Print Story So if someone you live with works with someone who met someone who might have been exposed...
By ObviousTroll (Mon Mar 23, 2020 at 08:48:45 PM EST) (all tags)
is that bad?

Asking for a friend. 

 So, Lamb's internship with AmeriCorps ended prematurely (I can't remember who I've mentioned this to, it might be in my previous diary) but after telling us they were shipping her home the following week, and that she cheerfully expected to land on Friday, buy a car on Saturday (for less than five grand!)  and move to Baltimore on Sunday to live with friends. On Monday her plan was to land an exciting job she had been talking to someone about online, things proceeded to get COVID-complicated.

So, first off, I have to say I admire her energy, her confidence, and her determination. When I suggested that a 14-year-old Prius was not a good choice she replied that she didn't want to owe anyone anything, not even her parents. But, after explaining to her that she isn’t going to be able to get a car that fast, or that cheap, and that she was going to need help from the Bank of Dad (and getting backup from her aunt and uncle who restore cars and build hot-rods for a living), I sent her a link to reputable used car corporation, she selected a few more rational choices, which I test drove and then selected the most new-driver-friendly. (She's only had her license 7 or 8 months, certifications for driving a 15-passenger van be damned!) The car actually seems to be a ridiculously good deal, 4 years old but with less than 10k miles, smaller engine (and smaller drivers seat) than I would have liked personally but, hey, perfect city car for an aspiring young professional. I dropped a deposit on it and the plan was that Lamb and I would purchase the car together on Saturday.

However, as time went on, Lamb steadily failed to provide us with flight information, chalking it up to gummit inefficiency, but finally mentioning that "they" were talking about making her particular team quarantine-in-place in Ain't-Nothing-Here, Colorado. Texting me she indicated that there were concerns that her unit might have been exposed. So, SWHTL and I were working on our personal forms of acceptance and trust, when word came in that she was flying out after all. 

And 15 minutes later the governor of Pennsylvania announced the state-wide shutdown. 

So, I sprang into action, emailing the used car dealer, and warning Lamb that things might not go so smoothly as she had imagined. The next morning the dealer replied that I could grab the car if I came by RIGHT NOW. I thought about it a bit (It was clear Lamb wasn't heading to Baltimore and wouldn't be paying me back any time soon, but it really was a nice, clean, used car...) anyway, I spent Friday running to the car dealer, finding a place nearby to stash the car once they closed their security gates, then 50 miles up to my office to snatch my desk chair (my home office chair's been giving my back a hard time) then to the airport to pick up Lamb. I even made a detour into a non-quarantined state to grab some of Lamb's favorite alcohols.

Stopped at the car dealer to retrieve Lamb's new-to-her car (although it was in my name, not hers, because she wasn't there for the paperwork) 

Tada! Time for a celebration. SWHTL had picked up sushi for us while we were travelling, and we all settled in for binge watching the Muppet Show and drinking our favorite beverages (I was still working my way through some single-malt I had picked up at a local distiller when we were down Williamsburg way.)

The next morning she pulled me aside and, looking very grave, explained that the previous week a member of her team had been exposed to someone who appeared to have COVID-like symptoms. She was really worried, because she had even tasted my bourbon from my glass the night before....

But, seriously, what can you do at that point? SWHTL and I  had already figured out that someone in Lamb’s unit had been exposed, and we were still happy Lamb was home with us instead of stranded two thousand miles away. As for drinking from my glass, WTF, we're sharing a bathroom. The truth is that by the end of the year all of us are going to have been exposed, there's an unknown chance that despite exposure we won't get it and, failing that, an 80% chance that we will have a minor case, a 10% chance it will be serious and a 10% chance it will be really serious. There's still some dispute about the mortality rate, and if we actually start staring that statistic in the face it's going to suck, but we'll face that if we get there, and we're going to get there whether or not Lamb had come home or not.

Still, it means I won't be delivering baked goods to my neighbors or assorted parents like I had planned. I mean, rational assessment of risk and all that.

Sometimes I'm overwhelmed by an oppressive weight, a foreboding about the future, whether medical, economic, or just personal. Still, I can't describe how affirming it is to hear Lamb and SWHTL laughing at a TV show upstairs.

Oh, and the Little Lost Lamb has been initiating conversations with both Lamb and I, which also makes me happy.

I'll take it, and consider it a win, regardless of what happens next.

< All by myself | I am busier working from home >
So if someone you live with works with someone who met someone who might have been exposed... | 12 comments (12 topical, 0 hidden)
Mortality Rates by wiredog (4.00 / 1) #1 Tue Mar 24, 2020 at 06:29:39 AM EST
I have friends who are nurses and they aren't worried about the mortality rate as much as the serious complications rate and the complete lack of slack in the US health care system. Already hospitals here in the DC area are on the edge and ones in NYC (a friend there is home with a presumed case and can't get tested) are already overwhelmed. Just-in-time health care is turning out to be a really bad idea. You run out of ICU beds and people start dying of things that otherwise were a one week hospital stay.

The "conservative" solution (as of last night) seems to be "let 5% of Americans die to save the economy" which, huh?

Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

What's really, really depressing me by Phil the Canuck (2.00 / 0) #4 Tue Mar 24, 2020 at 09:12:47 AM EST
It's driving past (essential worker wave) the places that are allowed to be open and seeing them mobbed by people. More people than normal. Because a large chunk of the population isn't staying home and are just compressing their shopping/errand/whatever routines into what's left to them. I walk every Saturday and Sunday for exercise and my normal route takes me past a Target. I walked around through the loading dock because the front door was human soup.

This is going on for a long time and we're going to make Italy look competent and prepared.

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It does explain why by ObviousTroll (2.00 / 0) #5 Tue Mar 24, 2020 at 09:32:22 PM EST
They’ve started telling people to “shelter in place”. Last weekend, Valley Forge was full of large groups, when I went for a ride today, when I reached a different trail, that too had a lot of people, although mostly obvious single family units trying to cope with small children who had been cooped up too long. I mean, I know the logic of quarantine, but I also know what’s involved with dealing with small children. 

An Angry and Flatulent Pig, Trying to Tie Balloon Animals
[ Parent ]
Mrs. Ha is an essential worker by georgeha (4.00 / 1) #2 Tue Mar 24, 2020 at 06:38:01 AM EST
and getting 50% more hours than she prefers. She probably comes into contact with close to a hundred customers a shift.

What can you do? Just try to minimize risks.

And now we have five adults in the house, sharing wifi and internet.

It hasn't been easy on my head. by dark nowhere (4.00 / 1) #3 Tue Mar 24, 2020 at 07:51:46 AM EST
I have a hard time when people who are wilfully negligent have too much influence over a situation I'm in, and right now there's a global situation and there are quite a lot of those people, most of them seem to be proud of the fact. I know some, none of which I'm currently on speaking terms with. Ordinarily we'd support each other, emotionally or otherwise, but I can't do it.

A few people in my family have been exposed. We're waiting on tests. I'm less worried about that. It's a thing, not likely to be a problem, certain to be over in a few weeks. I'm more worried about the family members who are at risk of having serious issues should they get infected. There are a number of ticked boxes.

See you, space cowboy.

Hang in there. by ObviousTroll (4.00 / 2) #6 Wed Mar 25, 2020 at 01:40:58 PM EST

Each of us in my household has had flashes of despair over our situation, financial losses, job security and so on. We just have to help each other when we can.

alternately, I found a truly amazing brownie recipe if you want to indulge in chocolate therapy... 

An Angry and Flatulent Pig, Trying to Tie Balloon Animals
[ Parent ]
I'll check back in an hour by marvin (4.00 / 1) #7 Wed Mar 25, 2020 at 04:42:24 PM EST
Your comment will be given a rating of 1 unless aforementioned brownie recipe is posted.

Teasing about chocolate products without posting links will be a capital crime when the revolution comes.

[ Parent ]
I'm so sorry. by ObviousTroll (4.00 / 1) #8 Thu Mar 26, 2020 at 08:40:38 AM EST
I should have realized I was making a triggering statement.

Here's the one I was talking about:  Here's another that I reallylike:

An Angry and Flatulent Pig, Trying to Tie Balloon Animals
[ Parent ]
Thank you by marvin (4.00 / 1) #9 Thu Mar 26, 2020 at 01:08:01 PM EST
I have amended my ratings according.

[ Parent ]
Extortion is such an ugly word. by ObviousTroll (2.00 / 0) #10 Thu Mar 26, 2020 at 08:38:22 PM EST
I haven't made them yet by marvin (2.00 / 0) #11 Thu Mar 26, 2020 at 11:48:48 PM EST
Maybe you should send over a test batch so that I have a baseline to compare against. Or who knows what depths of depravity I might stoop to next.

[ Parent ]
So... reality is so much less appealing than our by ObviousTroll (2.00 / 0) #12 Fri Mar 27, 2020 at 08:58:59 PM EST
Dreams, so perhaps I should leave you with those. 

An Angry and Flatulent Pig, Trying to Tie Balloon Animals
[ Parent ]
So if someone you live with works with someone who met someone who might have been exposed... | 12 comments (12 topical, 0 hidden)