Fromstock photos model to Marvel superstar, Simu Liu blew minds at theMet Gala 2021 on Monday when he appeared wearing an out-of-this-world watch worth nearly a million dollars.
Mind-bending watch: Liu, 32, showcased a Jacob and Co. watch that resembled our solar system, the jewelry and wristwatch retailer saidon Instagram.
The watch, called the Astronomia Solar Baguette Jewelry Planets Zodiac, featured a case made of 18-karat white gold, sapphires and adorned with gems representing the planets with one yellow sapphire in the middle for the sun.
“The blue PVD dial displays zodiac signs that are hand-engraved and filled with 18K rose gold,” Jacob and Co. explained. “This celestial scene floats over a base of baguette diamonds.”
Although Jacob and Co. did not disclose the price of the watch, a similar model was listed onChrono24 for $950,584. However, Los Angeles-based stylist Jeanne Yangsaid on Twitter the timepiece Liu wore cost $780,000.
Dashing looks: Liu arrived at his first Met Gala event held at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City wearing a custom-made outfit fromFendi, according to the Chinese Canadian actor’sInstagram post.
Speaking to“Good Morning America,” Liu admitted he felt like a “chicken with no head” at the event as he did not know where he was going.
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All summer, we enjoy our share of zucchini and summer squashes. Come autumn, we happily embrace their harder-shelled, densely-fleshed, sweet-tasting brethren. Like summer squash, mild-tasting winter squash welcomes bold flavor additions. Unlike summer squash, most winter squash varieties keep well for weeks, sometimes months, so fans can stock up at local farmers markets and produce stands.
There are dozens and dozens of squash varieties; it’s worth your time to get to know them. Acorn squash has long been an American staple, but it’s certainly not the most interesting flavor-wise. Three favorites — butternut, spaghetti squash and kabocha—can be found readily in large grocery stores. More exotic renditions, such as buttercup, red kuri, Hubbard and delicata, show up at farmers markets in early fall.
No matter what kind of squash you decide to try, select a squash that is heavy, rock hard and free of blemishes. When possible, choose squashes with their stems attached — these will keep the longest.
Once purchased, you’ll need to address peeling and cutting the squash. Not all squashes need to be peeled, but if they do, peel using a vegetable peeler, then switch to a paring knife to trim any stubborn bits before cubing.
If you are not peeling your squash, be careful! Cutting through the tough skin requires a sharp knife and some pressure. Make sure your cutting board is stable and keep your eyes on the knife. Cut the squash in half, then scoop out the seeds with a spoon. Set the cut side down to cut into wedges or smaller pieces. Enlist help to cut up the squash. The reward is delicious!
After the squash is peeled, cut or sliced, you can keep it in the refrigerator for three to five days. This makes weekday squash cooking doable for time-pressured cooks. You can freeze raw diced squash on a baking sheet until solid. Then scoop the frozen pieces into a freezer-safe bag and freeze for up to six months, so you can make fresh squash soups, stews and braises all year long. Cooked squash also keeps well in the refrigerator and can be frozen.
The flesh isn’t the only edible part of squash; the seeds can be rinsed, salted and slow-roasted in a 200 degree Fahrenheit oven, stirring often, for an hour or more, until crispy. They work great as a healthy desk snack or a crunchy addition to salads.
Note that most winter squash varieties are interchangeable in recipes with some subtle changes in flavor, though their yields will vary thusly:
Kabocha: A 2 1/4-pound squash, peeled and seeded, yields 6 cups of cubes (about 2 pounds)
Butternut: A 3-pound squash yields 3-4 cups of peeled cubes from bulbs and 1 1/4 pound of peeled round slabs from the neck
Spaghetti squash: A 3-pound squash yields 4 generous cups of shredded cooked flesh (about 1 pound 14 ounces)
Now that you are armed with the knowledge of how to cook squash, test your skills with these five recipes.
GRILLED BUTTERNUT ROUNDS
Butternut squash is the gift that keeps on giving. I cut the bulbous end into cubes for roasting, steaming or soup. The longer neck of the squash can be peeled and sliced into round slabs, which are perfect for grilling.
Serve these grilled squash rounds on brioche rolls smeared with mayonnaise and topped with grilled onion and pickles for a very satisfying meatless burger. Or, sprinkle with herbs and a little lime juice and serve with cooked farro or French lentils.
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Makes 6 slices
1 very large butternut squash, about 3 1/2 pounds, with a thick “neck” 3 inches or more in diameter
Expeller pressed canola oil, safflower oil or sunflower oil
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon coarse (kosher) salt
Preheat a gas grill or prepare a charcoal grill for moderately low heat.
Cut the squash in half so you have the bulbous end and the longer neck. Save the bulbous end for another use (peeled and cubed for steaming, for example). Peel the neck of the squash, then lay it flat on a cutting board and use a large sharp knife to cut it into 3/8-inch thick rounds.
Place the rounds on a baking sheet and brush generously with oil. Sprinkle both sides with chili powder and salt.
Grill covered over low heat, turning once, until tender when pierced with a fork, about 15 minutes. Serve warm.
ROASTED ACORN SQUASH, TWO WAYS
Baking squash whole for a short period of time will soften it somewhat so it’s easier to cut in half.
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 1 1/4 hours
Makes 2 servings
For the squash:
1 large acorn squash
Expeller pressed canola oil, safflower or sunflower oil
Coarse (kosher) salt
3 tablespoons Caper-raisin relish (see recipe below) OR 2 tablespoons butter and 1 tablespoon sriracha
Chopped fresh herbs, such as chives, basil or cilantro
Heat oven to 375 degrees. Pierce 1 large acorn squash in several places with the tip of a sharp knife. Put into a baking dish. Bake until squash starts to soften, about 20 minutes, then remove from the oven.
Carefully cut squash in half and scoop out seeds. Brush cut side with oil. Sprinkle all over with salt. Return to the baking dish cut side up. Bake until flesh is tender when pierced with a fork, 40-50 minutes.
Spoon some of the Caper-raisin relish into each squash cavity. Or, put half of the butter and sriracha into each cavity. Return to the oven to heat through, about 10 minutes.
Serve hot or warm topped with herbs.
This nearly-addictive sweet and tangy caper raisin relish complements virtually everything from simple steamed squash to grilled poultry. Try it over pasta tossed with shredded Romano cheese for a bold-flavored dish. Omit the anchovies if they are not your thing, but replace them with some dried mushroom powder or a splash of soy sauce for an umami punch.
1 1/2 tablespoons coconut oil or expeller pressed canola oil or safflower oil
1 medium-size red or sweet onion, peeled, halved, cut into 1/4-inch wedges
1 small poblano or red bell pepper, cored, diced 1/3-inch
1 small jalapeno, halved, seeded, finely chopped
Make Caper raisin relish.
Mix 1/2 cup ricotta, 1 tablespoon minced mint leaves, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a small bowl. Let stand at room temperature for up to 30 minutes or refrigerate covered for up to a day.
Put 4 cups kabocha squash cubes in a microwave-safe bowl and add 1/3 cup water. Cover with microwave-safe plastic wrap, vented at one corner. Microwave on high (100% power), stirring once or twice, until nearly tender, about 5 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes. Drain.
Heat a large, well-seasoned cast-iron or nonstick skillet over medium heat until hot. Add 1 1/2 tablespoons oil, then 1 chopped onion. Cook, stirring often, until golden, about 5 minutes. Stir in drained squash, 1 diced poblano and 1 finely-chopped jalapeno. Cook, mashing squash lightly until things start to get crusty and crispy, about 10 minutes.
Serve hot dolloped with minted ricotta and some of the caper raisin relish.
SPAGHETTI SQUASH WITH SPICY WALNUT PICADA AND PARMESAN
Spaghetti squash does best in a steamy environment. A microwave oven proves perfect. I cook one half at a time, cut side down in water. Then, after a cooling-off period, I use a large fork to pull it into long strands — hence its name. A container of cooked spaghetti squash strands keeps days in the refrigerator and reheats beautifully in the microwave. Season the strands as you would pasta — simply with oil and pepper — or lavishly with a walnut picada and cheese.
Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 25 minutes
Makes 4 to 6 servings
1 spaghetti squash, about 3 pounds, halved lengthwise, seeds removed
3/4 cup walnut pieces
3 tablespoons walnut oil or extra virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons chopped flat leaf parsley,
3 tablespoons chopped chives (or green onion tops)
1/2 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary or 1/4 teaspoon dried
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
Finely grated zest from 1 lemon
Coarse (kosher salt), freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 large clove garlic, crushed
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
Freshly shredded Parmesan or Asiago cheese
Put one spaghetti squash half, cut side down in a microwave-safe casserole dish. Add 1 inch of water to the dish. Cover with lid or microwave-safe plastic wrap vented at one corner. Microwave on high (100% power) until squash pierces easily with the tip of a knife, about 10 minutes. Cool. Repeat to cook the other squash half.
Meanwhile, for walnut picada, toast 3/4 cup walnut pieces in a small nonstick skillet just until fragrant, 2-3 minutes. Do not walk away or nuts might burn. Cool on a cutting board, then chop finely.
Mix chopped walnuts, 3 tablespoons walnut oil, 3 tablespoons chopped parsley, 3 tablespoons chopped chives, 1/2 teaspoon minced rosemary, 1/2 teaspoon pepper flakes and lemon zest in a small bowl. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
Use the tines of a large fork to pull the cooked squash from the skin in long shreds. Place shreds in a serving bowl. Toss with 1 clove crushed garlic and 1 tablespoon olive oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve warm sprinkled with the walnut picada. Offer the shredded cheese at the table.
APPLE AND BUTTERNUT SHEET PAN DINNER WITH CHICKEN SAUSAGE
Serve this with cornbread or corn muffins and plenty of soft butter for a satisfying fall supper.
4 fully cooked smoked chicken sausage or chicken sausage with apples, 12 ounces total
1/2 cup unfiltered apple cider
2 tablespoons unfiltered apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon fresh (or 1/2 teaspoon dried) thyme leaves or oregano, or a combination
Chopped fresh chives or parsley or a combination
Heat oven to 375 degrees.
Mix 4 cups cubed, peeled butternut squash, 1 cubed apple and 1/2 onion cut into wedges on a large, rimmed sheet pan. Toss with 2 tablespoons oil and 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Roast, stirring every 10 minutes, until squash is almost tender, about 30 minutes.
Add 4 fully-cooked chicken sausages, 2 tablespoons apple cider, vinegar and 1 teaspoon thyme to the pan. Roast, stirring once or twice, until sausages are warmed and golden, 20-25 minutes. Sprinkle with chives. Use a spoon to serve to scoop up any juices.
NEW YORK (PIX11) — A fight between a restaurant hostess and three women from Texas took a new turn on Monday. Black Lives Matter protesters showed up outside the restaurant at the start of dinner service after new details about the reported attack came to light.
Justin Moore, an attorney for the women, accused the hostess of racism and lying to police about what happened last Thursday. “It is unfortunate that Carmine’s and their hostess were able to lie to the police to avoid being held accountable for this hostess’s racism. She physically and verbally provoked confrontation, and then played the victim to criminalize these three Black women,” he said.
The fight between the women and the hostess was caught on video, and you can see one of the women punching the hostess. The narrative from the Upper West Side restaurant was that she asked for proof of vaccination, which triggered an assault by the women.
The women reportedly did provide documentation of COVID vaccinations, but that the confrontation escalated after two men who joined the party didn’t have proof. Moore told the New York Times that the hostess suggested that the vaccination cards they did have were fake, that she spoke condescendingly to the group, who are Black, and even that she used a racial slur. An attorney representing Carmine’s denied the claim.
A spokesperson for Carmine’s said the hostess, who is Asian, walked past the women, who were seated, and told them to enjoy their meal. “None of the attackers offered any reason for their attack. None of the hosts—all of whom are people of color—uttered a racial slur. None of the attackers mentioned anything about race to our managers, staff, or the police who arrested them, and a Texas criminal defense lawyer’s false assertion otherwise is a deeply cynical ploy to try to excuse wanton violence,” the spokesperson added.
The women were given desk appearance tickets for assault and released from custody. They are expected to return to a Manhattan criminal court in early October. Amid the back-and-forth over what actually happened, Black Lives Matter protesters took over the outdoor dining area of the restaurant for hours Monday night.
Restaurant owner Jeffrey Bank said he’s going to have to hire private security to protect his workers. Protestor Steven Lopez, meanwhile, said, “Three women were involved. They were the ones arrested but none of what they said came into light versus what the hostess said.”
NORMAL, Ill. – Twenty-five-year-old Jelani Day is a graduate student studying to get his master’s in speech pathology at Illinois State University. He was last seen Aug. 24 and hasn’t been heard from since.
Police found his car, a 2010 White Crysler 300 with a blacktop, in a wooded area in Peru, Illinois, a few days later.
“Nothing is more important to me than getting Jelani back,” Carmen Bolden Day, Jelani’s mother said. “I need help to find my son, it’s been 28 days.”
Jelani’s family from Danville and a faculty member reported Jelani missing after he did not show up for class for several days. Bloomington police said they need tips from the public in their ongoing search.
Carmen Bolden Day said they have not been receiving tips lately. She said it’s not like him to disappear without telling them his whereabouts.
“Now, we need another agency that has more resources,” she said. “It was just proven with the Gabby Petito case. She was missing, the FBI got involved, she was found within 3-4 days. Can I have the same help is all I’m asking.”
Carmen Bolden Day said she asked the police if the FBI could get involved and she said she was told that there was a “discussion” they were having.
Bloomington Police did not return Fox 2’s phone call Tuesday.
Carmen Bolden Day said her heart goes out to Gabby Petito’s family.
“I know what it feels like to be sitting in this seat, and you wanting your child back, wanting to know what’s wrong with your child. You want to know where your child is … My heart goes out to her,” she said.
“But I have a young black son that I want the same attention. I want the same effort given too.”
Theda Person is the founder of Looking for an Angel, a nonprofit she created after her son went missing at just nine years old. The nonprofit creates awareness for missing people.
“I can’t determine whose going to receive the blessings who won’t receive the blessings, but I can acknowledge the differences and the inequities,” Person said.
She also said that people in the community need to be aware of each person that is missing in their area so they can keep their eyes open for their loved ones. She said to treat each missing person like it’s your own family.
“Wherever you are, these people could be anywhere, this means we should have our eyes totally focused on whoever is missing,” she said.
While Carmen Bolden Day searches and waits for her son’s safe return, she said she just keeps praying.
“I have to trust God right now like I’ve never trusted him before, I have to believe things that I don’t see, that I can’t touch,” she added.
The family is offering a $25,000 reward for information that leads them to Day.
Anyone with information can contact their local police department or the Bloomington Illinois Police at 309-820-8888 or Detective Paul Jones at 309-434-2548.
Dear Amy: I am 58 years old. I was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s two years ago. My friends all know about my diagnosis.
My question relates to my sister. She and I had been estranged for almost a decade. Two years ago, I realized that our disagreements were water under the bridge, and we re-established a relationship. She lives several states away and has no contact with my friends.
I have never disclosed my diagnosis to her.
I don’t want her to come to the conclusion that I broke down the barriers between us because of my illness.
I did that because I love her, and not because I am staring in the face of my own mortality.
I also don’t want to bring stress into her life, she has enough of that, and she will fly into stress mode — that is who she is.
Also, because she is my “big sister” I also know that she will go into: “I’ll take care of you” mode (again, it is her nature), which is not what I need or want to be the basis for our relationship.
On the other hand, I don’t want her to feel betrayed when she inevitably learns about my illness.
Right now, I am able to hide my symptoms well.
When the day comes when this is not the case, I plan on telling her (and her children).
I am extremely torn as to whether I am making the right decision.
Dear Torn: I believe you are making the right decision, because — right now, this is how you are coping with a very challenging diagnosis. You have the right to control your own health information — for whatever reason you choose.
You seem to be protecting yourself from the stress of your sister’s anticipated reaction, but I want to remind you that people do not always react in expected ways.
Now that your relationship with her is on a better footing, you might be closer to breaking this news to her, telling her explicitly in advance that she can help you the most by staying calm and by letting you call the shots.
The timing of your diagnosis and the reconnection with your sister does seem more than coincidental, and, in my opinion, awareness of your own mortality is the best reason in the world to reconnect.
Dear Amy: I recently got a Facebook message from a man, “Thomas,” who said that he thinks he may be my brother (we did a DNA test proving that he is our brother). He had messaged other family members, including my half-brother, “Eric.”
When I spoke to Thomas, he told me that Eric (a newfound Christian) told him he wanted nothing to do with him because he could possibly be a product of our father cheating on his mother while Eric was an infant.
Yes, I know it’s Eric’s choice, Thomas had nothing to do with it.
I am planning a family get-together soon so we can all get to know Thomas.
I don’t know what to do about Eric, who refuses to acknowledge Thomas’ existence.
If I don’t invite Eric, he will make a fuss, but if I do invite him, I’m scared that he will be unwelcoming to Thomas.
I’m not sure what to do.
They are the only siblings I have left, as my two older brothers have died, along with my mom.
I just want everyone to get along!
— Caught in a Family Feud
Dear Caught: Of course, you want everyone to get along! Unfortunately, you simply can’t guarantee any particular outcome.
“Eric” has declared that he doesn’t want to have a relationship with “Thomas.”
As you wisely note, that is up to him.
I think you should invite all family members (including Eric) to your gathering, without attaching any qualifications or guarantees.
There is a likelihood that Eric will decide not to attend. That is his choice, and his loss. If he does attend, and behaves poorly, that is also on him.
I hope this goes well for you and the rest of your family.
Dear Amy: I don’t always agree with you, but I admit that I laughed out loud and cheered your response to “Unsure,” the cad who was ditching his wife, who had been his medical caretaker.
The line that got me was, “No doubt you will richly deserve whatever happiness is in store.”
— Big Fan
Dear Fan: I hope “Unsure” read the real meaning behind that line.
Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Ed Markey, D-Mass., and Rep. Ayanna Pressley, D-Mass., hope to bring back the COVID-era eviction moratorium, a move property owners continue to oppose.
“An extremist Supreme Court cut short eviction protections and put millions of people at risk for losing their homes,” Warren said in front of the White House Tuesday. “Forcing tens of thousands of people out of their homes will only make this public health crisis worse as (the delta variant) surges.”
The Supreme Court struck down the federal eviction moratorium late last month, arguing that the Department of Health and Human Services lacked the authority to implement eviction moratoriums and that Congress had to specifically authorize it.
The bill, titled the “Keeping Renters Safe Act of 2021,” would also implement an automatic eviction moratorium that would not require renters to apply, an issue Massachusetts renters and landlords have struggled with, and would remain in effect until 60 days after the end of the public health emergency.
But landlords, who have long opposed the moratorium, said it would only saddle renters with debt they can’t pay.
“Instead of responsibly addressing the crisis at hand, moratoriums leave renters strapped with insurmountable debt and housing providers left to unfairly hold the bag,” said Greg Brown, a senior vice president for government affairs at the National Apartment Association. “Ultimately, any effort to pursue additional moratoriums will only balloon the nation’s rental debt … and exacerbate the housing affordability crisis, permanently jeopardizing the availability of safe and affordable housing.”
Warren argued that a stay on evictions have staved off some COVID-19 spread, and cases spike after they expire. One study from MIT found that the average risk of contracting COVID-19 in states that ended eviction moratoriums jumped 1.39 times in the five weeks following the expiration, and 1.87 times after 12 weeks. The effect was amplified in low-income communities.
The Bay State senator acknowledged that, although Congress approved $45 billion for rental assistance to help landlords, “the money is going out too slowly.”
She cited statistics that almost 90% of the funds haven’t been distributed. “There are still billions of dollars to distribute and millions of families who need that help to avoid losing their homes,” she said.
Massachusetts received $768 million in federal emergency rental assistance funds and has spent almost $270 million on over 40,000 households since March 2020, according to recent data from the Baker-Polito administration.
Massachusetts currently has a temporary law in place that prevents evictions, providing the tenant has filed for rental assistance.
I want to put a text before you, from February 2020, the ideological landscape into which the coronavirus first arrived. It’s a review in The London Review of Books, a fine highbrow left-of-center publication, covering a book about plague and quarantine in 17th-century Italy. The book, by University of London historian John Henderson, details the attempts by the city of Florence — led by its public health board, the Sanità — to avoid the awful fate of other Italian cities: first by closing the city to commerce and then by imposing quarantines, lockdowns and what we now call social distancing.
The sympathies of the reviewer — Erin Maglaque, another historian of early modern Europe — are not exactly with the Sanità. Like our federal government in 2020, the Florentine state spent lavishly to make its restrictions sustainable, delivering wine and bread and meat to households (“On Tuesdays, they got a sausage seasoned with pepper, fennel and rosemary”) during the mandatory confinement. But the quarantine was also inevitably punitive and authoritarian, and Maglaque’s review details the way public health restrictions reproduced and deepened inequality and how already-disfavored groups — the poor, Jews, prostitutes — were regarded as particularly dangerous “vectors of contagion” and policed accordingly.
Meanwhile, the most sympathetic characters in her account are people who found ways to steal a bit of normal life in defiance of public health restrictions — like two girls, Maria and Cammilla, who danced illicitly with their friends and got those friends’ parents arrested. At the end of the review, Maglaque notes that Florence achieved a much lower mortality rate than other Italian cities — just about 12%, compared with 33% in Venice, 46% in Milan and a staggering 61% in Verona. But she hesitates to give the Sanità all the credit; maybe the disease was just “less virulent” among the Florentines. And besides:
Percentages tell us something about living and dying. But they don’t tell us much about survival. Florentines understood the dangers but gambled with their lives anyway: out of boredom, desire, habit, grief. To learn what it meant to survive, we might do better to observe Maria and Cammilla, the teenage sisters who danced their way through the plague year.
It’s a fine review of a fascinating-sounding book, but I confess that when I reached this ending — and again, I was reading it in early 2020, when COVID was a concern but not yet a world crisis — I rolled my eyes a little. The Sanità’s measures obviously worked! The percentages do tell us about survival, because thousands of Florentines survived to dance and gamble and go to Mass and frequent brothels for years and years after their difficult but temporary spell of quarantine! One could sympathize with the prostitutes who kept working, the peasants slipping “past bored guards as they played cards” or the girls who broke the rules and danced. But given that the Sanità was fighting a disease that killed more than half the population in some cities, it felt like folly to romanticize the rule-flouters.
And not just folly but a particular kind of left-wing folly — still worse, left-wing academic folly — whereas my more pro-Sanità reaction felt impeccably right wing. In a crisis the government needs to act to save lives, even if ordinary liberties need to be suspended. Yes, there will be unevenly distributed injustices; yes, it’s good to point that out. But if the Sanità’s temporary authoritarianism saved thousands of lives, then it deserved the gratitude of Florentines, despite the costs.
That was my view in February 2020. It was also my view in March, April and May 2020, when I was a COVID hawk but many other American conservatives embraced a much more libertarian position on how to respond to our own pandemic. Indeed, by late spring, it was commonplace for the right to critique the Sanità of Anthony Fauci on roughly the same grounds that The LRB’s reviewer critiqued the 17th-century Florentine authorities — arguing that lockdowns were instruments of class discrimination; that elites flouted the rules while demanding compliance from the lower orders; that distancing imposed too much unhappiness and loneliness and misery, especially on the young; that the bare living preserved by public health restrictions wasn’t worth the cost to life in full.
Over the past 16 months, I have shifted somewhat in this COVID-dovish direction. I think schools should have been open everywhere last fall; I think mask requirements should have mostly gone away with widespread vaccination; I think you can see in certain public health mandarins and certain countries chasing COVID zero a pathology of control that is incompatible with human flourishing. I also have a general sympathy for Americans who haven’t been immediately on board with all the rulings from our Sanità — in part because I have had my own difficult medical experiences and in part because there has been so much obvious expert-class bumbling throughout the pandemic.
But at the same time, I remain a COVID hawk relative to many conservative writers and talkers. Knowing what we know now, I would have supported much more draconian measures in February 2020, in terms of travel restrictions, border closures and quarantine requirements, than anything we did. I still think the March response to the first coronavirus wave — shut everything down and spend a lot of money until we figure out just how bad this is going to be — was fundamentally correct.
Likewise, maintaining indoor mask mandates, social distancing rules and limits on mass gatherings into the winter of 2021 still seems entirely reasonable, especially since the speed with which we developed vaccines created a window in which restrictions that lasted mere months could save a lot of lives. And more recently many Republicans have let reasonable doubts about vaccine mandates undercut their commitment to finding ways, by hook or crook, to get as many people vaccinated as possible.
Informing my continued COVID-hawk status is the fact that while the COVID death rate has not been nearly as a brutal as those 17th-century Italian percentages, it has still been much, much higher than a lot of COVID doves wanted to initially believe. In the first months of the pandemic, I was often reassured by conservative friends that data would reveal that more people had already been infected than the official numbers showed and thus the disease was far less lethal and herd immunity far closer than official projections assumed. Or, alternatively, that the first plunge in death rates in the late spring of 2020 was the disease burning itself out, independent of anything we did, and that the belief that this needed to be treated as an extended emergency was all hype from anti-Trumpers.
These friends were wrong. And as someone who thought of my COVID-hawkish position as the more right-wing one, I have found it remarkable that through all those hundreds of thousands of deaths — deaths that many doves didn’t think would happen — the American right’s libertarian stance has mostly stuck.
But as someone who can see lots of specific issues on which the doves and libertarians have a point, I’m equally fascinated by how dramatically liberals have swung against any acknowledgment of what until very recently seemed like a core left perspective — that stringent public health responses are inherently authoritarian and inevitably ratify various forms of inequality and social control.
As Justin E.H. Smith, an American-born academic in Paris, noted in a recent essay, a left that just a little while ago seemed committed to Foucauldian critiques of biopolitics and fears of what governments do with emergency powers now is “dug in so deeply on the side of anti-anti-vaxx signaling” that it can’t “acknowledge anything worrisome about the new high-tech hygiene regime, about how hard it might be to dismantle it once it has outlived its purpose, about how it might sprout new purposes that are inimical to human thriving.”
What’s especially striking is how smoothly and absolutely these shifts happened — how quickly, and without embarrassment or backward looks, much of the right started talking like Michel Foucault and his disciples and much of the left starting embracing the mindset of the Florentine Sanità, as if those had been their natural and inevitable positions all along.
Whatever the explanation, in the short run I think the bare acknowledgment that this weird flip took place might help a little with our polarization — tempering the liberal sense that the right is just a pro-COVID death cult and the right’s sense that the left wants us all to mask up and eat Soylent in our disease-free habitats forever.
In less than two years, we have gone from a world where it was normal for a left-leaning publication to run an essay gently celebrating the defiance of public health rules during a brutal outbreak of the plague, to a world where the defiance of public health rules during a less lethal pandemic is coded as incredibly right wing.
I don’t know exactly why or exactly what it means. I just want people to acknowledge that it has happened and it’s really, really weird.
BUFFALO N.Y. (WIVB) — Pfizer says its COVID-19 vaccine works for children as young as 5-years-old. It’s now waiting on FDA approval for emergency use.
“Pfizer is saying that they expect an FDA approval in weeks, not months,” said Dr. Kathleen Grisanti, the president and medical director of Pediatric and Adolescent Urgent Care of WNY. “We’re really hoping, as we move forward in the next month or two, that we’ll be able to start vaccinating these school-aged children.”
“We want to get as many people as possible vaccinated because the more people that are vaccinated in the community, the quicker we can return to normal,” said Stephen Turkovich, who’s the chief medical officer at Oishei Children’s Hospital. “By making the 5 to 11 year-olds within the nation eligible, we will increase the number of eligible people by 28 million.”
People in the community say they’re on board with children in that age group getting vaccinated. “This will help with the curve. I think the numbers are going to go down,” said Tyshawn Thomas. “I’m 100% pro-vaccine, because if you go with science, science is not wrong. So I’m all for it. I think it’s a good idea. It’s about time.”
“I have a cousin who’s in that age group, and I think she’s been wanting to get the vaccine because she’s been very anxious about the whole thing. And with kids being out of school, I think it’s increased their anxiety,” Caroline Terhaar said. “Getting vaccinated would just help them get back into their normal routine.”
Because the vaccine would be for a younger age group, the vaccine dose is lower than what’s used for people older than 11-years-old, but experts say it’s just as effective. “They found that the antibody levels that the vaccine produced were equivalent or even a little bit higher than what we’ve seen in the adults and older children that got the vaccine,” Turkovich said.
Local pediatricians also stress parents go to the experts with their vaccine concerns. “There’s always concern with anything new—and again, we just kind of reassure them that this is not a new technology, that we have been using this type of technology in all sorts of vaccines,” Grisanti said. “We just encourage them to talk to their pediatricians to find out their recommendations and vaccinate their children as soon as it becomes available to them.”
On the last night of summer at Coors Field, with a lively crowd split evenly between purple and blue, the Rockies went ahead by two runs over the NL West-contending Dodgers.
But Los Angeles emerged with a 5-4 victory in 10 innings.
Colorado was unable to produce clutch hits — 4-of-20 with runners in scoring position — while closer Jhoulys Chacin gave up L.A.’s game-winning run on an Albert Pujols RBI single. The Rockies (70-80) continue their final homestand Wednesday in their second matchup of a three-game series against the Dodgers.
Colorado’s bullpen combination of Robert Stephenson, Tyler Kinley and Carlos Estevez was spectacular Tuesday with no runs allowed on just one hit. The Rockies also had an opportunity to go ahead in the seventh and ninth with no outs and a runner on second. They never came through.
“I thought we pitched well and had some chances because of our pitching,” manager Bud Black said. “But we just couldn’t get the big knock as the game unfolded, especially late in the game.”
Pujols put the game away with an RBI infield single off Chacin that scored the Dodgers’ designated runner in the 10th.
The night began with a pitching duel. Starters Antonio Senzatela and Julio Urias combined to retire a stretch of 23 consecutive batters to keep the game scoreless through three innings.
Garrett Hampson broke through for Colorado in the fourth with a leadoff single. He came home when Charlie Blackmon smacked a two-out RBI double off the wall in right. C.J. Cron followed it up with his own RBI double to put the Rockies ahead 2-0.
“We’ve faced (the Dodgers) a bunch this year and we know what they’ve got,” Cron said. “I don’t know if you can even say: Get to the pen early. It doesn’t really do much when they have the caliber of arms they have down there. It was a tough game.”
Senzatela ran into trouble when he gave up two-out singles in the fifth to Gavin Lux and Luke Raley. A Urias RBI single brought L.A. to within one run. Then Mookie Betts reached base on an infield single that tied the game.
Ryan McMahon ripped a double to deep left to lead off the fifth. He advanced to third on a called balk on Urias. But Ryan Vilade grounded out, Senzatela struck out swinging and Hampson flied out to end the frame. It came back to bite Colorado the next inning when a Max Muncy RBI double put the Rockies into a one-run hole. Los Angeles bolstered its lead, 4-2, on a Will Smith sacrifice fly that scored Muncy.
Colorado fired back in the sixth with two-out RBI doubles from C.J. Cron and Elias Diaz to tie the game.
Senzatela ended his spectacular stretch of quality outings in seven consecutive starts dating back to Aug. 11. He finished the night with four earned runs on seven hits over six innings. He issued zero walks and three strikeouts.
“In the fifth inning I just started making mistakes,” Senzatela said. “They capitalized on that. I think I threw too many pitches in the middle.”
Lambert decision looming. Starting right-handed pitcher Peter Lambert is nearing his MLB return since enduring Tommy John Surgery before the 2020 season. Lambert threw a bullpen session Tuesday.
“I’m going to check with Peter and the pitching coaches to see how he did and how he feels tomorrow. The next step will be for him to throw a game probably later in the week. Either here with us or in Triple-A,” manager Bud Black said. “I want to see how he feels physically. I want to know his emotional state coming back from all these minor league rehab assignments and whether he’s ready to pitch in the big leagues.”
Joe unlikely to return. Injured first baseman Connor Joe (strained right hamstring) was hopeful to return by the end of this season. However, the Rockies are now less optimistic.
“Connor is doing just OK. It’s going to be really close here to the finish line whether he makes it (back this season) or not,” Black said. “I spoke with him today. We’re probably going to make that determination in a day or two to see where he is physically. But, quite honestly, it’s not looking too good for Connor.
“The hamstring is still sore and whether it makes sense to push it or not is the question. The answer is probably not.”
Dodgers RHP Walker Buehler (14-4, 2.39 ERA) at Rockies RHP German Marquez (12-10, 4.16) 6:40 p.m. Wednesday, Coors Field TV: ATTRM Radio: 630 AM/94.1 FM
Marquez is set to make his 31st start of the season and his second against the Dodgers. The right-hander faced LA on Opening Day and allowed one run on six hits (with six walks) over four innings. Marquez has been phenomenal at Coors Field with an 8-2 record and a 3.16 ERA in 16 home starts. He did not factor into the Rockies’ 9-8 win last Friday at the Nationals. Marquez struggled, giving up six runs on eight hits with two walks over four innings. Meanwhile, Buehler is a legit NL Cy Young candidate with top-three marks in the league for win percentage (.778), ERA (2.39) and WHIP (0.96). But he’s also rebounding from a poor start. Buehler took a loss at the Reds on Friday with three earned runs on six hits over six innings.
Trending: Entering Tuesday night, the Rockies have produced a team ERA of 4.63 in games played at Coors Field. That currently ranks fifth-best in franchise history.
At issue: Colorado began its final homestand Tuesday night after a 7-2 road trip to the Phillies (3-1), Braves (2-0) and Nationals (2-1). It marked the team’s first winning road trip of the season.
Thursday: Dodgers RHP Max Scherzer (14-4, 2.08) at Rockies LHP Kyle Freeland (6-8, 4.50), 1:10 p.m., ATTRM Friday: Giants RHP Anthony DeSclafani (12-7, 3.23) at Rockies TBD, 6:10 p.m., ATTRM Saturday: Giants RHP Dominic Leone (3-4, 1.72) at Rockies TBD 6:10 p.m., ATTRM