Saturday, August 22, 2020

Weekend Reading: The I Loved Roll Call Edition

I didn't expect to watch much of the Democratic National Convention, but I ended up watching a lot of the speeches from the first three nights on a delay and we watched most of the fourth night live, at Petunia's request. Her interest began when I decided to show the kids the roll call. Petunia loved it. So did I, really. If you haven't watched it, here it is:

I agree with Christina Cauterucci: It made me feel patriotic. And also really happy.

Alexandra Petri's piece about Biden's acceptance speech and the contrast with Trump is less happy-inducing, but it is very, very good and you should read it.

Dahlia Lithwick's piece about the Obamas' speeches and voting is also not very happy-inducing and very, very good.

My county is off the state watchlist, and unless our case numbers go back up, schools could theoretically reopen on August 31. That is also the first day of school in San Diego Unified, but they've already said they won't reopen until all of the county triggers are back in compliance, and we currently have far more community outbreaks than the county's threshold of seven in a seven day period (we're at 19 right now). I am sure some of the districts in the county will restart in person schooling as soon as the state allows, though. We already have a bunch of elementary schools with waivers allowing them to start in person schooling.

I am fine with San Diego Unified's slower approach. It is a big, diverse district without the same level of money to pay for outdoor tents, extra staff, etc., that many of the schools with waivers are using to minimize risk. 

Now that we're off the watchlist, people are of course asking when gyms, restaurants, and bars can open for indoor dining again. I sure hope the state keeps the brakes on this time, because we've got a couple county supervisors who don't have the sense to realize that if we reopen indoor activities we'll end up with another spike in cases. At a minimum, I hope we go more slowly this time so that we can see which indoor activities can be done safely. I am not optimistic.

It is also surreal to be watching people in my county argue that a rate of ~200 cases per day means we should reopen while my friends in Auckland are under a lockdown due to an outbreak that has a total of 92 cases. The New Zealand approach of eliminating the virus was probably never a viable option for the US, but the high levels of transmission we're willing to tolerate is surprising to me.

And now, for some things that made me happy this week:

Reading what happened to the "lost" colony of Roanoke.

Beautiful teapots:


Baby quetzal!

Baby bunny!

Have a good weekend, everyone!

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