Showing 1 - 10 of 41 posts found matching keyword: covid19
Monday 16 November 2020
COVID 19 has reduced this year's Macy's Thanksgiving Parade to a shadow of its former self, and that sounds like a job for Superman!
Most of my yard paintings over the past year have included a subversive wink at the holiday/season or current events that inspired them. Not so much here. I just thought the Superman parade balloon from the 1980s was pretty damn awesome, so I painted it. Because nothing says gratitude and generosity like corporate-sponsored marketing aimed at children. (Okay, maybe a *tiny* wink.)
By the way, that cityscape I'm using to hide the bottom of the ropes was an afterthought. I had originally planned that the ropes should terminate behind the rocks there at the base, but the ropes needed better bracing than I could arrange in that little space. In the future, I need to replace the skyline hiding the tie-off brackets with a crowd of Lilliputian rope handlers.
Maybe next year.
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Saturday 14 November 2020
Since today's UGA football game has been postponed (due to COVID, what else?), let's watch some movies!
170. (1824.) Guys and Dolls (1955)
Nope. I'd never seen Guys and Dolls. Now I have. (Sinatra playing a mobster again? What range!) It's pretty good, at least all the scenes without Brando. I don't have any idea what The Method would say about someone who lives in a reality where people break into song about their most intimate feelings, but Brando must have been insufferable for a few months. Sinatra must have been a saint to resist having him iced.
171. (1825.) Springfield Rifle (1952)
For the first half hour of this bland Western, you think, "why is this film about spies and cattle rustling and runaway children called Springfield Rifle?" Then they tell you and you're like, "how much did the Springfield Rifle company pay for that?"
172. (1826.) Blockers (2018)
A very modern sex comedy about a group of helicopter parents trying to save their children's virginity. Is there anything John Cena can't do?
173. (1827.) Enter Laughing (1967)
It took two tries for me to get through Carl Reiner's directorial debut (based on his debut novel). The play within the play is quality stuff, but most of the rest of the time spent in the protagonist's life can be a dull drag.
174. (1828.) The Hospital (1971)
This "modern" medical murder mystery film is a delightful black hole of cynicism. My only gripe is the abrupt, uncomfortable brutality of the scene in the middle of this where George C. Scott damn near has a mental breakdown in his office and then forces himself sexually on (a willing) Diana Rigg. That's the pivot point of the plot, and it's cynical even about honestly, but it's both too predictable and too preposterous to be satisfying.
175. (1829.) Sidewalk Stories (1989)
A mostly silent take on the sort of movie Chaplin would have made but with Black leads, which serves to underscore some of its more serious points. A good film.
More to come.
Wednesday 7 October 2020
Press Briefing by President William Henry Harrison, issued April 1, 1841:
MR. HARRISON: I just left Washington Infirmary, and it's really something very special. The doctors, the surgeons, the bloodletters, and I learned so much about pleurisy. And one thing that's for certain: don't let it dominate you. Don't be afraid of it. You're going to beat it. We have the best cupping equipment. We have the best opium, all developed recently, and you're going to beat it.
I went... I didn't feel so good. And two days ago, I could have left two days ago. Two days ago I felt great, like, better than I have in a long time. I said just recently, better than during the Battle of Tippecanoe. Don't let it dominate. Don't let it take over your lives. Don't let that happen.
We have the greatest country in the world. We're going back. We're going back to work. We're going to be out front. As your leader, I had to do that. I knew there's danger to it, but I had to do it. I stood out front. I led. Nobody that's a leader would not do what I did. And I know there's a risk. There's a danger, but that's okay. And now I'm better, and maybe I'm immune. I don’t know.
But don't let it dominate your lives. Get out there. Be careful. We have the best snake oil salesmen in the world, and they're all happened very shortly [sic], and they're all getting approved. And the boiled mixture of crude petroleum and Virginia snakeweed is coming momentarily.
Thank you very much. And Washington Infirmary, what a group of people. Thank you very much.
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Monday 5 October 2020
Dad's in the hospital again for some sort of infection. I thought at first he had decided that if COVID was good enough for the president, it was good enough for him. The good news is that he doesn't have COVID. The bad news is that I don't know what he's got.
[UPDATE 10-06: He's been diagnosed with untreated bronchiolitis that turned into sepsis. He is expected to recover. Would this have become such a dangerous issue if fear of spreading COVID to high risk patients hadn't closed his GP's office to all people with respiratory issues? *shakes fist at 2020*]
After extended visits in three consecutive years, it's getting harder to get Dad to go to the hospital. Despite feeling increasingly terrible, he's refused the option for weeks. He had to spend all last night bleeding from the nose before he'd finally consent to going. What will he have to bleed from next year?
It was almost exactly two years ago that he was checked into the same hospital for diverticulitis, a rupture in his intestines that he never had repaired. Is this a recurrence of that? (How far do you have to stick your head up your ass before bleeding from the nose could be a diverticulitis symptom?) Your guess is as good as mine. Better, probably.
I'm sure you don't really care about my father's medical problems, but this blog also serves as sort of a diary, and one day (probably in October 2022), I'll wonder when it was that Dad went in to the hospital for that mystery infection that might have been COVID.
I mean, I don't mind reminding you, but you really need to work on your long-term recall, future Walter.
Saturday 12 September 2020
Clarke County, Georgia, home to a particular Classic City, has seen their overall number of COVID-19 cases double for three straight weeks. In their infinite wisdom, the Powers That Be at the University of Georgia have responded to that news... by deciding to allow tailgating at UGA football games. Ye gods.
In similar news closer to home, Newnan High School had to cancel a football game this past weekend because the team they were scheduled to play — from the next county over — came down with COVID-19 cases on their team. Newnan promises to refund all ticket sales. Eventually.
So far, no one I am aware of has died as a consequence of getting COVID at a football game, but football season has just started. If we get to December and that number is still zero, I'll be happy to say that I am a panicky little Chicken Little who has badly overreacted to some unprecedented circumstances.
In the meantime, the total COVID-19 death toll for the United States through the first eight months of 2020 stands just under 200k with that number expected to double by the end of the year. Rah, rah! Exponential growth.
Are you ready for some football?
Sunday 6 September 2020
In the Before Times, tomorrow would have been the opening day of the Georgia football season (vs Virginia at Atlanta's Mercedes-Benz Stadium in the Chick-Fil-A Kickoff game).
That's not happening now. If Georgia does manage to have a football season, it won't start until September 26.
In honor of the COVID-19 modified 2020 season, I present my latest lawn ornament: On Ice.
Uga is always cool.
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Friday 4 September 2020
Someone asked if I had drawn the Batman PSA I posted on the 2nd. No, I did not. That came straight from DC Comics.
I didn't make this, either. It come straight from the people who made The LEGO Batman Movie.
Wednesday 2 September 2020
Welcome to the 15th Annual Wriphe.com Batman and Football Month, now with 80% less football! Past Septembers have included travelogues of my adventures attending UGA football games in Athens, GA, (and occasionally elsewhere around the South), but there will be none of that this year. (Thanks COVID-19!)
I find I'm not excited about football this year. I mean, I haven't been excited about anything the Miami Dolphins have offered in decades, but college football is usually another story. My ennui is probably COVID's fault, too. What is there to get excited about when everything we've seen in the past six months points to a significant disruption in schedule? Do I really need entertainment so badly that I'm willing to watch football players get sick and die needlessly for the sake of a game?
The Big Ten, Pac-12, Mid-American, and Mountain West conferences have all decided that the risk to fans and players alike is too great to play football in 2020, but the SEC is pushing ahead despite already having the highest percentage of cases per population (31 per 100k) of any football region in the country. As I've already said, I won't be attending. "It Just Means More℠" makes a fine motto, but let's not get carried away.
Maybe I'm just a snowflake. Maybe everything will turn out fine. It might happen. Sh'yeah. And monkeys might fly out of my butt.
In the meantime, I'll be following the advice of a billionaire philanthropist who doesn't have a financial interest in selling me football tickets.
It's easier for him. His parents are dead.
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Thursday 20 August 2020
Tuesday 18 August 2020
After weeks of discussion about how they could continue playing sports in the face of an unabated pandemic, the University of Georgia is now scheduled to play Auburn on October 3 in their first home football game of an unusual SEC-only season. Theoretically, I have a ticket. At least, I paid for one back in February.
While they have announced that all attendees will have to wear face coverings "over the nose and mouth" while entering, leaving, or moving through the stadium, the University has yet to announce any actual plan for dividing the 93,000 seat Sanford Stadium into socially distanced sections. There are about 58,000 season ticket holders and nearly 20,000 student tickets per game in a usual year. Obviously, the stadium will seat far, far fewer than that this year. I imagine that only the richest donors will get seats for all
5 games, but I can't imagine why they would want them.
(My bad. There are only to be 4 home games. What would be the 5th home game is the Florida/Georgia game, still scheduled to be played in Jacksonville.)
That first football game is still six weeks away. Since the start of this mess, there has been no six-week period with an overall decline in cases in America. Students have only this week returned to campus, so the inevitable explosion in COVID cases is still on the horizon. What will things look like that first October weekend? Based on recent history, it can't be anything good. In fact, Georgia Tech has just declared Georgia to be the state in the Union in which a person is most likely to be exposed to the virus. Whoo-hoo! Let's play some ball!
I get that the players want to play. As a fan, I want to watch. But just because we *want* football doesn't mean we're in a position to have it. If you're old enough and smart enough to go to college, you're old enough not to let your wants hurt you. If getting this pandemic under control, if ensuring that we break the chain of infections to protect ourselves, our families, and our neighbors means we have to stay in our homes (or dorms) and forego one football season, we should do that, even if we don't want to. Any other behavior is just irresponsible.
Go Dawgs. Go home. Football will still be there once we're all healthy enough to play it.
UPDATE 2020-08-19: I woke up this morning to find an email from UGA Athletics informing that I am to be granted the opportunity to attend 1 home game not of my choice. Alternately, I can opt-out of attending any games and either A) transfer my donation to help fund the skyrocketing costs of the university's attempts to play games during the ever-worsening COVID-19 pandemic or B) be refunded my 2020 donations "before the end of the calendar year." I think you can guess which I chose.