Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

This is St. Patrick’s Day and, although I didn’t wear green today, Sena got me some Irish beer. It’s Guinness Extra Stout. The back label extols the virtues:

“Intense characterful and bold, Guinness Extra Stout is the pure expression of our brewing legacy. Bittersweet, with subtle hints of hops, dark fruits and caramel, this stout is a testament to great brewing.”

That dark fruit better not be dates or prunes. It’s brewed in Ireland.

This being Friday night, I wonder if John Heim (aka Big Mo) will mention anything about St. Patrick’s Day tonight on the KCCK Big Mo Blues Show, radio station 88.3 in Cedar Rapids or 106.9 in Iowa City.

Maybe he’ll mention May Ree and her hand-battered catfish. It’s better because it’s battered. Maybe the recipe includes a couple of bottles of Guinness Extra Stout, with notes of dark fruits and caramel. Dark fruits which are not dates, I hope. Allowable notes can be sharp or flat, blue, high, or low—but not dates.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

St. Patrick’s Day Reflections: COVID-19 Vaccine 2nd Jab and More

This morning I got my 2nd COVID-19 vaccine shot at the Health Care Support Services Building (HSSB)—just in time for St. Patrick’s Day, as luck would have it. Sena got her first shot yesterday and is scheduled for her second next month. I forgot to wear green, which worried me a little while I was waiting in line when the lady ahead of me poked a lot of fun at a guide for the same sin. He pointed to something bright green on the sole of his shoe, which I didn’t inspect too closely, and which didn’t pass the lady’s inspection.

After my first shot last month, I had some swelling, soreness, redness, and itching in my left arm which didn’t limit my activities. Today, the nurse affirmed that my symptoms after the first shot were not uncommon and that I might have more symptoms after my second shot—or none at all. Like my first experience, the process was very smooth and fast.

I didn’t pay much attention to the type of vaccine I got. I felt lucky to get it. All three, Johnson and Johnson, Moderna, and Pfizer are effective. According to a recent news report, about 88% of Americans who got the first dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine completed the 2-shot series, based on a CDC study of 12 million people.

In other important news, just this past Sunday I spread crab grass preventer and fertilizer on our lawn. On Monday, I shoveled snow from our driveway. Sena assured me that the snow would not hinder the lawn treatment. In fact, things are greening up nicely for St. Patrick’s Day.

The robins have probably been around for about a week. I noticed a robin standing in the street Monday while the snow was coming down. It was mesmerized and seemed to be thinking like me, “Just my luck. Now what?” But the robin didn’t have to shovel a driveway. Luck comes and goes.

I nearly got a 29-hand playing cribbage with Sena last night. She nearly always wins. The odds of getting a 29-hand are 1 in 216,580. In my hand I had the jack of spades and 3 of the four 5 cards. All I needed was a spade 5 cut card, which I did not get. Some players think cribbage is 2/3 luck and 1/3 skill. You need both.

Me and the robin keep looking for the warmer spring sun, and any other good fortune which is coming—and not dependent just on luck.

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