A few hundred square miles of California are on fire right now and that really gets my goat. For the record, I prefer earthquakes to tsunamis, hurricanes, tornadoes, and wildfires. A few minutes of bed shaking and window rattling I can stand. It's the violent storm surges, sudden roof shears, whistling airborne autos, and thermonuclear razed neighborhoods that I detest.
Smoke from the Santa Rosa fires, about a hundred and twenty-five miles away as the condor flies, started to pour into the San Juan Valley over the Lomerias Muertas early this morning and by noon, it had begun to obscure the highest ridges in the Gabilan Range. The Santa Cruz television affiliates declared much of the air in the Central Coast area to be "unhealthy."
I decided this would be a good day to take some time off from the usual wandering around on foot that consumes most of my free time these days. I drove over to Hollister, sold some books, grocery shopped, and got a free flu shot at Walgreen's courtesy of Medicare Part B.
I read the Vaccine Information Sheet while I waited to get poked. The flu vaccine contains a "very small amount of a mercury-based preservative called thimerosal," said the info sheet. And now, so do I.
I asked the pharmacist about the relative dangers of thimerosal and he reassured me that "numerous" studies have been done and I would have a better chance of getting dive-bombed by a flying shark than I would have of contracting any of the approximately seven thousand rumored diseases and inflictions bandied about on the conspiracy interwebs. Funny guy. Numerous parts of me feel safe now.
This year has been so crazy for natural disasters and human catastrophes. There doesn't appear to be much that any one of us can do except roll with the jabs. And try not to breathe.
Peace, Love, and Pray for Rain,