Ramble Log

This is my ramble about various topics. You will see them listed in reverse order that I write them so that the newest entries are on top.

NOTE: These are whatever I feel like writing. The content frequently expresses my own opinions and nothing should be considered an absolute fact. It's up to YOU to verify the validity of any thing said here.

Note also that I won't intentionally lie to you. I will always give this my best effort to be factual. If you have any questions about anything here drop me an email at: - I am NOT looking for rants, critiques, or corrections. You can expect me to ignore any of these.

The Vaccine Shot - 3 Weeks (almost) Later - Mar 3, 2021

It will be 3 weeks tomorrow since my first shot. The only side effects I had were a sore arm the day after the shot so no complaints.

Normally you would get a second shot 3 weeks after the first (for Pfizer) but for whatever reason the schedule I got is for 5 weeks after. Not really a problem for me. I'm sure it let someone else get their first shot a couple of weeks sooner.

I'm ready for the second one. I'll let you know how it goes.

First Vaccine Shot Today - Feb 11, 2021

I got my first shot (Pfizer-BioNTech) at the Summit County office on West Market Street today. The process was smooth and very professional. Thanks to all the people (at least 10-20) who ran this operation. It worked very well.

So far I've experienced no side effects - it's only been a couple of hours though.

While I was waiting after the shot (15 minutes) I was able to get the appointment set up for the second shot.

It was a bit tricky getting this appointment set up. The registration started at 12:00 noon on Tuesday (the 9th) and I got started a bit late (12:03) but still managed to get things going. I have to say that the process did not go perfectly as there were some stutters from the web site. Being a computer geek I managed to bull through the issues.

It wasn't as smooth as the registration I did at Walgreens on Monday. That went perfectly smoothly and I got a 10:20 appointment for the next day. Too bad that it was all a 'mistake' and they weren't really doing vaccinations. I found out when I got there. The pharmacy personnel apologized for the misunderstanding of course. I have not yet received any communications from Walgreens themselves though. This is an inexcusable laps on their part. BOO TO YOU WALGREENS!

The Impeachment 'Trial' - Feb 11, 2021

Yes, the word 'Trial' is in quotes, because this isn't really a trial. If it was the plaintiff would already be in jail. There would also be no possible way he could avoid it either. The evidence is far too strong for any defense argument to counter. There would also be several others joining him in jail.

It's not over yet of course. We'll see what really happens.

No matter what I will be taking names of those who vote against conviction. I'm hoping for zero against but I'd be happy with a low number.

Aargh!!! - Jan 9, 2021

This has been a really 'exciting' week. In case you have been hiding under a rock or don't connect what I'm talking about - January 6, 2021 was the day that our so called president encouraged a group of demonstrators to march on the Capitol and take over congress.

Until 2015 I was not all that interested in politics. Then came the T**** era and all that changed. You had to keep up with what offbeat thing he was doing today. All too many times it was detrimental to the country and it's citizens. It often benefited his cronies and big business to the detriment of us common folk. I wish he had spent more time playing golf.

It's something that has never happened before. It was obviously his last ditch effort to keep power by becoming a dictator. He is so disconnected from reality. I don't know how we all put up with him this long.

There are ways to remove him, even though he's out on January 20th anyway:

  1. Removal via the terms of the 25th Amendment of the Constitution. This is probably unlikely unless the president goes really off the deep end. The Vice President just doesn't seem to have the guts to do this. I would be happy if this happens though.
  2. Impeachment. This process is actually going go happen. The Articles of Impeachment are already written and are expected to be introduced into the House on Monday. I don't think there will be a problem getting it through the House and sent on to the Senate. Unfortunately Mitch McConnell, the current majority leader in the Senate, has published the 'plan' - wait until January 19th and them MAYBE think about possibly doing something about it. That means nothing will happen before Joe Biden becomes President and Mitch McConnell ceases to be the majority leader. Although this would not get the president removed from office it would block him from ever running for any federal level office in the future, assuming it passes in the Senate - likely after the 20th. Not a bad thing to accomplish.
  3. The president could resign. I don't really see this happening but I'd take it if that's what happens.
This is a very disruptive influence on everyone (including me) because we are all worried about what the president might do next. I have no respect for him at this point (not that I had much before) but he does have a lot of power that could be misused for his own gain. His actions have tarnished our nation in the eyes of the rest of the world.

I can't wait until January 20th when Joe Biden becomes President. I hope things calm down enough for me to be able to go several days between political events. Some will no doubt be important but I can do without politics being off the wall.

And I haven't said a thing about COVID-19 (until now). That's another whole can of worms by itself.

One last item. Here's an interesting and somewhat related XKCD comic to brighten your day: https://xkcd.com/2396/

Coronavirus Updates - Dec 20, 2020

It's been too long since the last update. Thanksgiving has come and gone - along with a SIGNIFICANT increase in infections because far too many people did what they wanted to do instead of what they should have done.

Cases have been climbing since a week or two after Thanksgiving. This was totally predictable. No firm measures were taken trusting on people doing the right thing. Of course they didn't. You can expect the death rate to climb too - just in time for Christmas.

This virus infects everyone differently. Some don't even know they have been infected. Some have what could be classified as a bad flu (you DID get your flu shot right?). Some end up in the hospital - a bad place to be considering only 4 in 5 survive there. Some who have had the virus continue to have significant aftereffects from the virus that may never subside. Some don't make it at all and are added to the list of the dead.

In early January you can expect cases to climb again because again there are no firm restrictions in place. People will NOT stay home and protect those they are visiting. We so much want to be out and visiting people we know that at least some of us are willing to risk spreading or catching this virus.

We are so close to getting this thing under control but so many selfish people just don't seem to get it. Two (soon three) vaccines are here but the supply is limited so we can't just vaccinate everybody all at once. Most of us won't see the vaccine until May or June. I can't wait to get mine but I WILL gladly wait my turn.

Even after the vaccine becomes more widely available we will have to keep taking the measures to slow down the spread until most of us are vaccinated:

  • Wear a Mask
  • Keep Social Distanced from Others
  • Wash Your Hands Frequently
There are other measures that help too:
  • Keep your immunity strong - Vitamins C and D are IMPORTANT. During the winter months it is unlikely that you are getting enough so supplements are important.
  • Keep your exposure to a minimum. Don't go out unless you MUST. Work, groceries, and other essentials are reasonable exceptions to the stay-at-home recommendations. I've found that shopping early, 7:30 AM, or late, after 7:30 PM, works well for me.
  • Keep up your social contacts - but not physically. Your mental health can depend on it. Besides, those people want to know you're OK just as much as you probably want to know they're OK.
The way this is all going it will be July before we can start to relax a bit. I'm sure there will be some REALLY big 4th of July celebrations - even if we're still all wearing masks!

COVID-19 - Nov 13, 2020

Wear A Mask!

I know, I'm shouting. We ALL need to do our part to STOP the spread.

Forget the Thanksgiving get together for this year. STAY HOME! It doesn't mean you can't get together via the phone or if you're tech savvy via some online group thing.

We have all (me included) started to relax our guard and are tolerating small lapses from others. We MUST continue to be diligent and practice the usual precautions. You can alter some of the things you do to improve your safety. I have found that grocery shopping is best done early (7:30 AM is early enough) or late (after 7:00 PM). If you qualify, you can also use 'early hours' that some stores offer.

You can also cut down how often you go for groceries. I've been going once a week (early) but I'm going to stretch that to every 2 weeks. It just takes a bit of planning.

If we can get through this month and into the next MAYBE we can relax a bit with this surge behind us. A Christmas get together (and other equivalent holidays of the season) can become possible (still very restricted) if we all do the right thing NOW.

Vaccines are coming but don't expect to be able get them before April or May. It will probably be July, at the earliest, before we see things truly settle down. This time next year we will hopefully be back to 'normal' and can celebrate a truly meaningful Thanksgiving.

Let's go in to 2021 in the right direction - looking at a true and deep dip in COVID-19 cases.

The Electoral College - Nov 7, 2020

I know there are many of you out there that think, like I do, that the Electoral College has outlived it's usefulness. It made a lot of sense when the concept was introduced into our constitution. Travel took a LONG time in those days.

Now, in our era of instant communications, it's time is past.

To eliminate the Electoral College would take a constitutional amendment. I don't think this is a practical thing to do. It would be unlikely to pass for several decades if ever.

The states can determine how the Electoral College is implemented. Most states are set up in the 'winner take all' mode. I have alternatives to suggest:

  1. Currently, Maine and Nebraska use a different system where the state's electorate vote as a whole for two delegates. They also vote in their house districts for the remaining delegates. In Maine's case, this year, they voted 2 statewide delegates for Joe Biden, 1 house district for Donald Trump, and 1 house district for Joe Biden. This is an easy to implement and well established system that would better represent the will of the people.

  2. This one would use the popular vote totals and allocate Electoral College delegates based on the ratio of the electors. For Ohio this year (18 delegates) there would be 10 delegates for Donald Trump and 8 delegates for Joe Biden. This is also simple to implement and a fair representation of the will of the people.

  3. There is a movement among several states to simply assign all of their delegates to the candidate with the majority of votes from the entire United States electorate. Although this would probably accomplish the desired result, I don't see how this is representative of the state's electorate. I don't really like this method but it's still better than the current system.
Any of the above systems, if implemented in most states, would force the candidates to court ALL voters, not just the ones in the battleground states.

BTW, Joe Biden just started his speech off with 'My fellow Americans ...' - a good beginning!

The Waiting is Over - Nov 7, 2020

It's 8:30 PM on Saturday after the election.

The Vice President Elect is speaking on stage. She will be introducing the President Elect.

I'm glad it didn't take any longer. There is much to be done. This presidency will face significant inherited challenges and probably some new ones.

There are possibilities where this declaration is premature but they are vanishingly remote. The true confirmation of Joe Biden's election to the presidency will not come until December when the Electoral College comes together to cast their votes.

I'm hoping, but not really expecting, our current president will not, either through bad actions or through inaction, make things worse. This is his chance to salvage something of his term by doing something great.

The Waiting for Results - Nov 6, 2020

It's 7:45 PM on Friday of election week.

Some predictions give Pennsylvania or Nevada to Joe Biden. I'm not confident that either of these projections is based on solid statistical facts. I'm not counting on either of these for the following statements.

Most ballots now being counted are mail-in ballots which tend to be heavily weighted to Joe Biden. It does vary from state to state but generally it's true. There are also provisional ballots to be counted which are not necessarily weighted the same way. Accusations of fraud and other voting irregularities have been levied by the President and have not been backed up by any proof.

There are 5 states (6 if you count Alaska which will very likely go to President Trump) still technically up for grabs: Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Georgia, Arizona, and Nevada. President Trump holds leads in North Carolina (and Alaska). Former Vice President Biden has the lead in Pennsylvania, Georgia, Arizona, and Nevada.

Assume Alaska goes to President Trump.

To win, President Trump must win Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Georgia, and Arizona. Winning Nevada instead of Georgia would get him 269 - a tie.

Former Vice President Biden can win with Pennsylvania alone - or any 2 of the other states.

I'll add updates if something changes.

It's Looking Bleak - Oct 30, 2020

I just finished updating my spreadsheet for today (COVID-19 statistics for Ohio) and am feeling very concerned. We had nearly 4000 CONFIRMED cases reported. A month ago it was under 1000 per day.

The rate has been accelerating over the last couple of weeks. It is NOT a good direction. I expect that we will be in lock down mode before Thanksgiving. I hope we will be in lock down mode. Nothing else is going to stop, or at least slow down, the spread.

It's not getting any better nationally, or world wide either. The United States is on the path to 9 MILLION cases and 230,000 deaths before election day.

The RT value showing the rate of case increase is above 1.0 for every state but one - Mississippi. That means it's growing everywhere.

As much as I want to get out more I've decided to get out LESS. We have to stop the spread.

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