Author Topic: The Crowne Grippe (COVID-19 Thread)  (Read 782 times)

dubsartur

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The Crowne Grippe (COVID-19 Thread)
« on: March 11, 2020, 11:57:02 AM »
So efforts to contain COVID-19 may have failed, and some areas may be facing something on the order of the 1918 Spanish Flu (about half of the population infected, on the order of 2% of those infected die and very large numbers are in bed for weeks).  Italy, for those reading this in the future, has quarantined itself and some cities in UK are running out of toilet paper due to panic buying.

Edit: As of Thursday 12 March, a friend in Sardinia tells me that Italians are only allowed to leave their homes for work, grocery shopping, or medical treatment.

The World Health Organization has a webpage https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019

This woman, I think Boston MA based, has a pretty sensible amateur site https://siderea.dreamwidth.org/tag/coronavirus2020  I love this: "I discount a story's credibility if the content is either explicitly or implicitly trying to tell the audience what the audience should feel, rather than informing them about what they think the audience should know."

I have lacked a full-time job for a year and live in a space with a small shared kitchen and freezer so I am SOL.
« Last Edit: March 12, 2020, 11:01:27 PM by dubsartur »

Jubal

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Re: The Crowne Grippe (COVID-19 Thread)
« Reply #1 on: March 11, 2020, 03:02:09 PM »
I've renamed the threat to add a title clarification :)

Uni Wien has shut down in-person classes, but not other activities as yet - both of my upcoming talks have been cancelled which is something of a relief, but I have to work out how to remote-teach a course that was not in any sense designed for such, which is less good.

I'm a little nervous - Vienna is definitely very much infected now, even if without that many cases as yet, and my respiratory system isn't in fantastic shape which could cause complications if I got it. I'm planning to venture out to my writing group anyway this evening and to my work meeting tomorrow though - it's a difficult balance to get.
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dubsartur

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Re: The Crowne Grippe (COVID-19 Thread)
« Reply #2 on: March 11, 2020, 07:08:54 PM »
The thread title was going to be Middle English, a corvid joke, or a pangolin joke and I am tired. 

LFU Innsbruck has shut down for the month as well.  My South Tirolean friends are all north of the border.  And yes, isolating yourself and avoiding exercise hurts mental and physical health, but I won't be doing many pub quizzes this month.

Jubal

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Re: The Crowne Grippe (COVID-19 Thread)
« Reply #3 on: March 11, 2020, 10:54:18 PM »
Much of the US has a combination of pretty low population densities, and a very hyperactive media, which may tend toward it feeling very overblown for you. I think the fact that the major international agencies are now terming it a pandemic is worth listening to though. It's a balance - the panic buying, and interrupted news broadcasts, and so on are silly, but on the other hand I've seen some people liken it to the flu which just clearly doesn't check out factually any more. The death rate is quite a lot of times higher than flu, it has a longer incubation and spreads very fast. In Italy the death toll is genuinely getting pretty high despite very extreme lockdown measures, and Austria's number of cases is growing very rapidly now, especially in densely populated cities (like, say, where I live). It's hard to get the balance right - there's been some incredibly stupid hysteria, but one shouldn't stick fingers in one's ears and pretend nothing is happening either, isolation and containment measures will help ensure healthcare systems don't get overloaded by this thing.

I don't see that there's much need to avoid exercise - gyms perhaps, but I don't see why walking, running, etc should be per se impossible, it rarely involves close enough person contact to be much of a threat. I'm hoping to keep going to writing group meetings, but we'll see how bad things get.
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Jubal

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Re: The Crowne Grippe (COVID-19 Thread)
« Reply #4 on: March 11, 2020, 11:11:52 PM »
I don't think globally we have seen a disease that actually acts like this within the past century. Like, we've had tons of scares (the bird flu stuff or whatever) that we all remember well, but this seems to be actually doing medium scale killing in a way that things like the H5N1 Bird Flu never managed, and enough that it's putting pressure on healthcare systems. Of course many/most people might still never notice it, but that's true of most epidemics in history. I think one just needs to remain calm and be sensible with stuff for a bit (especially once the disease is actually in your area like it is with me).
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dubsartur

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Re: The Crowne Grippe (COVID-19 Thread)
« Reply #5 on: March 12, 2020, 12:21:00 AM »
The people who are very worried are the heads of national and international infectious disease agencies (and my friends from Italy and in China).  The people who say "its just another flu" are strangers on the Internet.  Just saying :)

The WHO site has comments on some of the things I have seen going around social media, like "sunny weather will slow the spread."

Glaurung

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Re: The Crowne Grippe (COVID-19 Thread)
« Reply #6 on: March 13, 2020, 07:16:43 PM »
"An overblown, press-created, hysteria."
Why is no one blaming the source anymore? I've read that this exotic food market is still operating... shouldn't we have literally nuked it by now? Something fishy is going on here.
So, about "hysteria", CG?

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Re: The Crowne Grippe (COVID-19 Thread)
« Reply #7 on: March 13, 2020, 08:04:20 PM »
There is definite hysteria

Agreed

It's legit to ask why the source hasn't been dealt with, especially when it's something like an illegal food market.

I really am confused why you keep saying this. It is very probably a food market in China, but I'm not sure why you are describing it as iilegal? Because it was retrospectively viewed as unsanitary by some western journalists? Even if it is "illegal", and/or if it did start there, what good would nuking it do? I don't think that market is especially different from lots of Asian seafood markets

Should we have nuked Mexico during the "swine flu" outbreak, since that started there?

I was drunk.

you've got my vote
« Last Edit: March 13, 2020, 08:12:56 PM by Tusky »
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dubsartur

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Re: The Crowne Grippe (COVID-19 Thread)
« Reply #8 on: March 13, 2020, 09:18:24 PM »
Gwynne Dyer says that the Chinese Communist Party has ordered all breeding of wild animals for sale and all sale of wild animals in markets ended.  He has some things he gets stuck on but I can't remember him being wrong about a fact.

Silver Wolf

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Re: The Crowne Grippe (COVID-19 Thread)
« Reply #9 on: March 14, 2020, 11:10:42 PM »
Czech Republic has been taking things very seriously from the very start (and that's very surprising).
"Less of a young professional - more of an ancient amateur. But frankly, I'm an absolute dream."

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Re: The Crowne Grippe (COVID-19 Thread)
« Reply #10 on: March 15, 2020, 12:33:03 AM »
@Tusky: AIUI, the food market in question did include traders in a number of illegal meats (notably pangolin). The market wasn't illegal, but if the theory that pangolin meat was the human vector for Covid-19 is true, the illegal activities at the market weren't irrelevant. That said, it's not the sort of thing where "shutting down the market" would do much, AFAICT, since presumably the poachers would find another supply line.

We're hitting medium lockdown in Vienna from now on: cafes and pubs can't open in the evenings, nonessential shops all closed. Annoyingly I failed to sort out some plants before this happened, so I hope my new thyme can survive being looked after in the pot it came in for a month or two. The weirdest thing is just not knowing how long this will all last. Everyone is treating it like it's going to be a couple of weeks, but I can't see how it will be at all effective if it's less than three months or so, which is long enough to cause severe social strains from the lockdown.
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Silver Wolf

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Re: The Crowne Grippe (COVID-19 Thread)
« Reply #11 on: March 15, 2020, 01:44:42 AM »
We're hitting medium lockdown in Vienna from now on: cafes and pubs can't open in the evenings, nonessential shops all closed. Annoyingly I failed to sort out some plants before this happened, so I hope my new thyme can survive being looked after in the pot it came in for a month or two. The weirdest thing is just not knowing how long this will all last. Everyone is treating it like it's going to be a couple of weeks, but I can't see how it will be at all effective if it's less than three months or so, which is long enough to cause severe social strains from the lockdown.

Pretty much the same here.
the whole thing is well organized though, I get SMS messages from the government concerning major updates.

It's gonna last a long time for sure.
Right now I'm more worried about the future effect on economy than the virus itself.
"Less of a young professional - more of an ancient amateur. But frankly, I'm an absolute dream."

dubsartur

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Re: The Crowne Grippe (COVID-19 Thread)
« Reply #12 on: March 15, 2020, 09:18:03 AM »
@Tusky: AIUI, the food market in question did include traders in a number of illegal meats (notably pangolin). The market wasn't illegal, but if the theory that pangolin meat was the human vector for Covid-19 is true, the illegal activities at the market weren't irrelevant. That said, it's not the sort of thing where "shutting down the market" would do much, AFAICT, since presumably the poachers would find another supply line.

We're hitting medium lockdown in Vienna from now on: cafes and pubs can't open in the evenings, nonessential shops all closed. Annoyingly I failed to sort out some plants before this happened, so I hope my new thyme can survive being looked after in the pot it came in for a month or two. The weirdest thing is just not knowing how long this will all last. Everyone is treating it like it's going to be a couple of weeks, but I can't see how it will be at all effective if it's less than three months or so, which is long enough to cause severe social strains from the lockdown.
I have no money but I spent the past week-and-a-bit buying things that are not available in grocery stores and pharmacies like replacement crockery (it keeps breaking while I carry it wet and in a hurry from the shared kitchen where there is no place to dry it- the drying rack fills up with small things all jumbled together and is great for cross-contamination anyways), a set of tableware which I can't possibly confuse with anyone else's (I already have my own paring knife, vegetable peeler, and cleaver) and a bin to carry things between my living space and the shared kitchen.

dubsartur

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Re: The Crowne Grippe (COVID-19 Thread)
« Reply #13 on: March 15, 2020, 09:25:48 AM »
It's gonna last a long time for sure.
Right now I'm more worried about the future effect on economy than the virus itself.
I hate to link to birdsite, but this video is worth watching https://twitter.com/i/status/1238854071509016577

If you don't have un poco Italiano, he says "the Echo of Bergamo, 12 February: one and a half pages of obituaries.  The Echo, 13 March: one two three four five six seven eight nine ten pages of obituaries.  This is not just the flu."

Jubal

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Re: The Crowne Grippe (COVID-19 Thread)
« Reply #14 on: March 18, 2020, 12:30:59 PM »
Well, settling into Viennese lockdown life here. After some confusion it turns out people will still be allowed to use public transport when going for walks on their own, so that's a relief for me. It's amazing how many problems a lockdown causes and how fast, though. One of our team has been forced to return to the US because her job is ending and her visa invalidated as a result, whereas those of the group who are parents are having issues with childcare not being available. It's getting almost frustrating for me to see all the "hey look at the stuff you can do when on lockdown" posts, because I'm having to work every bit as hard as usual to keep up with teaching right now...
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