Muting The Mandates

It appears that many in America are waving the white flag on the coronavirus.

Many have decided that they are just going to “deal with it” and go about their merry way, whether they get sick or not. Whether they are hospitalized or not. Whether they die or not.

Many have been vaccinated and boosted. Many have not. And it seems that it doesn’t really matter at this point if you have been vaccinated and boosted, as it appears that the vaccine doesn’t last much more than a year (nobody really knows) and now data has been released saying that four months after the booster shot, your protection decreases.

So that leaves the facemasks. They are the only tool that has really been consistent with protecting oneself from the coronavirus. Yet so many in the United States are giving up on them and doing away with mask mandates. They are just throwing caution to the wind and leaving it up to the individual as to whether to wear a mask or not. We have just given up. Which does not bode well from the remainder of 2022.

It can be argued that cases are dropping and that hospitalizations and deaths are down (that is not the case everywhere in the country), and that is why mask mandates should be lifted. The one thing the United States has to remember with the lifting of mask mandates is that the coronavirus is a world wide problem, not just a national problem. Until we reach zero cases, zero deaths and zero hospitalizations, not just in the United States, but across the world, we are always going to have the coronavirus to deal with at some level. As long as people travel internationally, there will be cases. And deaths. And hospitalizations. And as long as there are mutations, there will be cases. And deaths. And hospitalizations. And the longer time goes on, the less effective the vaccines will become, as nobody has given any guidance on whether the vaccines should be a yearly thing and nobody knows how long they really last. I’m sure right now people who were vaccinated at the end of 2020 are not even protected. Sure you can say you got the vaccine and you got the booster. But how protected are you really? It’s no surprise so many vaccinated people are becoming ill. And although right now many of their cases aren’t as significant as those of the unvaccinated, as time goes on, that is going to change. Then we have the children under five who still can’t be vaccinated. Not that it would probably matter much.

So put your masks away for now if you must. But I wouldn’t throw them away and I’d keep them close by. You’ll be needing them again sooner than later.

Number 199

Tom Brady retired from football today. Not that anyone was shocked by the “official” announcement, as we all surmised it on Saturday.

To think we knew Tom when he was nothing but a wet-behind-the-ears 24-year-old with a beat-up blue pickup truck who couldn’t dance his way around a Duck boat.

Thanks for the heart-wrenching and often heart-stopping moments, the many championships and the memories. Even if Tom doesn’t care to remember or acknowledge New England in his retirement speech, New England will always remember and acknowledge him.

Although he went from a humble QB who had to quickly learn his way around the NFL field to a cocky, sometimes selfish QB who thought nothing was good enough and felt he could let his teammates know it if he didn’t like what they did, nobody can argue that Tom will go down in history as the best QB of all time.

I will always remember the day my husband told me that Drew Bledsoe had been taken out of the game the day before and was replaced by Tom Brady. I wasn’t really following them at that point and I asked, “Who’s Tom Brady?” and my husband replied, “He’s nothing special”. At that time he really wasn’t. Special isn’t something you are; it’s something you become. And “special” is what Tom Brady eventually became.

It’s sad that Tom forgot where he came from. He forgot draft day when team after team passed him by. When he threw things in anger because he hadn’t been selected yet. When he moped along the sidewalks of San Mateo because he hadn’t been selected yet. He forgot that the Patriots selected him at 199. He forgot he got his true chance through nothing but pure fucking luck. It’s sad that in the end he didn’t remember how he got to where he truly is. But fame can often do that to a person.

Yes, I understand the speculation of why Brady left out mentioning the team he led for 20 years and the fans who adored him for the same amount of time is because he plans to sign a one-day contract and retire as a Patriot. Whether that actually happens still needs to be seen. It still doesn’t change the fact that he didn’t even mention New England fans in his good-bye speech.

One thing Tom Brady forgot in his retirement speech was to remember that to have an ending, you need a beginning. And the 20 years he spent in New England was one hell of a long, beautiful beginning, especially for someone who only mentioned the franchise and fans he has played with for the past 24 months in his retirement speech, as if they were the team he had captained for 20 years. I feel bad for Tampa fans. They only got to experience two years of greatness, mostly on the downside. We got to experience 20 great years, mostly on the upside.

I will always be a Patriots fan. Nothing will ever change that. And although I lost respect for Tom with how he divorced himself from New England, and has acted like those 20 years never existed, I know nothing can erase what he brought to a down-and-out, never-going-anywhere franchise. For that I, and many fans, will forever be grateful.

I wish Tom Brady the best of luck in all his future endeavors and happiness always with his family.

Thanks for the memories. It’s been a hell of a ride.

It’s Official

Saturday I officially became one of the 1.43 million people in Massachusetts to become infected with Covid. Well, I didn’t get infected on Saturday. I actually hadn’t been feeling well since Monday. But Saturday was when I was tested and they told me I was positive. I was lucky enough to have symptoms which allowed me to be tested at an urgent care. Because if you don’t have symptoms, they won’t test you there. And to find an at-home test right now is like trying to win the lottery.

Anyway, my biggest complaint? The sneezing. I don’t think I’ve ever sneezed so much in my life! Friday was the worst. I don’t think there was an hour that passed without me sneezing. So of course the sneezing has led to a very runny nose which I’m constantly blowing and have now developed a very sore nose. I do have a slight cough, but I’ve had worse coughs with an ordinary cold. In fact, I’ve had worse ordinary colds. And I have a hoarse throat so I now sound like Brenda Vaccaro. But I’ll take it.

I know many have questioned the term “mild symptoms” and everybody’s different. One person’s mild symptoms aren’t going to be as mild as another’s. To me, what I’m experiencing are very mild symptoms. Like I said, I’ve had regular colds worse than this.

The pseudo-doc at the urgent care told me that I should quarantine for five days from onset of symptoms. I told him that the visit to the urgent care was the first place I’d been in the past ten days. Then he told me that after that I should wear a facemask for five days. I told him I wear a facemask all the time when I go out in public.

Then the next day someone from the Public Health Dept. in my town called me and told me that any family members in my home could go about their merry way unless they had symptoms also. Which made me think “really”? Because they have been exposed for the past week to someone with Covid! What kind of irrational thinking is that? Thanks CDC! But not to worry because really nobody in my household has gone anywhere for at least a week.

This whole thing does have me thinking, however. How do I know when the Covid is gone? I can’t get my hands on an at-home test. And if I did and I still tested positive, what do I do? Keep testing myself with tests I don’t have? If I don’t feel well enough to go out to a store, even with a facemask, which I wear anyway, why would I even think about going out?

So I’m going to base it on my sneezing. When I stop sneezing, or when a day passes without any sneezing, then I’ll know I’ve overcome Covid. Then again, prior to Covid I did sneeze at least once a day. So maybe that won’t work either.

Betty

In 2016 when so many celebrities passed away, this meme came out:

Now she’s gone and 2021 can suck it!

Thanks for the memories, Betty. It’s a Golden Girl palooza for us tonight!

RIP