We are all doomed

In an attempt to encourage/coerce/beg people to just give up and get vaccinated, pretty please, UCHealth linked to this article in the newsletter they sent me today.Delta variant

First, I must say I’m absolutely stunned that only 52% of Coloradoans are fully vaccinated. Being a very left-leaning, becoming more blue every day, let’s-be-another-California state, I thought the percentage would be much higher.

Although the title of the aforementioned article sounds positive, it’s filled with gloom and doom because they really, really want everyone to get vaccinated, and can’t keep doing million dollar giveaways forever:
If you’re older than 12 and haven’t been vaccinated, buckle up: The Delta variant is sweeping the planet. It is roughly 50% more contagious than the Alpha variant, which itself was roughly 50% more contagious than the “original” coronavirus strains. Multiply that out and we face a variant that spreads more than twice as easily as the coronavirus that burned around the world a year ago. To extend a baseball analogy, if the original coronavirus threw a 100 mph fastball, Alpha hits 150 mph and Delta 225 mph. That sort of competitive advantage is overwhelming.

So, here’s the skinny: Either get vaccinated, or when this virus reaches Gamma level, we’ll all be dead and the planet will be nothing but scorched earth.

 

Happy New Year!

Quoting Neil Gaiman here, because I couldn’t say it better.

May your coming year be filled with magic and dreams and good madness. I hope you read some fine books and kiss someone who thinks you’re wonderful, and don’t forget to make some art – write or draw or build or sing or live as only you can. May your coming year be a wonderful thing in which you dream both dangerously and outrageously.

I hope you will make something that didn’t exist before you made it, that you will be loved and you will be liked and you will have people to love and to like in return. And most importantly, because I think there should be more kindness and more wisdom in the world right now – I hope that you will, when you need to, be wise and that you will always be kind. And I hope that somewhere in the next year you surprise yourself.

If you’re as big a fan as I am, you’ll enjoy these Neil Gaiman short stories.

Happy New Year image

Priorities

The coronavirus is everywhere, including here in Colorado. Although we are not to gather in large groups, our governor really likes to hear himself speak, so he has no problem with assembling the media hordes daily to make announcements and rehash what he’s been saying all along.

Denver Mayor Michael Hancock decided the governor isn’t doing enough, so today he announced a stay-at-home decree, closing non-essential businesses and banning people from congregating in parks and other public places. Among the non-essential businesses: liquor stores and recreational marijuana shops.

In a panic, people dropped everything to rush to liquor stores and marijuana shops to get the essentials before hunkering down at home.

Long lines form outside liquor and marijuana stores

In order to keep the peace, in less than three hours, liquor stores and recreational dispensaries were removed from the non-essential list.

Mayor reverses order to close liquor stores and dispensaries

This is grassroots activism, Colorado-style. Because, here in Colorado, we gotta fight for the right to party in quarantine.

Accidental Asshole

I didn’t mean to be a jerk. Sometimes I’m in my head and not paying close enough attention, and other people get mad. It happens more often than I’d like to admit.

Vintage gas pumpWe went to the gas station today to fill up both vehicles because I love a great deal, and had 30 cents off per gallon to take full advantage of. To do this properly, I need to pull my car all the way through the fill up lane, so husband can pull his in behind and we both can reach our respective gas tanks with the same hose.

We got there, and I spied a pump opening up. There was a vehicle idling that may have been waiting for an open pump, and I was going to let him take that one, but when his vehicle didn’t move, I took this as my opening, went around him and took my turn. When I got out of the car, I heard yelling, and thought, “Wow, someone is in a bad mood.” Turns out, he was yelling at me for taking “his” pump. I only know this because husband told me I almost started a fight. Oops.

By the time I was old enough to drive, self-serve pumps were everywhere. I’m perfectly capable of pumping my own gas, and in all these years, never set myself on fire or dumped fuel all over my body. I did once step away from my car when it was filling, and the pump thing didn’t click off, so I paid for about 5 gallons of gas that poured out onto the concrete.

This would never have happened if we still had full-service pumps. I remember driving into the Texaco with my mother when I was little.* There would be a “ding ding” sound as she drove over the alert, and the attendants would come out of the station with a big smile. One would stride up to the car in his starched uniform to pump the gas, clean the windshield, check the oil, and the tires. We didn’t have to get out of the car. I didn’t realize at the time how luxurious that was. 

I wouldn’t trade all of today’s conveniences for someone to pump my gas. If I really wanted that luxury, I could just move to New Jersey. Better yet, I’ll just pay attention next time.

*Always trust your car to the man who wears a star. The big red Texaco star.

Image by Stacey Kennedy

My Daddy Wore Blue Jeans

My dad lived a long, often hard, life. At the end, it’s easy to see that all he wanted was to be a better man than he was the day before.

Daddy was proud of a job well done, and wasn’t afraid of hard work. He never let anyone pay his way. He earned it, and stood on his own two feet. He wore blue jeans, because they were working-man clothes, and boots for the majority of his adult life, because he was a cowboy.

Of all that he was, at heart he was an entrepreneur, a helping hand to those in need, and a protector of those he loved.

For three years a child, he delivered produce, and for three of his adult years, he delivered newspapers by cargo plane. In between, and for years beyond, he did too many things to list. Of the numerous hats he wore, he was a:
Motorcycle Racer
Electrician
Building Contractor
Horseman
Cowboy
Wrangler
Cutting Horse Champion
(Yes, those are 4 different things)
Pilot
Munitions Expert
Radio Operator
32nd Degree Mason
Grand Master
Census Taker
Trucker
Veteran of the Korean Conflict
…and a lot of things I’ll remember after I click “publish.”

I remember hot summers playing in the barn, climbing on the hay bales he told us to stay off of, riding horses in the corral (my chosen horse was Tubbs, because she was gentle), and picking out any cereal I wanted when we went to the grocery store, which was a rarity in a home with 6 kids. He was always happy to see me, and when we were together, he made me feel special.

I’m proud of all he accomplished, and am happy that, with all the ups and downs in my life, we never lost touch. If I disappointed him, I never knew it.

In his final days, his thoughts and concerns were for his wife. She has dementia and is in a care facility with wonderful people watching over of her. He wanted to make sure she’s taken care of as long as she lives. He put things into place in insure that, and tasked my brother with the huge responsibility and honor of carrying out his wishes.

I miss him. The last thing he said to me was, “You did good. You did a good job.” It touches my heart to know he was proud of me, and what I’ve accomplished. While others may bicker over the small things, or fight for an inheritance, those words are a treasure that will stay with me to the end of time.

Rest in peace, Daddy. You deserve your reward.

This photo makes me smile. I think this is the only selfie Daddy took. As you can tell, it was fun for both of us.
Photo of me and Dad