log: first shot done

벌레 일지 WORMDATE: L4: 1,859 – 263,374: 3 – 2,330: 60.1 %-36 %

Monday was apparently our biggest vaccination day yet. It’s also when I received mine.

Hardest part was the stairs and the stairs were easy.

The process was pretty easy. I just showed up for my appointment, ended up on the wrong floor, found the right floor, filled out a form in English, brief conversation with a doctor, then got my injection. Waited the mandatory 15 minutes and left. Simple and painless.

It’s hard to believe what a big fuss people make about it.

As far as side-effects go, I was a bit achy and tired for the rest of the day but, honestly, that might have just been from the previous night’s work-out. It felt like that sort of soreness. It might have been only that. Either way, I took it easy.

I ended up getting the Pfizer shot and my next appointment is on Oct. 19.

I imagine that it will be a pretty different sort of world here by then. I figure I’m somewhere towards the back of the line so by the time I get my second shot, hopefully, by then we’ll be in a position where restrictions and whatnot will be loosened. That seems to be where the conversation is currently headed. As it stands, our Virus Hunter is saying that we need to get to 90% of the elderly vaccinated and 80% of the general population before we have a real change in strategies. Every shot gets us closer. Before that, it’s all a little premature.

“Living With COVID” is a tempting slogan and it’s probably how things are going to go, but slogans are one thing and figuring out what they actually mean is quite another. Off the top of my head, I think “Living With COVID” will probably mean a focus on different numbers –a transition away from daily case counts to hospitalizations and fatalities– but, from the beginning, that has pretty much been Korea’s focus anyway. The top priorities have been stop people from dying, keep the medical system from being overwhelmed and collapsing, and try to keep society and the schools functioning. Just, for a long time and still some time to come, the best way to do that has been by preventing cases in the first place.

Vaccinations will, hopefully, significantly alter that calculation and the approach will change accordingly. There’s some fogginess though. Variants etc. Calculating the numbers needed for herd immunity from R0 numbers is no picnic either, as I’m learning in my class. There’s a lot of variables and things can change rapidly. COVID still has the wheel!

All in all, I think the important thing is, pretty much as it has been from the beginning, to not get too hung up on hope. If we’ve seen anything –and, really, we’ve seen a lot– it’s the unacceptably high cost in lives of rushing to the next step before we’re ready. In almost every case where it’s been tried, acting quickly and according to the best available understanding of the data, has worked pretty fucking well. Crossing fingers, saying “good enough” just because one hopes that’s true and would very much like it to be true? Not so much. Or changing approaches because some bunch of rich shitheads make a buck off a lie and a pile of corpses? Even worse. So, for now, stay the course.

I mean, I’d like all this talk of transition to be true too and very much hope it is. Like, this isn’t the sort of thing I enjoy seeing.

It’s fucked up. I want people to return. I like crowds.

And, two years here and I’m yet to even dip my toes in the sea. A pretty minor complaint but still . . .

I just see little sense in trying some sort of map leap, tripping, and landing face first ten meters before the a marathon finishing line. I mean, not to stretch the sports metaphor thing too far or mix it too much but one does not slide into first base. It sure looks cool and morons think it shows hustle. Bit sliding into first base just slows you down. You run through the fucking bag! And first base is where we’re trying to get to. That’s all. On base.

If you ask me, the best way to respect the efforts everyone has put in so far is to make sure we do this transitional shit right. No rushing. Nothing stupid. We just have to get it right, and figure it out. It’s all going to be a little different though. Better, one hopes. I have doubts.

But, at any rate, I’ve got my first shot, am lined up for my second. And even if I don’t have the time or wherewithal to post about it, feel fairly comfortable thinking about what might come next –good cases and bad– and how that’s all going to look. So, pretty good news.

I also would like fall to get here. Between the heat, pandemic, and evolutionary biology, I’m starting to come a little loose at the seams.

It ain’t pretty.

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