Covid 3/12: New CDC Guidelines Available

I have a family member in the "wait and see" group. Why? I think: their main source of truth about the world comes from friends and family; they are generally skeptical of the medical establishment and authorities; and they won't really believe the vaccine is OK until many people they know have had it and nothing bad has happened, and/or people they trust tell them it's fine.

I told them I'm getting it as soon as I can, and I'm happy to be their guinea pig. I think it may help -- once I'm actually able to get a vaccine, that is.

Takeaways from one year of lockdown

This post really bothered me. I think perhaps the best way to sum it up is this old post of Kelsey's:

Also... just because you're dealing with a lot of fear, exhaustion, and trauma, and someone else isn't, doesn't mean you can trust them enough to outsource your decision-making process to them.

Also... it seems really unreasonable to say "if you can't handle 10 hours of grueling negotiations about what COVID precautions to take, you're weak and I need to cut you out of my life and/or take away decisionmaking power from you during times of stress." I would guess that, uhh, most people are weak by that definition.

Weighted Voting Delenda Est

It seems you think that people weighting how much to believe something based on whether the author is a Big Name is a bad thing. I get that. But I don't understand why you think weighted voting in particular makes this problem worse?

Takeaways from one year of lockdown

Also, I specifically want to say: Thank you for writing this post, even though it's very vulnerable and suggests that both you and your housemates were wrong about a really important thing. Please accept this gift of hedons and social status in exchange.

This is an important conversation for all of us to have.

Takeaways from one year of lockdown

Thanks for posting this. A lot of relatable feels and useful takeaways here.

(Reposting some of this from a lower-level comment)

From this post and my own experience, I'm getting the sense that living in a large group house was actually a pretty big detriment for many folks during COVID. You'd think it would be a good thing, because you can get your social bar filled just socializing with each other. And maybe that's true. But it increases the amount of negotiation about risks literally exponentially, which makes it much easier to lapse into a default of "nothing is allowed and no one does anything." Even though that's actually very costly.

It was much easier for me and my spouse to handle negotiation about e.g. "I want to go on bike rides because my sanity is at critical levels," because that was basically just one negotiation we had to have, instead of having 8 similarly-sized negotiations for each risky thing each person wanted to do and every objection brought up by every other person.

Also, we're married and have been together for almost 10 years, so we've had a lot more practice at this kind of thing with the two of us. I also enjoyed your earlier post about how being in a group house together doesn't mean you're ready to be, basically, married to all the people you live with, meaning you aren't ready to have these huge life-changing negotiations about collective decisions that you need to make together. Whereas in marriage that sort of thing is par for the course.

Takeaways from one year of lockdown

We were like this for about a month, then my sanity dropped to critical levels, forcing us to have a conversation about what we were ok with in terms of like, going outside. This resulted in me going on bike rides very frequently all summer, which helped A LOT.

Then in late summer, we had another "figure out what probabilities we are OK with" session and decided that we were going to categorically allow hanging out masked and outside, because the sanity/risk tradeoff seemed very good.

(Then we moved to DC and a whole lot of things happened that we would otherwise not have been OK with risk-wise, but were necessary for moving, which we felt was very beneficial overall.)

At this point we're still at "don't go indoors at a place with other people" (we grocery shop only via delivery/pickup), "categorically allow masked outdoor hangouts." Also, we will go indoors with a P100/N95/KN95 if it's a rare and necessary event such as medical treatment.

Feels to me from reading the post that A) Having these conversations was MUCH more difficult for OP, because she lives in a house with many other people, whereas Roger and I mostly had these conversations with just the two of us and to a lesser extent our two roommates who mostly just cooperated, B) We actually had much fewer of these conversations early on? We tried to keep it to just what we needed to make a couple very specific decisions ("is it OK for me to go on bike rides"), which I guess was also easier because there were fewer people and so fewer variables that needed to be tracked.

I guess a takeaway I have here is that it seems like 2020 was a good year to live with exactly one partner who you are very close with. Enough other-human for sanity, not so much other-human to increase the negotiation burden drastically. Seems like the difficulty of allowing people to do more things increases exponentially the more people you live with, which makes it hard for things not to lapse into "by default no one does anything even slightly risky despite the massive sanity damage."

How do you optimize productivity with respect to your menstrual cycle?
Answer by maiaFeb 09, 202116

I think your symptoms are substantially worse than average. I've only spoken to or heard of one other person with symptoms that bad -- Julia Wise, actually, who has written about it on her blog.

Mine are also probably worse than average, but not as bad as you describe. I'm usually unable to work or do much other than read or some other low-key activity because of pain, for about half a day to a full day at a time. I've never experienced vomiting due to pain.

I got an IUD ~7 years ago that basically made the problem go away completely. I've had a couple instances of extremely severe pain with the IUD that were so bad I went to the ER, but since it mostly deleted my menstrual cycle and there were only a few bad days in many years, I feel it was a good deal on net.

I would +1 all the commenters here saying you should investigate more birth control options that could mitigate the severity -- and probably try to find better doctors, if you can. I think it's a common experience for period pain to be dismissed as unimportant or not worth spending effort to fix, but that's utter bullshit.

I've gotten a lot of mental mileage out of thinking of it as "This is a minor physical disability that I have," and try to think how I would want to work around it if it were a Real DisabilityTM. For example, I used to feel guilt about taking time off work because I was in so much pain that I couldn't concentrate, because "periods are normal, if I can't work during this normal thing, then that means I'm a bad employee." Instead, I changed my thinking around it to be more like "This is a disability I have, and so my employer can accommodate it. If it's a problem for them that I have to take off half a day here and there, we can discuss it and negotiate it, but I'm not actually able to work right now, so there's no point staying here and pretending."

Covid 1/28: Muddling Through

Re: syringes:

President Biden highlighted the urgent need to produce more of the specialty syringes — called low dead space syringes, because they are more efficient — in his pandemic response plan unveiled this week. His administration said it plans to use the Defense Production Act to procure more of the specialty syringes.

The Biden administration and Pfizer finalized a deal Friday that will allow the government to track which shipments are accompanied by low dead space syringes and which are not, according to an individual close to the negotiations who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss the details.

Vials accompanied by regular syringes will be counted as five doses against Pfizer’s contract for 200 million shots, and those accompanied by special syringes will count as six shots toward contract fulfillment.

Appendices to cryonics signup sequence

Mostly! Do you plan to do any posts on the other funding options, e.g. a trust? I generally prefer to pay for things as one-time expenses rather than recurring expenses due to my financial situation, and paying a large amount all at once is not an obstacle. I'm mainly concerned with total lifetime cost.

(edit to add) If that's not something you've looked into much since it's not relevant to many people, I'd also be interested in any sources or other folks you could point to about this.

Appendices to cryonics signup sequence

As far as I can calculate, this option is never cheaper than using life insurance, so you should only do it if you are uninsurable (e.g. if you have already been diagnosed with a terminal illness) or if you're in a huge hurry (e.g. you have less than six months left to live)...

Would you mind showing your work on this?

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