Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Muh, Muh, Muh, My Corona

stilton’s place, stilton, political, humor, conservative, cartoons, jokes, hope n’ change, coronavirus, covid-19, pandemic, prepare

Today we're putting politics aside to speak about a genuinely serious issue: the continuing spread of Covid-19 (which we'll also call coronavirus, like everyone else does). First and foremost, we want to emphasize that this is not the time to panic!


Okay, now it's time! Well, not to actually panic - but to take the whole situation seriously enough that you start making some preparations while it's still easy to do so. But first, let's define what we're likely preparing for: not the apocalypse, not zombies walking in the streets, and not the collapse of society. No, those are the things that will happen if Bernie Sanders becomes president.

And here's some good news: even if you get the virus, the odds are wildly in favor of you surviving it. At least, the first time you get it (the next time may cause heart failure, because why the hell not?). But up to 20% of people will get pneumonia which may require hospital treatment, and 3% or more will Bite the Big One which, surprisingly, is not Pete Buttigieg's campaign slogan.

Now here's the bad news: it's a virtual certainty at this point that the virus cannot be contained, and it will be coming to your community. And it's a tricky little bastard! Covid-19 is wildly infectious and can be transmitted from touching infected surfaces or even breathing virus-contaminated air. The virus can be spread by people who are entirely asymptomatic, meaning that they will look, feel, and believe themselves to be healthy as they happily spread an illness which has a 1 in 33 chance of killing the people they interact with. Which also means that you could personally become a "spreader" without knowing it initially, because the virus can remain dormant (but infectious) for up to 24 days (don't believe the 14 day number you've heard - it's wrong, and a lot of people are being released from quarantine way too soon).

Hopefully, effective treatments and even a vaccine will become available - but don't bet on that happening before you suddenly find yourself in a "hot zone" (as is happening in more and more places worldwide. Imagine the surprise Italian villagers felt when they suddenly found their roads blocked by armed soldiers). Rather, we're all likely to be faced with an extended time in which social isolation (voluntary or compulsory) and supply chain disruption (seen the stock market the last couple of days? Yowsah!) is an uncomfortable new norm.

Which is why we're recommending that you (yes you!) lay in some supplies now which could get you through 2-4 weeks. We're assuming that regular utilities will continue to function, so we're really talking about food, emergency medical supplies, stocking up on prescription medications, toilet paper, paper towels and such. Bleach, cleaning wipes, and Purell will come in handy, too.

And booze. Lots of booze. Clan MacGregor, for instance, can be used to disinfect surfaces or as a germicidal to cleanse wounds. And, in event of a real emergency, you can even drink it!

And that's about all we're going to say about Covid-19 for now, because if we haven't convinced you yet to lay in at least a few supplies, we're not likely to change your mind. We will, however, point you to one of the online sources of information we've been following, which has proved accurate, ahead of the curve, and neither falsely inflammatory nor comforting in their daily updates over the past weeks:

Be safe out there, folks! And take comfort from the fact that large gatherings of people (like political conventions) are likely to soon fall out of fashion.

DISCLAIMER: As always, I reserve the right to be wrong - and in this case, I hope I am!


stilton’s place, stilton, political, humor, conservative, cartoons, jokes, hope n’ change, lucas hembree, birthday, cards

Readers of this blog will recognize the name of young Lucas Hembree, a terminally ill boy who we've followed online for years, and who has received donations from some of you generous folks. We have a simple request which can make a big impact on the Hembree family.

Lucas is about to have his 13th age doctors didn't think he'd reach. And to celebrate, his parents are hoping that they'll get a lot of birthday cards. Cards that Lucas can enjoy on his special day, and which will eventually be a comforting family memorial. You can read a full newspaper story about it here. 

Lucas isn't really verbal at this point, so cards with fun, colorful pictures are best, as are those which make sounds. (Helpful hint: you can get absolutely fine cards at your local dollar store)

Please send cards to:
Lucas Hembree
1454 Mimosa Drive
Louisville, TN 37777


Since we've been a bit light on humor today, we thought we'd revisit this cartoon from a previous disease scare...


mamafrog said...

Well, dad's gonna go first in the last cartoon 'cause he doesn't really have that nightmare inducing piece of bondage equipment on correctly. Maybe he deserves too. I'm not gonna die from Covid 19, it's gonna be food poisoning that gets me. I've just gotten over it again, and hopefully it won't last as long as last year (3 months of side effects, thank you very much) since I know what to take/do for it. Not your liquid diet, lol, but the expensive crap left over from last year and the damn Potassium I now get to take all the time.

M. Mitchell Marmel said...

Most affected: Well, not Clan MacGregor, that's for certain.

Keep your powder and your nasal cavities dry!

Fish Out of Water said...

One of the cities in the State of Assorted Nuts, with Medieval level sanitation, has declared a state of emergency, whatever that is supposed to mean. Perhaps finally doing something about the hordes of homeless? These cities that pander to the homeless are now frightening as they seem to be ripe for the virus and perhaps the perfect petri dish for it to further mutate into something much, much more lethal.

From what I've read, The Plague which also started out in China as comparatively benign, but then somewhere along the line, it mutated into the deadly threat we know today. Sooooo.

See too stocks have further slid. Wonder if this virus and the economic havoc it seems poised to cause will do what The Mueller Report, Shiff for brains, impeachment, Fauxahontas, Bernie, Uncle Joe, won't be able to do: make Trump unelectable in 2020.

While there is some genuine concern about what will happen economically, it seems among those driving this stock free fall are those who manage our money: 401k's/IRAs. So should we be comfortable with those who'll start to panic at the sight of the first dark cloud?

Anonymous said...

In addition to Clan MacGregor's antiseptic and germicidal properties, it works splendidly in cleaning the chrome on my car bumper.

Geoff King said...

I read where Trump has asked congress for 2.5 billion to fight Coronavirus, and Pelosi has thus far refused. I imagine she hopes thathousands of Americans contract it before November so they can blame the President.

Snark said...

An interesting speculation (from a doctor, no less) on Tucker Carlson Monday pm. The Class 4 bio hazard lab outside of Wuhan, China changed the protocols for lab operations, now prohibiting lab technicians from selling finished test animals at local meat markets. NOW pass the booze! The stock market fall can actually be a good thing. This market has been looking for a correction for two years. Can't blame this one on Trump. Traders get their chance to make money, Trump can look good turning things around. Dhimicrats get to run around like decapitated chickens (what else is new?) and propose even more wildly preposterous solutions. And maybe liberal bastions like Scat Francisco will finally resort to appropriate a huge fire.

NaCly Dog said...

Have a blessed day, everyone.

Hand washing is the new head on a swivel.

Because the Wuhan Flu has a Mattis plan.

Regnad Kcin said...

My preference for personal health and well being involves a large (1.75l) bottle of Bushmills and 2 teaspoons of Nyquil. Stir together in a large bucket and apply internally with a soup ladle through the pie hole with much alacrity. No ice otherwise a dilution factor with affect the desired results. Your mileage may vary.....

Alfonso Bedoya said...

So, far I haven't seen anything that points to prevention of the CV, other than it can be transmitted through droplets produced by coughing. Well....what about transmission from touching viral evidence merely by touching an infected countertop, or transmission by contacting one's blood? The HIV virus dies by itself on countertops, and is transmitted by blood contact only.

The masks that have been worn seem to be worthless unless there is a seal around the periphery of the mask; otherwise, droplets can sneak under the periphery and into one's lungs. Bearded mask-wearers are especially at risk. I haven't seen any particular precautions from the CDC that would be really effective against the CV, other than to avoid crowds, and now they say that the disease can be carried by people who are without Typhoid Mary?

I have suffered both pneumonia and bronchitis....and although I didn't die, being sick with both almost made me feel that death would have been welcome.

Colby, Jack said...

I'll coin a phrase that came in quite handy back in my salad days of the 70's; fill in your own blanks: Clan McGregor will get you through times of no _________ better than __________ will get you through times of no Clan McGregor."

And if I should contract the virus, can I count on people here to help me get to Washington, DC? I've always wanted to shake the hands of some gen-u-whine Congressmen. I especially would like to meet Representatives Schiff & Nadler. It would be a shame to waste a perfectly good health crisis.

Old Cannonballs said...

Went into my local hardware store yesterday morning before work -- in rural Northern California -- to pick up a few N95 "dust" masks, and was greeted with four completely empty shelves. Went to and found they didn't have them available online. Went to, and found that a box of 10 N95 face masks was as much as $179, with $350 shipping! (Can you say "price-gouging"? Way to go, Amazon!) And guess what -- they're shipped directly from China! How do you like them apples?

I read that in China, people are retrieving used face masks from garbage cans, and reselling them.

igor said...

The masks don't do a helluva lot to protect you from the airborne droplets unless your mask is NIOSH 95 or better. What it does is protect the infected from indiscriminately spraying droplets around. This is the main reason the Chinese police have been slapping the batsnot (pun intended) out of people on the street that they don't see wearing masks.

The worst people hit are those with weak/compromised immune systems that are easily overrun. Also asthmatics and those with pneumonia. Heavy smokers have weak lungs, lotsa smokers in China... don't smoke, people.

The only alcohol I need to stock up on is Isopropyl, 95% CP. And I've had my 2 year supply of food/water for the last 30+ years (yes, I rotate my stock - duh!). My meds are all on 90 day supply, just because. I'm not a hard-core prepper but I DO have a necessary stock of semi-precious metals - copper, lead, brass. You know the drill!

NOW may be too late to prep properly, but at least give it a try! Won't hurt.

Sergio said...

I don't worry about Corona Virus, cuz I don't drink Mexican beer. Somehow, we've survived swine flu, bird flu, and SARS. Love your preparation grocery cart!! I ain't skeered. The financial markets will rebound like Charles Barkley long before the election.
Speaking of elections..... Do you know how they hold an election in Japan? With Both hands!!

Colby Muenster said...

Limes... don't forget limes (duh... Corona right?).

But in all seriousness, Stilton's advice is very sound. I have my doubts this will turn into a full blown pandemic, but if it does, ya gotta eat, drink and wipe your ass (heavy emphasis on drink). Ammo would be a good thing too if things really go over the cliff.

My recipe is very similar, but you're using way too much Nyquil.

John the Econ said...

True enough. A viral pandemic isn't likely to be any worse than a Sanders/AOC ticket. The mortality rate from the the Covid-19 virus is no worse than that of your average socialist instigated economic collapse. Although, the advantage of the economic collapse would be that it would mostly be economically useless pajama-soy-boys and SJW women who wouldn't survive. We're largely immune from socialism. Can't say the same about Covid-19.

The problem with Covid-19 is that the incubation period is so long that by the time you'd know it was loose in your community, it would be too late. You've already likely been exposed.

Sortahwitte said...

Ammo and things that allow you to fling said ammo down range are cheap at the moment.
Just say'in.

The n95 masks I bought are a little upgrade from the normal. They have an exhalation valve and hook over the ears. They are re-usable. Spray both sides with a spray disinfectant (lysol, etc) hang'em up, let'em dry.

When I used to travel by air on overnight flights, I would overdose on nyquil to get some sleep. The problem was I would only awake when the cleaning crew fired up the leaf blowers and industrial vacuums. Live and try to learn.

Stilton Jarlsberg said...

@mamafrog- Food poisoning is the worst, and a risk I constantly flirt with because I'm a cheapskate who saves money by buying groceries that are marked down because they're a day away from going in the trash. Hopefully you'll be feeling better soon!

@M. Mitchell Marmel- Okay, that's pretty funny (Corona beer is rebranding itself "Ebola" to be less frightening to consumers).

@Fish Out of Water- I think we should declare sanctuary cities (like the one you named) as where we ship coronavirus patients while cordoning off the area. I don't think we've seen the full economic impact of coronavirus yet (although I sure as hell got my ass spanked Monday and Tuesday!). If it really breaks wide, and I can't see why it won't, then supply chains will be disrupted and much business that can't be done from home just won't get done. Moreover, as most people live paycheck to paycheck and don't prepare for emergencies, things could get dicey for them pretty quickly. Again, I'm not in panic mode - but I'm solidly in worry mode.

@donpaul53- Well, after being dead for a few days, everyone gets pretty strong.

@Anonymous- I assume you discovered that by colliding with a wino?

@Geoff King- The Dems definitely believe they should never let a good crisis go to waste. Right now, a "black swan" event for the economy and a breakdown of the medical system is exactly what they most want by November.

@Snark- There's a pretty compelling case for Covid-19 being a runaway virus from that lab in Wuhan. And yes, the stock market has been due for a correction, but that hasn't eased my pain over the last couple of days. Theoretically, this is a buying opportunity...but I'm not really sure we've hit anywhere near bottom yet. If the market climbs substantially in the next few days, I'm more likely to sell some stocks than buy them.

@NaCly Dog- A couple of good habits all of us should cultivate is frequent (not obsessive) hand-washing and practicing not touching our faces. It's hard (especially if you have a face as delightfully soft and supple as mine) but can be learned.

@Regnad Kcin- And that's the sort of practical advice we all need more of!

@Alfonso Bedoya- It's my understanding that the Covid-19 virus can live quite awhile (hours? days?) on contaminated surfaces. Great. And yes, most facial masks won't do much unless they're rated for viruses, although they can be useful to cut down contamination from people who ARE infected (and are wearing masks) by catching fluids and particles. And I'd forgotten about beards not working well with getting a good seal. I might have to shave, which I'd hate - my whiskers give the illusion that I don't have a freakishly small chin.

@Colby, Jack- You actually raise a good and frightening point: if people DO get infected, how many will want to make a beeline for a Trump rally or a meeting of the Bernie Bros? Yikes...

Stilton Jarlsberg said...

@Old Cannonballs- One of the reasons I'm preaching about preparing today is because when the public starts to really worry, stuff goes FAST. I still have a bunch of N95 masks left over from the Ebola scare...and apparently their value is appreciating a helluva lot better than my investments.

@igor- Great points throughout. And 2 years of food and water? I only have about 2 days worth of water, and maybe a month's worth of food (at the end of which time, my family will be sick of ramen and white rice). And you're right that the greatest threat of the coronavirus is to those who already have compromised immune systems - though things like stress and insufficient sleep can create that condition in almost anyone.

@Sergio- I've worried about those other health scares, but I'm a bit more worried about this one because the long dormancy period and asymptomatic spreading makes it nearly impossible to contain. And I HOPE the financial markets will rebound, but I'm not sure if it will happen soon (although a cure or vaccine could change everything in a hurry).

@Colby Muenster- I haven't gone full survivalist. My emergency stores only take up about 3 shelves in my office closet and have probably cost me under $200. If I need that stuff, it will be worth a lot more to me. If I don't, I'll eventually generate some good karma giving a bunch of food to a local food bank. If there IS a sudden run on supplies, those who didn't put at least a LITTLE away are going to be in pretty sorry shape.

@John the Econ- Your last point is huge: by the time you know Covid-19 is in your community, you've probably already been exposed. Another note: people should have basic first aid and medical supplies at home. If hospitals get swamped with Covid-19 patients, people with broken bones and other uninfectious conditions won't even get into the emergency room door.

@Sortahwitte- I've got some of those same masks. And yesterday at the dollar store, I got some protective glasses. They're not closed or airtight, but they would keep larger chunks of death-snot out of one's eyes.

mamafrog said...

@Stilton, out of date food isn't a problem, unfortunately. Basic hygiene and people who won't wash working in restaurants is my downfall lately, lol. This time was Sonic, my favorite place!!

Dan said...

On another blog (I think it was in Lilek's Bleat comments) someone had a graphic of how to properly wash one's hands -- Don't forget your thumbs and wrists!
My thought was yeah, try that in a public restroom with a spigot that only turns on when the sensor wants to. Then the water shuts off after three seconds. Then you move your hand around in front of the sensor for another minute or two trying to get your hands rinsed. And then finally give up and just wipe the soap off with the paper towel (if you're lucky enough to have a paper towel). Then you wind up with soap residue on your damp pants.

Pat Cummings said...

Interesting speculation heard today: the Covid-19 epidemic has already benefitted the Chinese government but shutting doen the protests in Hong Kong...

Fish Out of Water said...

@ Sergio:

"Speaking of elections..... Do you know how they hold an election in Japan? With Both hands!!"

That's not only not funny, it is puerile, juvenile and insensitive.

Anonymous said...

I understand lyme disease goes well with Corona virus.

Rod said...

Just now back at the computer. Stilt: That's a really funny cartoon. However, I've seen a grocery cart like it before. Four of us couples were in a beach house in Mexico for the week. The host and I were sent out on a resupply run to the mega-market with a list we had not really examined earlier. The loaded cart actually looked a lot like that one, plus a small bag of groceries. Fun group.

Valvenator said...

Hey Rod, did most of those "groceries" consist of
lemons, limes, tomato juice, olives, tonic water...etc? :)

Rod said...

@V: Come to think of it, you may be right. The host & I were also doing some diving that week and so we almost (not quite) looked like non-drinkers compared to the others; and my wife doesn't drink a lot. The host even adjusted his management of shares in the common "purse" to be fair. It was not necessary; but nice of him. The others put on quite a show. A downer to add to this: Aging is a tough thing. That was some years ago; at least two of them are no longer with us and another very ill. Enjoy life while you can.

MAX Redline said...

"The masks that have been worn seem to be worthless unless there is a seal around the periphery of the mask."

Great! Now you want to start a seal hunt?

Anonymous said...

Basket appears to be a bit light on the Vodka and Rum....