It’s Springtime!

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WINTER PACKED UP yesterday and headed home, wherever that is.

Now it’s Springtime, the season of hope and rejuvenation. I’m feeling rejuvenated already. Are you? Worried about the coronavirus?* It’s winding down in China where it began. Worldwide, about 10,000 people have died so far.

Yes, it will likely get somewhat worse, but think of this:

Every year, the seasonal flu kills about 650,000. Every year. Do we quiver in our homes each flu season? Do we torpedo the economy? Do we stock up on tons of T-P?

Do we initiate “social distancing”?

Every single, solitary year there is a pandemic of flu that kills hundreds of thousands, and what do we do? We are accustomed to it, so we shrug it off.

This flu season in the United States, which hasn’t ended, from 12,000 to 30,000 people have died. That’s just this season in the United States. That’s quite a bit more than the global fatalities from coronavirus. Getting the picture?

Also remember, most coronavirus cases are mild.

Life at the Hacienda is going on mostly as usual. The only extra precaution we’re taking is that we’re not doing the Mexican kissy-kissy and huggy-huggy for a spell. Of course, I stopped that about a year ago, but now my child bride is on board.

We lunched yesterday in a nice new Japanese restaurant here in town. We eat out every Thursday and Sunday, and we’ll continue with that.

Today our lunch is Greek chicken that I made in the crockpot. It includes onion, potatoes and garlic up the kazoo.

My child bride will be downtown on the main plaza tomorrow hawking her pastries, a regular Saturday event. Come on by. And she’s still going to the gym. Muscling her out of the gym would be a major undertaking.

In spite of warnings, even here in Mexico, to avoid large gatherings, there was a monster blowout last night on our neighborhood plaza. Tons in attendance to celebrate some saint, which is our usual excuse to make a racket and get drunk.

We two did not go, of course.

Nico the Curtain Man was here Wednesday to take measurements and give us a price to replace parts of the canvas curtains on the upstairs terraza after they were damaged — one totally blown out — by the horrendous hailstorm last week.

So life goes on, as it should. After an abortive trip to Costco in the nearby capital city on Tuesday, a trip we make every week, we’re short on some items, so this afternoon I’ll be going to a supermarket here in town.

Maybe they’ll  have some T-P. You always have to wipe yourself.

In any event, don’t worry! Be happy!

* * * *

* A prominent political wag called it Kung Flu recently and was promptly labeled A RACIST! Those nutty Democrats never give it a rest, do they? Sad.

43 thoughts on “It’s Springtime!

  1. You need to check your math. The CDC, according to your article, estimates there have been 15 million cases of the flu this flu season. It states there have been 8200 deaths. (8200/15000000 = .0005) Which means .05%. Pay attention to the decimal. Point zero five percent. Not even one half of one percent. That means one out of every 1830 people that get sick with the flu die. On the other hand, your article states that covid-19 has a 3% mortality rate. Applied to the 15,000,000 means that there would be 450,000 deaths. Which equates to one in every 33 infected. 1 in 1830 vs 1 in 33. And that is using your statistics, my friend.

    You may want to reconsider remedial math. Or at least read something factual.

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    1. Jonas: The figures vary somewhat, depending on who is providing them. But I thought you had given up on being a Moon follower. You’ve discovered that The Moon is like catnip!

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      1. I just wandered over here out of curiosity of your view on the pandemic. I found exactly what I imagined I would find. You are very predictable.

        No, you didn’t quote statistics. You obviously did no calculations. And it looks like the author of the article didn’t either! Tsk tsk is right!

        Here’s to a complete abscence of covid-19 in your beloved Patzcuaro (and elsewhere too). Stay safe. I might be back to check on you. I might not. After all, we’re both in the high-risk category of this “shrug it off” pandemic. You never know what tomorrow will bring.

        Be happy. Wash your hands. Vote Blue. Biden 2020.

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        1. Jonas: I am happy not to be kissing and hugging people, something I quit doing, mostly, about a year ago. I am now scrubbing my hands a few times a day. It requires little effort. As for my being predictable, yes, I am.

          Biden? Yeah, sure. Good luck with that.

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    1. Ms. Shoes: Never thought of that. However, I went to both the major-chain supermarkets here in town today. There was no shortage of T-P at either one. Plenty of it. There were no tomatoes, however. No celery. No grapefruit. No pickles. No avocados at one, but I found them at the other. Life goes on.

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  2. Your musings are similar to some I just wrote in response to a comment by Gary Denness.

    I was wondering what would have happened if the world leaders had taken no action concerning the coronavirus. The virus would have worked its way through the popoulation leaving some very ill and others dead, but, in the end, people would have jobs to support their families and the economy would have gone chugging along.

    By making the virus our primary concern, the virus will still work its way through the population leaving some very ill and others dead (I trust fewer than in scenario one), but the unemployment rate will have reached 20%, the ensuing recession will be so deep that it will feel like a full-blown depression, and job-growth may not recover for years. And, those of us who survive, will have spent what was left of our IRAs, after the market crashed, on toilet paper because somehow it seemed to be a good investment at the time.

    No leader could have chosen option one. If he had, people like me would have hounded him from office. And, in that answer, is the seed of wisdom. Humans always prioritize the immediate, even when we know it is going to lead us to a terrible place. Or when either option will simply be a choice of horribles.

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    1. Iran, at least until around now, seems to be a test case for government not doing anything. And the results aren’t pretty. And Italy shows what can happen when you let it get out of hand: the health system crashes.

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  3. It’s spring up here in Vancouver too. People are walking on the seawall and beach as usual, just less of them. Many stores are closed and some don’t take cash anymore because they might be contaminated. (Sounds like a plot to get rid of cash forever.) One funny development is that many stores have, with great fanfare, announced the end of single-use plastic bags. That’s fine. We all switched to reusable bags. Now they’re saying that reusable bags might be infected, so we’re going back to plastic! This whole COVID panic-Demi seems like a slow-motion train wreck. The media coverage has been despicable. Every day it’s 24-hour COVID coverage letting us know how many people have become infected and how many have died. They don’t ever report how many people have been tested, which is rising exponentially. And when ~40% of infected people have little or no symptoms it’s hard to say how many people have actually got this bug. So the bottom line is that the official death rate (~3.4%) is way overblown. It’s probably more like 0.1% along the line with regular flu deaths. It’s my conspiracy theory that the COVID pandemic is being used to create a worldwide panic, crash the markets and hurt Trump’s re-election chances. As for instilling panic, here’s Monty Python.

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    1. Brent: I have come to the conclusion that there is a huge political element to this entire scare, at least in the United States.

      Russian collusion. Didn’t work.
      Impeachment. Not guilty.
      And now, Pandemic!

      There is no doubt in my mind that much of the media is praying that this will stymie Trump’s reelection in one way or another. To that end, they are playing it up to the hilt. Nonstop hysteria.

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  4. Well, I hope I can say a bit here. Everything is quiet. I live next to the freeway, and for the first time in forty years, it is quiet. The bar is closed. No noisy drunks. The mini mart is closed, and so is the dirty bookstore.

    No more strange trash thrown into the yard. The schools are closed, but no kids on the street. The guy delivering the newspaper is wearing a mask. Two days ago, the wife went to the grocery, but there was nothing to buy. It looks like the government is going to give every household $2,400 plus an additional $500 per child. Where is this money coming from? It is supposed to revive the economy, but there is nothing to buy. And just where am I going to store $2,400 worth of toilet paper?

    The government has to bail out Boeing and a bunch of banks. How many banks can withstand people not paying their bills and mortgages for the next 18 to 24 months? My son has his bankruptcy books out and he is studying up. When the FDIC takes a bank, they usually announce it on Sunday evening. That prevents runs on the bank. But now banks are so intertwined through incestuous agreements, that I am afraid they may go down like dominos.

    Hang on, this is going to be interesting.

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    1. Señor Gill: Quiet can be nice. I sometimes wish there was more quiet where I live.

      I’ve read about that $2,400 gift from Uncle Donald. I wonder if I qualify, and if so, how I’ll get the cash. Sending a check in the mail down here would be a bad idea. Maybe I can request electronic deposit. At the current exchange rate, that would be about 57,600 Mexican pesos! That’s significant chunk of Mexican change. Gotta love the Blond Bomber.

      Things aren’t so quiet down here as you describe your area. But it is interesting.

      I still maintain this coronavirus thing is way overblown.

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  5. Until you get it. Big tents have been put up around the VA hospital. I sure don’t want to have to go there. All those folks that just have to have the test should know that it involves stuffing a stick about nine or ten inches into the nostril and then twirling it. Then they do the other nostril.
    As President Trump said, “I sure wouldn’t like it done every day.”

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  6. Pretty quiet over here on the frontier. Old folks tend to be pretty quiet anyway, at least most of us. Many have run out of things to say, many more can’t remember what to say or have no one to say it to.

    Lots of folks are nervous about the business end of all this.

    The media is not a help.

    Like the wind, all things come and go.

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    1. Ricardo: The business end is the big concern, far more than the Kung Flu. And the media are creating more problems than they are solving, and they’re doing it intentionally.

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  7. Felipe,

    Insanity hit my corner of paradise late this past week. My Canadian-filled frac. closed the pool, the clubhouse and the gym; the last of which was very underutilized, except by me and mi esposa. Then Trudeau declared they all had to come home before tomorrow or be stuck where they’re at. Result, mass exodus in the past three days. Only us year-rounders and a few who decided it was better to stay put. Icing on the cake came on Friday night when the Governor of Jalisco requested we all stay home for 5 days. All in response to the 27 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Jalisco; all of whom live in Guadalajara or Zapopan and all of whom contracted the virus while travelling outside the country.

    So, life in my corner of Gringolandia is pretty quiet this morning. The sun is shining and the birds are chirping. Best to you and your child bride.

    Regards,
    Troy

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    1. Troy: The Gringos and the Canucks are flipping out far more than we Mexicans. I had heard that your area had gone underground. I think it’s kinda funny. Hang in there, so the bug don’t getcha.

      As for us, we’re eating out this afternoon, getting a nice restaurant meal. I passed by that restaurant yesterday afternoon, and they had not one customer. It’s a touristy place. Today, they’ll have at least two. I wonder if we should request a discount.

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  8. Here’s why comparisons to seasonal flu are off-base.

    1) It’s much more contagious than seasonal flu.
    2) You can catch both, so it’s not like this is some kind of substitute.
    3) Whether you think it’s right or not, it’s filling the hospitals. That means that if you have some other medical emergency while your local hospital is full, you might not get treatment for that emergency. That, depending on what it is, could kill you.
    4) While we know a lot about seasonal flu, which is caused by members of the family of flu viruses, we know a LOT LESS about this Chinese coronavirus. That means the effects could be a lot worse than we know so far. Only this morning did I read that it can destroy your sense of smell. The article I read did not state whether this was a temporary or permanent effect.
    5) While the death rate is all over the map, depending on whose numbers you use, and what kinds of assumptions you make about undiagnosed cases (the denominator), the fact that the military in Italy is now carting bodies off to mass graves suggests that this is a LOT worse than seasonal flu. Though relatively few, coronavirus is killing young, otherwise healthy people that would have easily fended off seasonal flu.
    6) It’s much more contagious than seasonal flu.
    7) Many of the folks killed by seasonal flu were not long for this world in the first place, e.g., in many cases, seasonal flu is the straw that kills the camel, not necessarily the main, root cause.

    So yes, this is WAY more serious than seasonal flu, even if it’s not even a fraction of the horror of Spanish flu. And the economic effects are about to be horrifying. At some point, we may have to go back to work as the lack of economic activity could well prove worse than the deaths from flu.

    May God help us if it gets to that point.

    Saludos,

    Kim G
    Boston, MA
    Where the kids, out of school, have taken the opportunity to improve their hockey skills.

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    1. Kim: Head for the hills! No?

      Your list is one short because No. 1 and No. 6 are the same.

      I’m with you to a degree on the economic aspect but President Trump has our back! Don’t worry, be happy!

      I think you could be a writer for Zero Hedge. Send them a job app.

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    2. Kim, P.S.: All joking aside, here is my approach to the current situation. It’s not yet a big thing in Mexico, apparently. I think closing the northern border is an excellent idea because it keeps the Gringos up there where the situation is worse. What am I doing? I wash my hands more than normal. I try to keep a bit more distance from people in the street. I don’t do the Latino hugs and kisses, but I stopped that a year ago. I was prescient. What I am NOT doing is hiding at home. That would drive me nuts posthaste. And I am not over-reacting or getting hysterical. I also keep in mind that fact that most Kung Flu cases are mild. My being old works against me, of course, but I have none of those pre-existing conditions. Unlike most people my age, I do not take daily pills for anything. I apparently have no problems aside from white hair. I still eat in restaurants on occasion. I still enjoy my cafecitos most afternoons on the plaza downtown.

      This thing will burn itself out in time. How much time? No one knows. Till then, life goes on with some minor changes here. If the Kung Flu pops up here on the mountaintop, perhaps I will grow a bit more cautious. Or not. I will not get hysterical, however. One thing is certain: Dying young is not possible for me. Don’t worry, be happy!

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  9. Well, eventually some people will have to go back to work. People will get hungry, and someone has to sit on that tractor and plow that field. After telling people to self isolate, it seems now the Chinese government is wanting them to get back to work. I am suspicious of their data. They tell the story that they think is needed at the moment. Party control is more important than truth. How will this play out when people in the U.S. and Canada get hungry, I don’t know. It looks like the currency of the future is toilet paper.

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  10. My issue with President Trump’s approach to C19 is that he appears to see it as an economic problem not a public health problem, likely because he is focused on the economy as his signature achievement and key to reelection. He forgets — or never knew — the first principle of economics, that the economy exists to benefit people, not the other way around. You will never have a healthy economy without a healthy population.

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    1. Creigh: I think Trump is well aware of the seriousness of the health problem. And he’s well aware of the economic problems that have come from the coronavirus hysteria. Fret not. He has everyone’s backs.

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      1. People think of Trump as a businessman, which he is, except that he’s a particular type of businessman, that is, a salesman. In my youth, I worked with salespeople at a used car dealership. Let’s just say that their grasp on reality tended to be whatever was useful at the time. I generally liked those people, but I wouldn’t have recommended buying a used car from them.

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        1. Creigh: I’m sure that were Trump in the car biz, you could get a real sweet deal from him. Believe it. Both seller and buyer would win! That’s just the kind of guy he is.

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