I Got It Wrong; How Embarrassing But I Can At Least Admit To It; Dubai Becomes The Vaccine Hero of the Western World; A Drastic Switch in a Teenage Crushes: Wisdom from Former London Lover; A Biography Gone Bad with Wisdom From The New Yorker; A Retread Comes to Life; A Mission to Claim Zambia; A Photograph of Rings on My Fingers

It was rather a shock, did some basic vaccine Googling focusing upon the Middle Ease. This is what I found from a reputable news source: “The UAE has overseen the second-fastest vaccination campaign in the world after Israel, announcing on Wednesday that some 9.9 million vaccine doses had been administered to its mostly-expat population of roughly 10 million. Abu Dhabi approved the use of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine on Wednesday, reversing course on its previous strategy of only using the Chinese-made Sinopharm vaccine.” Now contrast that to my ‘precious’ Qatar. Nonetheless, I absolutely refuse to pain my face like the UAE flag – I do have some pride. It is one thing to admit you are wrong but quite another thing to have stripes all over my face in colors that are not flattering. There is more, and this from CNBC; “DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — The United Arab Emirates will consider “strict measures” to limit the movement of people unvaccinated against the coronavirus, as it seeks to ramp up a national inoculation campaign that has already administered more than 9.9 million shots. “Strict measures are being considered to restrict the movement of unvaccinated individuals and to implement preventive measures such as restricting entry to some places and having access to some services, to ensure the health and safety of everyone,” Saif Al Dhaheri, a spokesman for the UAE’s National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority, said in a statement late Tuesday.” Of course there are the nay sayers tweeting away. Twitter is a travesty – anyone can say anything with nothing at all to back them up and nary a question of their authority to speak. Remember that guy called Trump?? Here is the sane approach. “We are all responsible towards society and have a role in preserving its health and safety, the vaccine is our best means to recover and return to a normal life.” Individual freedom the naysayers assert. Well m – they can take their own life, should they choose, but there is no reason they have to take others down with them.

More information abounds. “Residents of neighboring Dubai, the Gulf country’s most populous emirate, can choose from Sinopharm, Pfizer-BioNTech, Oxford-AstraZeneca, or Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine free of charge, though Sinopharm was made universally available to adults months before the others. The UAE became the first country to approve the shot for use last year, and partnered with China, a major buyer of Gulf oil, to manufacture vaccines locally.
“The more tools we have at our disposal, the better,” Simon Bland, CEO of the Global Institute for Disease Elimination told CNBC on Wednesday. “Many countries have got several vaccine candidates that they’re using and I don’t think there is anything unusual in that, I think some diversity is valuable.”

What did I do about this on a personal level? I switched my teenage crush from the Emir of Qatar to a man in Australia and another who just might live in the UAE. Two for the price of one. Now this is hysterically funny. Two for the price of one is a song by ABBA: the song is about “our pathetic love-starved hero answering an ad for the girl of his dreams”.[1] The song’s lyrics describe a male custodian answering a personal ad for two women seeking a threesome.

Well I do not think that a threesome would be possible with these two men – anyway I would hope not. Well, they both have beards but other than that – do not have a great deal in common – well, except me.

Former London Lover declared that the thing he loved best about me is my strong opinions But coupled with the ability to listen and then change course, change my opinion in light of new evidence. Other insights are provided by Wise Man, who has tracked my history.
He: Alexis! When You are Done, You are Done.
Me: Well, you are right about that and I walk away, not looking back. But sometimes I can forgive and then a relationship may grow – based on different terms and conditions.

Now I am not altogether naive. Dubai has strong motivation to clean this up and Expo 2020 became Expo 2021 because of the virus and it is a major money maker for the country. The the Crown Prince of Dubai worked most diligently to bring Expo to Dubai, I guess the Emir thinks he can sit on his hands as the World Cup will not take place until 2022. I do not know, believe me I am not an expert on men – particularly, it seems, Arab men.

So I am not only embarrassed by my poor choice of Kings and Princes but also from recent, and quite shocking news, concerning a biography which was praised in a prior blog. I was not alone in praising it, HOWEVER, this was revealed in a April 23 New Yorker article written by Alexandra Swartz. “The author of one of the year’s biggest books has been accused of sexual assault. Strangely, it was precisely his subject that exposed him to scrutiny” Well, yes indeed, the title of this well written and researched treasure is Blake Bailey, Philip Roth, and the Biography That Blew Up. Here are some excerpts from the piece. The first biographer Miller, basically fired himself, although he and Roth were bosom buddies (so to speak) . Schwartz writes: “It didn’t work out, for various reasons. Roth had wanted Miller to refute a familiar charge, “this whole mad fucking misogynistic bullshit!” that he felt flattened his long erotic history into one false accusation. But Miller came to his own conclusion. “There is a predatory side to both Sandy and Philip,” he told a cousin of Roth’s. (Sandy was Roth’s older brother.) “They look at women—I’m not gonna write about this—but they are misogynist. They talk about women in that way.”

So Bailey was hired to replace Miller and the book got rave reviews. But something horrendous happened. “But the book’s readers are now limited in number. On Wednesday, after allegations surfaced that Bailey had groomed and harassed female students in the nineteen-nineties, when he was an eighth-grade English teacher at Lusher School, in New Orleans—and that he had raped two women, including a former student—his publisher, W. W. Norton, halted distribution of the biography. Bailey was dropped by his literary agency earlier in the week.” Well oops. Swartz does a careful analysis. “This turn of events is so shocking, so disturbing, that it is hard to know where to begin. But, since this is, among other things, a story about a profound and sinister failure of accountability in the publishing world.” The effect on readers of this stained book are considered. “How will the allegations against Bailey change our reading of his book—if we read it? In a sense, they already have. It is more than a terrible irony that a biographer of a man so dogged by claims of misogyny should himself stand accused of violence against women; it besmirches the whole enterprise. A number of women who spoke out against Bailey said that they were moved to do so after reading the book and feeling that it condoned Roth’s mistreatment of the women in his life.” Read the entire article, it is thought provoking. Here is the link: https://www.newyorker.com/culture/cultural-comment/blake-bailey-philip-roth-and-the-biography-that-backfired?utm_source=onsite-share&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=onsite-share&utm_brand=the-new-yorke

It is painful when your hero is shown to have feet of clay – in some cases, not just clay but manure. I try not to look for reasons, to justify their fall from grace (mine or the world’s), because ,under those circumstances, a lot of time is spent looking backwards. I just go hunting for a new hero to take his place – this time I found two. But one guy is, in essence, a retread – once he was exposed as having feet of clay. His feet may be mired again. Do love that word mire, you will too. Its synonyms are: bog, morass, peat bog, quagmire, quag, slough, sump, quicksand, fen, fenland, swampland, salt marsh, saltings, salina; His feet in a quagmire, s sump, a fenland.

Do admit to being unable to digest the statistics revealed in yesterday’s blog. But ending on a note of humor.
Me: Chris! We have GOT to do something about Zambia!! Only one reader?!?!

To be totally honest, do to know where Zambia is – well Africa, I am sure. That is a start.

The photograph is my right and left hands. I have rings on my fingers but not bells on my toes. I shall tell the strange story of the rings at a later time.

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