President “discovered” (Feb 2017) how complicated “health care” was to solve / fix.  #IncompetentDonald – November is coming!  —   KMAB]
.
On This Day In:
2019 Watching
2018 Even #45 Shall Pass To Sand
2017 Shedding Light
In The Neighborhood
2016 The Responsibility Of Freedom
2015 Face It
Birdfight
2014 Honoring Firefighters
2013 And Never Will
2012 The Human Adventure Continues
2011 Almost Never

Read Full Post »

Yesterday was the 4th of July, so Hil and I broke the rules (“guidelines”) and went out to my sister’s house for a BBQ.  We know it’s poor form, but sometimes you risk more than you should to be with family (Gemutlichkeit) – if only because these moments will be fewer in the future than they’ve been in the past.  It doesn’t make it “right”, but we ate outdoors and, when inside, the rooms had the exterior doors and windows open.  Fortunately, it was a beautiful sunny and warm day with a steady, cooling breeze coming off the Bay.  Oh, yeah, and except for the time it took to take these photos, we were mostly socially distanced.  Anyway, here’s three photos commemorating our throwing caution to the wind…  (And one for history.)
Me in my “flag” cap…
With the hostess… (2020 version)

Kev & Carm at 4th of July BBQ

Kev & Carm at 4th of July 2016 BBQ

And with our mom (who now lives with my sister).
.
On This Day In:
2019 I Walk Faster (Too)
2018 Modern Day Behaviour
2017 On Misogynist Tweets From #DumbDonald
2016 Cowboy Boots & Missing Teeth
Or Electricity
2015 Oh, To Be Vulnerable
2014 Neglected Horror
2013 The Price Of Illusions
2012 Once Again
2011 And The “Market” Isn’t Always Right

Read Full Post »

Liberty means responsibility.   That is why most men dread it.
  ―    George Bernard Shaw
.
On This Day In:
2019 Silent Purpose
2018 Just Bake The Cake, Man
2017 Visible Proof
2016 Poor Enough Means
2015 Still Standing
Follow Your Heart
2014 Just Reminded
2013 A Fine Balance
2012 One Measure
2011 Seeking The Common Ground
In Brightest Day…

Read Full Post »

I do not know which of our afflictions God intends that we overcome and which He means for us to bear.  But this is certain:  Some I have overcome, some I continue to bear.
  —  Jean Toomer
[This is an unusual post for me.  This post is being written on 28 May, three days after the Memorial Day weekend.  Yesterday, the U.S. passed 100K in deaths due to COVID-19.  We are dying at just under 1,000 lives per day.  We are engaged in a great social experiment testing whether we can open our economy without a plan to deal with the virus.  This post is scheduled to go online roughly 15 days after the holiday weekend.  If the President’s gamble was correct, the average death rate will be at or below 1,000 per day.  If his gamble (with our lives) is incorrect, the death rate will be higher – and potentially much higher.  Only time will tell.   —   KMAB]
.
On This Day In:
2019 One Generation’s View
2018 The One Thing
2017 Never Give Up
2016 Which Generation Are We?
Congratulations, Kyle!
2015 Centered
2014 Economic Trinity
2013 At Both Ends
2012 Holding Allowance
2011 The Power Of Good

Read Full Post »

One of the most indelible lessons of this scary time is that you can survive alone, but you need others to flourish.  The most dangerous preexisting condition my husband and I had for fighting the virus was our devotion to self-sufficiency.  Independence can be its own kind of social isolation.
  —   Belinda Luscombe
From her opinion / editorial:  “Nursing my husband back to health, badly
Appearing in:  Time Magazine, dtd: 18 May 2020
The article appears online as:  “I Thought I Could Handle Anything. Then My Husband Got Sick
The link is:  https://time.com/5824463/coronavirus-asking-for-help/
(It may be behind a pay-wall.  I am a print / online subscriber.)
.
On This Day In:
2019 This Pilgrim Has Had A (Mostly) Happy Road
2018 And Men, Too
2017 Damned If You Do
2016 A Storm Over The Horizon
2015 What About Today?
2014 Idiot, n.
2013 Temporary Reality
2012 The Great Objective
2011 Read A Book

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »

%d bloggers like this: