Movies to watch to pass time during quarantine

Ever since COVID-19 the world has been on quarantine, putting on pause the entertainment world. Many things have been canceled like, professional sports, movie releases, and concerts. It would be an understatement if I said I was bored, so here’s some of my favorite movies to watch in quarantine.

While we are on quarantine I’ve had a lot of time to catch up on the movies I haven’t watched in the past few years. Here are some recommendations for movies to watch that can be found on major streaming platforms like Hulu, Netflix, and Disney+

To fit the mood, you can start off by watching movies that are about apocalypses, and the world ending.

2012 is about a man trying to keep his family safe as strings of natural disasters engulf the world.

If you’re looking for an apocalyptic movie The Train To Busan is your best choice. Produced in South Korea, this movie follows a father and daughter on their way to Busan from Seoul. When a zombie apocalypse breaks out, they are forced to make difficult decisions on their journey to escape the zombies (Uses subtitles).

During this time I have also decided to binge watch fandom movie series like The Marvel Cinematic Universe, Star Wars, and Harry Potter. You can watch the MCU and Star Wars on Disney+ and can buy Harry Potter on Amazon Prime. 

Since the movie theaters have closed temporarily many movies haven’t been able to come out. Some movie companies have turned to putting their movies on streaming services. You can now watch Onward and Frozen 2 on Disney+ if you have a subscription to the streaming service.

On Amazon Prime, YouTube, and Vudu you can rent Trolls World Tour for twenty dollars.

With other movies that were meant to come out March through May, many companies have come out with new release dates for the movies. Disney’s Mulan will be released on July 4, 2020 and Black Widow will be released on November 6, 2020. 

 

What is Seasonal Depression?

As the seasons are changing, people are able to do more outside and are less confined to their houses. Many people also find that they have more energy than they did in the winter months.

This could be because of Seasonal Affective Disorder or SAD. It is a type of depression that, according to the Mayo Clinic, is related to changes in seasons. They also say that most symptoms, in people with SAD, start in the fall and continue through the long winter months. In some less common cases, people have been known to be affected in the spring and early summer.

SAD is very common in the United States, according to the Cleveland Clinic, with approximately half a million people suffering from it each year. This is more likely to start in young adulthood, but children and teens could also experience SAD. People who live far north and south of the equator are also found to be more likely to be affected. 

Most of the symptoms are the same as depression. The most common symptoms, according to Cleveland Clinic, are:

  • Sadness
  • Anxiety
  • Increased need for sleep
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Withdrawal from social activities
  • Loss of interest in usual activities 

The treatment for SAD varies depending on the severity of the case. Anti-depressants work in some cases but the most recommended treatment is light therapy and spending more time outside. Light therapy is when a device containing white fluorescent light is placed at a distance of 2-3 feet away from the patient. It is used as a substitute for sunlight, which has been shown to improve the patient’s moods. 

If you have diagnosed with SAD there are multiple things to do to keep your symptoms from returning. One thing to do is to try and spend time outside, even when it’s cloudy, the sunlight will still help. A second thing that is helpful is to eat well-balanced meals with lots of vitamins, even though you body might be craving starchy and sweet foods. Another thing that would help with SAD is exercising for thirty minutes a day, at least three times a week. 

Louisiana police use siren from ‘The Purge’ to signal quarantine

The Purge siren goes out with an announcement.

Louisiana had to put a quarantine into place due to being one of the places with the fastest spread of the coronavirus. Curfew is 6am to 9pm, and violation can result in a citation. Employees going to and from work must have documentation from their employer.

The police used a siren to signal that curfew had begun and to stay inside. However, they were unaware that the siren was used in the 2013 movie The Purge. In the film, the siren announces the beginning of a twelve hour period where all crime is legal. I’m sure for people who knew about the movie, this would have been terrifying to hear, especially at night.

The police issued an apology, and stated that the siren would be not used again. After getting numerous complaints, they assured the public that it was not a prank set out by the department, and it was an honest mistake.

The Purge is an incredibly successful horror film franchise. It has spawned four films and a T.V. show. A fifth film was slated for a 2020 release, but production was most likely stopped due to the virus. In the series, all crime is legal for a 12 hour period once a year. Hearing this type of siren late at night must have been scary for some people, and luckily the police department was able to catch their mistake on the first night they used it.

Why aren’t there any supplies?: How COVID-19 is impacting the supply chain

We are in a time unlike any our generation has ever faced. With millions of people out of work, and many quarantining at home, it’s crazy how much our world has changed in a short amount of time. However, one of the most pressing issues is the lack of supplies for both healthcare workers and people at home. 

Masks, gloves, and hand sanitizer are all important supplies to prevent the spread of disease. But for most of these supplies in high-demand, there aren’t nearly enough to go around. According to the New York Times, crucial supplies for saving lives are also running out. Ventilators and other life saving equipment are at shortages. Test kits are in high demand and are rarely handed out. This prevents people from being diagnosed and given the proper assistance to stop the spread and get healthy again. Masks, gloves, and other protective supplies continue to be in high demand; not only for health care workers, but for people everywhere.

At home, materials like toilet paper, packaged food, and other household items are becoming increasingly harder to find in stores. So, why are we experiencing all of these shortages and what can we do about it?

According to Vox, there are many reasons fr these shortages. Many are caused by major problems in the supply chain. Demand for these products is up, but suppliers have experienced many disruptions. Many American companies rely on overseas suppliers for materials and finished products. Any delay in overseas shipping can create a “domino effect” in regards to product availability.

Another major problem in the supply chain is caused by the amount of people out of work. With more people home sick, less of these products are being made, shipped, stocked and delivered.

So, what are companies doing to help meet the needs given such high demand for supplies? According to Johns Hopkins University, manufacturers and retailers have been working to improve things for consumers, even if it may not be immediately beneficial for business. For example, grocery stores have established dedicated shopping times for the elderly and other high risk individuals to allow access without exposure to others. Stores have also been imposing limits on the number of people allowed in the building to shop at a given time. Some stores are also rationing high-demand products by putting a limit on how much a customer can buy.

However, not all of this is on the manufacturers. We consumers need to take responsibility and realize that our actions have impacts on others. Avoid stockpiling and be aware that others may be in more need of a product than you.

And most importantly, stay home and social distance. The more we all do this, the sooner things will be able to get back to normal. 

Animal cloning in recent years

I know cloning sounds like a fictional plot from a sci-fi movie, but in 2020, this is a real practice.

There are ways we can help animals to become healthier through this. An example of this is when goats were cloned to produce more of a protein called antithrombin. The protein antithrombin goes through the bloodstream and reduces blood clots. They were bred now having more quantities of this protein. The research can be found by clicking this link.

When an organism is cloned, cells from that organism are harvested. They are then placed into the reproductive system of another, in attempt to grow the cells. Here is a more specific glance into the process of cloning.

A somatic cell is taken from the being that is going to be cloned. Then the nucleus of that cell is extracted. Why do we need to remove the nucleus? Well because that is what holds the organism’s DNA, which is what we need in order to clone it. The rest of the cell is discarded. After that, the nucleus of an egg cell is taken out from a donor organism, and replaced with the somatic cell nucleus. In hopes of the transfer working, they stimulate cell division in the new egg. With success, the egg divides. After division, the egg will be fertilized and transferred to a surrogate animal, which will carry the egg to term. The transfer has a high chance of failure, which is what makes the process an expensive one.

Human cloning is not yet possible. There is no federal US law that strictly prohibits it, though in 13 states it isn’t permitted.

Scientists are working on better ways of animal cloning. Animals that are cloned are known to have problems and mutations. There are health risks as well. The focus is to adjust the cloning process in order to produce healthy animals. Pushing forward in these sciences gives us hope that in the future we will have healthy animal clones, and we will continue to advance forward.

Businesses staying open during COVID-19 quarantine

From staying cautious, to a full quarantine shutdown, the coronavirus has affected many things as it has escalated quickly. Recently, nonessential stores were closed to slow the curve of its spread. But as many stores fight to stay open and argue to be an essential, what remains open during this time? 

One place that has to stay open is, of course, grocery stores and places that carry items that people need to replenish frequently as an important, or essential item. That includes large companies like Target, Walmart, Costco, and Cub Foods, as well as some smaller businesses like Lunds and Byerlys.

Fortunately, they have remained cautious and found ways to keep a six foot distance between customer and employees sometimes by using certain markers to stand on or even plexiglass divides.

Pet stores are also deemed necessary as they carry food for animals and pets that people own. From the standard dog food, available at any stores that carries groceries, to feeder insects for more unique animals, like reptiles. 

First responders are also expected to remain present at their jobs. These jobs include police officers, firefighters, paramedics, emergency medical technicians, and other trained members of important organizations. Though they have taken precautions and provided masks to some workers, a few first responders have become the patients after being tested and quarantined for coronavirus. 

As for restaurants and fast food places, many have stayed open and found ways to work around the suggested guidelines, or distances, of the coronavirus. Many places have limited the number of people allowed inside a store at one time or even switched to delivery or drive thus. But this raises the question, do places like Dairy Queen or Starbucks “need” to be open?

There are still many flaws that stem from stores being closed depending on how important they are. Many different businesses have argued and manipulated the system to remain open. Some of these places include Hobby Lobby, Michael’s, Joann Fabrics, and many more. Though it may seem pointless to keep them open from an outsider’s view, businesses risk closing because of the lack of human traffic and income. This also means that many employees would be laid off, making it especially difficult for those who live paycheck to paycheck. 

But, as many companies lose business, Amazon and online shops become the safer and better option for many people. Though it may seem like a good idea, be careful how dependent you are when ordering from these sites as deliveries have become significantly slower to arrive as people turn to this no contact, quarantine friendly, way of buying goods. 

Circus ban

All around the world, circuses travel and entertain people everywhere they go. Performers do flips, tricks, and balance on the craziest things. Something almost every circus uses is animals, which are often loved by children. 

Despite bringing huge success to the circus, people are arguing for animals to be taken out of circuses for multiple reasons.

Circus animals have the right to be protected and treated humanely under the Animal Welfare Act. Circuses often ignore that, and a couple examples of this are: using trailers that have splintering wood, and having sharp, protruding metal pieces near animals’ cages.

When it comes to taming the animals, trainers use whips, tight collars, muzzles, electric prods, bullhooks and other painful tools to force animals to perform. Tigers naturally fear fire, but they are still forced to jump through fire hoops in some circuses and have been burned multiple times. 

Other than physically being abused, animals are also mentally abused. During the off-season, animals used in circuses are sometimes put in small traveling crates. The confinement has harmful psychological effects on them that are often indicated by unnatural behavior such as repeated swaying, and pacing. 

Virtually 96% of a circus animal’s life is spent in chains or cages. 11 months a year they travel over long distances in box cars with no climate control; sleeping, eating, and defecating in the same cage until they die.

Not only does this hurt animals though, it also hurts people. Since 1990, there have been more than 123 documented attacks on humans by captive large cats in the United States, 13 of which resulted in fatal injuries.

As animals everywhere get abused, the senate in Colorado is passing Senate Bill 125, called the Traveling Exotic Animal Safety Protection Act. “Circus animals often have quite difficult lives, and this bill aims to prevent exotic animals from being used in such a way here in our state,” Rachel Zenzinger, a Colorado state senator said.

Colorado is putting up a bill to ensure animals are being fairly treated. Circus animals are often abused and mistreated until the day they die. As time goes on, it only puts more animals in danger. Circuses should be discontinued if they continue to hurt animals.

‘Map Of The Soul: 7’ album review

On February 21st, BTS dropped their 4th full album Map Of The Soul: 7. Having already sold 3.24 million copies during its first week of pre orders, Map Of The Soul: 7 was on its way to being the most sold album of the year. Within its first week after being released, it had sold 3.37 million copies; breaking the Hanteo chart history, and BTS’s last record of 2 million (for Map Of The Soul: Persona).

In March, it debuted three songs on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart (with “onat number 4, “My Timeat number 84, and “filter” at number 87). This marks BTS’s sixth week on top in the Artist 100 as a duo/group. This means that this is one of the most successful albums during their seven years together as a group.

During an interview for WBLI, RM explained what Map Of The Soul: 7 meant for them. “It’s like a big diary book for BTS so I’m how we went through all the ups and downs, rise and falls and yeah just we like to summarize it like it’s made into a small book that we called 7.” To go deeper into that, they have created an album to represent their seven years together as idols and the trials they went through while being in the eyes of the public and finding themselves without losing themselves forever. Not only did this album succeed in telling the beautiful journey of BTS, but it also teaches the youth that you don’t have to lose yourself completely just so you can fit in with what’s around you.

In the album there are twenty songs, fifteen new songs, and five olds songs from Map Of The Soul: Persona.

My top two would be “Shadowand My Time.” “Shadowis Suga’s solo song where he tells us about how when Yoongi was younger he dreamed of being at the top of the music industry. When he finally gets there, as Suga, he realized how lonely he had become. He talks about how Yoongi wants to run away from his anxiety (Suga) of losing all he’s earned. At the end of the song he concludes with Suga telling him that they are one and that will never change.

“My Time,on the other, hand is Jungkook’s solo song on the album. This song relates to where he first joined BTS. He was a fifteen-year-old boy sent to entertainment companies to support his family. In the song, he sings about not being able to call people or hang out, or doing normal things due to him being an idol. Because of this he wishes he could do all these things and now he is.

I would give this album a 9/10 personally. I think this isn’t the best album that they have put out. But this is a great example of the duality music BTS puts out to show known fans.

How the coronavirus has impacted my job

So, today we are going to talk about how the coronavirus has affected me in my job.

Well, at the start of the coronavirus outbreak we were still working in the Science Museum. However, after a while it called for us to just stay home and then eventually we were laid off, but temporarily, I’ll be working soon I think.

Working from home is a lot different than working at a location. I don’t get to see people at all unless we are in a video; there is no physical interaction. I can’t tease a coworker, hi-five them maybe, congratulate them in person too, and I used to talk to them one-on-one. No, it’s just all online; like we’re looking at video screens and you know sometimes multiple people try to talk and we have to make a rule to not talk while others are talking because it gets way too confusing.

Then there’s the fact that we like to have icebreakers and, we can’t really do that, but we have been playing online games together like trivia games, scribble.io and trivia murder. Those are fun games to play during this quarantine but then working with others can be hard as well because we have to leave the call and find another way to call our partners that we are working with.

So, we ended up starting a Discord where we can talk to each other but that wasn’t looking as professional so they decided to go with Slack, which is like Discord, but for work. It’s much easier to do work stuff in Slack, like make documents, but then you know we got a message saying that we would all get temporarily laid off.

It’s been maybe a month since I’ve been laid off and it sucks. I don’t get to talk to my people anymore and, you know, I don’t get to make money. I don’t get to, you know, have time to go buy stuff for my family now because I’m trying to conserve a little bit of money.

I have to watch my little brother now like a lot more than usual because, you know, mom’s got to work on her laptop with the video calls, because she can’t go into work and, you know, he likes to make a lot of noise so now he’s just in my room when I wake up usually.

So, in conclusion, quarantine sucks a lot for all of us, but there are still ways for us to stay connected and to help each other out. Just look at the image below, these are people in my
apartment complex trying to help each other in the dire time of need.

How can I help with donations?

While we are all under strict social distancing/stay at home orders/quarantine, many people are looking for ways to help the brave people who are risking their own health in order to make sure people who have contracted COVID-19 are able to recover. Many of us have people in our lives who are essential workers such as nurses, doctors, or other people in other medical professions.

Since the beginning of this outbreak, people have been buying materials in bulk that these medical professionals need in order to do their jobs safely. According to the New York Times, early in April, a man was arrested for hoarding “192,000 N95 respirators, 130,000 surgical masks, and nearly 600,000 medical grade gloves.” The man was arrested for lying to federal agents about selling the supplies back to hospitals with a 700% mark up. 

Even though those supplies are being distributed to hospitals in New York and New Jersey, many hospitals don’t have enough supplies and have begun taking donations of cloth masks. According to the Hennepin Healthcare page, they are taking donations of cloth masks for staff who do not need medical-grade protective equipment. They, like many other organizations, have provided a pattern to make the masks and designated drop off times.

Hospitals are also accepting donations of unused medical supplies as suppliers are not able to produce as much as all the hospitals need. Finding these products also becomes difficult when people are panic buying supplies in much larger quantities than they could possibly use. If possible, please consider spending some of your time while social distancing making these masks for our health care workers who are putting themselves in danger to help others.