Vaccine protocols confuse and confound

OK, this is complaint time by the few Old Men of the Mountain spoken to, plus just plain old folks that are not partakers of the past breakfasts, but could be because they are the age of this scribe, which puts them in the category of older than dirt, fire, and water.

The complaint is trying to either get on a list or make an appointment for the COVID vaccination shots. Many of the seniors in the Hilltowns and remote areas of Albany County find this futile or darn near impossible. 

A couple of the OFs mentioned one particular rule or protocol that makes no sense at all, and that is: Why can’t a husband and wife be vaccinated at the same time?

These OFs were told that the husband can make his appointment and then the wife must make hers, or the husband can make hers but it must be a separate appointment. Hmmm.

One OF explained that his may be on April 15 in Utica, and hers on April 20 in Plattsburgh. Duh, and who knows where and when the second shot will be. Come now, does this make any sense, or are the OFs hearing it wrong?

Next complaint. The OFs opined that calling the 4-4-7 number, as outlined by the county, is a waste of time. The OFs spoken to get the routine answer that all the personnel are busy so leave your name and number and someone will get back to you.

There must be no one there by the name “someone” because that “someone” never calls back. One OF commented that obviously no one works there — only a phone machine with the message that all the personnel are busy etc., etc.

One OF said he sees on TV people getting shots all over the place, and he wonders how in h--- do they do it and who do they know? Is there a secret number that is circulated by an elite few?

This scribe found that the people spoken to are well into the senior age, and most have underlying conditions, like heart trouble, cancer etc., and there they are hung out in limbo.

Most of the OMOTM are doing what they are supposed to be doing (that is most, not all). The OFs are staying home, limiting their outdoor activities to grocery shopping, and going to the doctor’s.

One OF suggested that is where he thinks vaccines should be sent — to their doctors because they know who their senior patients are, and what medical situations their seniors have. One OF even had it all planned out for them so the doctors would not have to worry about shelf-life of the vaccine.

This scribe keeps reporting that, within the Old Men of the Mountain, there is years-on knowledge in many fields, not being a doctor or having a medical degree, but the logistics of handling large groups of people in the most effective way.

This is enough of these complaints. When the number of people in the whole world is thrown into the mix, it makes the problems of the handful of people in Albany County, in the state of New York, in the United States of America, in the Northern Hemisphere, seem like a pimple on the butt of an elephant.

Doing without

This pandemic has shown that many people can do without a lot of things and that may be a good or bad thing. It takes stuff to make the world go around, stuff keeps people making stuff, and people buying stuff.

Even the OFs buy just stuff, but somebody had to make that stuff, whatever it is, or even if the OF needs it or not, but now the OFs are learning to live without stuff because (particularly older) people are afraid to go to the stores and shop, and that puts people out of work.

Virtual church

Even going to church in many cases is now different. In speaking to the Old Men of the Mountain, this scribe learned that many are going to church virtually. They are doing this via Zoom or YouTube.

This seems to work quite well for the church part but the OFs (just like the ones going to the breakfasts) are missing the human part, and to an OG they miss the personal contact. One OF mentioned missing the personal information of the families that are not on his list of close friends but in the OF’s church family.

That is very hard to do when they get together just once a week and stare at a glass screen to see what is going on.


At one point, one OF mentioned he was hoping to see the light at the end of the tunnel with the vaccinations but these shots don’t seem to be happening right now.

Another OF claims there is hope. He said dark is nothing; darkness cannot put out light for, as dim as it is, light can only go out by itself. So, as long as there is a glimmer of light, it will penetrate the darkness and right now there is light at the end of the tunnel — only it is a long tunnel. So say the OFs.

Even though it sounds like the OFs are growing exhausted from this situation they can’t control, this scribe recently received an email from an OF who sent a kitchen hint.

To wit: You know when you buy a bag of salad how it eventually gets all soggy and brown. Cookies don’t do that.