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March 24, 2020


Peter Garrison

It’s difficult for me to wait. Maybes can drive me nuts. Yes or no is a better answer for my mental health. When will this Stay Home thing end? Relatively easy for me, but the economic hit is going to be hard for others for a long time...

In the meantime, how about this thought-experiment.

Let’s say the number of infections trend downward for 2 weeks. The authorities jointly declare a set “Personal Freedom/Responsibility Day to take place in another 10 days. Businesses are advised to be ready to open with the social distancing procedures they think appropriate as citizens are advised to social-distance and wear face coverings.

Personal Freedom/Responsibilty day is declared 10 days later and business slowly creaks back to life. If an outbreak of the virus begins to reappear, a 7 day SIP is requested as a civic duty.

In the meantime, during the PFR Day experiment, the citizens’ ability to shame, nag and hound people and businesses who shirk their civic duty should keep things in line as the experiment continues.

If after a month, the infection rate is low, then we consider the virus as we do any other flu.

OK- another thought experiment:

Now that we have the ability to detect and sorta track an epidemic/pandemic and see the deaths approaching and surrounding us, then, ethically, why would we not close down the nation for a month-long Winter-Flu Break every flu/cold season?

Shouldn’t every disease death count as much as one from Covid-19?

And, to take the thought-experiment further, why not enforce the prohibition of real killers such as alcohol and tobacco, and cars that can go faster than 20 mph.

To balance the thought experiment with societal values, remember the debate about the California water crises and the worries about how much water almond growers or cattle ranchers use? Never mentioned is the amount of water vineyards use.

OK- Have fun with these Thought-Experiments! Only serious responses recognized.


This is in today's Daily Journal

San Mateo County is developing an agreement with Stanford to use modeling to determine when the shelter-in-place order for coronavirus can end, County Manager Mike Callagy said.

“This really is a science that can be developed and relied upon,” Callagy said.


Only 17 new cases today (555 total). The number is quite low, but we are not yet to the point where one could say we are ready to get back to "normal" whatever that might end up being. I haven't been adding deaths to this thread--too morbid, but that number is really, really low.

Once we get some news on how much testing is really going on in the County and, even better, some sense of how many people have a fever and a cough and are just staying home because going into a hospital seems even more dangerous, then we can assess where we are regarding Pete's "Personal Freedom/Responsibility Day".


Today's count it 579, up only 21 from yesterday. The County's chart is off somehow showing a daily increase of twice that number. I'm using the exact figures they show in big font everyday.


Today's count of cases is really, really low. 5 new cases. That's the lowest since early March. If this keeps up, something is going to have to change regarding the shelter-in-place rules. I hope the County and the State are thinking about some hybrid rule--recall Dave Pine was asking this question more than a week ago.


Another very low increase in cases-- +5 today just like yesterday. Total is 589. The County has added another section to the dashboard showing how many people are hospitalized with COVID-19; right now it's 159. Each section of the dashboard is still not totally in sync with each other, but I believe the big "New Cases" entry is probably the most accurate.


Looks like the County has stopped updating the update page............. the update was on April 6th. Can't imagine why that is the case.

Update: I figured out the browser glitch. +32 Tuesday, +22 Wednesday, Total now 633 as of yesterday. Still quite good, so keep it up.


Today's update came later than usual - another LOW day, only +5 cases to 638.

I forgot to mention the various programs that the City is looking into--Michael Brownrigg and Donna Colson are leading the charge on how to help local businesses:

Burlingame officials blessed a package of programs worth an estimated nearly $1 million proposed to help suffering local businesses and residents recover from the hard times brought by COVID-19.

Launching a grant program targeting businesses, offering a gift card program to residents, paying merchant fees to business improvement districts and temporarily waiving downtown parking fees were among the initiatives considered by officials Monday, April 6.



12 new cases today up to a total of 652 since March 4th. The low numbers are causing people to ask if our high interactions with China due to Silicon Valley business interactions has given us a bit of herd immunity ahead of many places elsewhere in the country. Interesting theory.


The County numbers from last week appear to be shifting a bit retroactively, but that is probably to be expected. The changes are small. Right now the County is reporting 21 new cases over the weekend and a total of 701. The bar chart next to the 701 count actually shows 698 so again a tiny discrepancy.

You can see the shift since that is an increase of 49 cases (or 46 if you go by the bar chart) but only 21 came in the last two days.

There is also a new section of the page showing total tests given (6773) and the positive percentage (10.3%) so that is helpful to know.


14 new cases yesterday, but the total went up +20 to 721.

County Health officer Scott Morrow has this to add:

My best guess is that approximately 2-3% of the SMC population are currently infected or have recovered from the infection. That’s around 15-25,000 people and they are all over the county and in every community. I don’t believe this number is off by a factor of 10, but it could be off by a factor of 2 to 3. Without the SIP, it could have well been over 50-75,000 by now, and that would have overwhelmed our healthcare system. So if you want to get a sense of how many infected or recovered cases are around you, just multiply your city population by 2 or 3%. My best guess on the number of people who are capable of transmitting the virus now is just under 1%, or approximately 5-7,000 people.
The city website lists our 2017 population as 30,686. Let's round it up to 31,000 and take the higher 3% estimate from Morrow. That means we have about 930 people that live in town and are infected or recovered and about 310 who are infectious.


Another Excellent comment Joe.
How many Latin people cooking "Take Out" @ Broadway/Burlingame Ave?
Low wage Service Workers live in very crowded conditions...
It is not uncommon that 4-6 Adults live in a One Bedroom.
Anyway "Take Out" is Gambling with CV19.


Life is a gamble, sir.

8 new cases today. Yesterday's count went up by 2. The total is now 747. Only 390 tests have been given over the last two days and the positive rate is basically the same.


How did this happen everyone?
Is this what happened to the Dinosaurs?
Most likely, "The Dino's" were unable to Communicate and Plan..
Lucky for us "they" left us Oil.
Listening to "The Trump" Message seems like listening to Dinosaur's POV.

Happy Tax Day All.
Hillsider and I are looking forward to 4/20.

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