Monday, May 31, 2021

Memorial Day: Biden Tribute | Ultimate Self Care: Naomi Osaka Pulls From French Open | CoViD-19: WHO Designates Variants With Greek Alphabet | Photos: San Diego Zoo Safari Park |

American Coot and Chick at San Diego Zoo Safari Park (Taken 5.31.21)

I know it's Memorial Day so it's a somber remembrance to all fallen soldiers. But I'm also ignorant. Do we only memorialize those lost in battle? Or those who died after service from cancers and injuries from say, burn pits or toxic exposure or during training exercises? Or those who've taken their own lives after coming home with mental wounds too deep to carry? And does it include anyone who has ever served and died of natural causes decades later? I don't know. Watching the news and reading Twitter, I would say I'm not the only one who doesn't know. So here's the wiki: 

Memorial Day is a federal holiday in the United States for honoring and mourning the military personnel who have died in the performance of their military duties.

I honestly don't know if that clears it up. So I'll spare talking about which I know nothing.

What I do want to talk about is Naomi Osaka. I played competitive tennis from my youth through college. I was never at the level where a future in tennis was a consideration, but I did it was intense and I had welts on my legs from the self-harm behavior super common in tennis of slamming your calves with your racquet to punish yourself for stupid mistakes and unforced errors. It was a joke amongst my teammates back then, but largely contributed to hanging up my racquet the second my final tennis season was over. I've maybe played a dozen times in the ensuing 20 years. That pressure is real. 

And so I cannot even imagine what it is like for elite athletes like Naomi Osaka, regardless of the sport, add the fact that she's a woman and a person of color at that. International sports media has never been particularly kind, empathetic, anti-racist, or supported women nor have the money-hungry sports associations, whether that be Roland-Garros or the French Tennis Federation, the IOC, the NBA, the PGA and all the others. It's disgusting that Osaka felt it necessary to withdraw because of threats by Roland-Garros and the other slams. What does she have to do? Shave her head like Brittney? Get run off the road and die like Diana? Overdose like so many...too many to name? Get into multiple car wrecks like Tiger? Start openly popping pills? What does it take for someone to outright say that they are suffering and for all of us to fucking listen? It's super gross and I just had to say something about it.

Besides all that, we went to the San Diego Zoo Safari Park this afternoon, after discovering they were open until 7. It was a little crowded when we arrived after 4, but we just hung by the African Lagoon Loop watching American Coot chicks until it died down and still got my late hour with rhinos, giraffes, and elephants, so it turned out to be worth the trip. Tomorrow we have reservations at the San Diego Zoo for the opening of the new Hummingbird House and the Monitor Lizard Terrarium. I'm gonna cocktail tonight so hope everyone had a great weekend. Stay safe out there.


  • State Data:
    • Southern California ICU Bed Availability: 34.6%
    • R-effective: 0.73
    • 58 New Cases/280,209 Total Cases
    • 0 Deaths/3,756 Total Deaths
    • 3.2 cases/100k population (Assessed on 5/25. Unadjusted Case Rate)
    • 1.5% Test Positivity (Assessed on 5/25)
    • 1.8% Health Equity Positivity (Assessed on 5/25)
    • 115 COVID-19 hospitalized patients (-2 patients, -1.7% from prior day)
    • 41 COVID-19 ICU hospitalized patients (+4 patients, +10.8% from prior day)
    • 266 ICU beds available (-15 from prior day)
  • County Data:
    • 45 New Cases/280,253 Total Cases 
    • 0 New Daily Deaths/3,756 Total Deaths
    • 2.4 cases/100k population (Assessed on 5/25. Adjusted case rate per 100,000 excluding prisons.) 
  • Universities:
San Diego Zoo Safari Park Photos (Taken 5.31.21)

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