RW245 - A Bubble of Me

This week, Dan and John talk about:

The show title refers to John's COVID bubble shrinking until he soon will be in a bubble with only himself.

Raw notes
The segments below are raw notes that have not been edited for language, structure, references, or readability. Please do not quote these texts directly without applying your own editing first! These notes were not planned to be released in this form, but time constraints have caused a shift in priorities and have delayed editing draft-quality versions to a later point.

Dan getting COVID, tests not showing results early enough (RW245)

Dan had the COVID, the Omicron. It was pretty bad! He had all his vaccinations and boosters and everything, but it doesn’t protect against Omicron, maybe they seem to say that it keeps you from having severe illness, and maybe it did that for him. He got it from his son who got it from one of the four out of six teachers at his middle school that were out with it because he hadn’t seen another living human being besides them in more than a week, he hadn’t done anything except laundry, and you don’t get it from laundry.

On Saturday night and he said: ”I feel dizzy!” - ”You have COVID!” - ”Do you think so?” - ”Obviously, yes! Of course you do!” On Sunday morning he was way more dizzy and just feeling run-down and bad, he definitely have COVID now, as does everyone else here. That day Dan’s daughter started to feel sick and got 100-something degree fever and aches and pains. Sunday evening Dan had a scratchy throat, which is not a sore throat, he never had a sore throat, and the main symptoms that he had was about 101 degree (38°C) fever for about two days, a mild cough, less than he might get from a cold, and one of the days he had really brutal sinus-pain and pressure and the whole time his sinuses were hurting.

The worst part was the fever and all the things that come along with a fever. They are not COVID-specific things, like body aches, chills, not being comfortable, being delirious, those things come with just having a fever from anything, you just feel horrible. Dan had that for a couple of days. He has done a lot of research about the immune system because it is fascinating how it works, and one of the things that he has read consistently goes against what everybody does and would tell him to do, which is the minute that they have any kind of fever, pain, or discomfort of any kind, they start taking Advil, Tylenol, whatever, and everything that Dan has read says that fevers are not something that you should be afraid of or you should avoid or that you should try to prevent because it is a very important part of the way that your body gets over things and heals. If it is possible you should just ride out the fever because it is helping your body fight whatever the thing is that it is fighting.

Dan had two or three days of just feeling like that and after that he had a really run-down feeling where by 3pm you are completely exhausted, you can’t do anything, and the whole time you can’t think straight, you are delirious, and he was watching YouTube and learned how to sharpen knives, he watched a movie called The Master which he highly recommends and he was definitely a character in the movie throughout certain points in his delirious state, he might have watched it two or three times for a solid day over and over. It is about Scientology.

Dan also watched Sully: Miracle on the Hudson with Tom Hanks, he was going in and out of consciousness a lot and being in that altered mind state that you are in when you have a fever and you are sick and you are just on a sofa for long periods of time, you can’t eat because everything is disgusting and you don’t want to even drink and you know you have to and it is a struggle. At one point a plane has to do a forced landing on the Hudson in New York and at one point the people are on the wing being rescued and Dan was feeling intense emotional about this, he was really being into this movie at this part and it merged with a dream where he was on the plane, it was very weird.

From start to finish it was a 7-day thing, and at the end of the 7th day, this Sunday night just a few days ago, he was saying to his son: ”This is the first time since this started where I actually am not just completely exhausted and feel like I am dying at 6pm!” Now he is pretty much back to normal. Having had this now, this is 100% an engineered virus. he is not saying it was released intentionally, but this is totally engineered. It has all the markings of an engineered virus and not a natural thing.

It is something you have to experience for yourself to really get it. There are markers in the DNA of the virus that suggest that the RmYN02 is not natural. The perfect way to explain it is: If Dan gave you a piece of cake to try, and you find it tastes good, and then he gave you another piece of cake and you would know there is something different about this because it has Stevia in it instead of sugar. You can taste this! It is still sweet, it is still cake, but there is a little something off.

It was really a horrible experience and Dan doesn’t recommend it. Both of his kids got over it in less than half the time that he did, though. The worst parts of it were the fever, the sinus pressure, the congestion, but he didn’t really have much of a cough or the runny nose thing. People say it is like mild cold symptoms, but it really wasn’t mild cold symptoms for Dan at all. On Monday when he was feeling sick, but it wasn’t full-blown yet he was trying to get tested, but you can’t get any tests in Austin. You want to get tested while you have it to know that if you have it, but all of the tests were a week or so out. How good does that do anybody? ”I think I have COVID today and on next Wednesday is when my test is!”

Dan had to pay $120 to go to the Tarrytown Pharmacy drive-through station over on Shoal Creek. You drive up, you call them, a nurse comes out in full hazmat gear, they give you the little swab, you put it in there, and it comes back in an hour. Dan had read a lot of things about this Omicron, saying that it doesn’t show up in your nostrils as quickly as the other variants did, in fact, it is more living in your throat, so the very forward-thinking doctors and people in medical will swap your throat as well, but they don’t let you do that at these testing centers.

Of course it comes back negative! Dan has been double-vaxed and boosted and he had a negative COVID test, although he knew he had COVID at that point, but he could have shown his negative test to people, he could have gone nightclubbing, and people would have been like: ”You look sick!” - ”But I tested negative!” That is messed up! Dan passed all the criteria to be out in public, mixing it up. On Tuesday a friend was generous enough to drive one of their home tests that they had in abundance, the one person in Austin who was smart enough to pre-buy them, and they gave him one of these tests and it was instantly positive, instantaneously!

Dan got it probably from his kids on Friday or Saturday when both of them had yet to have any symptoms or feel bad at all. All of the things that they said about asymptomatic spreading is very real, all the stuff that they said about tests not detecting it soon enough is true, and no wonder this thing is spreading the way it is because you can feel perfectly great and not be sick yet and spread the hell out of this thing and maybe kill people in the process.

John’s daughter still going to school, his sister getting COVID and his daughter’s mother going out to bars (RW245)

It has been almost two years that we have been dealing with this, and John has never felt closer to COVID or has felt like the system of detecting and preventing COVID was falling apart more than he does right now. Every week he gets an email from his daughter’s school saying: ”Alert! Someone in the school tested positive for COVID, but we are not canceling school because the CDC guidelines say that that person something something!” - ”The person who was there all last week tested positive for COVID on Sunday, but everybody is fine?”

Then John’s daughter’s mother went out with a friend who said everyone in her house had COVID, but she tested negative, so she must not have it then, and they went out for drinks. What is going on? What are you doing? A year and a half ago they didn’t open the door just to check the weather. If somebody was coming down the sidewalk you would go stand over in a puddle to let them pass, and she was going out to drinks in a bar with someone whose family has COVID?

Then John’s sister flew to Colorado, Hi-Haw Central, to celebrate her birthday in Steamboat Springs with the girl she went to High School with and she gets there and is texting him: ”No-one in Steamboat is wearing a mask!” - ”Cool, great! What did you think? It is Colorado! It is more Liberal than Idaho, but it is Colorado!” John is not going to slur the great state of Colorado on this show. She was up there, everybody was skiing and not wearing masks and hanging out in bars. Good luck! And then she wrote and said: ”I have Omicron and so does Heather and so do the rest!” - ”Well, swell! And let me guess: You are going to get on an airplane and fly back here!” - ”Well, yeah!” So she flew back to Seattle with Omicron and quarantined herself.

At that point John’s kid’s mother was quarantined against her will because she went out to a bar with a person whose family has Omicron and now she had to go sit in her comfortable chair and look at her phone by herself while John and his daughter were quarantined over at John’s house for five days, but she was going to school, and every day he was getting an email from them: ”Oh, darn! Another kid is out with Omicron, but it is fine, you can all come back. Don’t worry. The CDC something!”

Why does John feel now of all the times that everybody is just resigned to the fact that he is going to get Omicron? It feels like a giant universal thing, like: ”You know what? He was always going to get it, he is going to get it now!” There is no protecting yourself in every direction.

Nobody knows anything about COVID (RW245)

Dan asked his doctor if he is still contagious, and the reply was that the CDC’s latest thing says you quarantine for five days and then five days after that you wear a mask whenever you are out, but you don’t need to do the ten day thing anymore, and that is probably fine, but nobody knows if Dan is immune to COVID now. He might be immune to the Omicron strain, but nobody knows for how long. A few weeks, he would guess, but maybe not. Maybe it would be a few months, maybe he can never get it again, but he could certainly get another kind of COVID immediately, he could technically have both kinds.

Dan now believes that he is immune to Omicron for an extended period of time, he is going to cap it at three months, not like he is going to change his behavior at all, but by the time that he might be able to get reinfected by Omicron it will be long gone and it will be the next one that he will then not have any real immunity to. The biggest question is: Did the vaccines and the boosters have any effect on this? Or was this simply just it played out as if he had nothing at all? There is no way to know!

Everybody in John’s family thinking he probably had COVID already (RW245)

In John’s family there gradually evolved a consensus that we all had it already in the last two years, there have been 3-4 times when he had a scratchy throat and maybe it was pollen, maybe it was that he wasn’t sleeping well, there were a couple of days where he felt really bad over the course of two years, where he felt like he was about to get really sick and he definitely had COVID, but two days later it was gone completely. Maybe he was huffing glue!

But over time your mind gets working on it, and you think you probably had it one of those times, especially after you got vaccinated, a lot of people don’t even know that they had it, so probably you were one of those, but on the other hand, given John’s history with getting sick, he would get super-duper sick and he would be clinging to the edge. But within the family there was this: "Oh, we probably had it! How is it possible we didn’t have it?” - ”Well, it is really possible because we have avoided all human beings!” - ”Oh no, you probably got it from the contractor all the way back!” - ”The contractor is a 30-year old Mexican guy who is strong in the prime of his life, muscled and full of health and living a life where he is full of energy drinks and those can kill anything and he got sick as a dog. He was laid out for two weeks, this guy that could climb a pole with one hand, and you are telling me I got it?” - ”Oh yeah, probably!” John might have had COVID three times!

There are people who are totally asymptomatic or have very mild symptoms, but most of the people that Dan knows who have gotten coveted within the last month, they all have had their vaccinations and boosters, and they all very much knew that they were sick. You know when you have this! Maybe that was not true with the other ones, and maybe there are still plenty of people who are walking around not paying attention to it, but even the one person that Dan is friends with that had it and seemed to have a really mild case, they were still screwed up for 2-3 days where they were coughing and runny nose and feeling run down and tired and crappy.

Dan even knows someone who did the Joe Rogan protocols and ordered Ivermectin from a pharmacy in India and they were putting Colloidal silver in their nose and gargling with Peroxide and taking Ivomectin and they still knew very much that they were sick. You are going to know when you have it, maybe not know for the first couple of days, but you are going to know, especially because that is the only thing people are getting right now. If you feel sick, you have COVID! You just have it. Tuesday morning Dan was so dizzy and wrong, there is no way that you can just shrug that off and go to work like this. You know you are sick, he texted John and said that he was doing badly and he doesn’t ever do that otherwise.

John’s sister dropping her strict COVID protocol (RW245)

John doesn’t want to throw his sister under the bus, but of everyone in the family she was the strictest about COVID protocols in 2020, and that continued into 2021. She was the one that was like: ”Somebody went to the grocery store, so we can’t see mom for a week!”, the double mask, the hand washing, all the original stuff. She was the Taskmaster on them!

Somewhere around this past summer, after they were all vaccinated, but before the booster, she started to say: ”We are vaccinated now and we are probably all going to get it anyway and herd immunity…”, things that were a little bit less on the button. They had all been grateful to her because she was the one that kept them straight, those times when it was like: ”Maybe my daughter can go play with her friend!” - ”No, her friend went to YMCA camp! They can’t!”

But all of a sudden she started to say things that were like: ”I don’t know. I don’t know about that, really!” Last year they went to Alaska for her birthday and that was just the beginning of: ”Are we really getting on an airplane? Why are we doing this? We are going to Alaska for why? Talk about Hee-Haw! They are not even taking Ivermectin because they think that is part of the global conspiracy. For them cocaine fixes everything!

At some point she went to Colorado for her birthday and the whole state of Colorado is a super-spreader event, and she was going to the middle of it. Steamboat Springs is a hippie, rich-people town, but also in Colorado, which is the combination of the three worst things: You got hippies that believe that they can take vitamins and cure all problems, they have rich people who believe that rich people don’t get disease, and they have Cowboys and Colorado people who are just Trump. It is a perfect storm of people that are like: ”We can’t get sick! We live in Charmed Mountains!”

She got really sick and was really miserable, and they all felt bad for her, but also: ”What do you expect?” Of all of them she is a very social creature and a community builder. She wants all to have dinner together, she wants to see the baby, she wants to be in the mix, and somebody like John’s mom who happily could go two weeks and not see another person and wouldn’t notice or John who says: ”Well, we could have dinner together. Or the other option is not!”, but his sister is the one that gets them all: ”No, we are going to have family dinner on Sunday night!” - ”Oh, that was really nice. I am glad we did that!”

But the other side of it is that she has now been in quarantine for ten days and she is going crazy because that desire to be social isn’t just: ”Oh, I love throwing cocktail parties!”, but it is an extrovert’s deep motivation to be with others. She is now in this nebulous quarantine state because at a certain point along the way she started to say: ”I got COVID before I went to Colorado!” - ”What?” - ”Oh yeah, I felt bad when I got on the plane, so I already had it!”

”What are you talking about? You got it in Seattle? We were all hanging out with each other right up until you left. We took you to the airport, we saw you the night before and the night before that and we were all together in a bubble. What do you mean you got it before you went? What is this narrative?” - ”I was sick the whole time I was in Colorado, so by the time I came back I was probably over it!” - ”What? You had 103 degree (39,5°C) fever two days after you got back from Colorado!”

The narrative starts to change because COVID exists in their minds even more than it does in their lungs. Now she has been back for a week and they have been saying: ”You had a fever until 4 days ago, our mother is still 87, she didn’t lose 20 years somewhere along the line, we are still trying to protect her the same way we did in 2020. What has changed that now we are not? You washed your hands for two minutes a year and a half ago every time you touched a doorknob, and now you are better?”

She is now sending messages where you can hear resentment in her voice, like: ”Well, the CDC literature says that I didn’t need to quarantine 5 hours after I had my last symptom and you guys need to decide what you are comfortable with, but I don’t have to isolate anymore, given the CDC, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah!” There is an element of it where she is transferring her frustration to them as though they are personally excluding her for some reason that none of them are admitting to. It is becoming personal in the text messages!

All of a sudden John is the last of the old guard who says: ”If someone has COVID, let’s not hang out with them!” and all around him everybody is like: ”Well, they tested negative. The CDC says that if it has been three days you can lick doorknobs, you can go into a supermarket and lick the floor!” - ”Golly, I really don’t want to get COVID, still! I still don’t want to get it, not more or less than two years ago when I didn’t want to get it, but the same amount!”

Now John’s sister is putting pretty significant pressure on the family in a series of texts, like: ”Well, I took a test, but the test didn’t work, and the CDC literature says that I don’t have to test negative before I go back in public.” - ”Does the CDC literature really not say you have to test negative before you go back in public? Apparently it doesn’t!” All this parsing, this fine tooth combing of what the CDC says, an organization that a year and a half ago none of us would have said: ”I trust implicitly the advice of the CDC!”

The virus has morphed! It was originally obviously an engineered virus, released maybe accidentally, and then it morphed into a series of nanobots, and then it became Omicron and now it is a mental disease, a disease that is affecting the soul somehow. What might have been an engineered hysteria has now morphed into the nanobot of all these microaggressions, these tiny texts. John’s daughter’s friend’s mother said: ”Oh, my whole family has COVID, but I tested negative and the CDC says that I can go to a bar and party!” How much smaller can John make his bubble. It is going to end up being a bubble of him, and he already lives in a bubble!

Dan says that we know that the common cold is constantly changing, evolving, becoming something different, and nobody is surprised, especially if they have young kids in their house, that they get colds frequently. If you have a 6/7 year old kid in school and they are coming home, you are going to get their cold every month or two, you are just going to get it. Nobody says: ”I can’t believe that I got a cold twice!” Of course you get a cold because there are millions of versions of colds and other things out there. This COVID stuff is that now. There are different versions of it, and because the first version of COVID and then Delta were so deadly to people, everyone is probably correctly under the impression that COVID can kill you.

We will never really know now if what we have done before, vaccines, boosters, other things, are actually helping us or not, because everyone has been so traumatized by the news media and everything else to think that if you get COVID you are going to die, and there are people who get it and die. It is so confusing! If they tell us that we need more boosters and vaccinations and people have had them and then gotten the COVID, are they going to be more willing to say: ”Yeah, sure, I will get more vaccines because that is what saved me!” or are they going to say: ”The vaccines did nothing! I still got sick!”, and they are probably both wrong and both right. It is added to this confusion.

Dan knows a few people who did all the right things, did everything they are supposed to do, still got the Omicron, and are now like: ”Forget it, I am not getting another vaccine. It is not worth it. It doesn’t do anything!” - ”But what if that is what saved you? What if that is what kept you out of the hospital? What if you are alive because of that?” - ”Who knows?”

John doesn’t like to get sick, the quarantine having been a revelation (RW245)

John doesn’t like getting sick at all. He has a small nose relative to the rest of him, and when sick gets in that small nose it is awful and miserable, not that his colds are worse than other people’s colds, and he gets terrible, terrible colds, and he never shakes it. It is never a thing where he gets a little cold and two days later he shakes it, but every time he gets a little sniffle in the course of his life he knows that he is going to fight it for 4-5 days, then he is going to get it, and he is going to have it for five days and then it is going to turn into an upper respiratory infection and then he is going to have that for five days, and after 20 days he is going to limp out of his sweat-soaked bedclothes and claw his way back to the living.

Over the years, as John has gotten older, those colds have precipitated an anxiety reaction to them that he didn’t use to have, and now on top of all that there is late night panic and there is tear-my-hair-out level of panic around not being able to breathe. John can talk himself into a panic attack just by thinking about getting sick, and he doesn’t want it and for the last two years he hasn’t gotten sick and it has been the greatest gift.

He hasn’t had his usual spring 20 day cold, and his usual fall 20 day cold, and even better he hasn’t had to listen to people tell him what he should have done or should do to not get sick or to make his colds not as bad, people talk about vitamin C or exercise or positive mental attitudes or 1000 other cures for the common cold or the flu that they pepper him with as he lays there in bed saying: ”Please turn out the light and get the fuck out of my life!”

Omicron and COVID now have entered into a realm where they are just another one of the many diseases that we catch from one another, but this quarantine has been a revelation to him. He doesn’t have to go to Rock shows anymore, which he realized once he didn’t have to go to them that he didn’t really like, and hadn’t for years, he doesn’t have to go places and do things, he doesn’t have to appear anywhere, and that is great and he is fine with it.

John is not on the Internet either, it is a whole revolution in his mind, but more than anything he doesn’t have to lay in bed and struggle to breathe. He is not cool with: ”I am just going to go back and join life again and just assume that this is one of 1000 sicknesses I am going to get as a part of being a human!” because he doesn’t want either of those things, the sickness or the going back.

Going to an empty movie theater (RW245)

John got a call yesterday from a friend who was like: ”Hey, the giant Multiplex movie theater up at Northgate Mall…” They are redeveloping Northgate Mall or something, it is a total ghost land, and they are showing that James Bond movie in this 900 seat theater up there and every showing is empty, nobody is going, it is just an empty room. He was like: ”Do you want to go to the James Bond movie in an empty theater?” - ”I totally do want to do that!”

So this afternoon John is going to the cemetery to meet with the lady who runs the cemetery to talk about cemetery things, unrelated to COVID, just normal cemetery business, and then he is going to the movies at what continues to be a 900 seat theater that has sold two tickets, one for John and one for this other guy, and they are going to sit and watch this James Bond movie, a movie they have already seen, just for the fun of it. John didn’t have the heart to tell him that for the last year and a half nobody has been going to the movies and John has probably seen 6 movies in completely empty theaters, including Dune. He went and watched Dune in a theater where he was the only living soul.

As soon as he realized they were showing movies again, the first time he tentatively crept into the movie theater they didn’t have anybody working the ticket counter, you just bought your ticket from the popcorn person, and there was nobody anywhere and he walked into the theater, there was nobody, the lights went down, not a soul. This is the greatest! John has been going to movies the whole time and nobody is there and it has been great! John is doing that and that is going to suffice as his social experience for as long as he can go before somebody else makes him do a thing. It feels like a new way of living!

John almost going out to a restaurant with a friend who was flying through town (RW245)

A friend was flying through town, he was in Vancouver, he was connecting in Seattle before he flew to New York, and there was a fog event, one of those when your phone gives you an alert and buzzes and you wonder what the hell is going on. It did it the other day and it said: ”Fog event!”, a term John had never heard of. None of them are tugboat operators, so what is this? A fog event? Are you guys really that bored at wherever it is that you do these alerts? It gets foggy here. Seattle is a sea port in the North.

Apparently they shut a bunch of flights down at SeaTac. All these planes can fly themselves, the pilots are just there to eat crackers and to have somebody to blame if something goes wrong. You can fly in and out of fog since the 1960s. A 767 could fly into outer space. Who cares? Anyway, his flight got delayed because of a fog event and he wanted John to come out and get some good and John said: ”Great!”, but on his way out to the airport he realized: ”Wait a minute! What am I doing?”

His friend was on an airplane, there was COVID, and John was going to pick him up and put him in his car and take him to a restaurant and they are going to sit across the table from one another? What am I thinking? It had skipped his mind for a second. ”Oh, my friend is in from out of town. Let’s go get a streak!” John got there and said: ”I am not going to put you in my car, super-spreader!” and they ended up spending 2 hours walking around the airport together with their N-95 masks on.

There was nothing he wanted more than to go to 13 Coins and get a steak, but that is irresponsible. John’s friend was very understanding, but it was crazy that it only occurred to John on his way there, he should have said when his friend wrote him that ”Boy, that sounds like a great thing! Maybe we can do it some other year!” We are all exhausted and bored and it would be nice, kind of, to see other people, sort of. If Dan was coming through town John would make an exception because Dan has already had it and John probably had it three times because he got a stuffy nose for 6 hours in March of 2020.


Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License