email circulated by a world famous scientist

Thanks to me exchanging emails with Carolyn Porco back when I was still stanning for Unitarianism, I got this this am. It is actually from a friend of hers.

Subject: What I am doing for the upcoming COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic

Dear Colleagues, as some of you may recall, when I was a professor of pathology at the University of California San Diego, I was one of the first molecular virologists in the world to work on coronaviruses (the 1970s). I was the first to demonstrate the number of genes the virus contained. Since then, I have kept up with the coronavirus field and its multiple clinical transfers into the human population (e.g., SARS, MERS), from different animal sources. The current projections for its expansion in the US are only probable, due to continued insufficient worldwide data, but it is most likely to be widespread in the US by mid to late March and April.

Here is what I have done and the precautions that I take and will take. These are the same precautions I currently use during our influenza seasons, except for the mask and gloves.:

1) NO HANDSHAKING! Use a fist bump, slight bow, elbow bump, etc.

2) Use ONLY your knuckle to touch light switches. elevator buttons, etc.. Lift the gasoline dispenser with a paper towel or use a disposable glove.

3) Open doors with your closed fist or hip – do not grasp the handle with your hand, unless there is no other way to open the door. Especially important on bathroom and post office/commercial doors.

4) Use disinfectant wipes at the stores when they are available, including wiping the handle and child seat in grocery carts.

5) Wash your hands with soap for 10-20 seconds and/or use a greater than 60% alcohol-based hand sanitizer whenever you return home from ANY activity that involves locations where other people have been.

6) Keep a bottle of sanitizer available at each of your home’s entrances. AND in your car for use after getting gas or touching other contaminated objects when you can’t immediately wash your hands.

7) If possible, cough or sneeze into a disposable tissue and discard. Use your elbow only if you have to. The clothing on your elbow will contain infectious virus that can be passed on for up to a week or more!

What I have stocked in preparation for the pandemic spread to the US:

1) Latex or nitrile latex disposable gloves for use when going shopping, using the gasoline pump, and all other outside activity when you come in contact with contaminated areas.

Note: This virus is spread in large droplets by coughing and sneezing. This means that the air will not infect you! BUT all the surfaces where these droplets land are infectious for about a week on average – everything that is associated with infected people will be contaminated and potentially infectious. The virus is on surfaces and you will not be infected unless your unprotected face is directly coughed or sneezed upon.  This virus only has cell receptors for lung cells (it only infects your lungs) The only way for the virus to infect you is through your nose or mouth via your hands or an infected cough or sneeze onto or into your nose or mouth. >>>>>>> OKAY THIS WAS THE POINT I SAID hunh

Because this disease has cell receptors all over your body, as previously mentioned in this blog. HOWEVER he’s right that it can only infect you by getting into your respiratory system, usually by you transferring live virus to your facial mucosa. Once it gets in you, it can hurt your heart and your circulatory system surfaces as well.

2) Stock up now with disposable surgical masks and use them to prevent you from touching your nose and/or mouth (We touch our nose/mouth 90X/day without knowing it!). This is the only way this virus can infect you – it is lung-specific. The mask will not prevent the virus in a direct sneeze from getting into your nose or mouth – it is only to keep you from touching your nose or mouth.

3) Stock up now with hand sanitizers and latex/nitrile gloves (get the appropriate sizes for your family). The hand sanitizers must be alcohol-based and greater than 60% alcohol to be effective.

4) Stock up now with zinc lozenges. These lozenges have been proven to be effective in blocking coronavirus (and most other viruses) from multiplying in your throat and nasopharynx. Use as directed several times each day when you begin to feel ANY “cold-like” symptoms beginning. It is best to lie down and let the lozenge dissolve in the back of your throat and nasopharynx. Cold-Eeze lozenges is one brand available, but there are other brands available.

I, as many others do, hope that this pandemic will be reasonably contained, BUT I personally do not think it will be. Humans have never seen this snake-associated virus before and have no internal defense against it. Tremendous worldwide efforts are being made to understand the molecular and clinical virology of this virus. Unbelievable molecular knowledge about the genomics, structure, and virulence of this virus has already been achieved. BUT, there will be NO drugs or vaccines available this year to protect us or limit the infection within us. Only symptomatic support is available. I hope these personal thoughts will be helpful during this potentially catastrophic pandemic. You are welcome to share this email.

Good luck to all of us!

James Robb, MD FCAP

Japanese folk art called Temari

Image

Source, Nana Akua, photographing her grandmother’s  work. Shown are 24 brightly coloured embroidered balls in a variety of mostly geometric patterns, showing tremendous skill and design subtlety

That balloon we’ve been talking about; it’s gone up. NC2019 is forcing the admissions of 100 people per day in Wuhan and it’s appeared in Singapore and Thailand. Just learned this from Helen Branswell from an article from China that hasn’t been translated into English yet.

How do you like this

This is a fractal, possibly for the cover for my lamentable, never to be published porn side project from the Upsun universe, known as Sweetie’s House of Tentacles, which I ran off in a bunch of different colour palettes. This one I turned into a BEADING PATTERN and look how it turned out, look at it. Isn’t it stellar?

Fractal pattern converted into a bead pattern

 

 

Note to people I block on twitter

It’s possible I have you blocked because something you posted crawled all across my sensory homunculus rubbing salt in the unhealed blisters and cuts, and not because you’re a suppurating organ of discharge pulsing gleets of hatred and falsehood onto twitter.

I straight up loved Parabellum. Long may Keanu reign.

Roxane Gay rules and this post is TMI

YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED…..

So my very favourite Bad Feminist Roxane Gay, who has to deal with so much more intersectionality than I do, has participated in a puff piece in stylist.co.uk talking about her hygiene routine.  I told her I would follow her example.

At this point I can hear Jeff saying something, and then when I ask him to repeat it, he says, ‘Oh, nothing, nothing.’

I probably should shower more frequently than I do, being about three times a week, but as I get older I get dryer, and I feel like I’m turning into a desiccated old piece of sod.  I use Belle de Provence Honeysuckle soap because it smells very good, lasts a long time and is the one piece of luxury in my hygiene routine. Hardly anyone carries it and since it’s 6 bucks a pop I tend to buy in bulk when I find it.  I use Head and Shoulders brand shampoo/conditioner and buy it in the large pump size as it’s cheaper.  I use no other soap products.  I wash my hands every time I handle the cat, before I prep food and after I come in from being out in public as well as after I groom myself or go to the toilet.  I didn’t give a shit about washing my hands before I ran a restaurant.  Now I really, really do care about it, and it’s the simplest, fastest and easiest way to prevent illness, so why the hell not.

I hate all deodorants but I stink if I don’t use them.  When I’m feeling radical I wash, dry thoroughly and apply baby powder to my pits, but that’s good for about 12 hours before Jeff’s eyebrows do something improbable (the fan in the basement blows my effluent in his direction when we’re watching tv, so … yeah.)  Otherwise I use whatever kind of bo juice isn’t loathsome, and I’m like a lightning rod for deodorant being discontinued, so I try to be cool, but right now it’s a pretty loathsome vanilla smelly thing.  Gak.   Still better than the alternative.

I use two different kinds of eyedrops, thanks to the amazingly practical and super unjudgey Lady Miss Banjola, one for day, one for night, and I am not consistent in their use but by gar it’s a good thing to have them, because when you need them you’re like ACK MY EYES MY EYES I CAN’T GET MY EYES oh thank goodness I can see!  Also, thanks to her I found out that dryness amidships can be ameliorated by the twice weekly anointing of der ladygel, and she made brand recommendations, and I can get them reasonably cheap on line.  With that one small recommendation she made my life go from a meepy, withered parody of what Beeker sounds like after he’s been mugged, to me being able to contemplate having a boyfriend.  I don’t actually want a boyfriend, and the men in my life who squire me around do not wish to fill this or candidly any other vacancy wheresoever situated, but at least the prospect shifted from being painfully impossible to being ludicrously improbable, and only the Rumi’s Beloved could parse that shift in meaningful terms, but I view it as an improvement.

I pluck my eyebrows every day.  I watched the best eyebrow guy on the planet do a tutorial on youtube, and I thought “Hey, my OCD and some grooming tips wa-ho!” but I tell you my brow game is fierce, and it helps with the performative feminity, although I have not recently been mistaken for a man (it only happened the once, and I think the person was altered.)

This upping of the eyebrow game was subsequent to Keith picking out to extremely flattering and stylish frames for me.  I was looking really hard for a job and I wanted to be ready to interview at a moment’s notice, and now, provided I have a clean dress, I really am.   I pluck my chin hairs, and my (sigh, fuck my life) chest hairs.  I do not shave my legs or pits and anybody who wants me to can shave his or her legs and pits all they want but this lovely, amazing, FEATURE of adult life called BODILY AUTONOMY does not stop being awesome just because you are creeped out by my hairy legs, and the next time somebody calls me on it I’ll just say that sexism is uglier than hairy legs and any sensible person knows that.  Body hair sure makes men who have basic issues with mansplaining and feminism go away right quick, and smell ya later, ya squirrelfondling preverts.

Also, I got really really bad frostbite on my lower legs when I was in public school, so bad that the skin on my lower legs (the shaving zone) is burst-into-tears sensitive, so yeah, no, fuck your leg shaving.  It HURTS.  I bleed, and then all the little hairs growing back in catch in my bedding, so fuck you and go AWAY if you think I should shave my legs for any reason whatsoever.  As for my armpits.  When more than 50 percent of north American men shave their armpits, I’ll sign up for one of those monthly boxes of shaving gear, but until that day (bwa ha ha, coming soon!) yeah, just no.

I used to use Garnier number 60 hair dye and I still have some tucked away, but it really really bothers Jeff and I’m not a fan of doing it, I am a fan of having it done. Fortunately the colour is almost exactly the same as the two remaining stripes of colour I have in the mounting nest of grey that is my hair so even when I let it grow out it looks reasonably okay.  If I get another interview, which will be hard, as I am officially as of this moment no longer looking for work since hey we’re in a recession, and nobody would want to hire me even if I wanted to trade the best part of me for 24K net a year, which I don’t, and which makes me an elitist asshole. Ok.

I make my own perfume, which is called Cyprus, and has a secret blend of floral oil ingredients, and which smells fantastic on me (to the point where other women have demanded I sell them some, which I did) but everybody from my mOm to my brO thinks it smells like I’m hanging truck stop air freshener from my pits AND about 40% of my friends have chemical sensitivities and find it overpowering even when I’m using it gingerly so it’s only for special occasions.

My last pedicure made me limp for THREE FUCKING MONTHS and I am never paying for one again as Hecate may bear witness; now I cut off the parts of the toenail that stick out and abrade down the rest with a number of different kinds of pedicure gear.  I occasionally soak my feet and use footrub on myself or get somebody else like Katie to help out.  I am very very on top of my toenails because I can go from Happy Feet to ballerina outtakes (thankfully not shown here) in less than a week.  My hair, feet and nails grow at a tremendous rate, which is great because I get rid of heavy metals that way, but I must cut, hack, saw and file away with vigour.

I used to be an assclown about dental hygiene but I brush and floss every single day now (occasional lapses, but not many) since I can’t afford to lose the use of any more teeth when toothpaste and floss is so cheap.  I buy firm or super firm brushes and brush whatever way feels right and I pay for getting my teeth cleaned professionally once a year.  I am seriously considering investing in dental picks.

I have incredibly clean ear canals.  I hate the feeling of anything in there except air, but I no longer scrape them out with anything hard because it removes the hair that grows in the canal and I’m so clumsy I might deafen myself.

I wash my face with soap once a week.  Any more and I dry out like something that went with Scott to the Pole.

Once every three months I apply a clay facial mask.  I like how my skin feels afterward.

Once in a very long while I get a massage or a spa half day, but I can get the same results from rolling around on Wreck Beach and probably get exposed to the same amount of coliform in the process.

 

And there you have it.  Nobody asked for it, but that is my hygiene routine.

Beautiful but windy

Katie’s all perky because various job interviews are going well. I am very happy about this and hope she finds work remunerative and suitable to her one goal right now, which is to be back in her own apartment.  I must say, it will be a cold day in hell before she supports another man.  Or so she says, I hope she carries through.

Foyle’s War on Netflix is a wonderful show, Jeff and I are very much enjoying it. No swearing, decorous violence, great dialogue, sweet vehicles, and history all wrapped up nicely with the superlative Michael Kitchen at the helm.  He is GORGEOUS but in a very low key Oh So English way.

Streptococcus salivarus, I salute you!  It is the probiotic that turned my bad into glad, digestion wise.

Mouse traps have yielded nothing; we are moving on to sticky traps today, damnit.

Practiced 45 minutes today.

Yesterday was gorgeous but WINDY.  As I contemplate the lawn, which has now grown tall and fallen over, I keep hoping the Goat Man will pass by.  But he never does.

Ziva’s in Craigslist, priced for quick sale.

Allowed to be proud

The day before yesterday I bought dowelling, a pulley, stout cordage and a massive plant hook.

Today I sawed two four inch chunks off the dowelling, drilled a transverse hole through both in the centre, sanded the ends and screw holes, fed the stout cordage through the holes and tied it off, ran it through the pulley and VOILA.  I have a shoulder exercise machine with two handles!  It ain’t purty but it works.  And I cleaned up after myself except for the door lintel, which I should probably do before Miss Moppet drags her way through the debris.  She is VERY FLUFFY and staticky right now, and she’s getting matted just looking at me.

Jeff wants the device to be more securely set into the door lintel, and he’s cheerfully fixing that for me now, but I visualized it, bought it, and DID IT. I think I should make a safety cover for it when not in use, some of the men who come through the house on occasion are dashed tall.

Ripped a whole bunch of CDs today, mostly filk, blues and rockabilly.  I do like Dr. Crowell; hardly anybody in filk is a music perfesser, so we get a trained voice and unbelievable skill on keys.  Sadly, CD Woodbury’s special CD which includes his fine version of My Old School, doesn’t want to be ripped; the drive made a noise that usually presages catastrophic failure in any device emitting it, but I ejected it after an eternity of hideous grinding, and the drive seemed okay.

It’s Remembrance Day.  The family tradition is to rewatch Saving Private Ryan, A Bridge Too Far, a Night to Remember or Sink the Bismarck!

Katie has been staying overnight; mostly she’s out hanging with her girlfriends.  We all went out to breakfast this morning.

This article goes to a Popular Science link about what happens when you put lego in a washing machine, for science.

 

not a lot of money, but a really good day anyway

Katie is increasingly stoked about her camping trip.  Wish I could say where but we don’t want uninvited guests now do we…

The shop SMELLS OF BACON.

We experimented with a new soup recipe and it’s so simple and so tasty Katie and I are both doing the Snoopy happy dance.  We can haz cheezy broccoli soup!

It’s raining, and we don’t mind.  Only one more hour to go, and then I pick up Ziva (again) and we go to Costco (our home away from home) and then… ep 4 Band of Brothers with Jeff, since we are rewatching it.  SUCH A GOOD SHOW.

Gotye’s Heart’s a  Mess is playing on the shop sound system.

Yeah, so not so much revenue, but a good day anyway.  Regulars came by, newbies came by, I got my CRA letter off to the post box, all the fridges are behaving, I organized a bunch of receipts, wrote down the new recipe… and Katie’s crush forked over his phone number.  I can now let my breath out after a month.

I light a candle for a close family friend who just lost a baby.  I sucked in my breath when I heard she was expecting… she’s multi-risk.  And now she knows why women don’t announce pregnancies until they quicken.  It’s horrible, it’s sad, it’s completely messed up, and it is life in it’s glorypain.  She and her husband are going to lie low for a couple of days.  Hell of a thing to happen on Mother’s Day, god help us all.