Power came back around 1:30. Been playing catch-up ever since.
FYI, the Zoom iOS app may say you’re on mute but the mute is a lie and everyone heard me explain to my 5 year old how daddy was on an important call and if he died he’d just have to figure it out next time.
I had to clarify that he’s playing a video game.
Also yelled, “Get out of the rain and somewhere dry, dude,” to a soaked squirrel standing in the driveway so self-isolation is going great.
“Rainbow Connection” is up there with “Pure Imagination” for movie songs from my childhood that get me every time.
The last couple of weeks have been day after day of Sammy, the 5 year old, wanting to throw pretend parties. They involve a lot of “presents” which are his toys wrapped in a blanket delivered to us throughout the house. And a big party set up in his room with stations including an art area, a reading spot, costumes, and a lesson on toy cars crashing into other toy cars. He’s gotten Jasper, the 2 year old, to join in, who is now equally obsessed at the idea of throwing a party.
So guess who’s having a party this weekend?
Like most of America, I need a haircut. It’s starting to curl on the ends in the back. Soon it’ll curl around the ears. The rest will continue to puff. It’s not going to be pretty.
File this one under “why didn’t we think of this sooner?”
Today Sammy had a playdate with one of his friends from school via Zoom. It was simple, they showed each other some of their toys then built LEGO from their own homes and showed off their creations. Even Jasper got in on it, showing off to Sammy’s friend.
Sammy was pretty excited to see his friend. Makes me wonder what’s going through their little heads throughout this whole thing. Everything is so different, and they know it, but what does that mean to a 5yo and 2yo?
PRO TIP: Don’t take reopen advice from any “experts” who:
– 6 weeks ago predicted 20,000 total US deaths
– 4 weeks ago dismissed models as absurd because there was no way New York would reach 12,000 deaths by 4/15 (they reached 11,900)
– Attacks pre-social distancing modeling for showing 100,000-200,000 deaths yet we’re “only” at 58,000 (despite social distancing – and we’re not done yet)
– Generally dismissed COVID-19 as “just the flu”
Now, yes, there is room for taking this seriously AND believing that the extent of social distancing may have gone too far or that we’re at a point where we should consider our options when it comes to taking steps to getting some businesses open and folks back to work, but this was clearly more than “just the flu” and treating it as such would have made things a whole lot worse.
Bonus Tip: Anyone who outright dismissed social distancing from the beginning shouldn’t be listened to on how we should start the process for reopening.
Shaved for the first time in two weeks. Look somewhat more respectable and many years younger. All of my grays are in my beard. It’s rough looking. Of course I didn’t think to take a before picture, but it’s probably for the best.
Despite social distancing measures in place in Virginia, despite the shutdown of non-essential businesses, despite everything we’ve all been sacrificing to keep COVID-19 in check, VA still reported it’s largest jump in confirmed cases today with 864 new positive tests.
Let’s say we’ve decreased overall social interactions by 80% – could you imagine the panic if 4,000 cases were being reported today? After 2,500 yesterday? Or 3,000 the day before?
And that’s IF we could get testing capacity to stay above 2,500. Which we can’t seem to do.
This thing still has a 3.4% fatality rate among confirmed cases. That’s more than 320 lives that would be lost if we had 9,500 new cases in the last few days instead of 2,000.
That’s more than 100 new fatalities a day and a curve still aiming for the sky.
The further flattening of the curve and declining projection of fatalities isn’t a sign of failure or fake news – it’s a sign of SUCCESS!
Yes, one can argue if the measures have gone too far and whether or not we should have a plan to reopen and what that can look like.
But we can’t pretend this wouldn’t have been much worse, or that we’re out of the woods yet.
To those that have stuck to their guns and stayed home, THANK YOU! You’re helping keep my family and friends safe and healthy.
Let’s keep on this together so we can get out of it sooner.
Why the sudden outburst from your friendly neighborhood Jason? I’m sick of seeing people point to a lack of resource shortages, the availability of beds, the extended peak and curve, the lack of deaths as some sort of “told you this wasn’t a big deal!”
Despite treating this like a big deal, hundreds of Virginians are dead, hundreds are still in the ICU and on ventilators, thousands are sick with hundreds more being reported daily, assisted living facilities RAVAGED, and all from something that is clearly not “just the flu.”
There are going to be long term economic consequences of this, and they are going to hurt, but the economic disaster of an overwhelmed healthcare system and a populace afraid to step outside and a government not taking this seriously would do far more damage.
We’ll bounce back. And, thankfully, thousands of folks who will be alive because of the decisions and sacrifices made today will be part of that recovery.
UPDATE: Test results take time, anywhere from 2-8 days, so positive results from this morning may reflect reality over a range of time.
By averaging over the last 2 weeks or 1 week we can see a bit more of the continuing upward trend.
In the chart below, red is the One Week Average, blue is the Two Week Average.
Since April 1st, the 2 Week Average has NEVER declined. The 1 Week Average has only seen single digit one-day drops that adjust back up the next day.
Why is this significant? Because the results of a single day is just noise and not reflective of an actual single day snapshot in the Commonwealth. But by running averages we can get a feel for trends given how results take X days to come back. Say we have a series of low days and one really high day of positive results – if the average is still LOWER than the proceeding days or weeks, we’re trending downward overall and that’s a win.
As long as this trend continues to rise, we still have a growing problem in Virginia.
The Kenney Family’s social distancing began 45 days ago, meaning we’re entering our seventh week of the whole family being home. We’re still not doing enough of the schooling of our children and boy oh boy is the idea of “limiting” screentime hilarious, but on another level it’s kinda nice.
Seeing these boys interact and be their own people and play and learn and grow together is something else. There will never be another moment when we get this kinda time with them, even if a lot of it is in the background while we’re trying to get work done.
Risked leaving the kids alone in the home office while I was on a conference call. Came back to find my mouse missing and three keys popped off my keyboard. Coulda been worse?
My first experience with Post Malone was a meme that said he looked like the 0.01% of germs hand sanitizer didn’t kill. I enjoyed his song off the Into The Spider-Verse soundtrack and noted a comment I heard from him on a podcast about how he could make his voice do this “Stevie Nix goat kinda sound.” Otherwise I haven’t given him much attention. That changed this weekend when he did a very respectable 15 song set of Nirvana covers with Blink-182’s Travis Barker to help raise money for WHO COVID-19 response.
I’m a little put off by his colorful language between songs, but more because that limits my ability to listen to this because of the kids being around. I tell myself. GET OFF MY LAWN.
An unintended consequence of this quarantine is a small growth of the vinyl collection. Spoon’s “Gimme Fiction” is coming up on a 15th anniversary this June, and grabbing that had me feeling like giving “Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga” a listen and remembering what a fantastic album that was. And while I was picking up other records I figured I’d get Beck’s best album “Sea Change” (followed closely by “Mutations”) which I’d been meaning to do for a while.
President Clinton would approve:
The 2 year old wanted me to draw his stuffed cat. So I did.
Then he wanted me to give him a sword. It kinda went downhill from there. Or uphill?
I’d started keeping a journal back when all of this began. And after a couple weeks fell out of it. Part because it read like the same thing every day: “Work. Boys were good. Everyone’s stir crazy.” Repeat. But then some heavy things happened that awkwardly made it difficult for me to feel motivated to write (usually it’s the opposite). I sometimes pick it up in the morning and put the date on the page with the intention of filling in the blank space below, but, lately, inevitably, the blank space gets filled with the date of the next day I pick it up.
Cal Newport is a professor of computer science at Georgetown University and the author of Digital Minimalism: Choosing a Focused Life in a Noisy World (2019). Late last month I did an interview with GQ about technology and the coronavirus pandemic.