Monday, August 31, 2020

COVID-19 San Diego Modifies Public Health Order | Anti-Maskers Are Everywhere | #OverdoseAwarenessDay | Some Event Industry Pros (Not Me) Demand...Something?

Newman The Sandcat at San Diego Zoo Safari Park (Taken 8.30.2020)

It's been quite a day today. Nova started her distance learning today and it seems to have gone off without any tech difficulties, but our property management company told us weeks ago that they'd be doing extensive work on the property, including a bath/shower replacement and we heard nothing since. Of course today they show up and started demoing the bathroom of the empty apartment below us, so we're gonna have to get Nova some noise cancelling headphones with a microphone, as they're not exactly known for their speedy completion of projects around here. 
I didn't expect to be up early this morning, but it meant that I watched the #overdoseawarenessday press conference and the event industry demonstration, too, though that was a little more confusing. It's unclear if they're demanding guidelines, a timeline for reopening, full reopening, or aid and support for the industries under the umbrella...venues, event planners, weddings and related industries, and more. What I do know is that I don't trust Supervisor Desmond as far as I can throw him. 
The County also had a media briefing and the biggest takeaway is that there will be modifications to the public health order as it relates to indoor dining and business safety plans, including required registry of patrons names and phone numbers when inside newly modified businesses. Those details are below. I had a lot to say about a lot of things today, so at least you've been warned. Off to see my sea lions. All the news, after the jump.

Sunday, August 30, 2020

COVID-19 Sunday County & State Stats | San Diego Zoo Safari Park Photos


I'm going to keep it short tonight. Nova starts school on Monday and is quite excited about it. TBH, I can't imagine what the kids and teachers are going through with all the moving parts of distance learning but she's a pretty responsible and self-reliant kid (though she's still a teenager, which means every little task takes four times as long as it should) so I think she'll be just fine. 
I mostly avoided the news because we spent the afternoon at San Diego Zoo Safari Park, but I did see Twitter going nuts about protests. There's definitely a sector of society that feels emboldened and the flag-waving trucks are just driving through protests, driving down the freeways with their racist symbols on full display, so I guess all I can say is that if you choose to protest or march, be on guard for these vigilantes and know that they're not afraid of confrontation or outright violence, and we know that policing is not equal for all people, so just be super careful out there. 
The other news I followed up on was Mayor Faulconer's tweets from Friday complaining about the new tiered system of reopening. Several people have said it came as a surprise, Dr. Wooten said they didn't have input, and businesses are complaining that there wasn't enough notice. This strikes me as funny for several reasons because the governor had repeatedly said new sector guidance was coming on Friday, Dr. Wooten had previously said all county health officers had been giving input to the state, which indicates they were aware new guidances would be statewide, and since the beginning of the pandemic, business owners have been told to be ready for anything, that they should be prepared increased safety measure requirements like we've been seeing in the news around the world and across the country for literally months now. Faulconer seems to be talking a big game to gear up for his eventual run for governor and to be honest, it comes off as whiny, petty, and ill-informed. 
Not a lot of reading today, but stats and some Safari Park photos are after the jump. 

Saturday, August 29, 2020

COVID-19 County Has 2nd Highest New Cases In State Today, But Sure, Let's Reopen | Registrar Puts Out Call For Polling Place Managers |State Parks Updates |

La Jolla Cove Sea Lion (Taken 8.28.2020)

I woke up in such a good mood today and I pretty much spent the whole day on my balcony with weather that finally felt like San Diego again. I even found myself at one point tonight turning off all the fans which have been on nonstop for several weeks because I actually felt cold, something I can't say I've experienced in months. I potted some new plants I bought and now I want to get a dozen more. While I was laying on my bench, a hummingbird stopped by and fluttered next to me for what seemed like an entire minute, so close to me that I could have touched it. Besides that, not much to report today. I'm really enjoying the Hoopla app and watched a documentary called A Small Act, about a man from Kenya who went to Harvard and works for the UN who attributes his success to a woman from Sweden who sponsored his secondary education through a scholarship fund. He tracked her down in the early oughts and started his own foundation in her name that sponsors students each year. It's pretty amazing. His cousin is also featured and followed much of the same path who now works in refugee relief. She said something that really struck me.
"One of the reasons why I'm so attracted to education is because I always see the ignorance or the lack of education that keeps so many people in poverty in my village. I also see that--very much-- in the conflict situations where I've worked, that when people are ignorant, that when people have little education, they're so gullible it's so easy for a politician to just come and mislead them and they take up arms, either on the basis of belonging to a different ethnic group or religious group or even on the basis of gender."
It really resonated after this week's shootings in Kenosha. You can watch the movie for free on YouTube. Today's stats are after the jump. 

Friday, August 28, 2020

COVID-19 Diary | California Releases New 4-Tier Framework For "Moving Forward" | 730 Wildfires Still Burning | County Outlines Reopenings Under New Tiers |


Didn't have a tripod on hand, so a little family portrait with the help of a cement planter. (Taken 8.29.2020)

I woke up super early this morning after sleeping normal human hours for the first time in a long time, so I thought it would be nice to motivate for early morning zoo time. But my whims don't translate to everyone else's, so almost an hour later when we were all finally ready to go, we did a drive-by and saw the line to get in and changed course.
I've definitely been in that line before and I know that it moves fast, but I also know there are other times to go with no line at all and that we're still seeing massive tourists and locals alike who barely feign wearing their masks when someone is looking and otherwise wear it under their chin, or use their Starbuck's venti fraps as an excuse not to wear them. I'm just tired of the knots it gives me in my stomach. 
Instead, we drove through Balboa Park and Inspiration Point, admiring the gardens and blooming flowers, then circled back to check out this old somewhat hidden fountain we used to really like until the City emptied it. We were glad to see it's been restored and is full and clean and pretty and therapeutic. 
Darren has been wanting to take me to San Diego Habitat for Humanity ReStore. We're on the hunt for a gently used or new couch that we can comfortably sit in and also that won't immediately be destroyed by our pets. Our current one is down feather and has had enough of us and the pets and lets us know so by poking us with feathers whenever we sit on it. On the way, we detoured at Los Quatro Milpas, but after waiting in line and it filling up with non-mask compliant people, we decided it wasn't worth it. So we proceeded to National City. 
We didn't find a couch, but found a cheap desk chair ($5!!) for Nova so she doesn't have to use her piano bench for distance learning.
After that, we came back north and went to Consignment Classics and wow! I don't know how I've never been there before but it is amazing and huge and I bought some plants and a Talavera planting pot and will definitely be back. 
Today's State media briefing covered the new tiered framework for reopening various sectors, and it's a lot of information. So much so that Dr. Wooten had to do an unplanned County update, too. I guess the funniest (not funny ha-ha, but funny as in mind-boggling) is that if we just had mandated masks when we shutdown in March and had universal compliance, we wouldn't really be talking about tiers and sectors and framework and shit. But that's not what happened and people are less and less compliant and here we are. As Dr. Wooten repeated today, "Hope is not a strategy." And as Dr. McDonald said on Wednesday, until we're under 25 cases/100k people (using the old formula of the past 14-days before a 3-day lag) and we're not even close. 
Anyway, we did La Jolla Cove while Nova was at (distance) soccer and watched a pup nearly get washed away and then struggle to get up on the rocks and triumph in the end, in spite of the humans who were blocking his only path to safety from the high tide rolling in. 
We stopped by PB Costco, which has the Alpine Brewing cases again, so we loaded up and will probably be locked in for the weekend barring any Zoological afternoon impulses. So much news, all after the jump. Also note, I have at least 200 emails I still haven't gotten to today as of 9:30pm, so I will just do a new post either tonight or tomorrow to get any relevant info out. I've got a new bottle of rye with my name on it. 

COVID-19 CDC (Mostly) Walks Back Testing Guideline Changes | Who's Policing The Police? | "Donald Trump and the RNC are negligent, period"

 Flamingo at San Diego Zoo (Taken 1.20.2020)

I finished this post in the afternoon but had to wait for the County's statistics to post and then got distracted with a nap, making dinner, watching World's Toughest Race: Eco-Challenge Fiji, however reluctantly because producer Mark Burnett is a piece of shit. Still, the images are stunning and something about this pandemic has made me slightly obsessed with survival/outdoor shows in addition to the remodeling/backyard shows I've also been watching.
Obviously today was the last day of the RNC, and obviously I didn't watch. Time to keep moving forward and brace for whatever else comes our way this year and look forward to the election when we can finally imagine life out of this berserk hellscape. The good news was that the CDC walked back their guidelines that asymptomatic but exposed people didn't need to be tested. The bad news is that you still have to just look our for your own health, as increasing numbers of businesses, schools, health officers, and various jurisdictions refuse to share positive cases, even when people may have been in close contact. 

Thursday, August 27, 2020

San Diego Venue Livestreams | Drive-In Concert | Inside Lands | Country Sway


I've resisted doing a livestream calendar because there were just too many across the web, but since more local venues are jumping into the game I thought I'd try to start. Some of them are live at local venues, some are ticketed with portions of proceeds going to the venues, and some are just bigger events that I thought I'd include, including an actual drive-in concert at Westfield North County. I know Bar Pink and Space were also doing some livestreams, but I didn't see anything for this week. I'll update if I find more that are relevant to San Diegans and regular readers of this site. 

CoViD-19: CDC Doesn't Give A Fuck If You Die | California Develops New Testing Partnership | Numerous Leagues Strike For Racial Justice | #JusticeForJake

Wednesday was National Dog Day, so here's Ficus at Fiesta Island Dog Park (Taken 7.14.2020)

On Wednesday the first piece of news I read was that under pressure from the administration, the CDC changed guidelines on who should be tested, and I was infuriated. Our health should not be a political issue. I was comforted by watching the State and County media briefings where it was stated that these new guidelines do not change anything for who, how, and when tests happen within the county or the state.

But as the day went on and I dove into my emails and the news cycle, it was one more upsetting thing after another. If you don't click all the links and reading I'm outlined today, please at least take the time to watch Clippers head coach Doc Rivers talk about the shooting of Jacob Blake, who is now paralyzed from the waist down after being shot 7 times in the back by Wisconsin police. I've included his interview below. (The actual video of the shooting has been shared widely but I don't watch such things.) 

So I've been trying all night to find good news and gathered a couple cool music happenings, but I'll give them their own post so as not to contaminate it with news of this very bad, no good day. One bright spot, however, is that if you have a Chula Vista, National City, or Escondido library card (I'm sure there are other cities, too), you can now access Hoopla via app or Roku among other formats. It allows you to "check out" up to six movies monthly. I haven't fully explored but found a Bill Nighy movie that I'm gonna dive into now to clear my head. Lots of reading and links after the jump. 

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

COVID-19: HHS Drops FDA Review Requirement For Tests | County Approves School Openings Without Waivers 9/1 | County Stats Relatively Stable

Lioness at San Diego Zoo Safari Park (Taken 6.28.2020)

Davey is a hero and fixed my laptop and you should totally support his shop, Red Brontosaurus Records. Besides that, I lazed around watching "Love In The Time Of Corona" on Hulu which was actually pretty great. Darren and Nova kept busy shuffling the air conditioners around the upstairs and downstairs and checking fuses and buying new power cords so that Nova could have a window box in her room. Like many people, I was shocked about the announcement that Dr Wooten said all San Diego County schools can open without waivers next Tuesday, September 1, but after reading the announcement and the state guidelines, it's not really as crazy as it sounds, except that it feels like many schools (as did restaurants, bars, gyms, salons) will adhere to the guidance at first, but it will quickly fall by the wayside. The main thing in the new guidance is that class "cohorts" may not be more than the same 14 students with the same 2 adults, which fundamentally would change junior high and high school. And on top of that, SDUSD has already made their own more stringent criteria for reopening. So read the state guidance, which was updated today for childcare, day camps, higher education, schools, and youth sports, and don't let crazy headlines get you all worked up (like I did). 

CoViD-19 & CA Wildfire Updates | County Below 200 New Cases | 625 Fires Rage On In California | Sea World Lays Out "Zoo Days" Reopening Plan

Strawberry's pose when she's on balcony lookout (Taken 8.19.2020)

Darren and I had a late Sunday night in the speakeasy and when we were finally coming back upstairs, I dropped my laptop. Today it won't turn on and so needless to say I'm kinda freaking out about it. I'm using my old one in the meantime, but it has a really hard time typing the letter V, needs a new battery and powercord, which I guess I should've taken care of when I wasn't desperate for a backup. Hopefully Davey can take a look at it on Tuesday and assure me that i didn't destroy it. Nova didn't go to soccer because she had her mandatory online school orientation, which means we haven't been to La Jolla Cove since last Monday. I'm currently bingeing the second season of Trinkets on Netflix, a show I'd completely forgotten I'd watched before. I don't really have anything going on at all this week, but hopefully it cools down and we can do a couple trips to the San Diego Zoo or Safari Park or some fun stuff before Nova's days become filled with school stuff again. Monday's briefing notes and some reading are after the jump. 

Sunday, August 23, 2020

CoViD-19 San Diego Pulls 300+ Daily Cases | CA Approved for FEMA $300 Unemployment Funds | "YOLOers vs. Distancers" | CA DMV Sells Your Info | Photos: Baby Rhino & More at Safari Park

Kacy & 1 month old calf at San Diego Zoo Safari Park (Taken 8.23.2020)

Last night I was hoping to sleep like a normal person, and I mostly pulled it off. I was in bed by 11:30, took some melatonin, and fell asleep, though I did wake up from 3:30-4am, during which I scrolled through my phone, then fell back asleep until Strawberry did her daily gymnastics climbing over us to let us know it's time for breakfast. I was more productive, too. I seasoned my new wok, then made fried rice to be eaten at lunch but it was so good I ended up having it for breakfast after all. We went on a short family bike, I took a cold shower, we watched The Sleepover on Netflix and had lunch, and then we left at 3:30 to go to the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. It was hot af and I'm not sure what protection wet/sweaty masks offer, but it was worth it to get the final hour we were there with the one-month old rhino and her mom showing off at one of the lookouts. We didn't get home until after 8, so I'm gonna keep this short today. Kellyanne is gone (yay!) but reading her daughter's tweets are pretty sad (boo). I imagine Monday's press briefing from the Governor will cover progress of the fires, the power grid, COVID, and how/when unemployment benefits are going to be added to people currently receiving it, so it will be a big day. That doesn't even mention the continued hearings about the USPS. Also sad to hear JTE died. I did merch for him a couple times and he wasn't particularly sweet but a talent for sure. 

Saturday, August 22, 2020

COVID-19 San Diego Stats | Streaming Watchlist: Drunk Parents | SPLC Weekend Longread for Anti-Racists

Ficus In The Yard Back Before The Heat Dome (Taken 5.12.2020)

Today Darren and Nova took Ficus to Balboa Park, went for a bike ride, played soccer, painted, played guitar together, and read for awhile, too.
I slept.
And when I wasn't sleeping, I was scrolling and reading and catching up with all the rest of the news that I missed this week (Check out Heather Cox Richardson's daily breakdowns.) I think I need to get my sleep back into non-vampire hours, so I'll probably bust out some melatonin and try to sleep like a normal person for once and get back to real life in the morning. Till then, just a couple articles and today's stats, after the jump. 

CoViD-19 Hits 3rd-Leading Cause of US Deaths | California Burning | Recycle Right

Darren rockin out in the "speakeasy" (Taken 8.14.2020)

Darren and I have been having so much fun in the speakeasy lately. I've been teaching him to swing dance and salsa a little bit so we have this little dance parties that are completely out of character for both of us, or he'll play songs, or we'll just play his favorite podcast, Yo, Is This Racist? Last night I ended up staying up all night through this morning and ended up listening to the testimony of DeJoy. What a piece of shit that guy is. Absolutely unbelievable how these people have been allowed to carry on in their destruction of literally everything that Americans value right in front of our eyes with no repercussions.  
Of course, being up all night and morning meant I pretty much slept the day away, thankfully with no recurring ant nightmares. Fingers crossed that it starts feeling like San Diego again sooner rather than later because even at 2:30am with my A/C running, my living room is still almost 80 degrees and I am over it.  

Thursday, August 20, 2020

CoViD-19 Updates | Biden Accepts DNC Nomination | Ant Nightmares | Bannon Arrested | San Diego Zoo Updates Health Screening

Amur Leopard Cub (Taken 8.20.2020)

I finally gave in and have been watching Backyard Envy on Bravo and I'm obsessed. We went back and started from Season 1 but we're gonna get through it pretty quick. I'm learning a lot, but the problem is that it's hard to know if the plants they use in New York would be viable here. Not that we're running out with multi-thousand dollars to build a backyard, but it's fun to watch for ideas and whatnot. I guess I finally understand what Pinterest is for. 
Anyway, today me and Darren went to the San Diego Zoo for the final hour it was open but mostly just to get me out of the house. I also feel vindicated from my whole Facebook fight about face masks because now they've added a 4th question to their health screening: 

Failure to properly wear an acceptable face covering at all times during your visit will result in dismissal from Zoo grounds. Do you acknowledge and agree to comply with this requirement?

It just further validates that facial coverings are not actually a personal choice. You agree to the social contract that if you're out in public, you will protect others, and they will protect you. Just like you cannot smoke in public, you don't get to make decisions about my health.

CoViD-19 International Cases Rise | California In Flames With 367 Known Fires | Sector Reopenings Not Likely For At Least 5 Weeks | President Obama & Senator Harris Slay DNC

August 19 International Orangutan Day (Taken 2.3.2020)

When I said I don't function during the heat dome, I was not exaggerating. Besides picking Nova up from Derby United, I haven't left the house since Monday. We took advantage of her skating by getting a pizza (she doesn't eat pizza sauce) and it was delightful eating out on our deck. There was kind of a lot of news today, but the biggest thing was we got a nugget of information from Governor Newsom, who indicated that sector reopening guidelines would likely be ready next week, but basically said that after counties come off the monitoring list, they have to go 14 days before schools can reopen (which we already knew). But from there, he hinted that counties will have to have under 5% test positivity for 2-3 weeks before any other openings can happen, while also keeping an eye on schools and subsequent outbreaks within those schools and districts. So suck it up, buttercups, we should've just listened in the beginning when experts told us we wouldn't see any normalcy for a year or two, if ever. Today's goods after the jump.  

Tuesday, August 18, 2020

CoViD-19: San Diego Removed From State Monitor List | 100 Years Of (Some) Women Voting | City Allows For Permitted Use of Parks For Gyms, Churches |

Me & My Mom, Who Instilled The Importance of Voting Since I Was a Kid and Who Has Never Missed and Election(Taken 10.5.2019)

Last night I finished my post, said I was going to have cocktails, then laid down on my bed, and fell asleep. I woke up a couple hours later and finished the book I was reading. I hate the phrase "chick lit", but apparently I read a lot of it. This one's writing was so basic and playing into so many idiotic and cliched tropes, and I'm kinda bummed I read it, so I'll be steering clear of that author. Anyway, today wasn't much more productive than the rest of this week, just trying to stay cool. We watched The Tiger Hunter on Netflix which was a pretty great movie and made burgers at home. Then I watched Audrie & Daisy on Netflix, a documentary about two girls who were raped and bullied on social media after their assaults. Of course, the boys almost always get away with it. After hearing that Daisy committed suicide last week and man, it is an especially hard watch. 
Tonight I'm definitely heading into the speakeasy, so I'll say goodnight now and catch ya again tomorrow. 

Monday, August 17, 2020

CoViD-19: California Under Heat Dome of Extreme Heat | San Diego Likely To Get Off State Monitor List on Tuesday | Watch Michelle Obama's Hopeful DNC Speech

A Sea Lion exits the water at La Jolla Cove  (Taken 8.14.2020)

We went back to La Jolla Cove today while Nova was in soccer and it's been a while since I've done the thing where my battery was completely dead. The video switch must've been triggered in my bag. Still, it was nice to get our feet wet and hang out in our usual spots for a little bit. She doesn't have soccer this Friday, so it will be a week until we go back. We're just mostly still bunkering at home. I started a new book last night and read for several hours this morning before finally falling asleep in my air conditioning. I also started watching Dirty John: The Betty Broderick Story, but I was bummed because USA Network only has the first 3 episodes and it won't be on Netflix in the US until the spring. It's interesting because it happened while I was in middle school, so I was aware of the story but maybe too young to care or follow along. There are lots of local references in the show, and fun fact, the guy who plays the case investigator during the court scenes and questioning is Jesse Mackey, who was an old pal from Chula Vista back in the day. Anyway, I've got a lot of email to still catch up on, but the speakeasy is calling. Today's notes after the jump.

COViD-19 55 Easy Self-Care Tips | San Diego Reports Over 300 New Cases |

Our little family at San Diego Zoo Safari Park (Taken 8.9.2020)
I did nothing today and it felt great. The house was quiet as Darren and Nova washed and folded all the laundry and it made me feel like a pampered princess. Later, Nova and I watched yet another dumb dance movie on Netflix called Feel The Beat and I would definitely say don't waste your time on this one. I swear, sometimes these movies feel like they're written by a bot. 
Anyway, not a lot to report today, so I'll get back to my RHOP episodes and brace for Monday. Today's stats are after the jump. 

Saturday, August 15, 2020

CoViD-19 150 Days | SDGE Outages | California & San Diego County Stats | Mayor & Supe Whine About Reopenings

Strawberry loves her new catio redesign. (Taken 8.12.2020)

My heat strategy is to sleep as much of the day away as I can (it helped that Nova had her birthday gathering today), but now that the sun is set, I can go about my normal business. We picked Nova up from her friends' house and decided to tackle a couple errands along the way. We popped into Home Depot to finally get trash pickers to clean up our neighborhood a little, though I wish we could've just borrowed these from North Park Main Street or another organization that has an abundance of them because they're $20 each and not as good as the industrial ones we've used for San Diego River Cleanup and the like. We got takeout from El Panson (which is now our fifth takeout meal since March). It was delightful, but now I'm totally stuffed, enjoying the A/C in the speakeasy while Darren plays some music and I enjoy a cocktail or four. I didn't have much in the way of news today and what I did was just a regurgitation of every other thing: the US is failing in curbing COVID-19, our testing is pathetic, the USPS is being dismantled, our mayor and county supe sent a letter to Newsom whining for more reopening guidelines, and the CoVidiot-in-chief's bro died, to which everyone unanimously seemed to say, "it is what it is." Just another day. Stats and stuff after the jump. 

CoViD-19 San Diego Day 3 Under 100/100k | Newsom Discusses Education | Proper Gathering Etiquette | USPS Is A Scandal Of Epic Proportions | La Jolla Cove Photos

Are you my mother? Juvenile pup and female on Boomer Beach (8.14.2020)

This heat wave is really just the icing on the cake, isn't it? It's bad enough we're all at home the majority of the time, now we get this insane heat and rolling blackouts to go with it. Keep your phones charged, my friends. It's 3 in the morning and still 75 in Normal Heights and it's still at least 84 degrees in my living room (which is as high as my Galileo thermometer can measure.)
Anyway, I'm pretty worthless in this weather. My wi-fi doesn't reach my bedroom (probably something we should take care of, stat), so I mostly waited until the sun went down to even start going through the day's news and briefings. Then I watched Knives Out which took all my attention. 
Being Friday, we did take Nova to soccer and visited the sea lions while she was there. This time we started on Boomer Beach, where Darren took a quick swim and I dipped my feet a little bit, too. Then we went to to our regular spot on the cliff over the Cove, but the sea lions claimed the little trail down. I joked that it was because they were tired of humans, but in reality I think they liked the cooler dirt instead of their regular white rocks, which I imagine were too hot for comfort. Anyway, there's a lot to get through today. I really hope the covidiot-in-chief is golfing this weekend because I really can't take anymore of his bullshit. Lots of stuff after the jump, with Friday's photos thrown in for good measure. 

Thursday, August 13, 2020

CoViD-19: San Diego 2nd Day Under 100/100k | It's A Miracle! Fewer Tests Mean Fewer Cases (/sarcasm) | San Diego Zoo Pics

I don't know how iguanas 'do it', but I think this one was getting penetrated during this photo (Taken 8.13.2020)

It's has been five days since I first posted a comment on the San Diego Zoo Safari Park's Facebook page and people are still telling me I should just stay home. Despite that there are Zoo rules, the County Health Order, and the State Health Order, which are literally enforceable by law (if we had any compunction to enforce, 5 months into this pandemic.) In fact, as more research comes out, I wouldn't be surprised if sooner or later we'll get guidelines as to what kind of facial coverings are allowed (since nylon/spandex gaiters and valved masks are showing to be ineffective.) As we were walking into the San Diego Zoo today, in fact, we heard some staff recounting a family refusing masks. "Did you hear that lady? 'But it's her birthday! We don't want her to suffocate! She's only 2!'" to which another staff quipped, 'Uh, yeah, happy birthday, here's a mask!'" as they shared their frustrations with each other about patrons. (Blogger ears are always wide open!)
Meanwhile, we're celebrating that we're one day away from being off the State monitoring list while New Zealand is completely back to normal life but briefly shut down after just FOUR new cases showed up, until they could contact trace and make sure those cases stay quarantined. We are our own worst enemy. 
I finished reading Big Summer by Jennifer Weiner, and while I can do without her lady-porn sections, I've read every book she's written because they're easy page-turners to take one's mind of the current state of affairs. And, as mentioned, we went to the San Diego Zoo today because it's truly the place where I feel safest and lowest risk, even though some people still wear masks under their noses or under their chins. It was hot, so the reptiles and tortoises were loving it and all more active than usual, and we also just sat for a while in Fern Canyon, taking in the abundance of oxygen and fragrant flowers and the sounds of a running waterfall. 
We'll likely be hunkered at home this weekend if the heat wave gets as bad as they say it will. The San Diego Public Library and San Diego County Library have really been lifesavers with their vast collections of e-books and quality recommendations on their browse by category pages to keep us from just being complete TV addicts. I'm off to the speakeasy for the night...stats and today's readings after the jump. Also including a handful of today's Zoo pics for good measure. 

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

CoVID-19: State of California Briefing Addresses Businesses & Legislation Optimism | College Sports Cancel Among COVID Spread | San Diego County Hits 1st Day Below 100 cases/100k

Today is World Elephant Day and Zuli's 2nd Birthday (Taken 7.9.2020)

I am a little disappointing today. I really wanted to go to the San Diego Zoo Safari Park for World Elephant Day, but haven't been feeling super great since yesterday. It's my own fault, we had a late night in the Speakeasy on Monday night and then I ate nothing but junk on Tuesday. I'll be fine, just need to get back to veggies and salads and backing off the processed stuff. We've actually been really good about cooking and eating at home. I think we've only eaten takeout 4 times since March, but sometimes cooking so much can get exhausting (as I'm sure everyone damn well knows by now). 
Anyway, I spent the day sleeping a lot. And I'm reading the latest from Jennifer Weiner, and I watched the very, very long media briefing from Governor Newsom, which was framed as a summary of all the things they've done for Californians as well as his wish list for what the state legislature will accomplish in the next two weeks. Since it has sooo much information, I'm gonna format the COVID-19 reading first and then the State and County stats after. Check it out, after the jump. 

COVID-19: Bill Gates Speaks Truth | San Diego Has Fewer Than 200 New Cases, Lowest Since June 22nd | Must Streams | Kids Are Little COVID Vectors | Fiesta Island Pics

Ficus at Fiesta Island (Taken 8.11.2020)

Today was a pretty good day. I now see all the blowback on Biden announcing Kamala Harris as his running mate, but I'm pretty happy about it. I think it's a big deal for women, for people of color, particularly bi-racial people who don't see much representation in this world. Neither Biden nor Harris are without faults, and I would be voting blue no matter who, but I'm encouraged with this ticket. 
Anyway, we spent most of the day chillin' around the house but we did go to Fiesta Island for 'golden hour' with Ficus, who hasn't gotten much time outside the yard this quarantine. Mostly that's because she's a big scaredy cat and is always kinda limited on where she'll go, but the water was nice to splash around in, even if her hip is a little pained now. 
Other than that, I don't know why my volume of email seems to be increasing every day but it's nearly two in the morning and I just finished getting through everything. I'm gonna checkout and catch up on Housewives and veg out. Hoping to make it to the San Diego Zoo Safari Park on Wednesday for World Elephant Day and Zuli's birthday. Lots of stuff and today's stats after the jump.   

Monday, August 10, 2020

CoViD-19: California Governor Appoints New Public Health Director | Data Backlog (Mostly) Rectified | "To Each His Own" Doesn't Apply During a Pandemic |

Sea Lion Yoga (Taken 8.10.2020)

It was a long day and I hoped to get this post published before soccer, but the County is pretty slow with their daily updates sometimes. This morning's Governor's media briefing was pretty average, though I wish Gav would really drive home that people showing ANY symptoms that could be thought to be COVID-19 should STAY HOME until tested or obvious that they're not. I mean, I get that allergies, a hangover, or any number of actual colds or ailments have basic symptoms, but people just aren't getting it, and he did speak to the fact that even people testing positive are still working for fear of losing their jobs. That has got to stop. 
Besides that, we took Nova to soccer and if you saw my Instagram, I got nailed by a wave while trying to have a nice, quiet, distant walk on the beach and then Darren stood up into a rock and got a small fleshwound on top of his head. He's totally fine, but saltwater and blood made it look like he was Carrie for a minute, especially because his wet yellow mask soaked up the blood. I assure you we're both fine and we not in any real danger. My camera survived, too, though my phone won't charge because "moisture is detected" but I'm sure that will be fine, too. We still went to Costco (totally wet pants) and resupplied our beer stash (because clearly we need it,) but we also bought some nice cod and had a lovely dinner until Nova had a meltdown because I had the audacity to tell her she needs to clean her room tomorrow. Yikes. Teenagers, amirite? Anyhow, some reading and stats after the jump.

CoViD-19 California Blew It | Sunday Stats: 417 New Cases, 4 New Community Outbreaks | Photos: San Diego Zoo Safari Park Rhinos and more

We went back to the San Diego Zoo Safari Park today. It was much more crowded than our trips before, but that could be because we arrived a little earlier in the afternoon than we usually do. They're no longer issuing bracelets upon entry, so I guess my collection will remain as is. 
Because of the crowds, we skipped some areas, like the elephants, and w also just enjoyed more of the walking and finding shady grass to lay down on instead of rushing to see as much as possible. The rhinos ended up being the hit of our day, as a crash of them were up by our favorite lookout. After being elusive, we also tracked Rhino Kacy and her 2 1/2 week old calf, so I spent about an hour watching them until they disappeared again. There are so many areas where the animals can get out of public view without the tram system. Darren and I have this dream that maybe as a fundraiser or something they would allow bikes to ride the roads the trams usually take, but we know that is just a fantasy and a million reasons why that would never fly. 
The cheetahs had been absent on our first go-round, too, but at the end of the day, we looped back and two were out, so Nova got to have her moment of chirpiness with them. We grabbed takeout from Rolberto's off Aero Drive on the way home, only our 4th time getting takeout since March, so that was an extra special treat for us. 
For anyone regularly following along, I had my dumb little Facebook fight yesterday and got one more comment. "really so now if somebody is coughing or has a fever is Covid19??? stay away,stay home...blah-blah...But what happened with a flue,...Flue is gone now???I am curious.Yes my daughter had an asthma too before and she had breathing difficulties,so what???Some people is so ignorant now" That's a doozy and so much to unpack I just had to let it go. With this mindset so prevalent, we're never gonna get past COVID-19. Meanwhile, we ordered goggles and we've all got a stash of masks, so we're not taking any unnecessary risks. I wish 'you do you' or 'to each his own' or 'live and let live' were sound arguments, but the virus just doesn't work that way. Today's stats and some reads after the jump. More photos, too.  

Saturday, August 08, 2020

COVID-19: If You Love Your Friends & Family, Stop Seeing Them | COVID-19 Scams | I Got In A Dumb Facebook Fight

Elephant at San Diego Zoo Safari Park (Taken 8.6.2020)

We had a super fun night in the speakeasy last night and I ended up staying up until after the sun was up, so when I did finally sleep, it was well into the afternoon. When I awoke, Darren and Nova had chopped vegetables and started the grill, so we spent the whole day enjoying the yard and my neighbor's loud ranchera music as they did the same. 
I am happy to report that my parents asked that my cousins cancel their visit because they didn't feel comfortable with the fact that they flew in and because Indiana is having high numbers, too. Plus my cousins are super religious, so chances are probably pretty high they've been attending mass during all of this mess. I'm proud of my parents for putting their health first, though it does beg the question, are they reading my blog? Years ago my mom condemned my frequent F-bombs ("You're smarter than that. Use your words.") but they really haven't mentioned my site in ages. Regardless, I'm glad they made the call, painful as it must've been, since the Indiana cohort of my family really doesn't make it to California all that often and we love when my LA cousin visits since she lived with us while she was in high school, so we have more of a sibling relationship. 
In other news, I was called a Karen today on Facebook. Probably not the first time and probably not the last. Basically I commented on a San Diego Zoo Safari Park post that I appreciate their safety measures but wish they'd implement the Disney rule of eating and drinking only when stationary and about the idiot mom whose kid was hacking all over us a few weeks back while inhaling a bag of cheetos and not wearing a mask by the elephant mesa. I was told that if I feel unsafe with someone coughing, I should just stay home. Um, okay, numnuts. That's exactly what we're supposed to be afraid of during a GLOBAL PANDEMIC of a RESPIRATORY VIRUS. My next comment won't be very nice, so I'll refrain, but sometimes I wonder how it must be kind of awesome being so completely blissfully ignorant. Must be nice. Anyway, today's stats after the jump plus a couple reads and my Facebook fight.  

CoViD-19 Life: San Diego Clamps Down On Beach Gatherings (But Should Be Actively Ticketing) | Get Off Your Phone | Pence "Said The Quiet Part Out Loud" | La Jolla Cove Photos

This is my favorite sea lion. I've named him Brutus and I love him. (Taken 8.7.2020)

I try to read or at least filter every email I get every day but it's now midnight and I am going to cut it short since we're in the speakeasy and trying to hang out and play music and shots are waiting. Today we did the Cove and Derby so I wrote about that below, plus I've got the usual stats below as well as some reading. I'll have more this weekend when I finally get through the other 66 tomorrow. And you guys seem to like when I post more photos, so I'm adding those at the end (untouched today). Hope you all have a great weekend. 

Friday, August 07, 2020

COVID-19 San Diego Decreasing Case Rate | Diary: Meet-Cute Anniversary | TV Watchlist | San Diego Zoo Safari Park Baby Rhino Photos

Today is the 8th anniversary of the night me and Darren met at Soda Bar. I was blowing off steam after the Black Lips show at the Hard Rock Show got shut down after three songs because mixing a belligerent band and meathead bouncers turned out to be a bad combination. Darren was there enjoying a beer after work. From the second we started talking, I guess I knew he was my guy, and here we are 8 years later in a life I never could have imagined.  
I was mostly offline today because I convinced Darren and Nova to go to the Safari Park for the last couple hours of the day because I wanted to try to glimpse the 2 week-old rhino calf. I learned from a photographer who was there that she is Kacy's 4th calf, with Justin being one of her brothers. He's been banished for now while mom protects the new calf and it was pretty spectacular to see for a short time, though the viewpoint was a little crowded and the drive-up private safaris blocked the view for awhile. 
I'll post those pics at the end of the post. In the meantime, happy anniversary of my meet-cute with Darren, who has given me a love like I'd never known before, even if he is currently passed out from our day's adventures. Today's news and stats are after the jump. 

Thursday, August 06, 2020

COVID-19 County Clears Investigation Trigger But Remains On Monitoring List For Others | Del Mar Steps Up Mask Enforcement (San Diego Should, Too) | San Diego Music Is Alive

Cheer up, sleepy cheetah (taken 8.5.2020)

Darren and I watched this interesting documentary called "There Are No Fakes" on Amazon about counterfeit paintings of contemporary Native artist, Norval Morriseau, and a deep dive into how many people went to extremes to make money off of him. It gets pretty dark and intense but it is very enlightening. Today was a pretty chill day for us. We went to the San Diego Zoo in the late afternoon. I realized that when I get super annoyed by entire families of tourists unmasked there are enough spots to duck into that aren't as popular, like the aviaries or fern canyon where I know they won't be. Unfortunately we keep missing the new lemur twins so I'll have to suck it up and do a morning session one of these days. I watched today's County briefing and finally made it through all my first inbox of emails but I'm gonna shut down and watch a movie now because I am wiped out. All the news after the jump. 

Tuesday, August 04, 2020

CoViD-19 County Supervisors Board Meeting Snoozefest | Social Distancing Worked | Kids Are The Little Monster Vectors You Knew They Were

Sea Lion surfs a wave at Boomer Beach/La Jolla Cove (Taken 8.3.2020)

I tried to watch the County Board of Supervisors meeting, but it's so frustrating knowing that Fletch is the only dem vote and every single thing is an uphill battle when you've got the knuckleheads JD and KG in there. Really, really hoping we see new more representative faces on the Board come November. It's also frustrating when people keep making the same arguments over and over, why can X be open but not Y?
Let's review again: 

Successful Infection = Exposure to Virus x Time 

The arguments against Home Depot and Ross and Costco to justify opening gyms and salons make no sense because of the nature of the activities. The stores you can get in, get out, keep distanced. Not so with gyms, salons, indoor dining, etc. It's not that complicated. Then a dozen people called in to restore recreational boating and compared it to restaurants, which may actually be right, but they're actually making an argument why restaurant/bars should be closing or at the very least removing the allowance for mixed households sitting together, not why boating should be restored. Our numbers are certainly looking a lot better than mid-May, but it's still a long way to go. City Council had a meeting, too, but it was almost entirely consent items.
I don't really have much else to talk about today. I would've loved to have hit the San Diego Zoo or Fiesta Island today but I'm a woman whose cramps can shut me down for three straight days, so that's where I am today. Instead it was all Netflix; I finished The Twelve, Nova and I finished Get Even, and I started watching this amazing show called Tales By Light, about photographers who use the medium to draw attention to critical issues like poverty, pollution, or losing traditions of indigenous peoples. I HIGHLY recommend it, especially Season 3 episodes 1 & 2 on child poverty, so you can think about these poor babies working in mines and factories while we're whining that our kids need gymnastics and little league so we should just send them back to school already. 

CoViD-19 San Diego Community Outbreaks| Dr. Fauci Speaks | White House Plot To Destroy USPS To Interfere With Elections

Sea Lions challenging each other above La Jolla Cove (Taken 8.3.2020)

I've always had really messed up sleep patterns. As a teenager when I couldn't sleep, I'd rearrange the furniture in my bedroom until I was exhausted enough to pass out, my mom waking me in the morning surprised at how my room was transformed. In adulthood, it results in what I refer to as leapfrog; Darren wakes up and I sleep, I wake up and he takes a nap. But sometimes our schedules actually line up, as they did on Sunday night, and we had a fun night of drinks on our redecorated patio. 
Of course, that means kind of a slow moving Monday. I didn't watch the Governor's briefing, but I did watch the County as well as Dr. Fauci's Connecticut Q&A. And being a Monday, Nova had soccer so we hit La Jolla Cove, which seems to have chilled a little bit since many people returned to school. Still, I wish our Tourism Board or City Parks & Rec would post signs about facial coverings being mandatory in the County and State because a lot of the tourists just seem to not know. Locals have no excuse and clearly just don't care. 
We also made a Costco run and they seem to have an abundance of disposable masks as well as 4-packs of polyester/spandex reusable ones, though after buying I don't really think are adequate protection but I think they're more specifically for wearing while doing sports. I'm in between watching Get Even with Nova and The Twelve when everyone else is asleep...both on Netflix. Today's updates and reading after the jump.  

Sunday, August 02, 2020

CoViD-19 is Airborne | With Slightly More Cases Than San Diego, Melbourne Locks Down | Fighting Off Family Functions

A resting hummingbird at San Diego Zoo Africa Rocks Pollinator Garden (Taken 8.2.2020)

It was a super-chill Sunday around the homestead. In the afternoon, Nova and I went to my mom's to catch up with my cousin who was visiting. As I mentioned, they bought new patio furniture, so we appropriately separated by households/masked on in the backyard, though I constantly have to nag about this. I left Nova to get Darren from home hoping to go for the 6-8pm window at the Zoo, but by the time I got him and we gassed up, we arrived at 6:47, only to find that they changed August hours, so weekends now close at 7pm. They let us in, so we raced to the Amur leopard cubs, caught a little bit of Agapito, the Andean bear cub, but were then ushered out as security made the rounds and were back in the car by 7:30pm. 
We returned to my mom's but by this point everyone was inside, so we didn't stay long. 
Before we left, my cousin told me her brother is coming to visit this week from Indiana and so they'll be down on Sunday with his daughter and her boyfriend. And now, to be honest, I'm furious. 
I have SENIOR CITIZEN parents, my dad is SEVERELY immunocompromised and as it is takes about 30 pills a day for his medical issues and has almost died in the hospital twice in the last 5 years. My cousin will be FLYING from Indiana to stay in LOS ANGELES and then come down to visit DURING A GLOBAL PANDEMIC. 
As I've said, my parents' yard is big enough that we can certainly distance and wear masks, but will they? Do I trust they know the State and County Health Orders and will follow? Or do I prepare to make a giant scene and revert right back to Bossy Rosey? Or do I Facebook message them before they fly out, "Hey! Super stoked to see you next week! Don't forget you are required to wear masks here, you need to stay away from my dad, and if any of us get sick, I will never forgive you. K, Byeeeee!!" 
This is obviously why so many residential outbreaks happen, because people slip, they take off masks for eating and drinking, get too close, and before you know it, an entire family is sick with the most vulnerable not making it while everyone else wonders who was asymptomatic. I'm gonna have to stew on this one all week. 
Usual stats and reading after the jump.

Saturday, August 01, 2020

COVID-19 California & San Diego Stats | 40 Community Outbreaks | Barack Obama Eulogy For John Lewis |

Agapito, the Andean Bear Cub at San Diego Zoo (7.30.2020)

I wanted to go to the San Diego Zoo today but got caught up finishing reading my book in the calm sanctuary of my air-conditioned bedroom. Last weekend we tried to hit it, but it was too crowded, so I do what I do and did recon by checking the #sandiegozoo hashtag on Instagram, but anyone who was indicating it wasn't too crowded was also taking family photos without masks, so I couldn't handle the frustration today and decided to sit it out. What was cool, however, was that the San Diego Zoo notified members that all memberships have been extended by the amount that they were closed, so that's a nice little bonus. I also (finally) watched Barack Obama's eulogy for John Lewis, which I've linked below. 
On personal homefront, it seems we've gotten control of the ants (thanks to Terro traps), but now we've detected fleas, which is normal peak-summer, but we reupped all the animals with their treatment dosages and Darren did a full baking soda treatment on, under, and around the couch and living room. So we're not just doing COVID-19 sanitizing but pest control, too. Super fun. 
There wasn't a lot of news I want to dwell on today: there were protests in La Mesa, Facebook is still flooded with people out and about living as if there's no virus, and we carry on. Stats and links are still after the jump. 

COVID-19 The Social Contract | La Jolla Cove Etiquette & Photos | Impending MLB Shutdown? | Danger Of Recirculated Air | San Diego Sets New Record For Community Outbreaks

Nova has soccer on Fridays, so it's become a habit that we head to La Jolla Cove to commune with the sea lions. I've been expressing a lot of frustration about this lately because as it is frustrating year-round when people get too close to them or block their right-of-way, it's doubly or triply frustrating because people are not wearing masks and giving other humans proper space. My cousin tried to call me out, as if I was saying that I'm entitled to be there and other people are not, and nothing could be further from the truth. I know that La Jolla Cove is one of the true gems of this City and I wish more locals could experience it regularly, that tourists come and take beautiful memories home with them, but when people are inconsiderate to other humans and to the animals, whether by littering or smoking or not following the State and County health order, I get really, really pissed about it. So today while we were on the cliff, we had it to ourselves for nearly an hour until two guys decided to come down, one wearing his mask under his chin, so I told him he needed to put it on correctly or stay away from us. And when we went to Boomer Beach and three young boys were daring each other to touch a tragically dead sea lion pup, I screamed at them to leave it alone. Just by living in society, there is a social contract. Everyone has the right to be there and enjoy themselves. They do not have the right to be a dick without consequences, even if that's just being yelled at by some random lady (me.) COVID-19 news and updates and more Sea Lion photos after the jump.