Wednesday, September 22, 2021

CoViD-19: Old VOI & VOC = VBM | FDA Approves Booster For Limited Populations | Governor Newsom Signs Loads Of New Legislation | Humanitarian Crises Abound Worldwide | Photos #WorldRhinoDay

 

World Rhino Day at San Diego Zoo Safari Park (Taken 9.22.21)

I woke up with such anxiety today and I'm not really sure why, but my best cure for it is to try to zip through my email, deleting the junk and focusing on the ones that warrant a response and holding the rest for later while I escape the house. 

Darren and I went to San Diego Zoo Safari Park because it is World Rhino Day and also the new rhino baby is a month old. On their social media, the Safari Park announced the contenders for Kianga's calf: Kamaria (beautiful like the moonlight in Swahili) and Kifaru (means Rhino in Swahili). Obviously Kamaria is the better name. When we arrived, Kianga and her babe were on the far hillside, but one year olds Alice and Mwezi were playing in the lower valley and eventually rejoined their moms and one pair came up to Kilima Point. The Safari Park used to be a little more generous and basically you had about an hour after closing time to make your way to the exit, but it seems they've been a little more aggressive about clearing the park which is unfortunate because they now close at 5 and the animals don't seem to really get active until the sun drops right around that time. Still, I felt pretty lucky that one of the mama/baby pairs came up to say hi before we had to leave, though I can't really tell Holly and Mwezi from Casey and Alice most of the time.

News is crazy per always. The FDA approved boosters for limited groups, though not that limited because smokers and medically obese people qualify along with immunocompromised and 65+, so that's easily more than 50% of the population. Pfizer people should keep an eye out for that rollout in the coming weeks and months. There's all kinds of stuff going on with Congress and the Senate and the UN and the Biden Administration trying to cleanup decades of inherited disasters but I have this small inkling that they may go nuclear to pass the two major packages because the majority of Americans want the government to start working for the people and not the corporations and lobbyists and billionaire class. But it's not really worth watching "how the sausage is made" because it is so incredibly frustrating. I'm just hoping the church on my street is successful in relocating some refugees from Haiti because (selfishly) we have a ton of stuff to donate to clear space in the speakeasy and (altruistically) because the church was very helpful for people after that earthquake a few years back. I also just love having new diversity to the neighborhood and hopefully can volunteer or help if they do in fact bring some people from Texas. 

Numbers are looking good, vaccinations are up among younger people, hospitalizations are going down, all point to good news for now. Stay diligent and be safe out there. 

Things To Do In San Diego: Wednesday, September 22 - Tuesday, September 28, 2021 | Modest Mouse, Dear Boy, Mipso, Los Amigos Invisibles, Cold War Kids, Joey Cape and more!

Ben Johnson is having a book signing on Saturday at Verbatim (Taken 12.31.2019)


I decided to go ahead and do listings because it's so much easier to be thorough when I don't have emails coming in every other minute and everyone in the house is asleep. It means I'll be sleeping in, but it also means that I might get to go to the San Diego Zoo Safari Park this afternoon if it isn't psychotically hot. 

There are some really great shows this week and I definitely have FOMO for some. If you haven't heard Mipso, you should definitely check them out. They're playing Sunday at the Casbah and I'm genuinely considering going depending on how the local COVID stats bear out later today. 

Stay safe out there. 

CoViD-19: Breakthrough Cases: You Don't Want It | J&J Booster Data Released | UN "The World Must Wake Up" | Fuck You, Joe Manchin |

 

Familia (Taken 9.21.21)

Monday was my mom's birthday but because of all the kids' overscheduled lives, we didn't celebrate until today. It was fun to be with family and now we've still got my birthday and Nadia's to come. Hers is the most anticipated, however, because she'll be able to be vaccinated, the last one of the family, until we all eventually get boosters, too. And yes, we're all maskless because my sister's family were all tested 3 times last week, the rest of us aren't really out in the world much, and there were fans and air purifiers running. It's risk assessment, i guess, and everyone has to choose for themselves, but you still won't find us in a restaurant anytime soon. 

That is all to say that family time is why this post is so extremely late today. I don't go to bed until every email in my inboxes is read so I know what to expect for the rest of the week. I have to say, if you're a musician and you want to be taken seriously by anyone ever at any venue, your triple exclamation points and your ASAPs and your demands on marketing can take a hike. Venues, especially small ones, don't have a team, they usually have one or two people dodging bullets and putting out fires and juggling plates and whatever other metaphor you want. We, for example, currently have about 150 upcoming events and numerous shows to be booked. That your show isn't selling is more your problem than mine, especially if you're a local artist that isn't doing any of the legwork on your own end. So yeah. That's where I am today. There. I said what I said. 

As for news- the UN General Assembly drama with France is like watching a Real Housewives episode, the Gabby Petito case is hard to look away from, and Joe Manchin is a piece of shit owned by fossil fuels lobbyists. He should be stripped of his chairman position on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee and his conflicts of interest should be top news every day until he gets on the right side of history. Wednesday is the big gata dump day so I'll try to update sooner and get listings out there, too. 

Stay safe out there.     

Monday, September 20, 2021

CoViD-19: PFizer Submits Safety Data For Kids | COVID Deaths Match 1918 Flu | US CBP: Not A Good Look |

Moon Rising From Downtown (Samsung S9 Taken 9.20.21)

I sometimes start posts and never finish them. I have a drafts folder that I've tried to clean but sometimes I hold on to old things. Like this one time, I was ranting about "before times" stuff that I was hoping would never come back. It was an attempt to look on the bright side of the pandemic and isolation and the big shutdowns. But I never posted it because I thought it was too mean. It had to do with how I didn't miss hearing from acquaintances about their bullshit MLM "businesses" whether it be oils or keto powders or face creams or life coaching or whatever, and then last night I binged LuLaRich on Amazon Prime and I realized it wasn't mean at all...maybe I was just looking out for them. Seriously, staaaahhhhppp with this MLM nonsense. You aren't hashtag blessed, you're not a mom boss, and if you're actually making money, it's at the expense of poor and desperate people below you and you might be an awful person. Anyway, watch the limited series. 

Maybe I just binge garbage TV to avoid the dreadful news of the day. Those images of the Border Patrol agents wielding around their horse reins is horrifying. I know the other side loves to have a field day with immigration and the "border crises," but this is a decades long problem and each administration just punts to the next, particularly as long as the obstructionist Senate represents the racist minority of this country. And of course more people are going to try to come to the United States if they believe that the president is more compassionate and not a fucking psychopath. Nobody wants to really deal with the hard issues and the particular centrist democrats in the Senate can't even stand up to be democrats and nothing gets done. Get the fuck on board already. Meanwhile, this isn't going to be the only "crisis" this administration is challenged with, because they're actually trying to deal with shit as it arises, in plain view, where we're all open to judge and criticize from the comfort of our homes as our faucets deliver us (mostly) clean water, the power switches turn on (mostly) reliable light, the air conditioner keeps us reliably cool, and we have a roof over our heads. We don't know desperation and the destabilization around the world, particularly from countries run by nationalist dictators coupled with climate crises and the ongoing pandemic and things are looking pretty bleak. Still I trust there are good people out there trying to keep it all from falling completely apart instead of being the deliberate destroyers as was the last administration. I need a drink.   

Stay safe out there.     

Sunday, September 19, 2021

CoViD-19: US Cases Remain Above 150k Per Day, 2,000+ Deaths | San Diego Cases See Significant Sunday Drop: Trend or Anomaly? |


My Littles Aren't So Little Anymore - Magnolia & Jacaranda (Taken 9.19.21)

It was a perfect lazy day. I kinda got lost in the drama of the Gabby Petito case and was glued to the FBI press conference when they announced her body had been discovered, tragic as the news was. I listened to the last episode of the Murdaugh Murders podcast. I napped with my kitties. I read a little. I watched a little of the Emmys. We walked the dog around the neighborhood. Darren and Nova built new planters for some snake plant we found dumped on the side of the road a few days ago. I'm gonna skip most of the news and promise we'll get back to all of it tomorrow.  

Stay safe out there. 

Saturday, September 18, 2021

CoViD-19: Waning Antibodies After Infection | Anti-Vaxxers Turn Attacks To Restaurants | US Surpasses 2000 Daily Deaths (Again) | More Americans Depart Kabul |

 

Porter and Louis (Taken 5.13.19)

I tried to stay mostly offline today and I don't really have anything I wanna say except that it's hilarious how much of a failure the demonstration was at the Capitol today. Darren and I hung out in the speakeasy last night and poured one out for Louie. Our low-key lifestyle has gone on so long that it is hard to really feel the weight of the losses we've experienced over the past two years, but Louis' death hit me hard. And so did my subsequent deep dive into old photographs, where I definitely found some gems. Nova and I spent the afternoon watching movies and the only time I left the house was to walk the dog. This lifestyle suits me, maybe a little too well. I'm gonna get back to it. 

Stay safe out there. 

Friday, September 17, 2021

CoViD-19: Your Fake-Ass Religion Isn't A Valid Exemption | San Diego Surpasses 4,000 Deaths | US Offers Mea Culpa On Drone Strike | CA Sequoias At Fire Risk |

RIP Louis (Taken 5.22.2017)+

I started a post last night and then just decided to roll it into today's, so tonight's got a lot of reading and links, but the down and dirty is that boosters were not recommended by ACIP except for 65+ and "high risk" which I think goes beyond immunocompromised and includes hypertension, diabetes, COPD, smokers, obesity, and a lot more ailments that pretty much 50% of the population has one or more of. Meanwhile, many churches are denying religious exemptions for vaccine mandates, while front line workers, cops, firefighters, and health care employees would rather lose their jobs or sue than get a freaking vaccine that could save their lives and the lives of the communities they supposedly serve. I have no tolerance today. 

You can read all the other links, but I wanted to take a minute to talk about Louis Procaccino, as it was announced that he died. Louie was hilarious and annoying and funny and loud and kind and a superfan of music and spent his life in the industry. A few years ago he was involved in a workplace accident where a huge amp fell on his foot. It broke and never really quite healed, with complications from diabetes and being a person too on-the-go to sit on his ass and let it heal. I loved Louis so much though with the pandemic, we hadn't seen each other or talked in ages. I've maybe stayed too insulated in my bubble because it's too sad to think about the before times world we've lost. Louis was full of life except when he wasn't...he'd come straight to the Casbah after another several day stint in the hospital from some complication or other, and he treated it like a nuisance that would keep him alive just a little bit longer. I will miss his spirit for sure, and I know there are hundreds if not thousands in the music industry and community at large who would say the same. RIP Louie. 

Stay safe out there. 

Thursday, September 16, 2021

CoViD-19: Uptick In Moms-To-Be | Rural Rates Rising | Governor Newsom Returns To Governing; Signs Critical Housing Bills | Permanent Parklet Plan Moves Forward In San Diego |

Another one of Kianga and her calf from San Diego Zoo Safari Park (Taken 9.15.21)

 After the inauguration of Joe Biden, I remember feeling this sense of hope that things would get better in the U.S. And in a million ways they have and I can even feel that I'm physically different. I sleep a little better, I'm a little more alert, even my digestion has improved. 

Then we had the lead-up to the recall and I was consuming absurd amounts of news and political ads as a side-effect, and I was back to horrible sleep, pain in my shoulders and neck, comfort eating, and all that kinda thing. 

Now the recall is over and for now, it feels like I can breathe again. I can make myself focus on non-news and life in general. Today I went to the San Diego Zoo-- alone because Darren was doing laundry -- and it was so nice, the weather so perfect, the crowd limited, and the animals extra chill. I watched the two young elephants sparring, the pygmy hippos go for a dip, and sat watching the mountain lions for awhile. After Darren dropped Nova off for derby, he and I ran to Costco and stocked the speakeasy and picked up dinner. 

It was a good, normal, not crazy, average day and I'm happy to have more of those. 

Stay safe out there. 

Wednesday, September 15, 2021

CoViD-19: 1 in 500 Americans Died Of COVID-19 | US Reports 2000 Daily Deaths | Newsom Win Gets Late Night Treatment | Sexually Abused US Gymnasts Testify At Judiciary Committee |

Kianga and her calf born 8.22.21 at San Diego Zoo Safari Park (Taken 9.15.21)

I woke up in such a good mood. The recall is behind us, SD Bytes called to tell me my other laptop will be good as new in a few days, and it was the first day we didn't have to blast the air conditioner around the house. I had a productive morning, partially did listings, got some Casbah work done, caught some news and media briefings. But then I watched the US gymnasts opening statements at the judiciary committee and it just made me so sick about what was allowed to happen to these women when they children. It's a tough watch but worth the watch nonetheless. 

So after getting most of my work behind me, I convinced Darren to go to the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. They're only open until 5 right now, but getting there around 3:30 was plenty of time to walk around and then spend about an hour at Kilima Point where it was pure magic. First time mom Kianga was sharing her as yet unnamed calf. There's this thing that animals do...and maybe I'm imagining it because I'm certainly not a zoologist...but new moms will kind of 'present' their babies. The giraffes, okapi, tapir and others will kind of protect their babies from view from the public when they're brand new, but at some point they let go a little and show them off. I didn't realize that Kianga is an older daughter of Casey, who gave birth to Alice last year, but that means that I've been taking pics of her since she was little, too. It just felt like pure magic for her to nudge her calf over closer to where I was with the docent, and the calf let us know she saw us and was being super cute and playful, challenging us and then trotting away, only to come back. Puppies and kittens do the same thing. I watched them for quite some time until the "The Safari Park Is Now Closed" recording seemed a little more insistent and we were on our way. 

The San Diego Zoo Safari Park isn't a close drive, but if you take the HOV lane and exit at Del Lago, it isn't usually too bad. Weekdays are nice and empty with lots of space for social distancing and getting in your steps or just sitting by the lagoon or the Watering Hole and taking in the sights. I kinda can't wait to go back. 

As for news, I'll let the headlines speak for themselves, but LA County is expanding vax requirements for all staff and patrons of indoor bars, restaurants, venues, etc, similar to what San Francisco did. It feels like our numbers are trending down, but I had a feeling more measures would come down once the recall was behind us. I welcome them all. 

Stay safe out there. 

Music: Things To Do In San Diego: Wednesday, September 15-Tuesday, September 21, 2021 | Durand Jones, James Blake, John Legend, JMSN, Buck-O-Nine and more!!

Sold Out Show At Casbah In The Before Times (Taken 1.18.21)

I updated the listings which I left incomplete yesterday. I know everyone but me is going out into the world and going to shows and having a grand old time, but I urge that if you do, you're getting tested regularly and are wearing a mask whether you're indoor or out. I'd also recommend goggles, but I'm a dork that way and not taking any chances. 

Stay safe out there. 

Tuesday, September 14, 2021

CoViD-19: Kid COVID Concerns | Governor Newsom Remains: Californians Soundly Said NO On The Recall | California 4th Happiest State In US | First Arrest Warrants On Murdaugh Murders Saga |

 

Peek-A-Boo with young mandrill (Taken 9.13.21)

What a relief. I hate polls and I'm so sick of pundits and I'm so tired of all of this both-sidesism bullshit. Governor Newsom soundly defeated the recall, but the news gave his win about a minute-30 and then proceeded to give the next 9 minutes to all of the losers. I watch NBC San Diego, and they're like the least biased of them all, and yet... they followed up by doing a story about the City Council voted to ban ghost gun parts...which passed with an 8-1 vote...and then the story interviewed a gun shop owner, in Oceanside which isn't even in San Diego mind you, and chose not to interview a single person who supports the ban, even though we far outnumber the ammosexuals. Another newscaster from a different channel-- while everyone on twitter is talking about the election results--felt that was a good time to post an article about California leading the country in poverty, without giving any context that the number went down during the pandemic, that the index is based on high housing costs, and a ton of other factors, some of which are not solvable regardless of who the governor is. I'm just looking forward to tomorrow when Governor Newsom can have a signing party for all the bills that are waiting on his desk that might make the losers' heads explode. 

I'm gonna call it a night because it was such a long day on pins and needles, but I should've had a little more faith in my fellow Californians. Thank you to everyone who showed up. 

Stay safe out there.  

Monday, September 13, 2021

CoViD-19: California Risk Decreases | Biden Campaigns For Newsom: Vote NO On California Recall | GHS Students Protest Dress Code |

 

Ernest the Lion at San Diego Zoo (Taken 9.12.21)

I remember a friend of mine saying that as you get older you just go to bed earlier and wake up earlier naturally, and while I don't think I'm there yet, since Nova's gotten older and her bedtime later, I sometimes just make it through the 11 o'clock news and zonk out by the time they get to the weather. This then does lead to an early wakeup, but it isn't daily so maybe I have that to look forward to (or dread) some other time. 

For now, I guess it was nice to wake up to see Nova off to school, get some work done, and then with Darren's encouragement, went back to San Diego Zoo for the afternoon. We don't normally go earlier in the day so it was much more crowded than we're used to, but we still have our ways of avoiding the major traffic jams. Eventually he left to get Nova and take her to piano -- her first in-person lesson since the beginning of the pandemic-- and I did a few laps around some of my favorite parts. Did you know that not only are the Kangaroo Bus and Skyfari included with admission, but so is the full guided bus tour? I haven't done it in years, but could be kinda fun sometime. Anyway, they came and got me after the lesson ended. 

Mondays are Nova's busiest day, so after slamming a quick dinner, we took her to derby and took Ficus on a little walk in an open space reserve near Derby United. Now my feet hurt and I could probably zonk out before the news even starts but I'm gonna try to rally. 

Tomorrow is election day, and maybe the most consequential election for Californians ever. If you haven't already, please vote no on the recall and get your ballot either in the mail or a dropbox. I was a little mad that Newsom's campaign didn't have (or at least I couldn't find) graphics and resources for sharing, so I compiled a bunch at the bottom of this email if anyone wants to grab and share on their own social media. 

Stay safe out there.

Sunday, September 12, 2021

CoViD-19: At Home Testing Ramps Up | Vaccine Pressure Is A Gesture of Love | Vote NO On California Recall | Serval On The Loose in San Diego |

 

One of the Servals at the San Diego Zoo (Taken 9.12.21)

After my post yesterday, I heard from yet another friend who got a breakthrough case of COVID-19. He said he got it after the Hella Mega Tour at Petco Park and was notified through the California Notify app, which I guess it's good to know that's still working. Ideally if we shift to more available rapid tests, people will still self-attest and report on the app while also isolating. My friend says he wasn't super sick but it also doesn't make me wanna rush out and put myself in a crowded concert situation. At least when I'm at the San Diego Zoo or Safari Park I can be constantly moving, only near other people in short passing. 

So that's what I did today. Darren had gone on a bike ride with a friend, Nova was cocooning in her room, so I went to the Zoo alone and took my sweet ass time meandering through the park. After a couple hours, I caught the last Kangaroo Bus at the bottom and intended to Skyfari back to the front, but it was stopped. I don't mind heights but I certainly wouldn't wanna be stuck on the Skyfari for 10 or 20 minutes and not moving. Eventually it started up again, but I think they were manually cranking the cable in because it was a long and slow process. Meanwhile, I opted for the long way out through Elephant Odyssey, around Kopje Canyon, past the koalas, and toward the exit. If our local meteorologists are accurate, it is supposed to cool down this week, so maybe I'll head up to San Diego Zoo Safari Park for another little adventure. 

And speaking of adventure, there's a serval on the loose in North County. Apparently it was someone's pet and she died so her daughter was watching it but it escaped. Servals are NOT pets but they're cross-bred with domestic cats as a type of vanity pet and it is not good. But it sounds like if he is caught, they understand he'll be taken to a sanctuary or more appropriate place, so hopefully they can wrangle him before he's hit by a car or some other tragic end.

I'm kinda skipping out on general news today. Sundays feel like just a recap of all the  shootings and hit-and-runs and sideshows and carjackings and all the other nonsense that happens across the country on Saturday nights when an entire population is completely out of fucks to give. The rest of the news is just more reflections on 9/11 and the recall election so I don't need to further cover either here. You know where I stand on the latter. 

Stay safe out there.