Is it time to talk about coronavirus?

Mark Booth

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Aaron Eudaley is a photojournalist for a local network TV news station. With FAA approval, he flew his drone over various locations and landmarks in San Diego County to document how well San Diegans are abiding by the stay-at-home orders. His 3-minute video is haunting, surreal and beautiful, all at the same time.


As a hobbyist drone pilot and photography/videography nut, I know just how much work went into creating that video. I salute Aaron's talent and excellence.

At 1:05 in the video Aaron is flying over Mt. Helix (cross and amphitheater). We live fairly close to Mt. Helix and typically go up there about once a month. On a clear day the view is outstanding.

Mark
 
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Josh Steinberg

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I haven’t seen a bottle of rubbing alcohol anywhere I’ve been for at least three weeks, but still a great idea for those who can utilize it.
 
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JohnRice

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I've put 75% isopropyl alcohol in some small 1oz spray bottles I have and keep them in my car. When I go to the grocery store, I saturate the handle and let it dry before I push the cart. From all my research, that seems to be the best way to reliably destroy viruses and the only way without toxic residue. Then when I'm done and get back in the car, I spray my hands before I touch the steering wheel, and I often treat the steering wheel and gear shift. Then, of course, wash my hands thoroughly when I get home.
 

DaveF

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I've put 75% isopropyl alcohol in some small 1oz spray bottles I have and keep them in my car. When I go to the grocery store, I saturate the handle and let it dry before I push the cart. From all my research, that seems to be the best way to reliably destroy viruses and the only way without toxic residue. Then when I'm done and get back in the car, I spray my hands before I touch the steering wheel, and I often treat the steering wheel and gear shift. Then, of course, wash my hands thoroughly when I get home.
My grocery store has hand sanitizer at the entrance. And they're wiping down each individual cart with sanitizer before it enters the store corral. So I sanitize my hands and hit the cart handle again. Shop. Then sanitize my hands and iPhone on the way out.

I'm not worrying about my car. It sits in the garage unused for days at a time now.

When I get home, I wash my hands well. Then unpack the groceries and discard the shopping bags.

For when I'm back at work next week, I want to think about getting some IPA or making some spray sanitizer for cleaning my desk and keyboard and trackball off, perhaps as you've described.
 

Josh Steinberg

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As we all participate in these threads here and wrestle with questions like, “what does the new normal look like when this is over?”, I think the answer will depend to some extent on how varied our experiences are. If what’s happening in NYC happens everywhere, we’re more likely to see at least some modest changes to day-to-day life. If experiences vary wildly where communities like mine are ravaged, and people in other areas never have to struggle to get basic supplies, I think the longterm response will be different.

I don’t mean this to sound like I’m picking on you John; I sincerely hope what’s happening here doesn’t make its way out to you.

I also think it will be a fundamentally different experience for people living in cities and densely packed suburbs vs people in more spacious areas. In a city, something as simple as doing laundry becomes a harrowing experience because everyone has shared laundry rooms. There’s no “curbside pickup” to avoid going into a store, because very few have cars, and real estate is so expensive that store aisles are much narrower and more densely packed, so there are limitations to how much social distancing can be done. There’s no stepping into the backyard or porch to enjoy an outdoor moment of peace; there’s only stepping out in public and hoping people stay away. For people in essential services, there’s no riding to work in your own car and avoiding crowds; there’s riding on the subway or bus that’s now extra crowded because they’re running far fewer than normal. Something like 20% of the police force is either infected or in self quarantine; if you need police help, you may not get it. And even if you try your best to limit your trips out, in a city apartment you have less room to store food and supplies, and less ability to buy in bulk when you’re without a car and limited to what you can carry, so your ability to to stock up for an extended period is questionable.

Everything that’s great about a city in normal circumstances is now a liability.

I don’t know what, if any, changes that will inspire but if my experience and that of my colleagues here is similar to what other city dwellers are experiencing, those of us in cities may be carrying the baggage of having lived through this in ways that may seem unfamiliar or exaggerated to those who live in less populated areas.
 

JohnRice

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My grocery store has hand sanitizer at the entrance. And they're wiping down each individual cart with sanitizer before it enters the store corral. So I sanitize my hands and hit the cart handle again. Shop. Then sanitize my hands and iPhone on the way out.
FWIW Dave, from my research, 70% isopropyl seems to be ideal for destroying viruses and leaving a safe surface. Hand sanitizer is weaker and has other stuff in it to make it less harsh on skin. Wipes don't have enough alcohol to sufficiently wet the surface and have other stuff that doesn't help. On surfaces, just the alcohol seems to be just about the perfect thing to use. Soak it, let it dry. I've really looked into it. Sometimes the best solution is extremely simple.
 
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Tony Bensley

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Just a little while ago, I unexpectedly ran into two instances of falling short of the 6 feet apart rule. Both involved taking the garbage and recyclables downstairs. The first time was after I entered the stairwell, a lady was coming up from the floor below and there was no non awkward way for me to avoid it. The second instance occurred when I was going back from the Garbage Room through the door that leads to the elevator (Which I've been avoiding using, because social distancing!) and the stairwell entrance, there was a gentleman on the other side. Neither instance was anybody's fault, but its sure got me thinking that wearing a face mask might be warranted anytime I leave the apartment, never mind the building. :unsure:
 

Josh Steinberg

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The available research suggests that a passing interaction whereby you walk by an asymptomatic person at a shorter distance but don’t have direct contact is probably going to be just fine. But I completely get how stressful it can be just the same.
 
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Mark Booth

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Just a little while ago, I unexpectedly ran into two instances of falling short of the 6 feet apart rule. Both involved taking the garbage and recyclables downstairs. The first time was after I entered the stairwell, a lady was coming up from the floor below and there was no non awkward way for me to avoid it. The second instance occurred when I was going back from the Garbage Room through the door that leads to the elevator (Which I've been avoiding using, because social distancing!) and the stairwell entrance, there was a gentleman on the other side. Neither instance was anybody's fault, but its sure got me thinking that wearing a face mask might be warranted anytime I leave the apartment, never mind the building. :unsure:
Yep. If she was climbing stairs then she would have been exhaling a little harder than normal (perhaps a lot harder, depending on the shape she was in). You walked right though her "mist". Ditto for you when you were coming back the other way.

Mark
 

Adam Lenhardt

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Latest numbers from New York State:
Coronavirus_NewYorkState_20200407.png

(earlier dates available here)

5,489 confirmed fatalities -- 731 of which occurred just yesterday. Thirteenth consecutive day of triple-digit increases, and a significant jump after a few days where the numbers had seemed to plateau.

If Adam still wants to be tested there is a new drive though testing center at UAlbany.
https://cbs6albany.com/news/coronavirus/coronavirus-mobile-testing-site-opens-at-ualbany
Too late for me, unfortunately. I think I'm past the point where it would have any value.

I'm holding out for the antibody test the State has developed, per the health commissioner today at the governor's daily briefing.
 

Mark Booth

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I went grocery shopping yesterday (Albertson's). I also shopped in Target (same shopping center) and scored some TP and paper towel. We were finally starting to get low on rolls of paper product so the timing was nice.

I was impressed with Target's social distancing measures. They had 2 employees whose only job was to enforce social distancing and direct customer traffic. There was a single master line and they directed customs to open check stands from the master line. Smart. They had sanitizing wipes (for the carts) at the entrance. It was basically similar to my experience at a grocery store last week (small independent chain).

Albertson's was a different story. No sanitizing wipes. No employees directing customer traffic. Rather than a monitored single line to feed all available check stands, there were lines at each check stand (with stickers on the floor for 6-foot spacing) and, because there were too few check stands open, the lines were backing up down 4 different aisles. It was impossible to shop about 1/3 of each of those 4 aisle and still maintain social distancing. Stupid arrangement.

Worse, the first checkout line I was waiting in, I noticed that the checker was wearing her (mandatory) mask around her chin only. Well, she was also constantly playing with the mask, lifting it up and down with her fingers at the SAME TIME as she was scanning a customer's order. Needless to say, I got out of that line. Then I realized that the checkers at the next two lines were wearing their masks only over their mouths, their noses were completely exposed. :wacko:

I was literally thinking about just abandoning my cart and going back to the small independent chain. Then I noticed that one checker only was wearing her mask properly. She was also cleaning her check stand area between each customer. I got in her line.

When I got home, I used Albertson's online form to report the incident and health order violations to corporate customer service. I gave them until late this afternoon to respond. They haven't, so I just used the County's special website to report the violations to County public health officials.

https://211sandiego.org/publichealthorder

When law enforcement visits the location, if anyone is observed not following the public health order, they could be cited on the spot. Up to $1,000 and/or 6 months in jail.

Mark
 

Mike2001

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Los Angeles had the cleanest air of any major city in the world yesterday. Not an LA Times headline I ever thought I’d see. I guess we are doing a good job at staying at home.
 
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