Coronavirus roundup

From out of the blue, new realities


I was reading to Swamp Rabbit from Albert Camus‘s The Plague:

Everybody knows that pestilences have a way of recurring in the world; yet somehow we find it hard to believe in ones that crash down on our heads from a blue sky.

I reminded the rabbit that he and I, along with tens of thousands of others, had been at the Flower Show less than a month ago. Even the most ignorant tulip watchers knew the coronavirus was coming, but hardly anyone at the event seemed worried. It was too hard to believe, in such a balmy setting, that a plague would soon “crash down on our heads from a blue sky.”

“Enough Camus,” he said, stretching out in a beach chair on my porch. “I don’t need no more existential dread. I’m depressed enough as it is.”

He was playing devil’s advocate, like last week. Or maybe he wasn’t.

“Camus believed in courage, not dread,” I replied. “He believed in fighting the good fight, even though the deck is stacked against you.”

Swamp Rabbit laughed. “It’s easy to feel courageous if you got groceries and the Internet and checks in the mail. It’s peeps like us who ain’t got no dough who feel the dread.”

I fetched a rusty milk crate and sat down six feet from him. “This is tough on everybody, rabbit, even those with money. People like privacy, but they also like to go to ball games and flower shows and so on. They don’t like sheltering in place. They don’t like too much isolation.”

“Peeps don’t like forced isolation,” he said. “They like having a choice. The thing is, there ain’t never no choice if you got no money… Is my six-pack of beer still here?”

He was trying my patience. “Virus deaths are spiking in Europe,” I said. “The worst is yet to come over here. Trump has stopped saying the virus is a hoax and started calling it the invisible enemy. He wants his base to think it was planted by the Democrats and the Chinese.”

The rabbit sat up, angry. “Trump’s gonna do what he always does — blame other peeps for problems he’s too dumb to deal with. F–k Trump. He oughta be quarantined in some dungeon somewhere.”

“That’s better,” I said. “Anger will keep your spirits up, rabbit. We’ve got to grapple with the new realities, the opposite of what Trump’s doing.”

He slumped back into the beach chair. “You go right ahead and grapple with them realities, Odd Man. Where’s my beer?”

Coronavirus roundup

He’s nothing if not blatant:

The ongoing facepalm caused by Trump…

Anthony Fauci frankly discusses the difficulty of handling Trump amid the coronavirus pandemic.

WTH? My head is going to explode. Good lord, if this doesn’t say everything about Trump…

Safety net

Incompetent asshole in chief

The days of fear and kindness

Photo by Fusion Medical Animation on Unsplash

The testing site was in a West Philadelphia parking lot, and I found out about it Monday night from a relative who’s a nurse. I alerted my son, who’s been short of breath for a couple of days,and he went over there yesterday to stand in line for an hour.

He won’t know if he’s positive for a few days, but at least he’ll know. His employer is still open, but only a few days a week. I’m not sure how long he’ll have a job.

My other son was laid off from his server job at a high-end Upper East Side restaurant. Now his roommates have all bugged out and he’s alone and scared. How does he pay rent by himself? What happens next?

So many things I could solve for my kids if I had money. Ah, well. It’s going to be awful. Stick together, be kind to each other.

The governors are filling the vacuum

But it’s not enough: