Lacking perspective

Bear Grylls says that the COVID pandemic means that it has never been harder to be a young person than it is today. I am sure that the kids who lived through the Athenian plague of 430 BC, where two thirds of the city was wiped out would feel sorry for the kids of today.

Then there was the Justinian plague during the 6th century AD, which wiped out one quarter of the world’s population.

Or how about the black death of the mid 1300’s? I mean that only wiped out a third of the world’s population. This disease was so severe, that there are still traces of the loss of genetic diversity to be found in the DNA of people today.

The arrival of the Spaniards in the Caribbean in 1492 wiped out 90% of the indigenous populations of the Caribbean isles.

The Spanish flu of 1918 killed 50 million people worldwide.

Over a million died from the Asian flu in 1957.

But hey, that COVID pandemic with the 98% survival rate and the 10% infection rate is the worst EVER.

Papiere, bitte

A couple left for Hawaii for Valentine’s day. Aware of the COVID testing requirement, she got tested swabbing her own nose in the parking lot of a Walgreens, he got tested at the Mayo clinic.

Well, it turns out that the Mayo clinic hasn’t applied or paid Hawaii to be a ‘trusted partner’ so the husband was not allowed to stay Hawaii and had to fly back to Los Angeles. He is hoping to get tested and return to Hawaii in time to spend Valentine’s with his wife.

In other COVID news

I was just contacted by a contact tracer from the health department in the county where I work, because I was exposed to COVID through my in laws. My employer reported me because I told them about the exposure. They informed me that I am under quarantine for fourteen days from the date of exposure. Without too many details:

My in laws, as well as my wife and I, live in one Florida county. My wife works for a school in the same county. I work in the neighboring county directly to the north. My wife was told she could return to work after ten days, which meant she returned to work yesterday.

So I live in South county with my wife, who also works in south county. I work in North county. My wife and I were both exposed on the same day, but I am quarantined for four days longer than she is, because why?

Who knows?


My in laws are the WORST patients ever. They both have COVID. They are both sick as hell, with my FIL being on the verge of needing to be hospitalized. They won’t eat, they won’t drink, I can’t even get them to stay away from other people.

I have asked them to do three things:

  • take their temperature and SpO2 every 6 hours
  • take their medicine
  • stay the fuck home and rest while avoiding other people

They won’t do any of it. I ask what they are eating and drinking, and this is what I get: “In the past 12 hours, I had a cup of coffee, a small bottle of Gatoraide Zero, and half a bottle of water.” I tell them that this isn’t nearly enough, especially since they are telling me that they have diarrhea and a fever of 103, then I point out that if they cannot take care of themselves they are going to wind up in the hospital. The reply? “Good.”

I try to get them to eat, and they tell me that food tastes funny, and they don’t want any. I try to get them to eat soup, and they say that they are tired of soup. We try alternatives. Apple Sauce. Cream of Wheat. Oatmeal. Mashed Potatoes. We even tried burgers (FIL loves burgers). All no.

Then the topping on this cake: I asked if they needed medicine. Several days ago, they told me that they need cough medicine. I brought it. They complained that it was the wrong kind, and wanted Delsym, because someone told them that this brand was better than others. Today, they admitted that they are getting medicine somewhere else. This means that they are either going out or someone else is coming to see them.

This concerns me, because I am not supposed to be leaving the house, since I have been quarantined due to being exposed to them. My job will fire me if they find out that I am working from home and still going places like the store to get their supplies. Why am I going to risk my job to help them, and then find out they are sneaking out? That frankly pisses me off.

COVID and family

My father in law tested positive for COVID. My FIL is rather stubborn. We have been trying to get him to eat, but he won’t eat. We try to get him to drink fluids, including Gatoraid, chicken broth, water, you name it. He won’t drink.

He has had diarrhea for the past two days, can’t take a deep breath without coughing, and has a fever of 102.2 degrees. The fact that he isn’t eating or drinking means that he is losing fluids and electrolytes, and that isn’t good for anyone, much less a 75 year old man with COVID.

I dropped off an Oxygen saturation meter so they can test his SpO2. There is evidence that lower blood oxygen levels in COVID patients is an indicator of reduced increased mortality- 90 percent or lower is the danger zone. So I told them to take their readings every 4 hours, record the result, and let me know if any reading went below 92 percent.

The mortality rate for Covid-19 patients depending on their blood oxygen levels. It shows that lower oxygen saturation conferred with higher a mortality rate within 30 days. However, even within the 'normal range' (94 to 98 per cent, according to the NHS), the mortality rate was higher

So today they sent me a list of the readings over the last 2 days, and my FIL was having a slow drift from the mid 90’s, dropping to 89 percent this afternoon. We contacted the doctor, and the doctor recommended that we send him to the hospital. Since there was no other way to get him there, we called an ambulance.

He is in the ER now, and we are waiting to hear if they will admit him or not. My wife, as you can imagine, is beside herself with worry.


My in-laws recently took a COVID test. Both my mother in law and father in law both came back with positive tests. They, so far are doing OK, even if they are pretty ill. What this means, however, is that I am currently quarantined and cannot go to work. My wife and I are both symptom free at this point. Time will tell.