Improbable Island Message of the Day (MoTD)
Covid update, 15-year-anniversary postponement
Hey folks, please see the previous MotD
for context on this one.
Seen it? Read it? Cool, my daughter still has covid, and my immunocompromised spouse and I still don't. The nurse on the phone told us hey, you're gonna get it, it's a matter of if
- I don't think she knew how much duct tape and filter material and stupendously high voltage
was in my house.
We've had the thermostat set to 15-16c all winter (folk round here in the USA typically set it WAY higher), so we've saved a bunch of money on gas, which we're now spending as we crack the windows for better ventilation. We're wearing bathrobes over our clothes so we're still toasty.
Furnace fan is set to run even when the furnace itself isn't on, cycling air through the furnace filter, which is a high-voltage electrostatic job that was all the rage for about five minutes in the early 2000's before people realised they were a pain in the arse to run through the dishwasher every month. Ceiling fans are set to reverse, pushing air against the ceiling and down the walls to the intakes where viral particles can be sucked in and exploded in our furnace's kilovolt trap (this also pushes hot air from the ceiling down to where we're at, which means less running the furnace).
We made a Corsi-Rosenthal box
out of four MERV-13 furnace filters duct taped together into a cube with a box fan on top. A duct tape shroud ensures air has to pass the hard way through the filters, rather than being sucked back through the edges of the fan. These filters are electrostatically charged so, again, an extra electron (hopefully!) compromises the cell wall in a similar way to contact with copper. And we're all wearing N95's (electrostatic, again). If I feel extra paranoid then I run my CRTs downstairs too (arcades have bizarrely clean air and filthy surfaces because the presence of so many tens-of-kilovolt sources charge the crap floating in the air and make it electrically "sticky" - if you open up any tube TV (don't, it'll kill you) you'll find the area around the anode cap coated in a millimetre of jet-black gunge. Wipe it off and run the game, and it's back again next month).
So far, all this is working. Daughter's exhaling through material that effectively kills the virus, anything that gets past doesn't live very long in this inhospitable environment we've made, and then there's own N95 masks to get past. For a viron to get into me or Emily it's gotta go through two N95's and a gauntlet of traps designed to kill it on an industrial scale. It's still all down to luck in the end, but so far - knock on wood - we've had luck in abundance.
My six-year-old daughter is being incredibly brave, pragmatic and grown-up about this whole thing. Her idea to limit hugs, her idea to all mask inside, her idea to ensure her parents don't get sick so we can better take care of her. She's showing little in the way of symptoms. Honestly she's probably handling this the best out of any of us.
Trying to write code for the Island isn't going so well right now; my head is so full of voltage and filters and worrying about stopping my spouse catching it that even getting simple stuff written up feels way harder than it has been in a long time.
I still plan on converting us over to the new chat system in early February, but doing Something Big for our 15-year anniversary will have to be pushed back a bit.
However, if you're missing any Monthly Mementos, might want to get some tenners saved up, 'cause we're gonna do the ten-year-anniversary MM Catch-Up Memento again. Yay, some good news! Use February's Monthly Memento to turn it into a Monthly Memento that you don't
yet have. We only do this for very very special occasions so it'll be five years minimum before we do it again.
Apologies for the delay in programming, and fingers crossed we'll be back to our regularly-scheduled silliness pretty soon.