Posts Tagged ‘Coronavirus’

Covid-19 Vaccine Adventures (2-Verse Limerick Plus Vaccine Scheduling Tips)

Tuesday, March 2nd, 2021

What follows is:

1: A two-verse limerick about my adventures (and difficulties) in booking Covid-19 vaccine appointments in New York City for hubby Mark and me. (And yes, we both easily qualify by age.)

2: A blow by blow description of how I finally managed to snag vaccine appointments in the doesn’t-deserve-to-be-called-a-system New York Covid-19 vaccine scheduling “system.”

(I hope that the information I provide below my 2-verse limerick proves helpful to those who are having similar vaccine-booking problems, both in and outside of New York.)

Fin’lly got my first shot. So did Mark,
After problems with booking them — stark!
New York’s issue-packed system
(too many to list ’em)
Is so bad, I have fantasies — dark.

So how did I schedule our shots
In a system so tied up in knots?
“Push notifications”
Resolved our frustrations;
We were saved by some fine Twitter bots.

If you’re having problems booking Covid-19 vaccine appointments, here’s how I did it in New York City. I hope it helps you too. (Even if you live in another state, some of my info just might be applicable to you.)

1. After trying all the obvious methods for booking vaccine appointments, and failing abysmally, I searched Google to find out if anybody had created a Covid-19 vaccine appointment locator bot in New York. I used search phrases such as covid-19 vaccine New York bot and Covid-19 vaccine New York tracker bot.

This led me to these two Twitter accounts: @turbovax and @nycshotslots. (If you are having trouble getting a vaccination appointment outside of New York, try a similar search for your own state. And if you’re lucky, a Good Samaritan in your city or state created a comparable public bot. For example, this bot was designed for New Jersey residents, and this one was set up for Massachusetts residents.)

2. I went to Twitter, searched for both accounts, and clicked on “follow.” (I was already active on Twitter. However, if you’re not already a Twitter member, you’ll have to join it before benefiting from these or other Twitter bot accounts.)

3. For the next couple of weeks, I checked those New York bot Twitter accounts three or four times an hour. And from time to time, I actually found some potential appointments. Unfortunately, however, each time I went to snag a pair of appointments, I was already too late. This happened even when I started checking every five or ten minutes.

4. Finally, in desperation, I researched how to get “push notifications” from individual Twitter accounts. (In general, I hate and avoid push notifications. But this situation called for emergency measures!)

Fortunately, setting up Twitter push notifications on my laptop turned out to be very simple: All I had to do was return to the home pages of each of those two accounts I was already following (@turbovax and @nycshotslots) and click on the icon immediately to the left of the word “following.” (The icon looks like a bell with a plus sign.) Clicking on it turns on push notifications for that specific Twitter feed, and you’ll know it’s properly set up because after clicking on it, it will turn as dark blue as your “following” indicator button.

5. From then on, as long as I was near my laptop (and the sound was on) I’d hear a sound indicating that one of those two accounts had just tweeted. Additionally a visible notice would flash, then disappear very quickly.

6. As soon as I saw or heard one of those “push notifications” I headed to Twitter to read the latest bot tweets and see if it was for appointment locations/dates that might work for us. And the second I saw one that might be good, I clicked on the site, filled out the forms, and was able to successfully book appointments for both Mark and myself.

Even then, acting so swiftly, I ended up with appointments for us on consecutive days, and not the theoretically more desirable same day. But that actually turned out to be a blessing in disguise, because parking was impossible at that location (Hillcrest High School, Jamaica Queens, NY.)

So Mark and I took turns on consecutive appointment days, remaining in the driver’s seat, illegally parked in front of someone’s driveway with the blinkers on, ready to move the car at a moment’s notice, for as long as it took for the non-car-baby-sitter to get his/her shot.

Mark and I are both very relieved to have gotten our first shots and to have dates scheduled for our second shots. And I hope you too either have gotten (or will soon get) your Covid vaccine shots.

I also hope that you found this info helpful or, at least, enjoyed my limerick.

*****
FYI, here’s a non-Twitter New York State-wide bot that I haven’t tried, because I discovered it after booking our appointments.

Snow Musings (Limerick)

Tuesday, January 26th, 2021

I looked out the window. Saw snow.
How severe is the forecast? Don’t know.
I’d prefer a short flurry.
But why should I worry?
With Covid, there’s nowhere to go.

Limerick-Off Monday – Rhyme Word: SIDE or SIGHED at the end of any one line (Submission Deadline: May 9, 2020 at 4 p.m. (Eastern Time)

Saturday, April 25th, 2020

It’s Limerick-Off time, once again. And that means I write a limerick, and you write your own, using the same rhyme word. Then you post your limerick(s) as a comment to this post and, if you’re a Facebook user, on Facebook too.

I hope you’ll join me in writing limericks using SIDE or SIGHED at the end of any one line. (Homonyms or homophones are fine.)

The best submission will be crowned Limerick-Off Award Winner. (Here’s last week’s Limerick-Off Award Winner.)

Additionally, you may write themed limericks related to CHALLENGES, using any rhyme word. And of course I’ll present an extra award — one for the best CHALLENGE-related limerick.

How will your poems be judged? By meter, rhyme, cleverness, and humor. (If you’re feeling a bit fuzzy about limerick writing rules, here’s my How To Write A Limerick article.)

I’ll announce the winners on May 9 or 10, 2020, right before I post the next Limerick-Off. So that gives you two full weeks to submit your clever, polished verse. Your submission deadline is Saturday, May 9, 2020 at 4:00 p.m. (Eastern Time.) PLEASE NOTE THE NEW, EARLIER DEADLINE!

Here’s my SIDE-Rhymed limerick:

’Twas deceptively lovely outside,
But a problem was readily spied:
Though the sun was a-glitter,
No humans! (No litter!)
I retreated — electing to hide.

And here’s my CHALLENGE-themed limerick:

Feeling trapped in your house? Join the crowd!
(Except joining a crowd ain’t allowed.)
Though our viral constraints
May be cause for complaints,
We must cope with the challenge unbowed.

Please feel free to enter my Limerick-Off by posting your limerick(s) in my comments. And if you’re on Facebook, I hope you’ll join my friends in that same activity on my Facebook Limerick-Off post.

To receive an email alert whenever I post a new Limerick-Off, please email Madkane@MadKane.com Subject: MadKane’s Newsletter. Thanks!

Yet Another Pandemic Challenge (Limerick)

Wednesday, April 1st, 2020

The pandemic is causing a strain
On emotional health. What a bane!
We feel trapped! Tempers flare!
Can’t escape! I need air!
(Hey divorce lawyers, look for a gain.)

Who Hasn’t Had This Problem? (Limerick)

Monday, March 30th, 2020

It seems nothing I need is in stock.
I keep checking out stores, block by block.
They’ve been bought out by hoarders
And raging marauders…
Though I DID find a dusty pet rock.

An Upside To Social Distancing (Limerick)

Wednesday, March 11th, 2020

Headline: “Coronavirus is changing the way the world says ‘hello'”

Social distancing sounds fine to me!
No more hand-shaking, hugging? Whoopee!
Fewer kisses to duck?
Well that surely won’t suck!
(They are hard to fend off when you’re wee.)