Life in the time of Wuflu, Part 10

Apologies for the lack of posting, but everything is “All Wuflu, all the time” and I’m simply not going to get on that bandwagon any more than I can help. I’m not going to assist the legacy media by adding to the feeding frenzy. I’m not a scientist or someone who works in the medical field, so my abilities to add value there are limited. I’m down in Third Class with the rest of the folks, and why did the Titanic just shudder slightly?

So these “Life in the time of Wuflu” posts are simply meant to chronicle the things I see, first hand, in my area and to some lesser extent, the world. I would say “I hope they take your mind off the Wuflu,”, but yeah. FAIL.

Since last Thursday, I’ve stayed home except for a walk down the street with Mrs. Freeholder, who has suddenly developed an interest in walking. I suspect it’s “anything to get out of the house” syndrome in its early stages.

Because I panicked early, we really haven’t had to have anything. However, we do like salads, and the milk is about down to the powdered stuff. Plus, I want to keep out of the staples I’ve just purchased and repackaged as long as I can. It seems prudent at this point.

So, this morning I got up bright and early ventured off to the grocery store. I’m not quite eligible for “old folks hours” just yet (give me a couple of months), so I got there about 8:15. Traffic was more like an early Saturday morning than an early Wednesday. The parking lot was as empty as I’ve seen it in a while. For some reason there was a local cop hanging out. Not doing anything as far as I could tell other than sitting in his car and watching.

The store itself was a little better stocked than the last time I ventured in. There were even some canned meats, if you like corned beef and chicken, along with stuff like sardines and anchovies. Canned vegetables had returned to some extent, and fresh vegetables were in pretty good supply once one allowed for the usual seasonal variations (no decent cucumbers yet). There was some ground beef, sausages and a few roasts, but that was it for meats. Pasta had returned, as had peanut butter. Pasta sauce was thin, but the makings weren’t. Canned fruits were very thin. Chef Boyardee was back. Almost no rice. Some dried beans, but not a lot. Plenty of chips and drinks. Water for $1.69/case. Plenty of milk, no eggs and almost no cheese. Sandwich meat available. Hot dogs and chili. Bread if you weren’t picky. Spices are still well-stocked, as were condiments of all types. Frozen foods were very spotty, especially meal-type items. Even frozen pizzas were about gone. People must be pretty desperate to eat those.

Lots of holes on the shelves. Overall, it looked more like Walmart’s toy section the day after  Christmas than a grocery store as I’m used to seeing them.

And what is this mysterious “toilet paper” of which you speak?

Lots of vehicles with fishing boats in tow heading toward the lake. I guess if you stay at your end and I stay at mine, we’re socially distant, right?

(While I was writing that last sentence, we just got buzzed, and I mean buzzed, by a Blackhawk. Visual confirmation on that. We see them fairly frequently ( I live next door to Peoples Republic of Pineland, after all) but being buzzed is a little unusual. Probably means nothing, but these days I’m noticing everything. Probably not a positive sign for my mental health.)

Gas prices are stable, hovering in the $1.50-60 range for 87 octane. One station would be slammed while another would be empty.

Breakfast from the drive-thru at McDonalds. Sausage and Egg McMuffins are still tasty. A few cars in line. I should probably have passed on the fountain Coke, but they’re a weakness.

Mrs. Freeholder just left to go to school and pick up a few needed items. She’s going to hit the drive-thru at the pharmacy while she’s at it. I need some migraine rescue meds refilled. “Anything to get out of the house” syndrome again. I can’t blame her-I’m an introvert and it’s starting to wear on me as well.

Tomorrow is a trip back to the chiropractor. The foot is doing much better, but I’ve learned to be more aware of my body as I age, and I can feel some twinges that tell me that joint is trying to lock back up. I’m not going to tolerate that if there is any other choice.

Friday, Son is going to come over and help with the on-going ham shack build. Yes, eventually it will be a post or three of its own with pictures. Another trip to the big-box home improvement store will be needed.

All kids are still working. Son is back on 4 10s this week, so either orders or materials showed up. Daughter continues in the hell of of tax season, even with deadline extensions at the Federal and State levels. Son-In-Law is fixing crunched cars, but his business is way off. Son is a bit miffed his regular D&D games are on hold for the duration.

That’s things at the micro end of the scale. Now a few things I’ve noticed at a more macro level.

Wuflu is very unevenly distributed. High population density along with stupid government decisions seem to be the leading factors that determine whether things are just inconvenient or pretty ugly. Zoom in on the Johns Hopkins map-big red blobs over the major metropolitan hell-holes, while the rest of the country has freckles. I don’t find this surprising.

While I understand the stay at home orders and travel bans and agree they’re necessary, they’re applied stupidly. More rural states don’t need blanket bans, but targeted ones. It strikes me as smarter to put the bans in place where they’re needed, and allow other places to continue on with lesser restrictions as long as possible. Urban states probably need to be more aggressive in both the stringency and length of bans plus in their enforcement. I say this because people in more rural areas seem to get the joke and are doing their hand washing and social distancing, while pictures from urban areas look like business as usual in too many locations.

Those thoughts are driven by my own growing belief that we are burning down the village to save it. We’re nuking our economy, and we can’t keep this up. I don’t want anyone’s grandma to die, but at the same time we’re going to have to start taking some health risks if we aren’t going to trigger one hell of a depression. How many people would that kill?

Of course, if we would/could start massive antibody testing to determine who is “safe” to go out versus who needs to be more circumspect, it would be a game changer. If wishes were horses….

I live under one of the major north-south flight paths for airline travel. FlightAware is a favorite app on my phone. It hasn’t been getting used a lot lately.

Calls on the scanner are down. Even the criminals and drug addicts are socially isolating, or so it seems. Also fewer calls on the UNICOM frequency for the local airdrome. Traffic on local ham repeaters is way up.

Lots of folks are out walking the neighborhood. Lots of folks are also running 4 wheelers and golf carts up and down the road. Fewer cars/trucks are driving in and out.

I’m seeing the beginnings of a backlash against things China. It really struck me when watching some YouTube videos last night. This isn’t only because of their handling of Wuflu. It seems that people are noticing that their goods have a tendency to be of poor quality. One video in particular pointed this out when a trailer connector was found to be broken as manufactured. I guess you notice these things when you can’t replace that busted gadget quite so easily. I started getting tired of it a while back when I noticed just how crappy things like nuts, bolts, washers and screws had become. Perhaps we’ll learn that both good and poor quality have their costs, and that poor quality costs more over time.

Well, enough of me. The lawn is calling my name.

1 thought on “Life in the time of Wuflu, Part 10

  1. Thanks for posting updates from where you are. I live in Fresno CA now (between LA and Bay area hotspots). Overall, street traffic is way down, but traffic at the supermarkets is still busy. We now have to wait in line to get in the store to allow for "social distancing" inside. I make sure to make the comment (under my breath, but loud enough that people near me can hear) "Welcome to Socialism. Standing in a bread line is not the way America does things". Just doing my part to make people unhappy with the current status quo ante. If enough people are unhappy with the way things currently are, perhaps it will help inoculate us against full blown socialism.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *