Day 250: Rite of Winter

Today is the 250th day of The First Ohio Shutdown — two hundred and fifty days of “15 days to flatten the curve.”

No doubt about it, my friends — we’ve been had.

Deb and I are fine. We winterized Ernie today, as advertised, but we did it in a different order than we’d planned. Reading the manual this morning I learned that we should empty the holding tanks first, not last. Since there’s a dump station at a small truck stop ten miles away, this side of Lancaster, we saddled up and drove down there.

Turns out it’s pretty much a full-service operation for our RVing needs — diesel, potable water, bulk propane and a dump station. We’ve driven by it hundreds of times over the years and never knew. First we topped off with fuel, putting 16 gallons into the 100-gallon tank, then circled around to dump the nasty stuff.

Despite being our inaugural dump with Ernie, it was a drama-free exercise. And, I’m pleased to say, so was backing the bus up the Second Chance Ranch driveway.

After taking a brief break, we dove into the plumbing. Like the Bumper Bunker a couple of months ago, it was a simple (albeit time-consuming) matter of opening the low-point drains, connecting an air compressor, blowing 30psi through the city-water inlet, and finally opening each faucet to finish purging the lines. We also poured a total of two gallons of pink antifreeze into the drains and toilets.

Ernie is equipped with one, shall we say, extravagant appliance — a washer-dryer combo in the main bath. We gave that a dose of antifreeze, too, ran a spin cycle and unhooked it.

Done.

And now the big bus sits, put right for the cold-weather months, until we’re ready to roll in the Spring. We have plenty of work to do between now and then. Stay tuned.

There are a couple of things gnawing at me this evening. The first is a Johns Hopkins study released last Sunday — a critical analysis revealing that coronavirus has generated virtually no increase in total U.S. deaths this year. What’s more, the sum of decreases in other causes of death almost exactly equals total deaths attributed to coronavirus.

Two days after the study was published, it was deleted.

Johns Hopkins issued a brief statement, apologizing that the analysis may have “contributed to misinformation” about WuFlu — that is, they didn’t retract the study or say that its findings were in error, they simply expressed regret that it didn’t fit The Approved Narrative.

Draw your own conclusions.

Hal Ketchum died this week. Best known for “Small Town Saturday Night” and other ’90s country hits, Hal was kind of a gentleman’s Dwight Yoakam, a great performer and, according to his friends, a damned good guy.

He hadn’t toured since early last year, reportedly for health reasons. What’s bothering me is that he died from “complications of dementia” — at the age of 67.

Dementia? Like, Alzheimer’s? At 67? Shit, I thought, that’s just a few years older than me.

And then I remembered something I said to Deb after her father passed away: Death, to the living, is a tap on the shoulder.

My friends, tomorrow isn’t promised to us. We have no time to squander.

As for Deb and me, we’re not gonna waste a single second.

Take care of yourselves, Patriots. Stay free.

#WiseUp #LibertyOrDeath

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