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I am Ram

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Everything posted by I am Ram

  1. It's not just school, maintaining a modern-day vet practice is very, very expensive. A lot of the equipment is similar to human medicine tech, and of course you need staff, a fairly large space, etc. I feel for them, but at the same time, I don't take my dog to the vet as much as the industry lobby tells me to. I know what veterinary care costs in other countries, and I'm simply not willing to pay hundreds of dollars every time my vet decides it's time for a routine this-and-that.
  2. I may or may not have a little Psaki crush. Not enough to expose my brain to MSNBC in the future, but I'm sad to see her go, and I wish her well. She did a good job.
  3. Story time, a decade ago, my wife and I commissioned an engagement ring from a local hippie artist she knew from work. She made it out of palladium because that was cheaper than gold and she liked working with it. It's also pretty chunky, so now we look like ballers although we were just basically too poor for gold. As for crypto... yawn. Every time the price crashes, crypto is dead. Every time the price surges, the 500k BTC is just around the corner. I don't even bother reading anything about it, but I've thrown some money at BTC and ETH for a couple of years. I was around for the surge in 2017 (?) and sold back then. Then started buying a bit here and there again. I avoid the bros, I don't need financial advice from a 2nd year CS major. I don't "believe" in the technology (although it's a cool idea), and I have no fantasies of waking up rich beyond my wildest dreams. If I make some money, yay. If it all crashes to zero, whatevs.
  4. We've been here a couple days now, and we absolutely love it! The sky alone is worth the trip after looking at grey PNW clouds all winter. We're up in Santa Fe now and woke up to a couple of inches of snow, which makes a beautiful high desert landscape even more gorgeous. ABQ was a bit eerie because it felt so empty (being cold, post-pandemic, spring break and all, I guess), but we had a great time there too. Up here in SF, I could just look at adobe stuff all day (if my family let me), but we've done a lot of the touristy stuff already, and it's all been worth it. The next couple of days will be nature time. This is my first time in any of the southwestern states other than CO and CA, and I'm thrilled. It's pretty much exactly how I imagined the American SW to be as a kid (growing up in Europe). Next time, I want to see central NM and the south. You live in a beautiful +++++ing state, New Mexicans!
  5. Damn, that's reasonably priced. I guess those menu prices might not be totally current, but I'll go there and put food into my mouth.
  6. This is the only bread recipe you'll ever need if you're not into baking bread. It's a German Bauernbrot, and it's easy enough to replace most of your crappy grocery store bread with should you so choose. It's not inherently healthy, but it has five ingredients, and you can experiment with adding seeds, using whole grains, etc. The bread this recipe makes is fairly small, but you can just double the ingredients for a larger loaf. 500 g (about 18 oz) all purpose flour 7 g (1/3 oz) dry yeast 300 ml (just over 10 oz) lukewarm water 10 g (just a little over 1.5 ts) salt 0.5 ts sugar (to get the yeast all sexed up) Throw stuff together. Knead using either: Your man hands Your fancy-ass Kitchenaid (which used to be so much better before they became a lifestyle product and were made in China) Your hand mixer Do this for about 8 minutes till you get a nice smooth dough. The dough should have absorbed all the water and flour and not be very sticky. Add small amounts of flour or water as needed. Don't worry if your dough doesn't turn out great, it'll still taste awesome. Put in a bowl, cover, throw into the fridge overnight. You COULD let the dough rest for just two hours at room temp and get a decent bread, but letting the yeast work overnight at cool temperature is key to great flavor. Fire up your oven to about 430. While your oven heats up, knead the dough one more time by hand and try to shape it into a nice round ball. Put in a proofing basket or any old bowl with a bit of flour or towel to prevent stickiness. Let your oven heat up for an hour. Any oven telling you it's reached temperature before that is lying to you. Put the bread in for about 45 minutes. Score with a lame or sharp knife. Your bread is ready when you knock it and it sounds hollow. If you have a thermometer, it should read just over 200. Enjoy! Get some nice butter, nice honey and be in heaven!
  7. The image makes it look like before/after scenes, but according to the article, the tanks (above) got stuck because their supply trucks (below) got destroyed.
  8. My family and I were very excited to finally travel for spring break again this year, so we looked at airfare and hotels in Hawai'i... Then we looked at airfare and hotels in Florida... And then we told our kids: We're going to New Mexico! We'll be in the ABQ and Santa Fe, and we have almost no plans. We'll do Meow Wolf, and of course we'll see Georgia o Keeffe's stomping grounds to look at flower vaginas. (Then we'll answer uncomfortable questions loudly asked in public by our kids.) That's about it for plans so far. What else is good? What/where to eat and drink? What to see? We're traveling with a 9-year-old and a 6-year-old, but my wife and I are pretty good at ignoring their whining, so museums, hikes, etc. are fair game. Thanks in advance for your advice, all! I've never been to New Mexico, and I'm super-super excited.
  9. vs. https://abcnews.go.com/US/dr-fauci-wear-goggles-eye-shields-prevent-spread/story?id=72059055
  10. What you are saying is those of us who can afford to do so take "common sense measures." Everybody else is +++++ed unfortunately. I had some junk hauled from my property the other day. The guys doing the work were huffing and puffing next to each other without adequate protection and then got into the small cabin of their truck together. Pretty sure they didn't choose to work that way. Also pretty sure they'd been fired on the spot if they had approached a customer the way they were working next to each other. I'm not entirely sure I understand how this is an issue that the government can't help solve about but individuals can. Overwhelming evidence from the US and from our "peer" countries suggests that's not true. Edit: I do agree that it's everybody's responsibility to protect themselves. But government needs to provide the appropriate policies and infrastructure so people can actually do so.
  11. Face shields may work great in certain situations, but if aerosol transmission is a major factor, they won't work without masks in many settings.
  12. And let's not assume these people can keep going forever. I'm sure many are at the brink of exhaustion now.
  13. There was an interesting article in the Atlantic last week that discussed a model which predicts that the percentage of infected people to achieve herd immunity is way lower than previously thought. I don't remember the details, but the basic idea is that people susceptible to COVID (for various reasons) got hit early and hard in some places. Those people are still the ones most likely to get sick, but they are immune now. And everybody else is less likely to get sick in the first place. So the bottom line is that you don't need to get the majority of people immune - just the majority of people who are likely to get sick (and sick again). Here's the article: https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2020/07/herd-immunity-coronavirus/614035/
  14. Promising indeed. And all the more reason to follow proper safety precautions now. Experts have told us from the start: It's not about preventing every single one infection; it's about buying ourselves time to come up with better management, treatments, and eventually a vaccine. Obviously, every hospitalization and every death suck, but they will seem even more painful if in a couple months we'll look back and know that almost all of them would have been easily preventable with the right course of treatments. It's like dying from cholera just before someone realizes "Hey, tons of fluids might be a really good idea!"
  15. And the 6 feet might not even matter if you can cut the air in a classroom after a few hours. Can you imagine the fear in the teachers and staff being forced to go to work like this? If schools open and things don't feel adequately safe, we'll see mass retirements, quitting, and strikes.
  16. Haven't they already tried that like a thousand times? What's different now?
  17. But what factors into average life expectancy is car deaths per capita, not absolute numbers. And per capita deaths are way, way down since their peak in the 70s. Definitely. I follow this German YouTuber, don't ask me why. He's this 23 year old kid, used to rate fast food, talk about what he bought at the grocery store, and a bunch of video game crap. Basically spent his life in a chair. About a year ago, he had a come to Jesus moment and realized his life was in the crapper. He decided to cut the fast food and get out of the house. Today's videos are a difference like night and day. He used to have these weird lack of focus tics, slapping his forehead, making weird noises - you could tell his brain wasn't working right. Today, he's a fairly normal computer nerd. And it's not like he runs 5 miles a day now. He's still 250 pounds or whatever, and he still spends a ton of time in his gamer chair and his car. But the difference the better nutrition and a bit of exercise make is staggering. By the way, this development isn't even a major theme of the channel. I'm not sure the guy even realizes just how much better he is than just a year ago.
  18. Absolutely. Which is also what we are seeing in countless Covid cases right now. It's easy to say, "Wear your masks, avoid indoor settings!" Well, if your healthcare depends on your shitty job, and your shitty boss happens not to "believe" in the coronavirus, then good luck with that. The total dependence one's job and employer is part of the quality of life problem I mentioned above. Should have included that.
  19. I'm not questioning that. What I'm saying is that neither gun deaths nor traffic accidents are what cuts off years of average life expectancy compared to other developed countries.
  20. Pretty sure the US could afford all its gun and traffic deaths (both at historic lows as far as I know) and still compare favorably if it got its lifestyle back on track. It's a sad fact that many Americans a piss poor quality of life when it comes to factors like time off, childcare, nutrition, and exercise. I'd wager that although the members of this board enjoy above average incomes and live in places with above average quality of life (especially Fort Collins, of course), there's a sizable number of members who never eat real cheese, never had a chicken that wasn't a water-soaked monstrosity, never take a vacation longer than a week, etc, etc. Small things, but if a hundred of them add up, things are bad. You can't be healthy like living the lifestyle many people live. You can keep going somehow, but you can't be healthy as an individual nor as a society. Which is sad because fixing these quality of life issues for most Americans would be well within our means.
  21. And yet until not long ago, American total life expectancy was very much in line with the rest of the world. So what happened during the last two decades? The country didn't get bigger. Traffic deaths are near a historic low (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Motor_vehicle_fatality_rate_in_U.S._by_year#/media/File:US_traffic_deaths_per_VMT,_VMT,_per_capita,_and_total_annual_deaths.png). Canada is an even bigger (and more diverse) country with a much better life expectancy. However, I agree that declining life expectancy is not the fault of the quality of the healthcare system (it is far too expensive though). Just like the police, schools, and some other institutions, healthcare in America is asked to do far too much and far too many things outside its core duties.
  22. Not a surprise, of course, but this is sad. I haven't seen the Euro side of my family in a year, and it's increasingly looking like I won't see them this year. I'm also worried about the WH's potential reactions. Please no wine tax...
  23. I predict we'll somehow muddle through this with a mix of local shutdowns, prevention measures such as mask requirements, and hopefully some advances in treating patients, but it's not going to be pretty. And the longer we just try to wish the virus away the less pretty it's going to get. Right now we can still point at a few peer countries that have higher per capita death rates than us, but that's not going to last long. France and the UK, for instance, have both basically contained the spread. They have a few hundred new cases a day. That's a rate where you can afford trying to normalize life. We have close to 30,000 new cases a day.
  24. If most of us get this, 2% will be millions of Americans dead. Plus millions more who may spend weeks in the hospital, suffer permanent lung damage, and have their finances devastated from this. And even those who are okay with the idea of hundreds of thousands to millions of elderly lives cut short should consider these two things: 1. Do you know how many families count on their elders for things like childcare? Do you know how many grandparents take care of their grandchildren because their parents aren't around for whatever reason? Do you know how many elderly still support their families' income? The virus does NOT just kill those elderly who are already on their way out anyway - we have plenty of evidence that's not the case. 2. Thankfully, most Americans aren't okay with sacrificing their elders. So forget the idea that the country will just shrug off the pandemic and somehow go back to normal just because their governors say it's okay to do so. People will stay home as much as they can, and that's going to cause MORE damage to the economy than a few more weeks of shutdown would have cost.
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