25 April 2020 – Saturday – #41

It’s been hard on my Spanish friends staying inside. Now I’m realizing, though, that my friends may not be as creative in dealing with the lockdown as I’d expected. If they were really creative, they’d be in one of the Spanish Police tweets showing how people walk their “pets” to get a little fresh air.

My favorite is the guy walking his bowl of goldfish. Actually, don’t do this. It’s a slippery slope to a 600 euro fine.

I need a break, so it’s going to be mostly a fun diary entry today. However, I want to mention this one serious Covid-19 development. Yesterday, I noted that Covid-19 patients sometimes develop blood clots. It appears that these clots are causing strokes in patients in their 30s and 40s who sometimes don’t even know they’ve had Covid-19.

“Our report shows a seven-fold increase in incidence of sudden stroke in young patients during the past two weeks. Most of these patients have no past medical history and were at home with either mild symptoms (or in two cases, no symptoms) of Covid.”

Dr. Thomas Oxley, Mount Sinai Health System, neurosurgeon

If you or someone you know shows symptoms of stroke, don’t hesitate to seek immediate medical help. Here’s a simple test if you’re worried whether someone is having a stroke: ask them to smile. If they’re having a stroke, their smile won’t look right. If they aren’t, you get to enjoy their smile.

I bashed Trump pretty bad yesterday, so I’d like to acknowledge some of the things he’s done to improve the economy during the Covid-19 pandemic. First, he’s convinced people to drink bleach to protect themselves from Covid-19. After his suggestion that ingesting bleach stops Covid-19 (please do NOT drink bleach, by the way), a Maryland poison hotline received 100 calls about bleach and a New York City poison hotline saw it’s calls double to 30 in a day. So, credit where credit is due. Great job pumping up the poison hotline business!

Second Trump has created a market for an entirely new domain name category. DomainTools has measured growth in “reopen” domain names after Trump’s “LIBERATE” tweet tirade at the beginning of April. The run on domain names started after Aaron Dorr, a gun activist, bought the first handful of reopen domains to organize protests. Dorr set off a race to buy reopen domains, some for nefarious uses like phishing attacks, others to take the domain names out of circulation, and still others to speculate on sales of reopen domains. If you’re not too tired of exponential growth curves, here’s one for sales of reopen domain names.

Registration of “reopen” domain names after Trump’s “LIBERATE” tweets.

Meanwhile, in Germany, where people take tests for Covid-19 instead of drinking bleach, German football league plans to reopen soon. The DFL suspended games 13 March, but plans to start games again on 9 May. It’s seems incomprehensible after reading Covid-19 news from Spain and the US to even contemplate professional sports games, but that’s the advantage of plentiful testing and early lockdowns.

Dr. Tim Meyer, who heads the DFL’s task force, looking into how games could safely return, said there are three pillars when it comes to safety: Monitoring the infection of the professionals who test positive, ensuring the safety and cleanliness of the venues, and also regular testing. Meyer said they would need about 14,400 tests over a 10-week period to complete the season, with any leftover tests going to the community.

CBS Soccer News

I’m still thankful to Joan Miguel for inviting me to a Barcelona game so I could watch Messi play live for the first time. Weren’t those the days? I remember bicycling to the stadium and back without gloves, hand sanitizer, or a mask. I’m just hoping it wasn’t also the last time I see Messi live.

Who says the housing market is dead? Bill and Melinda Gates just purchased a $43 million home in Del Mar, California. It’s an indication that life for the 1% during the Covid-19 pandemic is a little different from the rest of us. Of course, kudos to the Gates Foundation for providing resources and guidance during the Covid-19 pandemic, resources and guidance that I would have expected from a functioning US government. The Gates are role modeling the very best 1% behavior. Others not so much. The 1% have been able to insulate themselves earlier and more extensively than essential and low wage workers. Some are hoarding ventilators and medicine.

My friend Frederick reports from Washington, Connecticut that local healthcare is telling New Yorkers who have fled to the countryside to please return to New York for their healthcare services instead of swamping the local system. He also notes that Manhattan residential real estate may be in for an adjustment as the 1% decide that waiting out the pandemic in the countryside is safer. Full disclosure: Frederick will be selling his countryside house soon, so this may be wishful thinking on his part. However, I’m happy to put you in touch with Frederick before countryside real estate prices skyrocket!

In the wait-for-the-peer-review department, remember that study of Covid-19 infections in Santa Clara County that claimed 50x-85x more infections than previously measured? Well, turns out the wife of one of the researchers emailed friends to get tested. The subject line of her emails read “COVID-19 antibody testing – FREE.” Hmm, could that have skewed the results? This is a good reminder that when you see a study that confirms your bias, take a breath before you post it on your social media, especially when it’s claiming orders of magnitude differences from what is previously measured.

I’m ending today with this Kinks Covid-19 parody that Dana sent me. Youtube is flooded with these Covid-19 music parodies. Thank goddess people are doing something creative during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Kinks Covid-19 parody.

Anyone else pick up that the ubiquitous Coronavirus graphic in this music video has pink triangles instead of usual blood red triangles? No, I didn’t think so. That’s why I get paid so much to write Covid Diary BCN.

I’m pretty sure the coronavirus triangles are pink because, you know, the gays caused Covid-19. Sometimes even I am amazed at our superpowers.

Actually, the only payment I get is your kind attention. If you liked today’s Covid Diary BCN entry, please post on your social media feeds and email to your friends. Thanks!

%d bloggers like this: