Wednesday update

I watched the COVID-19 task force press conference with a PBR in my hand, having got off work early yesterday. I want to start off with a scary statistic: Last weekend, the city hosted 4 testing sites for people who were asymptomatic – meaning, they had absolutely no idea they were sick, and were just getting tested out of curiosity.

9% of those people tested positive.

Friendsgiving events are popular Downtown, and everyone hosting one or attending one needs to take heed of that statistic. For every person you invite, there’s a 9% chance you’re inviting COVID as well.

Let’s do a little math here… if you’re asymptomatic, there’s a 91% chance you don’t have it.

If you spend Thanksgiving with one other person from outside your household, there’s a 0.91 * 0.91 = 0.8281 chance neither of you have it.

Invite a third person from another household, and there’s a 0.91 to the 3rd power = 0.75 chance neither of you have it.

Invite seven asymptomatic people from different households and the probability drops to 0.47 – in other words, it’s more likely than not that someone at your gathering has COVID and doesn’t know it.

Not to mention the person you invite who thinks, “My throat is a bit dry and I have 99.8 fever, but I’m sure it’s nothing, I’ll be fine, I don’t want to miss out on turkey and pumpkin pie.”

Dr. Haushalter clarified the part of Health Directive No. 15 that says people sitting together should all be from the same household. She said the restaurants are not expected to police their patrons, checking IDs and requiring MLGW bills as proof that people live in the same household. She said that if people tell the host or server they live together, it’s reasonable to believe that they do.

Next, I want to address an issue that was covered in the press conference yesterday: During this pandemic, health officials across the country find people cussing at them and threatening them. I’ll give a personal example. When one of the local bars restarted trivia night, a team named itself “Fuck Dr. Haushalter” and that was chosen as the winning name. I thought that was highly inappropriate. The health officials have a job to do, and while I disagree with some of the decisions they make, I have no doubt they have the community’s best interests at heart.

Dr. Haushalter, Dr. Randolph, thank you for your service to our community, and I wish you a happy and safe Thanksgiving.

Tigers on national TV today: Memphis plays Saint Mary’s in the first round of the Bad Boy Mowers Crossover Classic in Sioux Falls, SD today at 1 PM on ESPN2. COVID has caused several teams to have to be replaced. The tournament field is

  • Memphis Tigers
  • Northern Iowa Panthers
  • South Dakota State Jackrabbits
  • St. Mary’s Gaels
  • Utah State Aggies
  • VCU Rams
  • Good ole West Virginny Mountaineers

This MBJ article on inquiries about buying Earnestine & Hazel’s makes me think the real estate agent does not understand owner Caitlin Chittom’s desire to sell to a local owner who will keep the spirit of the dive bar alive. He’s talking about a restaurant downstairs and apartments upstairs.

Off work today, so I guess about 8 I’ll walk over to the Cossitt Library at Front and Monroe and read a book. Wait, what? The library’s not open? Well, I guess I will walk in that general direction a few minutes after 8 and see if I find anyplace that strikes my fancy. Thanksgiving is a slow news time, especially during a pandemic. Back next time I have news to report, sometime between later today and Saturday probably.