Link Love

There were 6 covid deaths in our county last week.  Most of them middle-aged, not in their 70s or older.  One person in their 30s.  Cases counts are firmly in the “orange” zone (positivity rates still “red” which suggests people aren’t getting tested).  Researchers are advertising a Tuskeegee style study in which they follow unvaccinated young people to see what happens to them.  I guess our area is a good place for that given the still high covid rates and the legislated inability to require masks or vaccines.  I don’t want to live here anymore.  I bought DC2 more child-sized masks in case there’s a run on them in August when everybody realizes the vaccine isn’t out yet for kids under 12 and yet they have to go to school in person.  I can only pray that my kid will keep hir mask for a month on in the face of peer pressure and the inability for schools to have a mask requirement.  Even better would be for vaccines to come early.  I signed DC2 up for a vaccine study in the city, but probably too late to actually be a part of it.  All I can really do is hope that people who say that kids getting covid isn’t a problem are right and the fact that we don’t have long-term information or have any idea what variant will be around come August/September when school starts and the college kids come back won’t be a problem.

Firey Millennials FIRE evolution

statistical packages across different platforms

I read sooo many novels with that completely unnecessary and out-of-place third act conflict.

Marketing an indie book series.  And the importance of a backlist.



8 Responses to “Link Love”

  1. Lisa Says:

    I hear you on the COVID frustrations. We went to a neighborhood 4th of July party/bike parade this morning and made the youngest wear a mask because they’re not vaccinated yet. Usually I’d wear a mask in solidarity, but it was so hot and outside and actually not that crowded. Our numbers are climbing, though, driven largely by younger people, and I want to keep the little one safe until they can get vaccinated. Like you, I’m REALLY hoping the vaccine is approved for kids before school starts up again.

    I read the FIRE link and found it interesting. Although I’m a bit intrigued by the FIRE idea, I don’t quite understand it. By which I mean that it doesn’t really speak to me. I think I’m just not the right audience. In my academic field, people tend to work as long as they possibly can – not because they need the money, but because they love the job. And my SO is a physician in a relatively low key specialty, where rather than retire, people tend to just cut back on working hours (they only work 4 days a week as a baseline). Although aspects of the FIRE philosophy (the FI part) are attractive to me and we save moderately aggressively for retirement, I would rather be financially secure and do what I want without retiring early. It is interesting to see more of a diversity of opinions being incorporated into the FIRE philosophy (disclaimer – I haven’t read into FIRE enough to make a critical analysis, this was just part of the point of the linked piece).

  2. Matthew D Healy Says:

    Here’s how I compare current infection rates between Counties, factoring in the fact that some places are testing far too few people, with (1) a simple formula and (2) citations to methodological sources:

    I myself currently use just a cloth mask indoors away from home because I feel the combination of low infections in my County right now (Johnson County, IA) plus two doses of Pfizer vaccine plus cloth mask suffice for now. If I were living in a place with more than 10 times as many current infections right now, I’d probably go back to double masking (KF94 under cloth). If I were in Branson, MO, absolutely I’d double mask AND also spend as little time indoor with unvaccinated folks as possible!

    My logic on masks and vaccines is that because the Delta variant reduces vaccine efficacy from 95% to between 80% and 90%, I want a bit more protection among people whom I don’t trust to be vaccinated. Fortunately, nearly all my friends and relatives ARE fully vaccinated so among them I feel safe unmasked. I don’t worry much about public restrooms: people don’t stay in those for very long and because of what they are they tend to be way better ventilated than most public indoor spaces! As best I can estimate, vaccine plus cloth mask gives me around 90% protection against Delta and double masking takes that to about 95%.

    This is the best place I know to explore scenarios for what might happen in Fall.

    Note that all the scenarios look very similar for Summer. The big divergence is in Fall. Depending on which assumptions are closest to reality, the Fall could be like a normal flu season for the US as a whole or much worse. But it’s not likely the US will have 200K more deaths now, because older age groups are highly vaccinated.

    However, there will be severe localized outbreaks and hospitals in those places may be under severe stress

    Keep monitoring data for your locality!

    • nicoleandmaggie Says:

      It’s gotten so much harder to monitor! The county isn’t sending the data to the media or tweeting updates anymore (stopped tweeting almost a year ago) so it is difficult to see trends—only a point in time M-F. The google data don’t quite match the county data. I would need to pay the local newspaper to see their reports.

      Do you mask at work? I went in last week and was the only masked person in the building. The college-level secretaries were kind of rude to me when I asked where IT’s offices had moved.

      • Matthew D Healy Says:

        DW and I both have been working entirely from home since before the pandemic so masking at work isn’t an issue for us. If we did work in person, we’d assess what the risk looked like there.

        A friend recently went to a Chicago Cubs game, where official policy was unvaccinated should mask. She said wryly, “either Cubbies fans have a VERY high vaccination rate, or some unvaccinated were not wearing masks!”

  3. rose Says:

    The U.S. seems to have many who want to help develop a mutation called the GOP Variant.
    I live in a high vaccination area but surrounded by areas that are less so. I MASK when around people I do not know … and avoid those situations too.

  4. SP Says:

    I am now having a lot of trouble also tracking COVID, but more because I don’t know how to interpret it anymore and translate to risk. The number of cases seems a little less relevant, and more the number of severe cases, hospitalizations, deaths, etc. Even with good vaccination rates, no one < 12 is vaccinated, so what does any metric really mean for risk to the < 12 themselves, and to the broader community (breakthrough infections, etc.)? And variants means we never seem to really know with any certainty the level of risk.

    I also read the FIRE link, and liked it. I have long questioned the value of very young adults jumping right into FIRE as a primary goal. But I also think the FIRE community have a good message of ensuring spending aligns with your values, and not tying yourself to a lifestyle that makes you more dependent on your job than you need to be. But this view is not really different than the Your Money, Your Life ideas (which have been around for a long time), and don't necessarily result in the FIRE as a conclusion.

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