Posts Tagged ‘virus’

More Spring Rain

15 March 2020
willow catkins in folsom

It was with some exasperation that I looked out upon the morning scene this Saturday and found it raining, again.

It’s not that I don’t like rain or that we don’t need rain. But this was Saturday, the one day I allow myself to go out and enjoy the out-of-doors!

And so once again, as I did last week, I packed my shopping bags, umbrella, and a book of short stories to pass the time, into my backpack and walked, without my bicycle, to the train stop to go to Folsom.

I’m glad I brought my umbrella this time, as it was still raining pretty hard when I got to Folsom. But it was tapering off a bit, so taking a few pictures was quite possible. How about this little snail skating across the walkway? I don’t see this much in these parts. Animals like this have to spend most of their time in the shadows under plants that get watered frequently, or they will just shrivel up.

snail on sidewalk with flower petals

I found this snail on the walkway up to Winco. I had checked their website and there the company assured customers that they would stay open (so that we can eat!) while also doing everything they could to comply with government regulations regarding crowd situations.

Thus, it was not a total surprise when I found a line outside the store, and employees there to inform us that they were limiting the number of people in the store to 250, letting us in ten at a time as shoppers exited.

It didn’t take long.

Much less of an inconvenience, I would imagine, than allowing thousands to come down to DOCO for a Kings (basketball) game, just to be turned away as one of the players had tested positive for the latest virus, resulting in the need to postpone the game.

Virus

I have gotten used to the word in its now-popular usage as a cybersecurity term. I had never really studied it that much as a biological phenomenon.

Some of the articles I read about it were so obfuscated by the heavy use of terms only commonly used in the arcane world of molecular biology that I could not make myself get all the way through them.

Articles “dumbed down” for the general public tended to anthropomorphize virus, as they seem to act in ways that are distinctly intelligent.

This tendency to portray virus as living thinking creatures might not be all that misguided, but is similar to what we have done with computers, and intentionally with AI programs like “Siri” and “Alexa.”

From my point of view, the probability that virus have a higher-level intelligence behind their structure and behavior is close to 100%. Chances are they have been around since the early days of biology, and perhaps were even a “mistake” or “security breach” from that era – totally lost now in the dimly-recalled and long-gone past.

An interesting game that virus play with higher-level organisms is that they mutate fairly rapidly, enabling them to re-infect organisms that have already developed immunity to previous versions. The only way for organisms to keep up with this game is to somehow face the consequences of getting re-infected, and then through that experience building up new immunity to the new strains.

Our medical people have attempted to simulate this process using vaccines. However, this has created a vaccine industry that depends for its cash flow on the constant development and sale of new vaccines, leading to ethically questionable practices. I sometimes think that all medical activities should be required to go forward only on a not-for-profit basis, thus discouraging bad behavior at the expense of our lives and our health.

The obvious priority in playing this vaccine game is to be as physically healthy as possible. This seems to be part of the impetus behind the pushing of “keto,” as the biggest advocates of it seem to be students of nutrition and physical exercise.

However, my training has taught me that there are mental and spiritual aspects to body health that cannot be overlooked. The brightest among us balance all these factors and tend to be very successful. The rest of us just try to keep up, or else have given up and wait quietly for their time to come.

I recommend the most proactive approach that you can manage given your resources. There is a certain clarity that comes with taking one’s personal health seriously in all of its aspects that is really worth having. I think it has something to do with certainty about one’s own future.

Here is a final image from my Saturday visit to Folsom:

oak tree new growth