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Thursday, February 9, 2023

Thick as a Brick

I would think that most people would know by now that COVID is far from done with us.

Nope, it ain’t and nope, most people don't seem to understand this.

At Cake’s vet appointment on Tuesday no one (besides Ten and yurs truly) was masked. Granted it’s not a crowded office but the exam rooms are tiny. There were four of us (+ Cake) in a space no larger than 10’x10.’

Then yesterday, Ten took me for a walk along the seawall. It was a beautiful day—sunny, not at all windy and not a person in sight. Then, a third of the way down the path, I spotted a woman walking in our direction. We stopped so I could put on my mask and see if she’d move onto the verge to pass us—if she walked on the grass versus the seawall path her maskless self would’ve been a safe-ish six to ten feet from me. No, she did not. In fact, as I squeezed against the seawall (I believe I may’ve been attempting to climb over the concrete barrier into the bay—desperate times/desperate measures and shit), she came closer and stopped. What the fucking fuck lady?! Do my mask and walker not reek of immunocompromised? Is this and my wobbly gait not a huge tipoff to stay six feet (preferably more) away?

I’m a bit embarrassed to say that, when she didn’t just wave hello and pass on by (nope, she started a convo with Ten), I became dramatically passive aggressive. In a weak, fearful voice (or so I imagine), I asked Ten “has she passed by us yet?” Fer fuck’s sake, I was looking right at her when I said this. Yep, this was NOT one of my finer, more adult communication moments. She did however resume her walk at that point.

Post walk, I asked Ten what she had said to him. She had asked if I was okay and said she was a nurse and could help. Bast almighty, spare me from the well intentioned yet blindingly obtuse. I would have thought a nurse, of all people, would understand the concept of proper precautions/behavior during a killer airborne pandemic.

Thanks to an anonymous commenter, I read that six feet is not enough (especially when unmasked).

Research with the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 supports the idea that 6 feet may not always be enough. In one study, researchers found the transmission distance of the virus may be up to 13 feet. (source)
When walking around the grocery store and mall it’s actually easier to keep a cautious distance from potential plague carriers. We go at off hours, there are people about but no crowds—some are even masked like us.

Why not do my walking at the mall or supermarket every day? Have you seen the shop windows at your local capitalist emporium? Does the cereal aisle at your grocery store captivate you as much as the sea might? No? Yeah, color me unshocked.

Over the past bunch of years (since TAB shuffled off this mortal coil actually) my dreams are generally about struggling to get out of heavy, muddy construction sites without being killed or maimed by heavy equipment or swinging girders. Why? The answer came to me yesterday. It's because I’ve been under (re)construction for a lot of years now. Bloody COVID and the general population's slow-witted and insensitive nature doesn't help.

I know I’ll never be fresh-outta-the-box, brandy new again but, fuck man, I gotta work it. As my little buddy Yoda says: "Do or do not. There is no try."

1: affected with swelling.
2 : old and decrepit : over-the-hill.

Donna becomes slightly less spavined with each passing month.

Thick as a Brick—Jethro Tull

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