Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Wuhan Flu -- March 24, 2020

Certainly unexpected: I thought that the Diamond Princess story was long over. How surprising to see two new deaths from the Diamond Princess reported in the past 24 hours; no new cases, but two new deaths. It wold interesting to hear the "back story": when did they first start showing symptoms? where have they been all this time? Where were they being treated? In the US or elsewhere? Had they been hospitalized all this time?

More than one strain: when one looks at the number of cases in each country around the world, things just don't add up. I don't buy any single argument that attempts to explain why Italy is different. Is there more than one strain? Has the original strain already shown antigenic drift? That's why the "seasonal flu" vaccine changes every year: the seasonal flu virus undergoes antigenic drift year-to-year and necessitates a different vaccine. Are there two coronavirus straings, one much more lethal than the other? Stories that caught my eye while looking for articles about that very possibility:
Gingrich: Newt used the same "old age" argument to explain the "Italian problem," but at least he did also note the relationship between China and Milan: "one belt one road."

NYC: city transportation update here.

Daily grocery story visit: we didn't need anything but Sophia and I stopped by the local grocer to see how things were going. About the same -- which is good news. No cleaning supplies and no toilet paper but otherwise enough of "everything" else to get "everyone" through another day: overflowing with eggs today (limit one to a customer); adequate hamburger (limit one package to a customer); more than adequate produce -- in fact, interestingly enough, there's never been a problem with produce -- what are Americans eating these days -- no fruits and vegetables? Certainly seems that way. Caffeine-free, diet Coca Cola was sold out but there were plenty of alternatives. Plenty of bread, though less than yesterday. More than enough milk -- just not the "brand" we like. But there is plenty of milk.

Gasoline: keeping the tank full. I don't want to be caught by surprise.

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