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Unnoticed COVID Hotspots? – Jeff Gross

by Jeff Gross, contributing writer

With Omicron cases spiking, very little, if any, transmission sources are now talked about. It is the same old vaccinate, vaccinate, booster, booster messages, times 10. Back in the initial COVID days the supposed experts looked at transmission sources and rates of virus life on various materials for COVID – from grocery bags to doorknobs, and steering wheels. You don’t hear much conversation about wearing protective gloves, either. All the cautions about surface transmission have quieted as COVID explodes around us. The following will give you some practical information on how you can fight back against COVID while experts seem to be doing a Keystone Cop routine. We’re not powerless, at least I hope we’re not.

Cleaning levels are quite neglected now. This writer cashed out at a local supermarket and was appalled to see the cashier’s conveyor belt looking like someone gutted a fish on it. I handed my purchases to the cashier one at a time without putting them down. He stated I could put them down and I replied about the condition of the surface. I can say the one place doing the necessary cleaning in my informal survey of grocery stores, is Market Basket. Any time one enters inside the store it is spotless.  Especially the cashiers’ areas. I point out to the cashiers how great of a job they are doing with the cleaning, and they often turn red and say thanks for noticing. It’s obviously in their training, but they also take pride in what they do. I tend to make “Karens” look like amateurs but will go out of my way to highlight someone doing a great job. If the great job is above the norm than the manager will get a pay increase or another monetary benefit request for the employee.

I conducted an informal poll and found that the household items pictured are neglected by most homeowners. Since these items are used on a daily basis, it would be a good idea to wipe them down with 409 or another spray cleaner. The standing joke 2 years ago was how everyone needed to be retrained to wash their hands. This writer does this entering or returning from a store and even after wearing gloves while pumping gas. Haven’t seen a person wear gloves while pumping gas in 10 months. On average my hands are washed 20X a day. That may be excessive but keep in mind that 3 of my neighbors on both sides of me are suffering from COVID.

20X a day is rather harsh on the skin. Sarah, the owner of Hair Heart and Soul in Bristol RI gave me a high end hand cream. As much as I was concerned about being able to grip a shot gun out hunting, the hand cream is working amazingly well. Who knows, in 2 weeks I may be sipping Merlot and reading poetry?  (Note: Ladies: Hair Heart and Soul in Bristol has an extensive collection of skin products. Gentlemen (and Ladies): With Valentine’s Day rapidly approaching keep them in mind for your sweetheart.)

RIFGPA gun club members are very meticulous about COVID cleaning in the club and range buildings.  I wonder how many members wipe down their firearms or gun boxes afterward?  While the members are diligent about cleaning their firearms, Nitrobenzene (Gun Cleaning Solvent) is not an antiviral.  I must admit I have never wiped down my firearms nor gear due to a Covid concern. That just changed.

Let’s get back to the basics, right where we started off with COVID, because transmission is still something that science will have to tell us in retrospect. As we’re living with this now, so the experts are starting to say, we’d best pay attention to things we can control – if not for our physical heath – it helps with our mental health. Stay safe.

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Editor’s Note: In a pre-print study in England and Wales, where over 10,400 adults with COVID were looked at for behaviors outside the household, infection was independently associated with: leaving home for work – public transport use – and shopping.

Jeffrey “Jeff” Gross spent 21 years as an Analytical Chemist at the USCG R&D Center in Groton, Connecticut, Woods Hole Laboratories, and Helix Technologies. Changing careers is a “great learning experience for everyone”, Jeff says, and I’m an avid outdoorsman and conservationist, a student of the sciences, and the world. The US holds too many wonders not to take a chance and explore them”.

Jeff is the Model Train and Railroad entrepreneur. Proud Golden Retriever owner. Ultra strong Second Amendment Advocate and Constitutionalist. “Determined seeker of the truth”. 

Jeff is a RIFGPA Legislative and Legal Officer, Freshwater Chairman, NRA Liaison.

His subjects include Outdoors, Second Amendment, Model Railroading, and Whimsical.

He can be reached at: trainsbythe144@aol.com

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