Friday, April 10, 2020


So I have been sheltering in place since March 5, when the Mayor of San Francisco announced that vulnerable people should do that. On March 7, I did a big grocery shopping at Mollie Stone's and got a ride with my groceries up the hill to my house in their van. Since then I have not gone further than I can walk from my house. I haven't been in a car or taxi or Lyft or bus.

But yesterday I took the bus downtown to the endodontist for a root canal. And I was HAPPY to do it. There's nothing like a giant pain in the middle of your face to make risking your life seem like a very reasonable thing to do! And I am so grateful to Dr. Koka and his assistant and his receptionist for being there for me.

Thank you, everyone who is still working out in the world! Thank you for risking your lives every day so that I can have my groceries delivered and ride the bus and have my root canal done. You are all heroes and you should all be PAID WELL for the risk you are taking to keep the world running!!!

Riding the bus was not a problem. So few people, I could easily keep six feet from everyone. Plus I was wearing a mask. This Washington Post article made me decide to do it.

Yes folks, it's..........

Think about it. The Surgeon General said we don't need to wear masks. The surgeon general who was appointed by Trump. At a time when there WERE no masks and the federal government had no intention of altering that situation by commanding the mass production of masks. Simple solution: Just tell people they don't need to wear masks! Mask crisis disappears! Except for all the people treating the virus, of course. In the countries that have done a good job of controlling the pandemic, everyone wears masks when they go out. According to the article, you don't need an N95 or whatever. Two layers of t-shirt material will offer protection. I urge you to consider doing this.

So I was able to take the bus downtown without touching any surface. Except for my Clipper Card, which I immediately wrapped in a kleenex. I got off at Market and Stockton.
It's very different to go to my little shopping street, 24th Street, which is mostly shut down, and to go downtown, to the center of the city, which is almost empty. Eerie.
Yes, there are people walking around. A few. They are almost exclusively those people who have nowhere else to be. And social distancing is not at the top of their list of priorities.
Please notice one of the men is holding a leash that controls another man. We are talking serious "I am my brother's keeper" here.

They were having a good time, the whole city to themselves, laughing, joking.
Another instance of a violation of the legal obligation to social distance! What were the people in this window thinking?!?

Doesn't it seem strange to see people crowded together like that? The other day, on my corner, a young woman shouted from across the street, asking if I had an extra poop bag. Dog owner talk. I shouted back yes and left the bag stuck in a little crack in the telephone pole. It felt like a normal, friendly interaction. NORMAL
Empty Macy's

The glamour and wealth seemed rather obscene to me for the first time.
These are the only two women I saw on the street.

And finally at 450 Sutter: The endodontist! It was freezing inside. They had a fan on, and maybe the air conditioner. It was cold and windy in that office, to reduce the possibility of virus transmission. I kept my coat on. Dr. Koka apologized for the cold. But I was all gratitude. This man was going to stop my pain.
The freezing fan above.

Dr. Koka as seen from below
Below is my friend Mary Wings's drawing to celebrate her successful visit to the dentist. I was so happy when I left -- especially since the novocaine hadn't worn off yet!
Heard an absolutely fabulous street drummer on the way to the bus. Gave him some money, of course. I hurried home, touched all kinds of surfaces. Didn't bother to put the kleenex back on my Clipper Card. By the time I got home, I was totally freaked out by having left my flat to go out into the virusy world. I tore off my clothes, threw them in the hamper, jumped in the shower, scrubbed myself down, and then took a nap. When I woke up, I was in free fall, plunging into despair and fear. Truly, those of us who stay home are so fortunate. It is so much easier for us to feel, and I think to be, safe. Then I got dressed to walk the pups and regained my equilibrium. I thought, "I'm going to take my tea and drink it on Kite Hill!" But then I realized I couldn't, with the mask on. Kite Hill was more crowded, but still doable.
P.S. Does anyone know how long you have to wait before a chocolate cupcake is free of the virus?
I know I said I would talk about virginity today, but truly, this is enough, isn't it? I'm sorry. Tomorrow, that is the FIRST thing I'll write about. Okay?
Thank you, dear Bloggelini, for putting up with me.

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