TWL: we’re gonna need a bigger y-axis

We all saw the terror in their eyes in the movie Jaws when the huge-beyond-imagination-shark was sighted up close waaaay out in the vast ocean, and one of the three dudes muttered, “We’re gonna need a bigger boat.”

Well, up close and personal, the Velcro virus, sticky and contagious, has no need for stealth because so many of its victims line up unprotected to take their turn. Brace yourselves–our former y-axis has been blown to smithereens by the caseloads this week with almost 4 million new cases. DOUBLE the number from last week. More than half a million cases each day in the US of A. So, I say we’re gonna need a bigger y-axis to graph this week’s case data.

Here’s another way to look at the data: 4-week chunks. Almost 8 million cases in the last 4 weeks.

(Again, we needed a bigger y-axis. If you’re asking what’s a y-axis? I respectfully request you stop reading this blog.)

I remember at the beginning of the pandemic checking caseloads each day and graphing and trying to model the data and predict the future: just how big was this threat? Then we took a new perspective and graphed once a week when we all realized the pandemic would not burn out in a few months. And then (holy smokes that slow boiling frog is so stupid) extending to 4-week checks when we succumbed to our dread that the time duration unit of this pandemic might be years.

Hey, we’re not frogs in a pot. The human race has highly intelligent members. They brought us electricity, ice cream, cell phones, nuclear bombs, indoor plumbing, Dopler radar, medicines to extend your life by decades, glorious music, heart-stopping art, plastic, polyester, Broadway, food… Hell, they let you fly. And then there are those who enjoy all these benefits without understanding any of the threads that hold society together. Many are quite loud. Some whine and complain. A bunch are suspicious of all they don’t comprehend. Together they are proud team members with the Velcro virus: Team COVID, the winning team. Team HUMANs are being demolished.

Indulge me: One more graph of cases in 2020, 2021, and so far in 2022. Let’s check in on this graph occasionally to see how long in 2022 Americans need to surpass our previous yearly record. Yeah, that’ll be fun.

No suspense here. No shark beneath the boat. No need to wonder and lose sleep. This is simple math, right? If we keep up a steady 5 million cases a week pace, we’ll beat last year by mid-February. We’ll need a bigger y-axis by spring. Holy crap.

What do you think of that?

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