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Truth in Reporting


I was so smug. I decided some time ago that on any day I didn’t play golf, I would take a walk through my neighborhood to compensate for the lost exercise. I came up with a course that I thought would come to two miles. Then, in my typically anal fashion, I decided to measure it. I came up with a length of about 1.8 miles. This was an outrage! I quickly added a short loop to make it add to 2.0 miles.


All through Covid, and all through my disenchantment with golf, I used this route, sometimes doing it backward for variety. In fact, to get the measurement, I had to drive the course backward, since a fairly substantial piece of it is a one-way street! Yeah, I had to be accurate. And I find myself telling people proudly of my routine. 2 miles through hilly terrain. Yeah, that’s me, quantifying life as much as possible.


For some reason, I recently began to wonder what the half-way point of my walk was. As luck would have it, I remembered this desire when I was actually in my car, just a few yards from my driveway, and not in dire need of taking a pee. To make matters even better, my odometer was just cycling over to a zero in the tenth column.


I’d always guessed that Bebe’s house was about halfway through my route. I wasn’t even close on that point, as I was only about .8 miles into the route as I passed the once distinctive house, now looking very ordinary and up for sale. I didn’t get to the one-mile reading until I got to a house up a hill, down a hill and half-way up another hill. And this gave me an odd feeling. I couldn’t possibly have another mile to get home.


I had good reason for this concern. I was home in significantly less than a mile from my alleged half-way point. I got home with the tenth column on my odometer at 8. This means that my walk was at the very most, 1.89 miles, and more likely 1.85. My odometer doesn’t cut measurements any finer than that. So if you’ve been impressed with my “two-mile walk through hilly terrain”, well, sorry to have misled y’all. It was an honest mistake. And I’m sticking to the “hilly terrain” part of the story.


In other news, I was at the drug store recently and did some impulse buying. What I knew I needed was paper towels. But what I saw on sale was some Binax Covid-19 test kits. I relied on these, using them frequently during the nasty years when they were paid for by Medicare. I was very conscientious about the disease throughout the pandemic, disinfecting all kinds of things quite frequently, wearing a mask, faithfully washing my hands more often and thoroughly than ever before, and testing myself frequently.

The Physical Shin

Last update: June 6, 2024

The John Shinnick Website

"A journey of 1.85 miles begins with a first step" ~ Chinese proverb sort of. This is where my daily walk begins.

I generally used Binax (Abbott Labs) in large part because it was what my local CVX was carrying. Then they switched brands to iHealth, and I got a false positive, on each of the two-test sequence. This was overruled by the more extensive test at my Carbon Health facility. I was asymptomatic, and it would have cancelled a gig had I not gone to Carbon. Now that insurance doesn’t pay for the tests, it’s easier to find the test you want, so I’m back to Binax.


Treatment of Covid has seemingly gotten better, but during the surge of new cases we had not long ago, I ran into a couple of people who had gotten it for the first time. They all agreed on one thing: it’s utterly horrible! Perhaps I’ve just been lucky, perhaps I’m naturally resistant, or perhaps I had it as some point but was asymptomatic and never knew it. But every now and then I just want to be sure of my status (like when I go to visit family). I had recently used my last test kit, so when I saw the sale, I jumped.


I saw in my news feed today that Dr. Anthony Fauci had to testify before Congress. Apparently, it was the usual farce of a hearing, perhaps worse than most, which is a shame. Congress has a need to know what went on, but there’s got to be a better way. Yeah, we’re still suffering some of the consequences of our actions, but I still feel that we did the best with the information we had.


So I’ve got a couple of tests on hand again. May they show valid negatives.

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