The Sixth Conversation Thread

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Khemehekis
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Re: The Sixth Conversation Thread

Post by Khemehekis »

Ouch.

I just read this, and am going to miss His Holiness. [:'(]

Euthanizing pets is something I could never bring myself to do. Not only would I feel guilt about it for the rest of my life, but I would keep picturing my pet saying, "But I thought you loved me! Why are you killing me?"

I don't have any pets right now who are more personally mine than the aquarium fish at my home, but if I had a pet like a dog, I would let it live out its natural life, and then when it could finally breathe no more, I would just say, "My dog died". It would feel as if I did all I could do for it.
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Re: The Sixth Conversation Thread

Post by sangi39 »

Khemehekis wrote:
29 Feb 2020 19:51
Ouch.

I just read this, and am going to miss His Holiness. [:'(]

Euthanizing pets is something I could never bring myself to do. Not only would I feel guilt about it for the rest of my life, but I would keep picturing my pet saying, "But I thought you loved me! Why are you killing me?"

I don't have any pets right now who are more personally mine than the aquarium fish at my home, but if I had a pet like a dog, I would let it live out its natural life, and then when it could finally breathe no more, I would just say, "My dog died". It would feel as if I did all I could do for it.
It had more or less gotten to that point with His Holiness. He hadn't really moved much for a couple of days, he hadn't really eaten at all, and could barely lift his head. Letting him live out the rest of his natural life at that point would have basically just been more of that, which isn't really living, and more just wasting away.
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KaiTheHomoSapien
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Re: The Sixth Conversation Thread

Post by KaiTheHomoSapien »

Any other students having their classes interrupted? My university has moved classes online for the time being. Some of us have been meeting up anyway...

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Dormouse559
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Re: The Sixth Conversation Thread

Post by Dormouse559 »

My alma mater has canceled on-campus events; not classes, though. It's encouraging, but not requiring, lecturers to transition their classes online.

I really like the patchwork approach. I remember the one online class I had, where I had to be physically on campus anyway because I had an in-person class right afterward. :roll:

ETA: Looks like they've decided to move all classes online now.

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Re: The Sixth Conversation Thread

Post by kiwikami »

My university is switching to entirely online classes for the next quarter. Spring break is next week. It's gonna be a tough quarter, since professors don't have a ton of time to prepare.
Edit: Substituted a string instrument for a French interjection.

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Xonen
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Re: The Sixth Conversation Thread

Post by Xonen »

Here in Finland, the government announced today that all events of more than 500 people should be canceled until the end of May; the university reacted by restricting everything to a maximum attendance of 50, and the student council is encouraging its sub-organizations to suspend all gatherings of more than, well, anyone.

As far as I can tell so far, it shouldn't affect my studies much, since I'm not really attending anything besides a thesis seminar of about ten people anymore... My social life, though, has been largely dependent on student organizations, so that's going to suffer if they do indeed shut down. I guess cabin fever beats COVID-19 if I really have to choose - especially since my lungs seem to have decided that this is also the perfect time to start developing asthma, so I'm apparently managing to enter a higher-risk group just in time for this thing to hit 🥳 – but still, I must say I'm at least somewhat unamused. [¬.¬]

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Re: The Sixth Conversation Thread

Post by shimobaatar »

My university's spring break is this coming week as well. After that, classes will have to meet online for two weeks. That's the official word, at least. Most of my professors think it's going to end up being even longer, maybe even for the rest of the semester. More generally, we've been advised against holding any gatherings of 100 people or more. I'm employed by an on-campus organization, and we're currently discussing how we want to proceed after the break, even though we have probably a dozen people at most.

I'm flying home tomorrow, and currently planning to return to campus after the break, but that might change, depending on how things are looking after this coming week. I don't think I'm particularly at-risk, thankfully, but I'm not 100% sure yet.

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Re: The Sixth Conversation Thread

Post by sangi39 »

One of my friends was due to move from Canada to Croatia within the next couple of weeks, with his wife (from Croatia) and their daughter. Croatia's government announced that they're issuing mandatory quarantine for any non-Croatian arrivals to the country from a country that has reported cases of Coronavirus (which includes Canada).

While his visa means he can stay in Canada, as long as he's in work (although I think his visa runs out at the end of next month), since everything was set up for them to move, they're now looking at becoming homeless because their landlord is looking to have the house sold by the end of this month when their tenancy ends. He's attempting to renegotiate with his landlord, see if they can stay in the house for another month, but there's a chance the quarantine procedure in Croatia could be in place for 12 months...
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Re: The Sixth Conversation Thread

Post by Salmoneus »

Why not just do the quarantine?

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sangi39
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Re: The Sixth Conversation Thread

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Salmoneus wrote:
13 Mar 2020 00:50
Why not just do the quarantine?
They had considered it, since it's just two weeks, but there's a few things about it that worry them. Their daughter is only four years old, so they're a bit worried that it would stress her out too much, they don't quite trust [insert authority's name here] to look after their two dogs and two cats for the two weeks, and they're not sure how much of their belongings they'd have access to (or whether they'd also be stored without getting damaged or lost). And they're also vegan, so they're not sure to what extent the Croatian authorities will take that into account since chances are it'll be them providing the food.

For the sake of two weeks, though, faced with the alternative being possible homelessness, I did say that maybe they should just through with it, but they're also fairly stubborn people, so trying to get through to them on that note proved rather difficult. I'd assumed as a minimum they would have looked into the specifics of the quarantine are, but either Croatian authorities are being vague about it or they've not been looking hard enough.
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Khemehekis
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Re: The Sixth Conversation Thread

Post by Khemehekis »

I have tickets for a Third Eye Blind concert that was supposed to be tomorrow. Today I learned that the concert has been postponed because the governor of California called a moratorium on big gatherings in the state.
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Dormouse559
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Re: The Sixth Conversation Thread

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So many live performances have been canceled. I have a lot of theater friends, and these past few weeks it's felt like every single one of them is doing a play somewhere; I've gone to like four since the beginning of February. But in just the last couple days, most of the ongoing shows have been called off, and several upcoming ones have been postponed if not canceled.

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Re: The Sixth Conversation Thread

Post by kiwikami »

My university hosts a linguistics conference every year that the second years in the PhD program have to run; last year was my time 'round, and it was stressful, but collapsing at home after it was over was a fantastic feeling, because hosting that monstrosity was a really good opportunity and a lot of worthwhile work and it felt like something major had been accomplished.

...The current second years just sent out an email saying that the conference this year was cancelled. I can't imagine how they must feel. Preparing for this thing is the bulk of the stress and effort and time spent in the fall and winter quarters. People lose sleep over it and pour their blood and sweat and tears into it, and are rewarded with a point of pride. It's kind of our department's rite of passage. And to get only a few months away only to have to call the entire thing off just before the spring... Hell, the psychological damage from this outbreak and the combination of isolation and quarantine and paranoia (and in some cases the loss of months of hard work), the threat of losing one's job or not being able to take sick days, the fear of being stuck overseas, all of that is going to end up being two thirds of the overall problem. I ran into a couple of the second years today, and they looked somewhere between miserable and numb, and all of this on top of the usual stress of knowing or being someone with underlying conditions, or in the older age brackets, or otherwise at high risk. This spring is going to be hellish.

I'm also really concerned about the toll this is going to take on infrastructure and the health care system. I'm healthy overall, but I know so many people living with chronic illnesses and relying on accessible medical care that might not be available in the coming weeks as hospitals get increasingly overcrowded and overworked. 2020 is really off to a great start here.

On a positive note, the Formosan clouded leopard was spotted in Taiwan after being believed to be extinct! So that's some good news.
Edit: Substituted a string instrument for a French interjection.

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Xonen
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Re: The Sixth Conversation Thread

Post by Xonen »

Dormouse559 wrote:
13 Mar 2020 05:46
So many live performances have been canceled. I have a lot of theater friends, and these past few weeks it's felt like every single one of them is doing a play somewhere; I've gone to like four since the beginning of February. But in just the last couple days, most of the ongoing shows have been called off, and several upcoming ones have been postponed if not canceled.
kiwikami wrote:
13 Mar 2020 08:38
...The current second years just sent out an email saying that the conference this year was cancelled. I can't imagine how they must feel. Preparing for this thing is the bulk of the stress and effort and time spent in the fall and winter quarters. People lose sleep over it and pour their blood and sweat and tears into it, and are rewarded with a point of pride. It's kind of our department's rite of passage. And to get only a few months away only to have to call the entire thing off just before the spring... Hell, the psychological damage from this outbreak and the combination of isolation and quarantine and paranoia (and in some cases the loss of months of hard work), the threat of losing one's job or not being able to take sick days, the fear of being stuck overseas, all of that is going to end up being two thirds of the overall problem. I ran into a couple of the second years today, and they looked somewhere between miserable and numb, and all of this on top of the usual stress of knowing or being someone with underlying conditions, or in the older age brackets, or otherwise at high risk. This spring is going to be hellish.
Similar things going on around here. The last couple of days have been a pretty much non-stop avalanche of reports of events being canceled, some mere days before they were supposed to take place. My own student organization was lucky enough that we had our big 70-year anniversary party a couple of weeks back; just the realization of how narrowly we escaped having to cancel it was enough to make some of our hearts in the organizing team skip a few beats. Being forced to sit at home with nothing to do because all the events you were planning on participating in got canceled is one thing, but it's exponentially worse if you were actually working on organizing them. And then of course there are the more professional circles, where I hear people are seriously starting to worry about losing their livelihoods and organizations going bankrupt because of lost ticket sales... Yeah, this sucks on quite a few levels besides the immediate risk to physical health.

On a positive note, the Formosan clouded leopard was spotted in Taiwan after being believed to be extinct! So that's some good news.
Well, at least that's a step up in the progression of species to come back from the dead, after SARS-CoV. Still, could the next one please be something cuddly and fuzzy and not armed with sharp protrusions it can use to rend human lungs into a bloody mess? [:S]

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Re: The Sixth Conversation Thread

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spring Q was cancelled at my college, so I'm gonna be epically sad over the next two weeks, and then six months afterwards
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Re: The Sixth Conversation Thread

Post by sangi39 »

A ton of bands have postponed tour dates the last few days as well. I was due to see Korpiklaani yesterday, but they've gone home to Finland, Evanescence has flown back to the US, as has Lamb of God. I'm not 100% sure. but I think Lacuna Coil are caught up in the quarantines back in Italy too.

I think part of this has come from festivals being postponed by organisers, and smaller venues wanting to not have larger crowds (I know a few bands were already announcing individual postponements as certain venues before just postponing entire tours). If you can't make it to half your gigs because of venues saying "maybe not for a bit", may as well turn round to the rest of them saying the same thing.

It sucks, as people might now be losing out in money for transport and accommodation they've already paid for (unless they decide to travel anyway), but oh well.
You can tell the same lie a thousand times,
But it never gets any more true,
So close your eyes once more and once more believe
That they all still believe in you.
Just one time.

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Re: The Sixth Conversation Thread

Post by Salmoneus »

It is indeed going to royally fuck over a whole lot of industries. Insurance will help in some cases, and government bailouts, but there's still going to be a lot of pain, particularly in more niche sectors that people don't think to bailout.

Sporting clubs and teams may be in for a lot of trouble, unless their professional organisations step in. Take football as the most obvious example: all games are cancelled, so no revenue, but players are still on weekly contracts even if they don't play. A lot of clubs are already deeply in debt and can't afford to just swallow that loss. There's apparently talk here of Sky (the broadcasters) demanding their money back - they've paid untold millions for the rights to show X number of games, and now the FA has unilaterally decided not to hold those games, but still wants to keep the money. The broadcasters are going to want a refund. But without the TV money, many of the smaller clubs can't afford to pay their players...

Similarly, I'm a long-term sort-of fan of Williams, the F1 team (sort-of because I don't watch F1 enough to be a real fan, and because true fans of Williams drowned themselves despairingly in alcohol years and years ago...). Last year they seemed to be teetering on the brink - not talking about bankruptcy (and selling off a huge asset so they weren't imminently going to go bust, but...), but clearly with absolutely zero money in reserve. Well, it looks like there'll be at most half a season this year, if any season at all - so will the sponsors demand their money back? If so, will they be able to keep employing hundreds of staff, doing nothing, with no money coming in?
[F1 happens to be in a kind of lucky position. Because there's a huge rule change for next year, most teams didn't spend much on this year's car, relatively speaking. Because boy, spending £100m on a car that was never driven because the season was cancelled would be seriously painful!]


I worry about classical musicians. Pop musicians probably have it easier - they'll be doing lots of youtube videos and streamed concerts from their living rooms and whatnot. Classical musicians absolutely rely on tickets at the door, and six months with no tickets to sell could hit very, very hard. American classical musicians make a lot of money, apparently, but elsewhere a lot of them are already really struggling (in terms of applicants-per-job, classical music is one of the most competitive careers, and wages often aren't great at all). Even worse, a lot of them can only get by with day jobs as music teachers (in a school or for private students), which is another career that social distancing will hit badly. I mean, famously you can't get rid of classical musicians, they'll still be doing the job even if they're starving and homeless, but it's going to seriously hurt...

--------

A big factor in many cases will be who makes the decisions and when. If the government bans you from doing your job, you may have a chance of compensation either from the government or from your insurer. But if you yourself decide not to do it, when the government isn't stopping you, you're probably on your own. A lot of sporting and music events are in trouble in this way: they're cancelling unilaterally (in the UK, not only are large gatherings still allowed, they're officially not even discouraged*), because they don't dare risk the legal liability, but because it's unilateral they're voiding any insurance policy they might have (and apparently they're all under-insured anyway, because most policies try to exclude disease outbreaks).


*our government's policy is: keep calm, and carry on. The idea is that we'll get everyone infected, and hope that we develop immunity, and only a few million people will die. This isn't a great policy. However, they do have a point about large gatherings: your chances of getting coronavirus in the fresh air in an open-air stadium are pretty low. The real danger points are pubs, bars, trains, buses, houses, etc - small, indoor spaces with still and humid air - not large outdoor gatherings.

Khemehekis
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Re: The Sixth Conversation Thread

Post by Khemehekis »

https://spellingbee.com/updates

Glad to hear that the National Spelling Bee has still not been called off due to coronavirus . . .
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Re: The Sixth Conversation Thread

Post by Salmoneus »

I don't understand some of the stockpiling.

OK, so there's no pasta, and now the panic buying has moved on to rice. Fair enough, although it's amusing to me that the traditional staple food for generations, potatoes, is (other than in chip form) still plentiful. Evidently we're a nation of pasta-eaters now, with the occassional curry.

And I guess stockpiling UHT milk makes sense in theory, although personally I think civilisation would have to entirely collapse, down to the sticks and stones level, before I'd start putting that on my cereal.

But why the hell is most of the fresh chicken and are all of the fresh whole chickens gone? People aren't going to be freezing whole chickens, are they!? And fresh milk! In what circumstance could coronavirus result in an increased demand for fresh milk!?

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Re: The Sixth Conversation Thread

Post by gestaltist »

Salmoneus wrote:
16 Mar 2020 13:54
I don't understand some of the stockpiling.
Yeah, it's bizarre, isn't it.
And I guess stockpiling UHT milk makes sense in theory, although personally I think civilisation would have to entirely collapse, down to the sticks and stones level, before I'd start putting that on my cereal.
UHT milk is the best for steaming if you drink coffee though. (Not that I'm defending the stockpilers, of course.)
But why the hell is most of the fresh chicken and are all of the fresh whole chickens gone? People aren't going to be freezing whole chickens, are they!? And fresh milk! In what circumstance could coronavirus result in an increased demand for fresh milk!?
It's the same in Poland. All the meat is gone. And I know for a fact most people don't even have freezers big enough for all that stuff. It's like going vegetarian for a week is lethal or something. People are weird.

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