Joining the Herd

Jeff Powell
4 min readJun 27, 2021


A few of you might have spotted the short post yesterday saying that I was behind thanks to my second vaccine dose. I’d been adding to our collective chance of achieving herd immunity.

As with my previous dose, I reacted strongly. The first time around I had a fever and chills like I had never had them before, and I felt a lack of energy for well over a week.

This time I had a very high fever (103° F) for some time. And it turns out if you google [ when is a fever dangerous ] you will find the internet is full of different assumptions about just how high a fever has to be before it becomes a significant problem. I got in touch with our local health people (BC provides a phone number to call and talk to a nurse about health concerns) and they screened me for covid and other factors as part of telling me that 103° F is on “the high end of a moderate fever” and to call them back if I hit 104° F.

But just a few hours later the fever broke, and I seem to be on the mend.

My vaccine situation is definitely odd by US standards. The first dose was AstraZeneca, which isn’t even approved in the US. And the second dose is Moderna, one of the mRNA vaccines. Mix & match is a thing, and I suspect my immune system is going to be better off in the long run for having chosen this path. I could have had two doses of AstraZeneca, but that vaccine is not effective against one of the variants — B.1.351, AKA Beta — so I figured I’d get a dose of an mRNA vaccine that is effective against it. And since Canada is at the mercy of the vaccine manufacturers, at the moment Moderna is the one available.

In any case, I am now fully vaccinated, and quite happy about it. In three weeks I will be very comfortable going out in public again, at least until some new variant comes along that gets through the vaccines. (Ahem… don’t go google [ delta plus variant ] unless you are a professional worrier, like me.)

The big news this week was the installation of the public art project I helped build in my last term at Langara college. It was designed by my friend Heather, and we (the entire class) got it fabricated, but Covid shut the world down and we didn’t have time to paint it or get it hung.

As it happens, the course instructor managed to get it finished up and on Wednesday it was mounted on campus:

Installation in progress — Click to enlarge

Above are three views of the installation. Medium isn’t letting me rearrange the images as I’d like, sadly, but they are:

  • The crane hoisting the work up to the location.
  • The last wave being attached.
  • Aaron Nelson Moody and Devon Knowles talking as the work is hoisted off the ground. Devon was our Public Art instructor and Aaron is another instructor on campus and has partnered with Devon in more recent classes.

And here are three views of the final installation. Heather titled it Tidal.

Tidal — Click to enlarge

You can see the movement in the piece, the great colours Heather picked, and the lovely way it all comes together. And yes, that is Heather herself doing the Vanna White pose in the last photo.

It is my understanding the piece will be up for about a year. After that it remains to be seen what happens. Devon suggests it might be possible to find a permanent home for it at some suitable location in the area, and I’d love to see that happen. If that falls through, though, I’ve offered to take it in and hang it on our house. I think we have a place for it, and it would be lovely. And of course if Heather wants it back we could arrange that as well, so long as we’re still here.

There isn’t much else to report this week. The guest bathroom repaint is close to done, but I have no photos. And nothing else much matters as we slam into a heatwave that is seeing predicted high temperatures peaking at about 40° C (104° F) on Monday.

Huh. Odd correlation between this heat wave and my fever, but I am not amused.

Get vaccinated, if you aren’t and can, and stay safe!



Jeff Powell

Sculptor/Artist. Former programmer. Former volunteer firefighter. Former fencer. Weirdest resume on the planet, I suspect.