I’ve been surprised at how many people have gotten the COVID vaccine shot around here.

Some of the most Democrat-hating, Trump supporters around are loudly bragging about having “got the shot.”

Don’t get the wrong idea.

People who were wildly offended by the idea of a piece of cloth on their face aren’t getting the shot. And they never will. And they will somehow avoid getting COVID and when the rest of us have done the work to get rid of this virus, they will say, “Pfft. I knew it wasn’t real all along, sheep.”

The latest numbers show around half of adults, about 150 million people, have gotten the first vaccine and the majority of those have gotten the second shot, but a number that is starting to be noticed have never gotten the second shot.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates about five million people haven’t gotten the second vaccine, missing the appointment they had set up. I would guess the bulk of them are fearful of the side effects some people are reporting from the second shot. There are several different side effects, but basically you feel like you have a very bad case of the flu.

Another reason is that from day one it’s been known the first vaccine was 80% effective. I’m sure some people say isn’t that good enough? Every year the flu shot barely climbs above 50% effective, so shouldn’t 80% be perfect?

I’m not a scientist or doctor, so I don’t know if one shot is enough. The second shot gets you to 95% effective, and in medical terms that’s considered as close to immune as you can get.

If somebody said I’m going to shoot at you, but there’s an 80% chance I’ll miss, unless you jump to the right, in which case it’s 95% guaranteed I’ll miss, would you jump to the right or would you stand there and think 80% is pretty good odds you’ll still be alive in five seconds?

I got both shots earlier this year and didn’t have any real side effects from either one. Briefly felt like I had a mild cold with the second one, but it was February, so maybe it actually was a mild cold.

But I have known people, including relatives, who got the full table of side effects. And according to some, it is not a fun trip. Headaches, chills, fever, runny nose, body aches and so on.

For some it only lasted a day or two, others for a week. But now, hopefully, they will be fine if they get exposed to the virus.

The president has said he’s confident the world will be pretty much back to normal by the Fourth of July. Even though the number of vaccine shots being given has gone down some, I could see so many people being vaccinated by July 4 that cookouts and parades are seen across the country.

And being back to normal is something we all want. Going outside, going to movies, going shopping without a mask and hoping those who have refused to wear a mask will just stay on the other side of the store.

There is the thought that we’ll never really be back to normal, or at least not until everybody who remembers this time is gone. COVID is going to leave a mark and we’ll always be wary of anything that comes along that can’t be explained at first, but starts killing people.

And there are those in the scientific field who say COVID will seem like a walk in the park when a real virus hits with a death rate of 50% of more. Sure, it sounds like they might have read “The Stand” too many times, but we really have no idea what’s out there, either nature made or created by man.

But life will go on and so will we, unless a virus comes along and has a 100% death rate and we join the dinosaurs. Until then, go ahead and get the second shot. It might make you sick for a little bit, but at least this virus won’t be the one that takes you out.

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