Sunday, February 16, 2020

Today On The DUH! Channel...

h/t IOTW Report

The White House doesn't trust China's coronavirus numbers.
No, really.


Yeah, who could possibly have seen that coming?

Oh, wait, that would be everyone else.

Sunday Music: Love's Theme

The other bookend for the week of St. Valentine's Day.This ain't '70s schlock, it's pure compositional genius. If he only ever wrote just this, Barry White would still belong in the pantheon of musical greats. Spin it.

Saturday, February 15, 2020

Even Obozo Wasn't This Stupid

Let's be serious though. Like Shrills would take the warm-bucket-of-spit job to run with a guy who's polling at less than 3%, and has less chance of getting nominated to run for president than the Harvey Weinstein/Bill Cosby ticket.

This has to be either National Lampoon or The Onion, trolling ABCNNBCBS, or else George Stephanopolopolopolopolous and Michael Moore drunk-texting NPR and MSNBC after splitting a case of bad tequila.

Reliability Factor: 1
Comedy factor: 11

Dear Gilligan,

For those all butthurt elsewhere because I'm a "condescending cocksucker know-it-all", read comments here, like this gem today, and walk a mile in my shoes, before you pop off.

"You can't wash your hands every time you touch something. You can't wear a face mask 24/7 and if you did the likely hood is that you would become infected FROM the dirty face mask. AND as you pointed out, the virus will get here and go pandemic. So what it really comes down to is most everyone will be exposed and some will die, some will get pretty sick, some will get a little sick. So explain again why we should turn our world upside down in a futile effort to not catch this virus? IN FACT catching it early, before the hospitals are overwhelmed, might just be the best thing that could happen to you."
The jokes writes themselves. But as Senior Drill Instructor warned us once,
"There are no stupid questions, only stupid people."

(6,2 and pick 'em, some wiseass regular reader made that whole post up and threw it against the wall just to watch the fun, but I'll treat it as legit and use it as a Teachable Moment.)

Let's take it point by point:

You can't wash your hands every time you touch something.
1) Yes, you can. Unless you're a quadriplegic.
2) You could wear gloves, and just wash your hands when you take them off.
3) Millions of people do 1 and 2 every day. They're called medical workers. Handwashing is not a superpower.
4) No one told you to wash your hands "every time you touch something". Just before you stick your fingers in your eyes, up your nose, in your mouth, before you eat your food, and after you wipe your behind. Just like we teach preschoolers. Try that, instead of "every time you touch something", and see if you can manage it.

You can't wear a face mask 24/7, and if you did, the likely hood [sic] is that you would become infected FROM the mask.
1) No one told you to do that either.
2) If you don't have one now, you'll probably never get one, because they're mostly made in China, and they've declared them a "strategic national resource". So you probably won't be able to get any for a year or more, at least from the world's #1 manufacturer.
3) You only need to wear one when you go out in public, if a pandemic breaks out.
3a) If a pandemic breaks out, you shouldn't be going out in public to begin with, unless it's unavoidable.
3b) If it's unavoidable, you should be wearing a mask then, not 24/7.
3c) If you have a job where it's unavoidable, a mask should be provided for you by your employer. If it's not, it's not unavoidable. See 3a, above.
4) When you wear a mask, you wear it because of an actual risk. Unless you live in a homeless encampment, 24/7 wear is recockulous.
4a) If you live in a homeless encampment, you're already screwed, and coronavirus is probably the least of your worries.
4b) But if that's the case, how did you get on the internet?
5) If you wore a mask 24/7, you'd roll over it in your sleep, and ruin it.
6) Straw men always make for stupid arguments.

AND as you pointed out, the virus will get here and go pandemic.
1) -100% for reading comprehension. I pointed out neither thing.
2) The virus is already here.
3) Whether it becomes a pandemic is an open question. The likelihood is high, but not anything like certain. Yet.

So what it really comes down to is most everyone will be exposed and some will die, some will get pretty sick, some will get a little sick.
1) No one knows how many will be exposed to it.
2) 3% of those exposed will die, give or take.
3) Virtually all the other 97% exposed will get sick. How "little" that is depends on a lot of things.
4) An unknown number will be sick enough to hospitalize, some of them in the ICU. IDK about you, but my co-pay, even with gold-plated Blue Cross, runs about 20% for hospitalization, which runs $2K/day, and $10-15K/day for ICU. Maybe you're rich, but ICU is usually several days to a week, and I can think of better things to do with a spare $2-10K.
5) You'll also pass your sickness along to family, friends, and co-workers, usually giving it to 2-4 of them. Including kids or older adults, who may die because you were too lazy to wash your hands.
6) See if you can guess why none of the other folks will want to work or play with you, come the day.

So explain again why we should turn our world upside down in a futile effort to not catch this virus?
1) It's not futile.
2) See 6, above.
3) If it gets big enough, you probably won't be given a choice.
Read this. It's straight from the CDC. TL;DR? Public health authorities have the ability and the will to cancel all sorts of things in the interest of public health. Schools, public gatherings, closing businesses, etc. And if that happens, most businesses, and all people brighter than you, will decide that going to work or leading a "normal" life isn't worth the risk. And if nothing's open, you're not getting gas, you're not going anywhere, and you're not doing anything. As in the case of China, that may be enforceable, as are all government edicts, at the end of a gun barrel. So then, you're either shot, or in jail, with a bunch of fellow rugged individuals, and no mask. Best wishes on your chances then.
4) "Turning your life upside down" will greatly inhibit the spread of the disease, and make it far less likely that it propagates wild and unchecked to the entire population. See 1, directly above.
5) "Turning your life upside down" will probably save a number of lives. Which most folks would agree was worthwhile, unless you're a sociopath.
6) I'm not saying this is you. But if anyone is a sociopath, they probably deserve to get infected, and hopefully they'll be in the lucky 3% who'll die. But the Universe is random, and we probably won't get that lucky.

IN FACT, catching it early, before the hospitals are overwhelmed, might just be the best thing that could happen to you.
1) Catching it early will guarantee you hordes of attention from the CDC you really don't want. In a jabbing you ten times a day and cramming things into bodily orifices you'd rather avoid, while being in guinea pig prison, sort of way.
2) I assure you, those of us who work in hospitals have a finely-honed radar detector for @$$holes who deserve the problems they have, and we talk about it amongst ourselves all the time. And we really, really, really don't have one fuck left to give for people so narcissistic as to live out the hypothetical you expressed. Please believe me when I suggest that at the leading edge of a pandemic, you do not want to be That Guy.
3) What ever makes you think hospitals aren't overwhelmed now, even without coronavirus pandemic?
4) If you're not dying, you're going to be kicked the hell out after minimal treatment. Not least of which because there isn't much we can do. Ask me how I know this.
5) If you are dying, you're going to ICU, and if you're that sick, you're already pretty well fucked, at that point.

More Fun With Math

Over at Bayou Renaissance Man blog, Peter (who, per usual, is taking a rational approach) and commenters were discussing the Kung Flu, and its mortality rate.

It's 2-4%, with an average of 3%.
The ones hospitalized, by definition, are the most serious cases.
That makes their numbers look worse than 3%, but they're not, necessarily.

It's probably too late to contain it, even with a border wall. But a wall will help against everything.

But looking at flu, with a 0.1% mortality, this is about 30 times worse.
That would be 1.5M deaths in the US in a year.
And perhaps as many as 9M.

Compared to 50K US flu deaths/yr that's definitely a thing.
The hospital system in the US skates by on a razor's edge in normal times.
Trust me on this.

You throw in a bonus pandemic, and you can definitely cancel Christmas.
We'll be treating people for this in tents, in the parking lot, all year long, until it burns itself out, or they develop an effective vaccine.

1.5M US Kung Flu deaths means another 150K in CA alone, for example.
That's 3K dead/week. That's about 50/county, one to three/day in every hospital ER in this state alone (CA has 58 counties, and 430 hospitals from Oregon to Mexico.).
And for every death, there will be 33 more people infected, 2/3 will probably come to an ER, and 1/3 of them serious enough to need hospitalization.
Another death/day, 20 additional visits, and 11 more admits daily, all year, is a yuuuuuuuuuuuge impact. For everyone, from broken toes to heart attacks and strokes.
In every ER, everywhere it goes. (At last look, there were 42 states already sending Kung Flu test samples to CDC. So 84% of the country already has legit concerns, right now. That's addressing reality, not panic. Recognize the difference.)

You'd better hope this doesn't get here.
And if it does, and it goes pandemic, cancelling Christmas is going to be reality, not doom-and-gloom.

That's how the napkin math works out, middle case, if this becomes a pandemic like the annual flu is.
It could be better. Like a total nothingburger.
I could also be worse.
Like 9M deaths.

Wee bit of variance there.
Plan as you see fit.
And remember how your neighbors act when there's going to be a hurricane, or a blizzard.
That's Joe Average, 24/7/365/ever.

If you haven't already got N95 or better masks, forget about them.
1) They're mostly made in China
2) as of last week, they're a "strategic national resource" for China
3) with tens to potentially hundreds of millions of people on quarantine lockdown there, they won't be going to work there to make more, nor exporting any even if they do.

Expect that state of affairs to last until about 2021 or 2022.
No, really.

Oh, and Wash. Your. Hands.
Like we told you last month.

Unintended Consequences

h/t Common Cents

"I think the Democrats have an ass-kicking coming to them in November, and I think most of them will be utterly shocked when it happens, because they're existing in an echo-chamber that is not reflective of reality."

Ass kicking??
Not existing in reality???
Be still, my beating heart.

This year's presidential challenger (and they're all eminently over-qualified for this) is set to walk into a spinning propeller face-first, full speed, and earn the Walter Mondale Electoral Drubbing Award.

The Democrats are going to regret what they did to create President Trump exactly once, and that time will be every single moment for the rest of their miserable lives.

Dear Dems: Beat the rush.


h/t WRSA

Don't worry.
Unlike every invention in human history since rocks and pointed sticks, small hobbyist-level drones will not be weaponized.

No one will ever use the fliegenden flammenwerfer to start brush fires, set oil terminals or LNG facilities on fire, or burn down the houses of opposition leaders at night when they're sleeping in them, let alone use them at protests either for or against the government.

Never, ever, ever.

And no one will ever make one and use it on, say, homeless mega-encampments.
Or from merchant ships, against Somali pirate motherships.
Or on groups of illegal aliens crossing the border.
Or on gang bangers selling crack on the corner.
Because that would be double-plus ungood.

The "experts" have proclaimed this as unpossible.

Sleep tight, America.

Personally, I want two dozen of them.

Napalm for the common man.
That's the Second Amendment, chickadees.

Picture a few of these zooming down on the redcoats at Concord Bridge, or the BATFE cattle car at Waco, and tell me I'm mistaken.

Friday, February 14, 2020

Dinner With Old Friends

Lobsters, just sitting there all day eating things best unmentioned so I can now
eat them.  And if God hadn't intended us to eat cows, he wouldn't have made
them out of steak.

My blog homework is done: though I may add to them, the weekend's posts, for a change, are in the can already. I had my semi-annual check-up this week, and the doctor was ecstatic. It's Friday night, the bank account is fat, and I'm hungry. So I'm off to enjoy a nice dinner with some old friends, namely Mr. Steak, and Mr. Lobster, and I bid you all a pleasant weekend, and to enjoy an equally fine meal. Treat yourself special once in awhile. It's unlikely most times that anyone else will.

You're Making Jeff Sessions Look Diligent By Comparison

h/t Cold Fury

Shrillary, your DoJ predecessors, and about half the FBI and CIA, for openers.

Sh'yeah, right.

DoJ drops investigation of McCabe
Army Won't Investigate Vindman Leaks

The Coup Cucks Clan rides again, and Barr turns out to be just another backroom buddyf**ker.
Let the Senate impeach him. Maybe he'll need to replaced by Ann Coulter, if not Alex Jones, to get this done right. So far, Abbott and Costello, or the Spanish Inquisition from Monty Python would have been better AGs.

They keep wanting to push a two-tier justice system.
Let's see how much pull they've got when the game is torches and pitchforks, and the sentence is hung by wire at the end of a lightpole.
Apparently, nothing less will avail, and they just keep pushing for nothing less.

Bonus: How Irish put it.

Concerning Common Sense

A myth from Pliny the Elder. But only for ostriches.

We'd have made these comments at the site in question, but we have evidently offended the host's delicate sensibilities, such that we are apparently verboten from either cheering or jeering there, let alone apologizing. (Not sorry for telling the truth, but that his feelings are hurt.) His site, his rules, his butthurt. So be it. (Oh, and Fran, assuming I am the He Who Shall Not Be Named there, I use the alias because I work in Hollywood. Since the 90s. For a decade and more, it put food on my table and a roof over my head, and I'm addicted to making a living. I commend to your fund of historical agnosticism both mark twain, and Silence Dogood. Not to mention john Wayne and cary Grant. The precedent is long established. I own what I write, and I always sign it. I am as much Aesop as you are Fran. Just not on my birth certificate. {My mistake. - A.} I like a lot of what you write, or I wouldn't bother with your site. Get over yourself, and stop being a Drama Queen. You'll be happier for it.)

Under the heading of "Stay In Your Lane", we bring you a sterling example of how not to deal with coronavirus, or any other viral outbreak, if it becomes as endemic as the flu:
"The reaction to this new disease that gets the most air time and column-inches has been hysteria: a pseudo-panic more appropriate to a potentially world-ending event – and I have a sneaking feeling that it’s mostly a media artifact.  
Nevertheless, I’ve been seeing emissions such as this one rather frequently:

Such recommendations, to my mind, are more dangerous than the Coronavirus itself. To follow it in its entirety would be to abandon society, personal affection, and all external involvements in the name of germophobia. Among other things, it would result in a severe reduction of economic activity – and a healthy economy is one of the requirements for maintaining a healthy population. Contrary to a lot of Leftists’ opinions, medical products and services do not grow on trees.  
One respondent said that “some temporary adaptation to environment may be necessary.” If we were talking about the Bubonic Plague, I might agree – and the response that physician recommended would be more appropriate. Indeed, it would be near to mandatory, especially for anyone with dependents. But this is a flu-like virus that has a mortality rate (reported) of about 5% — and apparently that mortality rate is skewed by age and other factors. So an "adaptation to environment" that amounts to huddling behind a locked door strikes me as excessive, and probably worse for us than maintaining a reasonable facsimile of our usual affairs."
Matt Bracken's list, contrary to that assertion, is how you stop a pandemic. They are nothing but simple common sense and distilled wisdom. They're even a pretty good way to make flu orders of magnitude less severe every year, if people had half the wits they think they do.

Sorry it offends the novelist's sense of propriety, but viruses cannot be reasoned with. If he would do so, Fran Porretto can shove his head in a very dark place all he wants. It's a free country. And the media may indeed be hyping this beyond rationality, as we've noted on this blog. But the fact remains that coronavirus enjoys a mortality rate of between 2-4%, with an average of 3%.

Influenza, FTR, runs at about 0.1%.

3% versus 0.1%? "Well then, this would be more, wouldn't it?"
Influenza kills about 50K/yr here since ever.
Thirty times worse, assuming influenza-like spread, would be 1,500,000 Dead.
But it could be worse still.
Depending on the total spread, Kung Flu coronavirus could kill as many as 9,000,000 here.
For Common Core grads, that would be 3% of 300,000,000 people.
If it becomes a pandemic here. Which it may, or may not.
Or, it could kill none.
It depends entirely on how far and wide it spreads here.
12 cases isn't worrying me much.
At 12,000, the cat's out of the bag, and it's almost certainly going to go nationwide.
(Ask China about that. With a pop. of about 1B, they're looking at a potential for 30,000,000 dead, from simple, unadulterated Kung Flu coronavirus. That is "Bubonic Plague" at those numbers, and it's possible that they're pretty handy with an abacus, and have figured that out already.)
But once it does spread, that 3% average mortality is pretty well carved in biological stone.
Shoving your head into a hole about that reality that doesn't make it go away.
And taking reasonable precautions to limit that spread will not destroy all life, affection, and commerce in the nation. At most, it'll be a minor annoyance for a season or three.
So if it does become widespread here, the best thing one can say is that such willful ignorance will be its own reward. Hence the Gilligan Effect*. Except for those others with whom Gilligan comes into direct contact. Bummer, friends and family. Guess Gilligan's not really your friend after all.
If one cannot wrap their head around such common sense, and grasp those basic scientific realities, perhaps one should stick to writing works of fiction. But learning anything from research pretty much goes by the wayside at that point, doesn't it?
"Ah, but a man's reach should exceed his grasp, or what's a heaven for?"
- Robert Browning
UPDATE: From Comments (h/t commenter nick flandrey), direct from the usual gang of idiots at the CDC, on what measures they will recommend if/when this breaks out widespread over here:
IOW, everything the MD linked by Matt Bracken said, except turned up to 11.
Look, I'm the first and loudest one to point out that the CDC isn't the brightest lights on the Christmas tree (in fact, they usually underperform even my lowest expectations), but when even they're telling you this thing is going to affect your daily life a wee bit more than the flu, maybe suck it up and listen up, no matter how smart you think you are.

*(The Gilligan Effect is that in every group, someone is the dumbest left edge of the bell curve of IQ. And that person is the weakest link in every problem, including pandemics. If the castaways had killed Gilligan in S1E2, the show is over in a week or two when they get rescued. True in TV land, true IRL. Don't be Gilligan. No, really.)

Thursday, February 13, 2020

Quarantine Math (For Common Core Grads)

Okay, kids, some folks don't get this yet (no finger-pointing) so let's break it down.

If you have, e.g., 3711 people on a cruise ship, and you get 20 new cases of corona virus per day, because the ship is essentially one common cootie-pit of shared air- and water-handling (not to mention food service), within 90 days, half the ship is infected. Since the infection curve will be bell-curve shaped to that point, shortly after that, everyone on the ship has it. (Attention, Math Nerds and Purists: Relax. Don't quibble over a difference without a distinction, nor get stuck on stupid. We're doing napkin math here, not quadratic equations.) If the disease course lasts 10 days, and it incubates for up to 14 days, that's a nominal 114-day quarantine, to wait it out after the last person is infected, with 3711 infected, and 111+ dead. (In the case of the MV Death Princess, where most of the passengers are aged over 60, the death toll will probably run into the multiple hundreds).

Conversely, if you brilliantly take everyone off  the motherf**king ship, and house them separately in individual or couples' quarters at dockside, you get the initial cases, no additional ones, and you do a quarantine of more like 24 days, instead of 114. And you can pull the infected into secure treatment areas immediately, so they don't spread it any further, once they're identified. With a death toll in the single digits.

Other than tentage, and temporary facilities, the cost is exactly the same per day, so you save 80 days' quarantine costs. Oh, and you also save hundreds of lives. Which, at least in countries that have never used live women and children for bayonet practice, is generally considered the whole point of the exercise.

During which time you can also have hazmat crews laboriously and excruciatingly decon the whole damned ship, while the locus of actual virus is still relatively small.

The nominal cost for Option A is
3711 x $2M@ for dead, infected, pain and suffering, mental cruelty, plus the cost to scrap the MV Death Princess out at sea, and they went for about $400M when they were built twenty years ago.

Call it US$8Billion, round numbers.
That bankrupts Carnival Lines, and cripples Lloyd's of London and twenty lesser insurance carriers by June, and pretty much cancels ocean cruises worldwide until further notice.

Which is another $126B economic impact, including $41B in salaries and jobs worldwide.
Double that $8B to Japan's treasury, for the role of the Japanese government in fomenting the disaster in the first place. After they covered themselves in glory with Fukushima.

This is on a par with what happened to the air travel and hotel industries after 9/11.

Or, they could stop being fuckwits, forthwith.

The nominal cost for Option B is
$100M, give or take, all in, for the miniscule number of deaths, minimal suffering, and decon of the ship.

So, for the clever Clydes out there, if you're the head of Carnival Cruise Lines, and/or the Japanese Minister for Not Being A Death Camp Guard Fuck-up, which bill would you rather pay?

Nota bene: The International Court in the Hague is awaiting your decision, and the navies of China, India, and several NATO countries (none of them with fond memories of your earlier dealings with them) are soon to be steaming towards Yokohama, in case you need help pulling your head out of your ass.

Tick, tick, tick...

Paging Dr. Mengele...

It's only "best" in the sense that you're going to kill a given number of persons, to a metaphysical certainty, most of them needlessly.
The castaways are only as smart as Gilligan, and those 3711 people, passengers and crew, are only as safe as the stupidest person on the ship, because that's the guy who's the 21st century Typhoid Mary, cheerfully spreading infection hither and yon. In this case, Gilligan is a Japanese quarantine worker:
"It's reported that the Japanese quarantine worker wasn't wearing highly protective clothing for high biosafety level areas, just wearing a mask and gloves.  He was handing out questionnaires and checking the health of passengers and crew members."
Top. Men.

(Bonus Question for Japan's PTB: How many Japanese citizens did Gilligan unknowingly expose and/or infect after he left the ship, and before anyone knew he'd contracted the virus? Get back to us in 14 days, quarantine geniusii. The ironic humor, it kills us.)

That Gilligan Factor may also include the ship's air handling system and/or plumbing, which isn't segregated, nor sterile, so keeping everyone in the rooms of a steel ship is tantamount to having the sickest of them coughing on everyone, 24/7/365, and will also probably necessitate the total write-off of the ship to Princess Lines as a permanently colonized Plague Ship.

It is a near-certainty that no maritime insurer will ever cover it to set sail again, even if they burned it out from stem to stern. (Would you sail on it, or drink the water from the pipes? Sh'yeah, like hell you would.)

At the end of the day, the line, plus the Japanese government, will be liable for billion$ in damages from survivors and heirs' estates, for literally killing people, but given Japanese history regarding the Rape Of Nanking, that shouldn't be too troubling to leadership in Tokyo. More like reliving the good old days of the Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere.

Basic humanity would dictate that they move people off the ship into individual quarantine tents in the adjacent parking lot, and strictly segregate all their functions, including food and toileting. Doing it like they're doing is going to kill greater numbers, needlessly, who were initially uninfected.

Including crew members.

This is ghoul practice, not quarantine, but it accords with the millennia-long eastern tradition of regarding individuals as less worthy than cattle.

If there were a war on, this would be a war crime. As it is, it's a crime against humanity. With which, yet again, the Japanese have some wee history of familiarity.

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Monday, February 10, 2020

Chaos Brings Opportunity...And Chaos

So, as I said I would at the end of that post, I went through my E.R.'s supplies this past weekend, and made a list of items that we source from China. The list is esoteric, and very inside-baseball, unless you're in the trade. I sent it, in a memo, up the chain, so that hopefully administration will source alternative vendors for items which may become Chinesium Unobtanium any day now, until further notice, because between 50-500M Chinese are no longer going to work in the toy factories that make the things I use to make sick people well. So forget the item list, but take away this TL;DR note:

Of 54 major items, 43% (23 items) are sourced from, assembled in, or produced in China. That's nearly half of everything we use, 24/7/365, forever.
Many of them might be sourced elsewhere (and I hope to hell we do it before it bites us in the ass); but many cannot be. The lack of some will get you or someone like you killed if I haven't got it.

Multiply that times nearly 5600 U. S. hospitals, and countless clinics and doctor's offices, just for healthcare, nationwide, and you can begin to grasp the magnitude of this problem.

Then, extrapolate that to the entire economy.

Then go from second-order effects, to third order effects.

WallyMart and Horror Freight live and die on importing literal metric mega-fucktons of cheap Chinese sh*t, to exist.

So when that pipeline dries up, possibly overnight, you tell me:

What does stock in WalMart or Harbor Freight open at on the market the day after they can't get their goods?

What about fourth-order effects?

Who gets laid off as a direct result?

What happens to the economy, not only for the family of Joe the Greeter and Sally the Checker, but for the folks whose groceries they don't buy, the movies they don't see, the gasoline they don't need to drive to work at the job they don't have any more, and the state and federal welfare dole they swell?

Because some little sh*theads, in some sh*thole, had to have batburgers last year, the economy, perhaps of the world, takes a punch right in the crotch.
And the rot of fiatbux means the house of cards could all come tumbling down.
Possibly in a matter of weeks. Or months. Or hours. Or never.

No one has any effing idea whether or not, nor how fast and far, such a collapse could go.

And it doesn't even require even one single person more outside China to get corona virus, (or whatever-in-hell this is).

That's enough rose-colored glasses for one morning.
Think it over yourself.

And have a happy day.

Sunday, February 9, 2020

Robert Conrad R.I.P.

Dead at 84 (just shy of number 85), of natural causes, at his home in Malibu, CA.
Gravel-voiced tough-guy (who was the 5'8" in his studio bio only in cowboy boot heels), who achieved television immortality by playing the western version of 007, and thwarting criminal masterminds in perfect 4 act teleplays on The Wild, Wild West from 1965-1969, wherein he did most of his own fights and stunts. Then again as a closer-than-most as Pappy Boyington on Baa Baa Black Sheep, which famously was a show that wouldn't die, a star who was embarrassingly popular, and launched any number of careers of lesser stars through the Universal Studios/Stephen J. Canell/Donald Bellisario  TV dynasties.
I met Conrad several times in the 1980s, and the real Pappy Boyington once in the mid-1980s at about age 70, and they were more alike than you'd imagine (including looking like if you looked at him cross-eyed, even at age 70, and he'd have taken a poke at you. Really. And given you a run for your money.) Boyington's motto was "Show me a hero, and I'll show you a bum", which I think rang true to Conrad's persona and style. But Conrad was gracious and personable by all accounts, and didn't let his TV personas go to his head. He just knew he was delivering the goods the fans wanted, in his prime.
Survived by a wife, an ex-wife, and eight children between the two marriages.

Gonna be quite a few faces on tonight's In Memoriam section.

Sunday Music: Wicked Game

Selected for a host of reasons.
Kick-ass tune (Top Ten Hit in 1991).
Valentine's Day is coming up fast.
The song-story: BTDT, got the t-shirt.
It's on a short list of tunes in my vocal range, such that I could walk out on something like AGT and nail this one, cold, ten times out of ten, without getting X'ed off the stage and collecting thrown rotten fruit on the way to the wings after an epic 'don't-quit-your-day-job' mocking by Simon Cowell, nor causing hearing injury to canines.
And that means if it comes on, it stays on, until it's over. And I can hold that penultimate line longer than Chris did, if it comes to it. But he got there first.