Author Topic: The pub.  (Read 836 times)

Offline Roger Kettle

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The pub.
« on: July 16, 2020, 09:07:00 PM »
Went to the pub this evening and had my first beer for four months. It was great to catch up with old friends and we sat outside, enjoying some typical Scottish weather---roasting hot one minute and then distinctly chilly when the sun disappeared behind a cloud. Of course, all sorts of precautions were in place but it was really nice to sample just a hint of the old normality.
Here in Scotland, the signs are optimistic---just one death in the last 8 days and only six people in ICU across the whole country. Obviously, any death to this awful disease is horrible but the wider picture would suggest that, at least for the moment, things are going in the right direction. Long may that continue.
How's it all going where YOU live? Diane, I'd like to think that the remoteness of Alberta has helped keep the worst of the virus at bay but who knows? Weird times across the globe.
Take care and be safe---we're getting there.

Offline Diane CBPFC

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Re: The pub.
« Reply #1 on: July 17, 2020, 04:23:56 AM »
It seems like its dragging on forever. People in Alberta are crowding beaches and not many that I see wear face masks. I am usually the only one wearing one when I go in to my local town and in the city today perhaps 5% would be a generous estimate for number of wearers.  So we are lucky that is it not too bad here - most of the cases have been in the southern part of the province. 

I see people I know who should be cautious such as teachers and health care workers posting big family gathering pics on Facebook - makes me wonder if I am staying home and not mixing un-necessarily.  I will be in lock down for a few weeks in August as I isolate with my daughter who is re-entering the country.

My husband thinks he took me for a "day out" today - we went to an auto wrecker to get parts for my son's truck and stopped for groceries afterwards.

But the exiting news is that I am getting spuds from my garden - as early as 63 days after planting an early variety. 
People will come from strange lands to hear me speak my words of wisdom. They will ask me the secret of life and I will tell them. Then maybe I'll finish off with a song. The Nomad

Offline Roger Kettle

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Re: The pub.
« Reply #2 on: July 23, 2020, 08:35:49 PM »
May your spuds prosper! (My wife planted some in our garden earlier this year and, so far, they have achieved marble dimensions).
The signs in Scotland remain optimistic---one death in the last 15 days and only 2 people in ICU. While it's nice to report these figures, it's horrible to see what is still happening elsewhere. Both North and South America are suffering some terrible spikes and my heart goes out to them. To focus on the political leaders involved would be pointless and unfair. Get well, World!

Offline Max

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Re: The pub.
« Reply #3 on: July 24, 2020, 09:36:29 PM »
It's nice to read about the normal things again, spuds and pints being consumed. For me it's chilli peppers growing and having a new gas boiler installed (in the house, not me personally).
With the virus figures so low at the moment I've decided to take a wee break up North, just to get outdoors and the shielding period stops just before I go.
Hope I can remember what it's like to drive for more than 15 minutes.

Keep well folks  (y)

Offline Mince

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Re: The pub.
« Reply #4 on: July 25, 2020, 10:44:39 AM »
Both North and South America are suffering some terrible spikes and my heart goes out to them. To focus on the political leaders involved would be pointless and unfair. Get well, World!

What is so sad is the knowledge that viruses cannot spread by themselves: they are entirely unable to choose to go on extended hunts for new victims. But they don't need to. People spread viruses.

America, sadly, is the perfect storm of unpreparedness, disorganisation, disinformation, science scepticism, recklessness and selfishness. And it's unlikely that even this pandemic will change that much.

If the American television programme West Wing had spent a season including everything that has happened in America since March, most would accuse it of jumping the shark.

If I had one wish, it would be that everyone who thinks the virus is a hoax or selfishly flouts social distancing should be put on an island together where they could experience the wonders of exponential growth while the rest of us use science and organisation to quickly rid ourselves of this pandemic.

Offline Roger Kettle

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Re: The pub.
« Reply #5 on: July 25, 2020, 09:43:15 PM »
The problem, Mince, is that "Science" has no definitive answer to this pandemic. You would think that something as simple as the wearing of masks would be universally accepted. It is not. A large number of experts believe that masks actually add to the problem. When the material becomes moist (almost immediately), they reckon it allows the virus to spread more easily. In the end, nobody really knows and all sorts of guesswork is in place. And I'll repeat that. NOBODY knows. The soundest advice remains the original one---stay apart and wash your hands regularly.
Oh, and drink copiously at home.

Offline Mince

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Re: The pub.
« Reply #6 on: July 26, 2020, 09:50:48 AM »
Thanks for the detailed reply, Roger. It made me do some extra research. I hope my disagreement with some of what you wrote does not come across as disrespectful.

The problem, Mince, is that "Science" has no definitive answer to this pandemic.

Science never has definitive answers on anything. But what it does have on each subject is tons of evidence pointing in one direction and little evidence pointing in the other. Science-sceptics jump on the former to rationalise their unfounded beliefs and ignore the latter: it's called cherry picking.


You would think that something as simple as the wearing of masks would be universally accepted. It is not.

Yes, studies on wearing masks are not perfect: many are not peer-reviewed, some are underpowered, and some find correlations without determining the true cause-and-effect. But the studies are leaning in the same direction: wearing masks save lives.


A large number of experts believe that masks actually add to the problem.

I would be interested to read your sources on this claim of 'large number'.


When the material becomes moist (almost immediately), they reckon it allows the virus to spread more easily.

Again, your source would interest me. The only one I could find has since been retracted because its statistical measures were unreliable: Seongman Bae et al in Effectiveness of Surgical and Cotton Masks in Blocking SARS-CoV-2.

The University of Iowa found that the growth rate of coronavirus slowed down after masks were made compulsory in 15 US states and the District of Columbia. Virginia Commonwealth University studied 198 countries and found lower death rates in those with compulsory mask-wearing. The Beijing Research Centre for Preventive Medicine found that if people wear face masks at home before they develop symptoms, it prevents transmission 79 per cent of the time. The Royal Society found that overall the use of cotton masks lowered the risk of infection by 54 per cent and the use of paper masks by 39 per cent.


In the end, nobody really knows

By "nobody really knows", do you mean "scientists haven't a clue" or "no scientist is 100% sure but most are 99% sure"?


all sorts of guesswork is in place

I won't infer from that that you believe science is guesswork. But the reason the pandemic has run rampant in the USA is that those in power are basing their decisions on money and politics before science, and then when science turns out to be correct and thousands die, they shake their heads and say, "Gee, who could have known?"

And some Americans are doing the same. Every day I read articles on Americans who think the coronavirus a hoax, only to say, "I think I made a mistake" just before they die, or articles on teenage Americans having to deal with the trauma of having killed their grandparents because going to a party was more important than protecting their loved ones, or Covid orphans whose parents and grandparents did not socially distance and all died. And their belief that the pandemic is a hoax, or that one party won't make a difference, or that social distancing is unimportant is supported in part from statements suggesting that science is wrong.


The soundest advice remains the original one---stay apart and wash your hands regularly.
Oh, and drink copiously at home.

I agree on social distancing and washing hands.

But given the recommendations from the University of Iowa, Virginia Commonwealth University, Beijing Research Centre for Preventive Medicine, and the Royal Society, I would also place the wearing of masks in that soundest advice category.
« Last Edit: July 26, 2020, 10:09:50 AM by Mince »

Offline Roger Kettle

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Re: The pub.
« Reply #7 on: July 26, 2020, 07:30:13 PM »
Well, my last line was supposed to be a joke.
I probably shouldn't have put Science in inverted commas. I did that because the word is being used by politicians worldwide to cover their own backsides and I was trying to convey that. I am a firm believer in the scientific world.
Mince, I basically agree with everything you say. The idiots who believe the whole pandemic is a hoax are just too ludicrous to discuss. I was really only trying to make one less-than-controversial point---experts, so far, have differing views on how the virus should be tackled. And that's understandable. Over the last four months, I've watched top epidemiologists put forward vastly different theories on things like, as I said earlier, the wearing of masks. (For the record, I wouldn't dream of going into a shop without one and I completely support the use of them).
I certainly don't believe, or meant to imply, that all science is guesswork but it does play a part. I heard one expert say that finding a vaccine will be down to "information, research and luck".  "Guesswork" is just a fancier "luck"!

Offline Mince

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Re: The pub.
« Reply #8 on: July 27, 2020, 12:07:37 AM »
Yes, I completely missed the joke. I actually thought you were talking about drinking loads of water.

I would love to see Beau Peep trying to get Mad Pierre to wear a mask.

Offline Diane CBPFC

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Re: The pub.
« Reply #9 on: July 28, 2020, 07:19:57 PM »
Just checking in. Yesterday we finally got some hot weather, first time this year. Even last week I was still getting cozy with a blanket for TV in the evenings.  It has probably been the chilliest summer I can remember.

I spent 3 hours giving my gardens a good soak yesterday - I have a lot of tomatoes in pots this year instead of flowers due to my world coming to an end salsa back up plan - tomatoes require a lot of water. 

I now have a system for long drawn out tasks like that though - i download audio books from the library onto my Kindle Fire - stick that in an over the shoulder bag and wear cheap and thin little headphones - slap on a sunhat on top of that and spray myself with bug spray - put on the garden gloves and then listen to chapters as I stand there with a hose.  I am currently enjoying the subtle humour of Alexander McCall Smith's #1 Ladies Detective Agency stories - as they are older books, there is not a wait time to get them from the library. 

I will be glad when my daughter gets home from New Zealand - she took a gap year and has been gone since October. One flight has already been cancelled. She is having a great time though - she worked on fruit farms and has been hiking volcanoes and waterfalls (oodles of waterfalls!), has seen wild penguins on the south island, been to Hobbiton and LofR filming locations and the WETA studio, bungy jumped and is now learning to surf.
People will come from strange lands to hear me speak my words of wisdom. They will ask me the secret of life and I will tell them. Then maybe I'll finish off with a song. The Nomad

Offline Diane CBPFC

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Re: The pub.
« Reply #10 on: July 28, 2020, 07:23:04 PM »
I have been gardening and watching TV
People will come from strange lands to hear me speak my words of wisdom. They will ask me the secret of life and I will tell them. Then maybe I'll finish off with a song. The Nomad

Offline Roger Kettle

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Re: The pub.
« Reply #11 on: July 29, 2020, 06:39:36 PM »
I've not been gardening.

Offline Mince

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Re: The pub.
« Reply #12 on: July 29, 2020, 08:30:33 PM »
I've not been golfing.

Offline Diane CBPFC

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Re: The pub.
« Reply #13 on: July 30, 2020, 07:08:32 PM »
I've not been annoying Roger.
People will come from strange lands to hear me speak my words of wisdom. They will ask me the secret of life and I will tell them. Then maybe I'll finish off with a song. The Nomad

Offline Roger Kettle

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Re: The pub.
« Reply #14 on: July 30, 2020, 08:22:08 PM »
 ;D