TGIF- Of Cheaters, Lockdowns and Mask

Thank Grog It’s Firday!

Although…Firday doesn’t feel a whole lot different than Mernday. So much for retirement.  All of my “casual clients” in my “semi-retirement” mode, have all been in a state of crazy PIVOT mode…along with all of my volunteer work, and more Zoom hours than any human should have to endure.  I have a zillion balls in the air…and they are all on fire.

I found the last bit of this update, horribly ironic.  There is nothing like a dialogue about cheating in baseball, when we are being cheated OUT of baseball!  One of the things I loved the most about Baseball, was the lack of overt cheating (spitballs and corked bats don’t count).  But, like so many other things…technology has sullied the game I once loved.

Of course the bit about the Isotopes was a thinly veiled reference to the horrendous Astros scandal.  It was funny…mostly… But, it made me think of so many other cheaters in the world. 
I don’t even have to get political…to state the obvious.  Politics these days is full of cheaters.  But, we have come to expect it.  But, dammitall…BASEBALL??? And no…I’m not talking about the decades of “Juicers” who ruined any legitimate quest for a Home Run record without a asterix next to it.

But, the obvious ones aren’t the head scratchers.  I mean, how does A-Rod get a pass…and a hot wife…and the ear of people who actually matter? And Pete Rose is still selling autographs in Vegas?  Oh. Wait. Maybe that’s why he’s still not in the Hall of Fame…BECAUSE he keeps gambling…without apology.  But, I digress.

The Astros…and their silly spying-trash-can-beating scheme, would be hilarious, if it didn’t help them win a World Series. And I’m not sure it is super funny in TSTO…but at least Buck ends up getting thwarted.

But, it’s all relative… Right?  I mean, I KNOW we are all going batshit crazy in lockdown mode. I even had my cataract surgery postponed, and had to buy some cheesy magnifying glasses from Amazon, so I could see the TV better. They don’t work.  What a surprise. Made in China. $12. But, they ARE hilarious!!

But, then…I got the word from Emma, our project manager for our work in Uganda, with a copy of the notice that ALL Ugandan citizens got last week. As in a complete national shut down.

Be honest…Westerners would “Lose their freakin’ heads” if they had to abide by these rules…and the military was wandering the streets…armed…enforcing the lock-downs.  So… the fact that I can still golf (but can’t see my ball) but, without food service or a drink cart…well…boo-freakin-hoo.  Right?

Rumor has it, they are going to want us to start wearing masks.  I have already been doing that. I had two (2) masks left over from construction work, when I was scraping off “Popcorn ceilings” during our kitchen remodel.   I gave one to my wife, who is still having to deliver food boxes to some of the families at her school.

I wear mine…if I go out in search of TP or ground turkey.

Although I have altered it a bit to make it look more friendly when I go out...wearing rubber gloves. It’s a weird world.  Might as well make others smile…right?

But, I am worried about all those who have to keep going to work in the “essential businesses.”  And yes…I am also concerned that liquor stores and gun and ammo stores have both been deemed “essential.”  I’m pretty sure I’ve seen that movie. Not sure I like the ending.

But, in the meantime…I decided to try a few DIY mask designs.  There are LOADS of them on the internet.  Just Google, “Make Your Own Mask” and then ignore anything that seems to be related to the movie “Eyes Wide Shut,” or the “Plushie Movement.”

In any case…my problem is that I have a Melon Head, as my wife describes it. It is large and “Full ‘O Brains,” but it is also harder to buy “All-fit” hats.  They don’t…and I am part of the “All.”

I measured…and couldn’t find a stencil big enough to measure my noggin.

And had to modify the template I found online…to fit my noggin…


So…I initially thought I’d just go “Mr. Robot” with a tightly drawn Hoodie.

But, in the end…I came up with a great design…using stuff you would find around any home.  Well…almost any home.


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48 responses to “TGIF- Of Cheaters, Lockdowns and Mask

  1. If everybody wore masks away from home, I would be able to safely go to the grocery store…. They really protect everybody else very well from us, since we can be merrily shedding virus into the air even with no symptoms. Current estimates are that half the people infected and therefore infectious have no symptoms and have no idea they are Typhoid Marys.

    And clouds of infectious droplets and aerosols can linger in the air quite a while after an unmasked infectious person has talked, coughed, or sneezed in the vicinity. Yippee.

    Protection of us from the unmasked is not as surefire since our eyes are exposed, but that’s more effective than previously thought.

    The web and YouTube are full of tutorials on how to make your own masks from cloth so you can wash it. I have charcoal masks because I’m so sensitive to everything (fragrances, car exhausts, smoke, pollen, mold…) but they aren’t washable and would be extremely expensive to use for protection against a virus. They cost several dollars each and would have to be tossed each time. So I might try to hunt down some fabric and find that needle and thread I know is here somewhere.

    A really good source of international updates from a quiet voice who goes old school (pen and paper in front of the camera) is Dr. John Campbell’s YouTube channel. The Dr. is for a doctorate in something relevant (nursing education, maybe, he’s done a lot of teaching). He is a retired U.K. emergency nurse. Which explains why he is so good at explaining things without lapsing into medical-speak. He has an interesting video on vitamin D against viruses and various home nursing tips in addition to the coronavirus updates.

    He is especially worried about many African countries and other places where many people have to work each day to buy food for that day. So even though lockdown is the best way to prevent out of control infection by a virus with a 2-4 day infection doubling time – they especially need help to eat. At least I can order online with a credit card.

    I think of it as being drafted into a war. Draftees get room and board without question. Our mission is to stay home for the benefit of everybody in the community, to slow down the $#%* virus enough so the hospitals don’t collapse, which for many people means no money coming in. We have to share that burden and keep the draftees fed.

  2. Cheating in Baseball (or any Sport) is a no win situation, but this definitely gets a 👍🏻 for the Writers commenting on that cleverly during this Mini Event (and FYI I feel the Houston Astros need to have their World win stricken the books!)👉🏻


    Cheating in Baseball has existed for as long as the game itself. Spiking opposing players, stealing signs, doctoring balls, corking bats, a team deciding to throw the 1919 Game (and getting paid off).

    Even if cheating is part of the game, does that still make it acceptable — as long as you don’t get caught? Not if you’re trying to teach proper sportsman like conduct to kids playing baseball! I feel you need to set a standard – and that standard should be intact especially during the Little League World Series — no you can’t lie about the ages of your team members (unless you feel teaching them “it’s ok to cheat just don’t get caught!” is appropriate)

    Steroids (Performance Enhancing Drugs)

    Ken Caminiti (R.I.P. 1963 – 2004) was one of the first baseball players to admit to using steroids. He admitted to using them during his MVP Season in 1996 for the San Diego Padres (and continued for several years until finishing his career with the Houston Astros / Atlanta Braves). He also said that he believed over 50 % of baseball players were using some type of performance enhancing drug when he was active.

    Whatever % , to me that’s one % too many, and every MLB Hall of Fame Member who used performance enhancing drugs should be removed (as well as have all of their record breaking achievements stricken from the lists!) You can’t have this going on while trying to teach kids proper sportsman like conduct (unless all you want to teach them is “hey it’s ok to use steroids!”)

    Gloves Masks Isolation

    So, with that out of the way, being a volunteer at Veterans Village gave me plenty of nitrate gloves + facemasks at home (handing some to the Mrs when she picks up an online order at the market – I’m the one who bravely goes inside for 🧼 and 🧻 and cat food / cat litter!) I still continue to volunteer there, only we get screened before entering (folks who are feeling ill with any symptoms need to stay home!) and now we have access to cloth masks.

    Google Duo has allowed us to securely keep in contact with many we are close to (tried Zoom once but found whomever is hosting group chat needs to secure it from the spam – or else you’re in for a surprise), but it’s not the same as physically going out. We’re adjusting, but I won’t be surprised if Marshall Law is declared to thwart the stupidest of activities occuring during this quarantine

    Let’s all stay safe, hopefully get to our medical appointments eventually (I have dental surgery on hold until this Covid-19 situation is more manageable), don’t let home quarantine get the better of you and your kids (we enjoyed watching most of the James Bond Films this week)😀👍🏻

  3. OK I see you say Uganda order is too strict for westerners?
    Probably Oregon is too liberal to see what the rest of the nation is forced to do? I never got upset with Patric’s posts, but this is too much.
    I really don’t see much difference here with Texas lock down and shelter in place order, maybe it’s not endorsed as much as in uganda, but that’s because Texans are more responsible. Westerners are already doing all of that, at least in my state, Patric. Get real.

    • Oregon was one of the FIRST to look down…and because of that, our numbers are super low…like California (especially compared to other populous states). The difference between here and Uganda, is the virtual Marshall Law…they are roughing up, humiliating, and shooting people who are breaking curfew in Uganda. So…no…not exactly Texas. And for thee love of God…Texas should have been locked down before those Spring Break Idiot went to Mexico. Sheesh. Talk about bad press from “the Hook ‘em Horns” crowd.

    • Unfortunately Uganda isn’t the only Nation with Strict Marshall Law governing the coronavirus pandemic (the Philippines is another example, I wouldn’t want to be in that situation – nor do I think anyone else, too).

      Sorry if Patric’s example triggered you …. I would hope that you could think about how some Countries are handling this Covid-19 situation better (vs those who are literally locking down households and controling who does , or doesn’t, get access to necessities).

      Meanwhile, all of the States (except for 6 ) have been cooperating with quarantine / stay home \ social distancing (those 6 are on par with Sweden’s lackluster efforts). I don’t enjoy being stuck at home (or going to work in what I call the ‘homemade hazmat suit’) but I do hope everyone stays safe and is thankful we’re not stuck indoors with armed troops in our Neighbourhoods. 👍🏻

      • If not enough people comply with lockdown rules, it will get to the law enforcement stage. Has already some places. No shooting, hopefully, but stiff fines and arrests (where the heck will they put them, though?).

        The more people violate the stay at home rules, the faster the virus will spread and the longer we all will be stuck at home, missing more and more funerals we aren’t allowed to go to and finding there is no room at the hospitals for us if we get sick or injured because they are overflowing with COVID patients.

        One fool here in Indiana decided to booze it up and crashed his pickup truck. He was charged with both DUI and criminal violation of the stay at home order. Turns out that boozing and crashing a vehicle while drunk somehow was not on the list of outdoor activities allowed by the governor. Who knew?

        • Unfortunately,
          Nevada has seen an increase in DUI /DWI ‘s (and it’s pure stupidity but some people handle home isolation better than others).

          We got our Angry Orchard Apple Cider
          We know how to use GrubHub / Lyft Pickup
          We hope this blows over soon

  4. Uganda has a point. There is no poing in wearing mask if you are not sick – the normal masks, cotton ones will not protect you, you need N95 and eyes protection. But if everyone has to wear the masks, it limits the virus transfer from the sick person – by his own mask. You know, before you start feeling sick, you have been already spreading the virus for one or two weeks, so you may already be sick and not know about it. If everyone was wearing mask, the growth of sickness would be slowed down significantly. So Uganda is right to limit all public gatherings, services, limit people meeting. If it takes 14 days for symptoms to appear, complete lockdown for a month could stop spreading. It would have some impact on economy, but so would half year of crisis and hundreds of thousand dead.

  5. “We’re from the Government, and we’re here to help”
    (runs screaming into the night)

  6. Forget about guns or liquor, your country has been far too slow in introducing social distancing. The UK wasn’t exactly quick of the mark themselves & look at the mess we are in now.
    Ironically China has shown how this pandemic can be controlled & are well on the way to producing a cure, which of course they will sell to the rest of the world.
    Finally a huge thank you to all the hospital staff putting their lives at risk on a daily basis.

    • My country reacted when there were less then 100 people tested positive – by closing the borders, limiting the poblic transportation, ban on meeting first more than 30 people, later less people, closing down the non-essential shops (just food shops, petrol stations and online services are open) and compulsory wearing of face masks in public. People still have to go to work, but you have to wear the masks at work. My company is closed to public, we work 3 days a week. And the growth of illness has been significantly slowed down. There are not enough masks to be purchased, so people started making their own – cotton ones, even from old clothes. There is saying – your mask protects me, my mask protects you. The biggest danger of the illness is not its mortality rate, but the fact that before you start feeling sick, you already spread the virus for one or two weeks (and some do not even start feeling sick while they have the virus in their body).

  7. Patric, I am also worried about those working in essential areas, actually I am really scared when I leave for work every day.

    I am nothing special like nurses and doctors are as I work for a supermarket stock control department which is pretty much one of the lowest paid jobs you can do.

    Over the past few weeks I have been insulted, sworn at and quite frankly been treated like something that people use toilet paper to wipe from their arses. All I am trying to do is get stuff in so there is actually something for them to buy.

    There have been so many instances of very angry people who are fighting over products, fighting over who is going the wrong way around the one way system, not keeping their distance or filling the trolly with too much.

    I find it totally exhausting every day and I am exposed to so many hundreds of people who seem to have a complete misunderstanding of things that are essential.

    I understand that some are going stir crazy at home, but urge people to seriously consider whether they need to visit a supermarket every day as they are used to just because they can.

    I am sorry to rant on, but I have done my piece now.

    Please everybody stay at home and please keep safe and also help others who have no choice the chance to stay safe!

    • YOU are something Special Jack! People still need food. Thank you for going to work and helping people. Despite the risks and the Idiots..

    • These are the times that can bring out the best in people. Unfortunately, they are times that can bring out the worst in people.

      If we all went on the notion that we don’t know the next guys story, it might help us get along better. So when you see someone with a bunch of toilet paper in their cart, assume that they are buying for people who are at risk. Maybe they have parents and inlaws to buy for, maybe they also have grandparents, or a brother or sister who is undergoing cancer treatment. The fact is, we just don’t know until we walk a mile (1.8 kilometers for the all but three countries in the world) in their shoes.

      Take care Jack, and realize that for every idiot out there, there are many more who can see the big picture.

    • You are truly on the “front lines,” there Jack. Nobody is really giving the store workers their due. People are sliding into versions of their worst self. Disappointing to say the least.

  8. Patric, for what it is worth, I think your article was on point. It is unfortunate that despite the rules about no politics on this site, this article and the comments display a very deep political divide. What we all need to remember is that this Covid19 is a pandemic in which very little is still known and false rumors are flying abundantly. As each country, state and local authorities are handling differently as well as each person, we as a people need to ensure we are following the guidelines set by the authorities and practice safe measures to keep ourselves, our families, and others safe.

  9. You are searching for Ground Turkey?
    I know there is a TP shortage, but y’all have a GP shortage? Plenty of domestic turkey products down here in California — the flightless version which pretty much spend their entire life on the ground.
    In my area, we also are sorta being overrun by the flying, non-ground turkey. Wild Turkey abound. Which, given the current ‘dire’ situation, an abundance of Wild Turkey is something to be appreciated.

    Sorry about your delayed surgery. I e had a few nonessential appointments delayed. Being very careful not to boo-boo and run to the ER. News reported a fisherman who ran a fish hook through his thumb. Happens, I know, but not god right now.

    Speaking of fisherman, on this Palm Friday…..

    The story goes of Jesus recruitment of the fishermen saying “l’ll make you fishers of men” — cute turn of phrase. But it works in English. Not enough of a linguist to appreciate how well it works in other languages.

    Stay healthy everyone.

  10. Ugandan poster restrictions would and should be used here in the UK to stop people treating this pandemic like a holiday, 685 people dead today with the virus and people in the park having picnics, what’s wrong with these idiots,
    Masks wareing according to the news today should only be worn if you have the virus, but if you want to buy one from Amazon at extortionate prices.
    Liquor stores/ off-licence closed here as well as pubs and restaurants.
    Guns and ammo stores we don’t have but should be open them in case if invasion of the zombie apocalypse.

    Nice post Patric, can you send me some guns, ammo and liquor lol haha 🔫🍺🍾

    • Despite what anyone thinks or says on this (ie I don’t care about your opinion on guns, and I’m not asking for your opinion on guns), the fact is: In America, we have a constitutional right to bear arms. Just like we have a constitutional right to a free press. Closing gun stores is just as much a violation of American rights as shutting down the press. That’s why gun stores are open and deemed essential. Also why when states tried to close them they were forced to reopen them.

      Liquor stores on the other hand…I guess they’re linking it loosely to the 21st Amendment. Or, because most states sell booze in grocery stores they’re saying we can’t close the grocery stores. In NJ you cannot buy liquor/beer/wine in the grocery store, you can only buy it at a liquor store. EXCEPT for Trader Joes and Costco, depending on the location in NJ those stores offer liquor. Well, Trader Joes offers beer/wine. So I think that’s why they’re keeping liquor stores open.

      • All possible. Of course…there is also the fact that both have HUGE lobbying efforts in Washington. But, hey…with enough of both, we will never be short of live entertainment.

        • The rights of Americans need protection. The media also has a lobby, as do religious organizations. Not everyone or everything is evil and out to get you. Sometimes it’s just about protecting the basic rights given to you by the constitution.

          • Uhm…who’s taking things too seriously now? LOL!

            To say that any right, has more weight than the “right to remain alive, and free from drunken idiots with guns” is silly. I’m pretty sure it is in the Amendments of the Amendments that got left out of the originals…because the Founding Fathers were celebrating too early.

            • MangoFusion01

              Some of the first right’s mentioned are the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. I think this is mentioned early is because they were deemed to be the most important. But that’s just my opinion.

              As for the right to bear arms, I am quite happy with my human arms!

              Ok, does the constitution define “arms”? A pointy popsicle stick could be defined as arms, you can make those yourself and since the grocery stores are still open, you can make your own.

            • Which freedoms are more essential? Our freedoms of assembly and religion got shut down for the common good. They are in the Constitution as well. So, I don’t really understand how people are complaining about losing their rights to liquor and guns when we have already lost our rights to assemble and religion.

              • In the case of religion, most churches acted proactively and closed church except for online. You still have a right to religion, just in a different way. It’s not as though they’re shutting down your internet connection to watch mass online. Nor are they shutting down the guy in OK who’s holding church services at a drive-in.

              • Uhm….and perhaps the most obvious answer…HE who is at the apex of every religion, is always available. The rest is just window dressing and ritual.

              • I thought Politics for sure..and to a point religion comments were frowned upon here Pat and Alissa! I’ve had my hand slapped before on these topics 🙂


                Social distancing and all that. I’m not touching you, or this comment with a TEN foot pole.

      • Ha ha, this wont get through moderation but love this one Alyssa ‘I don’t want to hear you opinions on guns, but am I’m gonna give you mine’. Isn’t free speech covered under your ‘Merican constitutional rights too? Bit hypocritical, particularly as you usually ‘ban’ anyone else’s political comments. Enjoy your dictatorship!

        • Well considering you can’t even spell my name right when it’s written in about a million places on this site, it makes sense that you can’t tell the difference between someone stating a fact and someone giving an opinion.
          Let me ‘splan for you since you apparently think us ‘mericans are stupid and evil…
          What I said was neither an opinion or political. They were facts. Someone said they can’t understand why the stores are open and I explained why. Without giving an opinion or making a political statement. Im sorry that in your mind you can’t tell the difference. But that’s on you, not me.
          You have no idea my political thoughts or opinions on the subject based on what I said. You’re making assumptions based on your preconceived notions about ‘mericans.

        • For the RECORD… I DID NOT approve this comment Alissa. I nuke this kind of brazen idiocy.

      • Many years ago when my wife had to travel..
        One location was Russellville, Arkansas
        A semi “dry” area.
        She had to pay an added fee at her motel which was her dues and as a member of the Private Club she was then able to purchase alcohol at the attached restaurant. Costco is a club. Not certain why Trader Joe’s is exempted.

        Couple of thoughts….

        Your right to swing your fist ends where my nose begins

        If you want to understand what someone is saying,
        First imagine that it is true
        Then imagine what it would be true of

        Finally, good video, better book….
        What you are now is where you were then
        (Boomers vs. millennials, easterners vs westerners, Yanks vs Europeans…..)

        We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen more and speak less, though I don’t know how to fit ten typing fingers into this pithy saying.

        Stay safe and healthy.
        Tracy, on Day 32 ~ 33 of self imposed isolation.
        — MAB waves —

    • Didn’t mean to provoke a debate on the guns laws or constitutional rights, am Scottish, it’s your rights, was just saying how it is here, you can’t get beer, pasta or a toilet roll, people here will be rioting soon for a tin if beans, it’s mad, panic buying or just pretending nothings happening and everything’s ok, downfall of so many at this rate.

      • I wasn’t debating it I was just stating why it was lol

        Apparently you can no longer state fact or rational answers without people thinking you’re being overtly political. What a time to be alive lol

    • Off licence still open in UK mind, government has classed them as ‘essential ‘. Lol, nothing typifies the UK more than this ruling that alcohol is ESSENTIAL to coping with a pandemic!

      • It could be that alchohol is essential to not creating a riot. At least that would be the case where I come from. And a riot would mean breaking all sorts of social distancing principles.

        • Well.. I can see that logic applied to the Cannabis stores. I’ve never seen a riot with stoned out hippies. However…drunken brawls? Waaaaaaay too many to count.

  11. Reading the info from Uganda, I’m surprised that the shutdown for most things is only 14 days (although I assume they’ll reevaluate then). The stay-at-home order in Massachusetts goes at least until May 4 (albeit without the evening curfew and armed soldiers policing it). And, if true, I like that the Ugandan government “will provide food for those affected,” in stark contrast to some things our own federal government has done recently to throw people off of food assistance programs. (Not saying I’d want to trade places, though!)

    I got one of the free mask-making kits from Joann Fabrics – they give you the materials to make five cotton masks to then donate to medical workers. After letting the bag (and its contents) de-virus for three days, I finally took a look inside last night…the instructions they provided are very unclear to me, so I’ll have to look for better ones on the internet. (They also ran out of sufficient elastic and said one could use ribbon, so I’ll have to see what I can scrounge up at home…)

    On the positive side, all of the extensive work I did to set my Classics Book Group up to meet virtually paid off with a very successful Zoom meeting, and my library’s “Stitchers” (knitting and crocheting) group is also planning to meet via Zoom on Saturday. I’m not as sure how that will go, since the meeting is usually a large-ish group of people having several smaller-group conversations simultaneously. If I were running it, I might play around with using Zoom breakout rooms, but I’m happy NOT to be running that one. I am debating hosting a virtual family Seder, but I’m not sure whether I have the time and energy to set that up….

    Fun times! (Not.)

  12. LOVE the sweatshirt rig!!! (But were you serious???)

  13. Love the photos. LMAO.
    😎 😷

  14. My problem with Pete Rose not in the Hall of Fame is that one of MLB official sponsor is Draftings which is pretty much is gambling.

    • You have to love the ambiguity there. Pete just can’t quite say, “I’m sorry.” It’s really weird. He gets close…and then does a “Bill Clinton.”
      “HEY I’m not the only one…and what about those dopers!!”

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