Wednesday, May 19, 2021

CoViD-19: It's Only Confusing If You Have No Capacity To Comprehend | Pandemic Spurred Career Changes | Indie Venues Anticipate Openings | Photos: San Diego Zoo Safari Park |


Southern White Rhino at San Diego Zoo Safari Park (Taken 5.18.21)

On our way to the San Diego Zoo Safari Park, Darren driving the I-15 carpool lanes, I was stewing. I had tried to get through as many emails and YouTube news and briefing clips as I could before we headed out. I have a pretty extensive subscription list on YouTube, so it feeds me the latest videos amongst my subscriptions and it felt like there were a hundred new videos from the night before to Wednesday afternoon with click-baity headlines with the words "masking" and "confusion", the vast majority from local news channels. 

Now, I get that it was maybe confusing on Thursday or whenever Dr. Walensky gave new guidance, but over the weekend, she was on at least four different shows to clarify that the new "guidance"--- not rules, not regulations, not mandates -- was only for fully vaccinated people (at least 2 weeks out from your 2nd shot or your only shot if J&J). 

Apparently we're all toddlers and only listen to the parts we want to hear. 

By Monday, CDPH (California Department of Public Health) clarified that our indoor mask mandates were still in effect regardless of vaccination status. They said it's so we can have more people vaccinated, allow businesses to prepare, and allow the new segment of 12-15 year olds to get shots. But the unspoken/unwritten part was that we've seen how stupid and selfish people are and the first to unmask would actually be those who never masked or vaccinated at all. So those of us who did both deserve the safety of indoor spaces still requiring masks. 

So as I said, I was stewing, and sent this tweet, specifically directed at Channel 10 and News 8 (because those are in my subscriptions) though I know other stations are guilty of the same. "Enough with the stories about mask confusion. It is YOUR JOB to CLARIFY to the communities where you report. CA still requires masks indoors. End of story. DO YOUR JOBS." (This is the part where I remind you I used to work for NBC San Diego but they're not in my YouTube feed because they have their own app and don't post every clip from their news as the others do.)

I needed to vent and I did and then had a lovely afternoon at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park with my family, with some sweet kangaroo and wallaby time, a little love from the cassowary and tree kangaroo, some talking to the birds, and then watched some of the elephants throwing a temper tantrum before spending the last part of our day with seven of the rhinos that were all at Kilima Point. 

When I got home, I watched the abbreviated 6 o'clock news from Channel 8 and lo and behold, there's Carlo Checchetto and Marcella Lee emphasizing at least 4 times that masks are still required indoors in California. I followed up with a thank you tweet, of course, even if it had nothing to do with me. This really isn't that hard.

Beyond all that, I was wandering San Diego Zoo Safari Park and thinking about when the tram will open, which lead to thinking about what California revised guidance will be when June 15 rolls around, assuming we stay on the trajectory we're on with cases and hospitalizations low and dropping, and vaccination numbers rising, and so here's my projection: anything that skews heavy with children-- zoos, theme parks, museums, summer camp indoor activities, schools, childcare-- will all still have mask requirements. Bars will be a free for all because no bar is going to do a vax check. Music venues, especially all ages ones, may continue requiring masks or conversely, a negative test or vax proof. All things we should be able to live with. And for the love of god, if you have kids who aren't eligible for a vaccine yet, set a goddamn example and continue to mask up and save the griping for when they're not around. 

My whiskey-driven 2 cents. Stay safe out there. 

San Diego Zoo Safari Park (Taken 5.18.21)

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