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September 18, 2021

FDA Meeting Re: Pfizer Booster

The scientific advisory committee to the FDA listened to a full day of presentations about the Pfizer vaccine - its vaccine efficacy against infection and its safety.  Data was presented by a scientist from the UK, scientists from Israel, the CDC, FDA, and Pfizer.  The vaccine is still effective against severe infections, hospitalizations, and deaths.  By the end of the day agreement was reached that there was some data demonstrating that vaccine efficacy was waning in older patients with exposure to the delta variant.  When given a 3rd dose their relevant Covid antibodies increased 10-fold. In each of these studies it was still unclear whether vaccine efficacy was waning or the arrival of the delta variant, or a combination of both.   

Safety information was also reviewed in these presentations, and the advisory committee members didn't think they had enough data yet on third boosters in the younger groups of males who are at increased risk of developing myocarditis-pericarditis.  There were no new safety issues, and even though the heart side effect was rare and mild, the committee recommended that the 3rd dose be held until there is more data. Other side effects were very similar to those associated with 2nd doses.  


The original question to be answered was whether a 3rd dose of the Pfizer vaccine should be given 6 months after dose 2 to people 16 years or older.  That vote didn't pass.  But each member of the committee felt that the 3rd dose should be given to 1.) fully vaccinated people 65+ years old, at least 6 months after dose 2.  2.)  People who were at high risk because of their occupational exposures. This proposal passed unanimously.  Meanwhile more data will be accumulated and analyzed - both to see if the vaccine efficacy is dropping and to make sure that 3rd doses are safe in younger people.  That proposal passed unanimously.

It is so interesting to watch a full day of scientific data presentations and to learn from experts on vaccine efficacy and safety.  I watch every one of these advisory committee meetings and will get my 3rd dose (because I'm 65+) as soon as the CDC advisory committee meets next week to review the data and approve the FDA decision.


February 7, 2020

More Paris Sketchbook Pages: October 24

I am very slow getting sketchbook pages posted from our Fall Paris Vacation.  I love Degas, and as my husband and friends were going through the D'Orsay, I stopped at the Degas sculptures - and sketched.  The patina on this wonderful sculpture was very unusual, and I'm not sure that I captured it in paint.  


I vividly remember loving his sculptures of dancers at the Metropolitan Museum of Art when I was a college student, in part because most of my life I have taken dance classes and in college was a member of the dance group 


After the D'Orsay we walked along the Blvd San Michel to Luxembourg Gardens and the Sorbonne.  A wonderful day! 


January 28, 2020

Paris 3: October 2019

I'm still working on drawings I did when we were on vacation in Paris.  This first sketchbook page was done quickly from our apartment window before we left for the day.  But most of the drawings I did in Paris were done in Museums.  Others have said that it is very hard to keep a travel sketchbook when you are traveling with non-sketchers, and I agree. 

Building across the street and up the block.  Drawn from our apartment window.



Chaim Soutine painted by Modigliani.  Painting seen in the Memorial de la Shoah in the Marais in Paris. 


December 3, 2019

Paris Musee Picasso

I really like Picasso, especially his non-cubist drawings, paintings, ceramics etc.   We missed the reopening of the Picasso Museum 5 years ago, and I was very interested in seeing the renovated space and collection.  The building is gorgeous, and they maintained the entry and grand staircase.  The galleries seem bigger.  But I quickly realized that I see so much of Picasso's art in NYC, especially at the twice yearly Impressionist and Modern Auctions, that the museum was a little disappointing.   Half of the 4 floors were devoted to a large series of "magical portraits," which was more cubist than representational.  I read that there are 5000 pieces in the museum collection and only 10-15% are on view at any one time. 

But on one of the upper floors they have a movie with Picasso doing line sketches with paint from behind a sheet of glass - and I've always loved seeing his movie.

These are a few of the drawings I did as we went through the exhibits.  The Owl was a large ceramic sculpture - probably close to owl size.  The sleeping girl was one of a series of small, fast drawings in pencil. on a single sheet  And the other sketchbook page of scribbles were culled from a small series of his artworks.  

Picasso Owl and Girl Sleeping



More Little Scribbles


November 19, 2019

Several More Dinners in Paris

We ate at small bistros during our visit and enjoyed a few we've been to in earlier visits.

First Dinner at Le Petit Chatelet:  It is a lovely bistro near where we stayed on the Left Bank.  It had good food and a lovely ambience.  Both drawings were done during dinners there and painted at home.



Second Dinner in Le Petit Chatelet which was opened in 1951 by the grandfather of the current owner.  We enjoyed it so much the first time, we went back the night before we came home.  These drawing were done in the upstairs dining room which was the garret bedroom of the original owner.



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