Thursday Numbers

Quote for today…

Time is more value than money. You can get more money, but you cannot get more time. – Jim Rohn

Welcome to “Thursday Numbers!” If you are a first-time visitor, this is the weekly column where I look at the numbers in the news (in descending order) and provide commentary sometimes sprinkled with sarcasm and humor.

This week’s topics include nation, state, and local COVID numbers, unemployment claims, NASA astronaut Mark Vande Hei, TWW poll results, Biden approval numbers, hate in Great Falls, a flamingo, Major League Baseball, worldwide gas prices, and much more!


That is how many people have died in the United States from coronavirus, according to the latest data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. There have been 80,057,322 cases across the country so far. The first death in the USA was reported on February 29, 2020. (Johns Hopkins)

Last week, the death total was 974,830.

Thanks to everyone who wears a mask and has been vaccinated – you are patriots!


That is how many Montanans have been fully immunized for COVID-19. This is still just 55% of the eligible population. (Source)

Last week, the number of fully immunized Montanans was 559,214.

Find COVID-19 Vaccines Near You by clicking HERE.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Montana’s population in April 2020 was 1,084,225.


In the week ending March 26, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial unemployment claims was 202,000, an increase of 14,000 from the previous week’s revised level. The previous week’s level was revised up by 1,000 from 187,000 to 188,000. The 4-week moving average was 208,500, a decrease of 3,500 from the previous week’s revised average. The previous week’s average was revised up by 250 from 211,750 to 212,000. (DOL)

Note: On Thursdays, this column is published right after 6:30 a.m. (Montana time), so I can post the latest unemployment numbers.


NASA astronaut Mark Vande Hei returned to Earth Wednesday, after spending a record-breaking 355 days in low-Earth orbit. Vande Hei shared a spacecraft with two Russian cosmonauts as tensions between the Russia and the U.S. continue amid the ongoing war in Ukraine. (ABC News)

I’m glad he did not have to hitchhike…


This week’s poll question asked, “Which two teams will play for the National Championship?” Here are the results:


Thanks for taking part!


The Cascade County (Great Falls, MT) City-County Health Department reports that as of Wednesday only 50% of eligible individuals in the county are fully vaccinated. (Source)

The “Community Level” is rated as “Low” in Cascade County.


According to, that is President Joe Biden’s current approval rating. (Source)

Last week, Biden’s approval rating was 42%.


Tawny Cale of Great Falls (MT) found a sandwich bag in her driveway that contained a folded flyer with a popular phrase criticizing President Joe Biden. The flyer lists members of the Biden Administration and health officials, labeling them as “Jewish” and labeling some as “Transgender.” (GF Tribune)

I wonder if “Grandpa Joe” was one of the names on the flyer – it’s a popular slam by some ignorant people on social media in Great Falls.

I will write more about this on Friday.


One of two flamingos that escaped from a Kansas zoo during a storm 17 years ago has been spotted on the coast of Texas, wildlife officials said. The Coastal Fisheries division of Texas Parks and Wildlife confirmed Tuesday to The Associated Press that the African flamingo — known as No. 492 because of the number on its leg band — was captured on video shot March 10 by an environmental activist near Port Lavaca, Texas, at Rhodes Point in Cox Bay. Officials were able to make out the bird’s leg band on the video. (AP)

How cool is that?


The Major League Baseball season will officially begin on Thursday, April 7 with nine Opening Day contests, including seven divisional matchups. Eleven games are scheduled for Friday, April 8th, and the first full slate of 15 games is scheduled for Saturday, April 9. (Source)

Well, I beat the drum and hold the phone
The sun came out today
We’re born again, there’s new grass on the field
-Centerfield (Fogerty)

0.095 – 10.897

That is the price per gallon of gas around the world as of March 28, 2022. (Source)

In the USA, the price on March 28 was $4.63. The week before (March 21), the price in the USA was also $4.63.



7 thoughts on “Thursday Numbers

  1. I kinda agree with Larry about the inconsistencies in the Veterans Administration disability system. Not all disabilities are valid. Knowing how to use the system is a great advantage. I do think the article about Zinke’s disability was a hit piece. In Vietnam, command at any level was an important career advancement. Zinke only made lite colonel? Something was not right. Most soldiers who experienced the horrors and gut-wrenching paralysis of fear from combat do not brag about it or use it for political gain out of respect for those who gave their lives. The decision of whether or not to vote for Zinke is simple. He does not live here (got it)? Listen to what he says. His opinion on public health is ignorant and stupid. DO NOT VOTE FOR THESE PEOPLE !! Forget about party and use common sense. D.N.V.F.T.P.

  2. Eighty percent

    This is apparently the amount of disability that Zinke draws from the military in addition to his retirement. This is outrageous when you consider all the Vietnam vets who suffered and died from all sorts of afflictions related to Agent Orange exposure but we’re never compensated one dime. The government would never admit that they caused the illnesses. As a Nam vet exposed myself, I followed closely all the stories from fellow vets. Theirs were stories of horrific suffering before they died. Google them some time. I, too, have suffered various ailments like cancer, etc., but could never get compensated. Finally, fifty years after leaving Vietnam, I finally got a small disability pension for AO exposure. Took the government that long. I fooled’em. I outlived their bull sh*t denials.

    And yet Zinke gets eighty percent according to the following article. I have no reason to doubt it’s accuracy because they cite their sources. I would be too embarrassed and ashamed to take disability for a Zinke injury!

    • Larry – I have assisted many veterans in getting their disability compensation from the VA. I would never slight ANY veteran for getting disability compensation from the VA – it’s that effing tough. I’ve read a couple of “Zinke Files” from your source. It’s a hit piece because some Republicans consider him a RINO.
      As for your situation, you voted for Tester and he’s the man with the VA clout these days, so if you think there’s more you deserve, pack up your files and meet with Tester’s VA people for help.
      – JmB

      • Not exactly true. I, too, am very familiar with the VA disability system. A whole of it is hit or miss. But I won’t mention any details. In my opinion it’s more of a lottery system than one based on actual merit. I could tell you stories.

        But I will say this. Conrad Burns was the best at trying to help anyone who called his office. Tester’s office, not so much. They won’t even return calls. I’m thinkin’ Jon talks a good game.

      • Larry – I guess I was good at the lottery when I advocated for Montana veterans with the VA. I won many cases. As for the real lottery, not so much! – JmB

  3. The thrill of Opening Day.

    Freezing cold. Or snow. Or rain. Or called after a 4hr rain delay and you spent $65 on concessions while waiting in the cold. Or your pitchers get shelled for 11 runs in the first inning. And the occasional glorious early April day with sometimes a win.

    But generally always fireworks and a giant American flag, sometimes a jet flyover, and for one brief shining moment your team is zero games behind in the standings. If they haven’t already lost on the road.

    • Terry – Great points. I’d like see baseball season start in May and end in September. Thanks, JmB

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