Both the federal government and New York State are taking actions to prevent people from having their homes foreclosed due to inability to make mortgage payments during the virus shutdown.
I hope you’re not one of those folks who rushed out and bought up a carload of toilet paper (fun fact: the average person uses only 100 rolls in an entire year.) If so, then you can skip this story. But if you were caught with no Charmin to squeeze and can’t find any in stores yet, here is a list of alternatives to toilet paper that are safe to flush (surprisingly, they claim that “flushable wipes” are not safe to flush. Seems rather misleading.)
If you do have toilet paper, but want to make it last, count on American ingenuity to quickly launch a website that helps you calculate exactly how long your supply will last, based on your personal…uh…habits. That is, if you want to share that information with a website. Although I'm sure some people have already put it on Facebook.
The Gov. felt compelled to answer this letter from Tavane:
Governor, I was with you right up until you said "Goodness knows, that’s a more productive use of funds than just passing out money to everyone." Though it may not make a difference to you, I know many, many families who are in dire straights right now because, like many Americans, they live from paycheck to paycheck and have no reserve funds set aside to buy extras to get them through the shutdown of this country. If they do have a 401k or other savings/retirement accounts you can't just get money out of them when you want to as they have special governing rules to them highly inaccessible and also bear steep penalties if withdrawals are made. These citizens also have children who are not going to school now and they also have jobs that need them there so now have to pay for daycare of some sort so they can keep their jobs. I usually find your comments uplifting but to negate the fact that American's need financial help right now to make it through is very negative and unworthy of a man of your stature.
From the Gov:
Good heavens, Tavane, I never said or even meant to imply that the government shouldn’t offer financial assistance to people who are hurting. I said “JUST passing out money to everyone.” People in many industries are devastated right now and need help. To cite just one example, my staff and I know many in the music business (most of whom struggle to stay afloat during normal conditions) who have lost ALL their work for the foreseeable future and are at a complete loss as to what to do and how to survive. I share all of your concerns. You are right about all of this --- except the part where you say I “negate” the fact that people need help.
What I was saying is that we have to find a medical solution to this because we can’t JUST pass out money forever. That alone is a terrible long-term plan, because if we just print billions and even trillions of dollars while everyone stays home indefinitely, we surely will end up like Venezuela. But, yes, of course, we must help Americans who are hurting right now.
Still, we have to find a cure and/or a vaccine that will allow us to get back to work --- and to stay at work with no threat of a "second wave." The longer that takes, the bigger the pit we'll have to dig out of. In the meantime, though, we certainly have to help each other get through this and come out the other side.
Is Your Microwave Cupcake Russian Propaganda?
By “Huckabee” writer/pop culture guru Pat Reeder (http://www.facebook.com/hollywoodhifibook)
We’re sure that many of you who are stuck at home with the kids are turning to YouTube to hunt for easy gourmet recipes, quick fun crafts to distract the rug rats, or just tips to make your harried life easier. You will find tens of thousands of them, but be warned: not only are many of them complete lies, but many are literally Russian propaganda.
This video exposing the story was posted yesterday:
It’s by a channel called “How To Cook That” started by a food scientist. She began by offering recipe videos, then moved into videos debunking fake “life hack” videos, like the idea that you can stir some ingredients into a mug, throw it into the microwave for 60 seconds, and pull out a gourmet cupcake (spoiler alert: no, you can’t.) Or that it’s easy to make a dirty sneaker look like new -- if you replace it with a new sneaker (look closely, and you’ll see the video makers were sloppy enough to use an “after” sneaker that’s a different size from the “before” sneaker.)
This latest video reveals that thousands of these videos from channels with millions of subscribers and billions of views are all cranked out by a shadowy Russian content farm interested only in maximizing views to boost ad profits, not in telling the truth or making your life easier. This same producer has even created a few political videos, like one predicting the Russian takeover of Europe and another predicting the decline of America (see the 18:00 mark on the linked video.) Amazingly, sites such as Facebook and Google/YouTube that are stringent about banning conservatives for anything remotely questionable allow these videos to remain online. Some are even dangerous (no, you CANNOT turn a red strawberry into a white strawberry by soaking it in bleach. It gets whiter, but do NOT eat it! It's full of bleach!)
YouTube is filled with great videos showing real crafts and recipes. For instance, EmmyMadeInJapan is one of our favorite legit channels; and Emmy’s new video is about how to make an easy, delicious pasta dish from things in your pantry, including ketchup:
Before you try anything you see on YouTube, check out a few of the other “How To Cook That” exposes of channels such as “Five Minute Crafts.” Be skeptical and remember that if it looks too easy to be true, it probably is. Otherwise, you might end up wasting time and money, injuring yourself or your kids, or having to scrape an explosion of burned-on yuck out of your microwave.
Movie theaters are asking Washington for loan guarantees, tax breaks and emergency funds to help them survive the shutdown caused by the coronavirus. They’d better pray that President Trump doesn’t say, “Okay, I’ll consider that, but first let me check to see what Hollywood’s been saying about me for the past few years…”
For Future (or Distant Past) Reference: If you are ordered to stay inside to keep from spreading the coronavirus, that does not mean it's okay to go outside, as long as you're dressed as a Tyrannosaurus Rex.
If your kids are going stir-crazy (and driving you crazy) being stuck at home, why not let them use their time productively by learning to draw, with free lessons on YouTube from award-winning children’s book illustrator, Mo Willems?