Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. A Personal Reflection on Dr. Hopland, a Doctor on the Coronavirus Cruise Ship

 

As I mentioned to Rodin recently on another thread, the doctor on the Coronavirus cruise ship in Japan is a close personal friend of mine. We practiced medicine in the same small town in the mountains of Tennessee for 20 years. Dr. Hopland and his wife were just taking a cruise and ended up in the middle of the Coronavirus fiasco. Dr. Hopland has arranged to have all the Americans transported back to the States, and he’ll probably have the entire ship redesigned before he leaves. Mrs. Hopland tested positive, and is now in a Japanese hospital. Dr. Hopland is back on the cruise ship, with nowhere else to go since he understandably refused transport back home without his wife. The rest of the Americans have been transported home, thanks to Dr. Hopland. But he and his wife are still there. Separated, frustrated, and far from home. Last I heard, Mrs. Hopland felt fine, thank goodness. I’ll contact one of their sons tonight and try to get an update.

I am a great admirer of Dr. Hopland. He started out as an engineer (electrical engineer, I think), and went to medical school later, starting his first practice around the age of 40, I believe. By the age of 70, he was running a multi-specialty, multi-facility group which found ways to provide above-average health care to those on government plans, while consistently turning a profit in an extremely difficult environment. One local practice after another would fail, but Dr. Hopland’s would grow. I don’t pretend to understand his business practices, but I think I understand Dr. Hopland quite well. And I’m fascinated by him. I think he displays several qualities often found in successful people. Let me try to explain…

Some qualities are obvious. When you first meet him, he has a strong, confident personality. It’s nearly impossible to dislike him. He’s short – maybe 5’6” – although he doesn’t seem short, because of his confident, assertive nature. He’s never in the background. I only notice his height in pictures, for some reason. He jokes about being a short guy sometimes (…It rains on us last!…), but I’ll bet that most people who know him don’t notice his height. He’s also handsome, with a square jaw and bright blue eyes.

He’s also clearly very intelligent, with extraordinary recall even of minor events that occurred decades ago. He’s a genius at understanding the motivations of others and finding ways to give them what they want, to strengthen his bargaining position. He’s a good doctor, but he’s a brilliant businessman, and I think this is a big part of it.

But the biggest reason for his remarkable success, in my opinion, is his enthusiasm. He’s restless and endlessly positive. He tries ten different things and is bubbling over with excitement about all of them. Nine of them fail. He instantly forgets about the nine failures, and he’s now excited about the remaining one thing, and starts ten more things, and is bubbling over with excitement about all of them. And so on and so forth. It’s remarkable. All that chaos would drive me crazy. I wouldn’t be able to sleep at night. But he thrives on it.

What kind of person lives like that?

One of my closest friends is one of his sons, also a physician. I told him that everybody in town had a Dr. Hopland story, each one more incredible than the last. “And they’re all true,” he interrupted. So allow me to share just a few of these stories, to give you a glimpse of this extraordinary man.

My friend “Tom” is a contractor, and Dr. Hopland hired him to do a job. Tom went to his house, to discuss the details. He pulls into the driveway, and finds an old fire truck with a ladder extended out over the garage, and over the swimming pool outback. There was an old wet fat guy with grey hair and black swim trunks scrambling up the ladder. Tom asked a kid standing there where Dr. Hopland was. The kid pointed up at the guy on the ladder, and just as he jumped off the ladder into the pool, yelling “Geronimo!” the kid said, “That would be Dr. Hopland.”

He had always liked fire trucks and thought it would be fun to have one. So he bought a ladder truck with an 80-foot extension ladder. This all makes perfect sense if you know Dr. Hopland. He would tie a $20 bill to the top rung, and extend the ladder 80 feet straight up, and tell his grandkids that anyone who could climb up and get it could have it. The higher they got, the ladder would start to sway, and they’d hesitate for a moment, then come back down. He’d sit in a lawn chair, cheering them on and laughing, enjoying the sheer entertainment of it all.

I went to his house once to return a tool I had borrowed (Dr. Hopland had ten of every tool you could possibly imagine.). He lived in a typical ranch-style house in a nice older suburb on the edge of town. I couldn’t even see his house, because of all the huge piles of dirt piled all over the place. I got out of my truck, and I hear his voice over the sound of a big diesel motor, “Hey Bastiat! You’ve got to try this thing! It’s awesome!”

He had bought an enormous used track hoe like you might see on an interstate job site or something. He yelled, “I’m putting a pond in front of the house, for the grandkids to fish in!”

I look over my shoulder at a huge hole in what used to be his front yard, with a brand-new, clean white six-inch pipe stretching across it. I look back at him, with a raised eyebrow. “I was planning on replacing that sewer line someday anyway! This thing makes stuff like that so easy! Come on! You know you want to! Give it a try!”

Thinking of buried power lines etc in the suburbs, I politely decline and go around back to his kitchen to lay the tool on his breakfast nook table. It’s a little darker than normal in there, with the piles of dirt blocking the view out the windows. I find his sainted, endlessly patient wife sitting at the table, with her head in her hands. I say, “Nice track hoe.” She groans. I say, “The pond will be nice…” She looks at me, with a less patient look on her face. I say, “Um, I’ve got to go. Have a good day!” And I bolt the heck out of there.

She really is a saint.

When the Segway came out, of course, he had to have one. He rolled down the street on it, from his office to mine. My secretary was sitting at her desk, and couldn’t see the Segway through the window to the waiting room. All she could see was Dr. Hopland seem to float across the room in front of her, and then rotate 90 degrees to face her. He asked to see me, and she came back to my office and said, “Dr. Hopland’s in the waiting room, and I think he’s on something.” I didn’t understand until I saw that he was on a Segway.

He said, “You’ve got to try this thing! It’s awesome! Let’s go out in the parking lot!”

I say, “I’ve got patients. I’ve got work to do. Maybe some other time.”

He says, “Oh, come on! You know you want to!”

So, of course, I went out in the parking lot and tried out his Segway. It really was pretty neat.

He owns a Prius with a trailer hitch on it. He bought it just to try to figure out how it worked. I can’t believe he’s ever towed anything with it. But heck – maybe he has. I wouldn’t bet against it.

And that’s the point. He tries all sorts of crazy stuff, but I’ve learned to never bet against him. He believes it will work. Or rather, he really, really doesn’t care if it doesn’t work. He’ll just try something else. He is fascinated by success and is completely uninterested in failure. He just doesn’t care.

He’s endlessly curious. He’s restless and impatient. He doesn’t fail, he just tries something else. He lacks reserve and overflows with enthusiasm.

What do those qualities remind you of?

A child. Read the previous paragraph again, and you’ll see that I described a child. But I also described Dr. Hopland and many other brilliant businessmen.

As a quick aside, I’ll note that our public school system makes a concerted effort to suppress restless enthusiasm, by necessity; it’s not easy to control 25 ten-year-old boys. I’m not criticizing, simply acknowledging that there are drawbacks to a system that attempts to teach everyone the same thing at the same time. But never mind.

Dr. Hopland is an extraordinary man. People like him make the world go ‘round. People like him also drive politicians and authorities crazy – they’re just impossible to control.

But we discourage them at our peril. We should stay out of their way. You never know what they’ll come up with. It’ll probably fail. But it may not. And even if you’re not comfortable with the risk, Dr. Hopland is, so you can just enjoy the fruits of, well, whatever he’s doing next. Plus, it can be fun to watch sometimes.

Unless you’re his sainted, endlessly patient wife.


Dr. Hopland, I really hope you and your wife are ok. Get home soon.

Signed,

Dr. Bastiat
Your absolute biggest fan

NOTE: I use Dr. Hopland’s name only because it has appeared in the press. I do not name his wife or family, or show pictures of the Hoplands, because I don’t think they were shown in the news stories.

These stories are real, as is my admiration of Dr. Hopland.

Published in General
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  1. Front Seat Cat Member

    My gosh! What a great post! God bless you and Dr. Hopland!

    • #1
    • February 22, 2020, at 3:21 PM PST
    • 8 likes
  2. I Walton Member

    Great post. Most successful entrepreneurs I know or know of, failed multiple times in different endeavors and just keep going until something works great. I’d have sat around lamenting the first failure for years. They’re just different and god help us if we can’t keep producing them or more likely insist on crushing them.

    • #2
    • February 22, 2020, at 3:50 PM PST
    • 8 likes
  3. PHCheese Member

    Great post. I heard him on the radio the other day talking about his adventures on the cruise ship. He sounds very persuasive. I heard Rush talking about Trump and his description of Trump’s personality sounds much like Hopland. I had an uncle that received a masters in engineering from Carnegie Tech now Carnegie Mellon University and then went on the graduate first in his class from Pitt Medical School. He was a pulmonologist and was always tinkering in his basement workshop on medical stuff. I think he had several patients. His four sons are also doctors. One is an orthopedist and also has several patients for medical devices.. My dad said my uncle was a maniac depressive that was only maniac.

    • #3
    • February 22, 2020, at 4:44 PM PST
    • 9 likes
  4. MarciN Member

    That was the best story I’ve read in a long time. :-)

    Just to add something else to your formula for success: I read a book a few years ago in which successful CEOs were profiled and interviewed. What was the most interesting thing to me about the CEOs was that they went looking for inspiration. They did not wait for it to come to them. Several mentioned the books that they were reading or that had affected them.

    I hope Dr. Hopland and his wife are free of this virus and horrible ordeal soon.

    • #4
    • February 22, 2020, at 7:05 PM PST
    • 7 likes
  5. Danny Alexander Member

    Editors: Please Main Feed this post ASAP.

    I’m a Tokyo denizen (off-and-on since 1988 — current stint since Spring 2016), and I’d *really* like to link to this post on my LinkedIn feed. My network here in Japan (specifically to say, the Japanese in said network) really needs to see this kind of positive thinking, drive, and healthy lack of concern for “that which is just not done.”

    Especially in these profoundly trying times.

    • #5
    • February 23, 2020, at 2:17 AM PST
    • 7 likes
  6. Nohaaj Coolidge

    Dr. Bastiat: The rest of the Americans have been transported home, thanks to Dr. Hopland.

    Can you please provide more details about this? It sounds like he personally organized and paid to charter the jet and staff for the repatriation. From your description of him, I wouldn’t doubt it. Is that correct?

    • #6
    • February 23, 2020, at 3:08 AM PST
    • 4 likes
  7. Full Size Tabby Member

    Dr. Bastiat:

    Dr. Hopland is an extraordinary man. People like him make the world go ‘round. People like him also drive politicians and authorities crazy – they’re just impossible to control. But we discourage them at our peril. We should stay out of their way. You never know what they’ll come up with. It’ll probably fail. But it may not. And even if you’re not comfortable with the risk, Dr. Hopland is, so you can just enjoy the fruits of, well, whatever he’s doing next. Plus, it can be fun to watch sometimes.

    Unless you’re his sainted, endlessly patient wife.

    When I moved from California to western New York state in 2000 I first began to notice how prevalent the response, “Is that allowed?” was whenever a seemingly nutty idea was presented. In that case I found that the residents of New York state were so accustomed to heavy government control that they dared not do anything that was not explicitly approved by an authority. More generally, I suspect many (maybe most?) people look to authority approval before we try things. Dr. Hopland appears not to be one of those people. The question you raise is, are we willing to allow the Dr. Hoplands that are among to continue to follow their weird ideas, or maybe even to encourage them, or are we going to beat them into submission before they hurt themselves?

    • #7
    • February 23, 2020, at 5:13 AM PST
    • 8 likes
  8. Dr. Bastiat Member
    Dr. Bastiat

    Nohaaj (View Comment):

    Dr. Bastiat: The rest of the Americans have been transported home, thanks to Dr. Hopland.

    Can you please provide more details about this? It sounds like he personally organized and paid to charter the jet and staff for the repatriation. From your description of him, I wouldn’t doubt it. Is that correct?

    No – he called Congressmen, explained the situation, and got transport arranged. He can be very persuasive.

    • #8
    • February 23, 2020, at 5:35 AM PST
    • 10 likes
  9. Stad Thatcher

    Dr. Bastiat: Dr. Hopland, I really hope you and your wife are ok. Get home soon.

    Ditto from us too. Great post!

    • #9
    • February 23, 2020, at 5:55 AM PST
    • 3 likes
  10. Chris Hutchinson Coolidge

    Dr. Bastiat: Unless you’re his sainted, endlessly patient wife.

    He sounds like an incredibly interesting gentleman. I’d like to focus on his wife though. I gave a presentation on entrepreneurship a few months ago to college students: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1Dp9ZT2T8dSi9rVYFO6h0PG1VfsOaHiCdof8975p59VQ/edit?usp=sharing

    I was asked to tie in my military background to my business success. Great! I love sharing positive things about military service. I talked about some shared traits and being born with them as compared to learning them. I talked about what I thought were some of the most important ones for success. I wanted to be original so in addition to a couple you always hear about I talked about a couple less often mentioned. I finished off telling them the absolute most important thing in being a successful entrepreneur was to have a great spouse. I wanted to be a bit provocative. I wanted to bring out some of my conservative and religious beliefs to young adults without being too overt. But it was 100% true in my case. I’m generally considered to have a lot of willpower as well as other needed traits. The things I did in the military attest to it. I live by a creed that stresses never quitting but I know for a fact that I do quit in business if not for my wife.

    I wonder where Dr. Hopland would be without his wife. I imagine more than just staying out of his way she knew exactly when and when not to suppress his relentless enthusiasm.

    I did read an article with Dr. Hopland’s wife’s name. It mentioned she’s contracted the coronavirus and is currently hospitalized. They are in my prayers.

    • #10
    • February 23, 2020, at 7:05 AM PST
    • 10 likes
  11. GeneKillian Coolidge

    What a great post. “Completely uninterested in failure.” I love that.

    • #11
    • February 23, 2020, at 7:05 AM PST
    • 7 likes
  12. Dr. Bastiat Member
    Dr. Bastiat

    I think the editors here at Ricochet do a very good job. The only time I’ve complained about the editing of my posts in the past is when my work ends up littered with, of all things, semicolons. For the love of Pete. Let me say again to my patient, benevolent readers – if you ever see a semicolon in my work, I swear to God that I did not put it there.

    Once an editor changed my title to piece. That bothered me, because his new title changed the intended purpose of my post. But I left it.

    Well.

    This time, the editor changed my title from a five word provocative phrase, to a wandering paragraph which means not much and includes, heavens forfend, a semicolon! In the title! Let me go lie down for a moment…

    So look. I’m changing it back. If the editor goes back and changes it again, I’ll leave it. I’m just changing it to ask the editor to consider which title is more effective.

    I’ll let you play along at home.

    My title: “What makes a successful businessman?”

    Editor’s title: “A Personal Reflection on Dr. Hopland; a Doctor on the Coronavirus Cruise Ship.”

    This post was not intended as a personal reflection on anything. It was supposed to be a discussion about what makes some people successful in business, and why others fail. I argue that brains are important, but not that important. I point out that the way society treats such people in school and in life in general is typically unhelpful, and perhaps dangerous. To us all. I concede that personality traits that can drive us crazy should sometimes be tolerated, and perhaps even encouraged, for reasons that I try to make clear.

    I’m not just reflecting on stories about an old friend.

    So please, think this over. It’s important to me. I’m not criticizing. I can see how you might read my piece that way. But that is not how I intended it.

    I will also politely point out that if your title is so long that it requires punctuation, you might consider tightening it up a bit. But if you feel the need to add punctuation to my title, for the love of all that is holy, please use something other than a freakin’ semicolon.

    Thank you for your consideration.

    • #12
    • February 23, 2020, at 7:14 AM PST
    • 12 likes
  13. Blondie Thatcher

    What an interesting man. His wife must have the patience of Job. I’ll bet he has redesigned the ship several times over. Fortunately they won’t have any heavy machinery on board. 😉 Thanks for the post. BTW: I like your title better. 

    • #13
    • February 23, 2020, at 7:54 AM PST
    • 5 likes
  14. cdor Member
    cdor Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Dr. Bastiat (View Comment):

    I think the editors here at Ricochet do a very good job. The only time I’ve complained about the editing of my posts in the past is when my work ends up littered with, of all things, semicolons. For the love of Pete. Let me say again to my patient, benevolent readers – if you ever see a semicolon in my work, I swear to God that I did not put it there.

    Once an editor changed my title to piece. That bothered me, because his new title changed the intended purpose of my post. But I left it.

    Well.

    This time, the editor changed my title from a five word provocative phrase, to a wandering paragraph which means not much and includes, heavens forfend, a semicolon! In the title! Let me go lie down for a moment…

    So look. I’m changing it back. If the editor goes back and changes it again, I’ll leave it. I’m just changing it to ask the editor to consider which title is more effective.

    I’ll let you play along at home.

    My title: “What makes a successful businessman?”

    Editor’s title: “A Personal Reflection on Dr. Hopland; a Doctor on the Coronavirus Cruise Ship.”

    This post was not intended as a personal reflection on anything. It was supposed to be a discussion about what makes some people successful in business, and why others fail. I argue that brains are important, but not that important. I point out that the way society treats such people in school and in life in general is typically unhelpful, and perhaps dangerous. To us all. I concede that personality traits that can drive us crazy should sometimes be tolerated, and perhaps even encouraged, for reasons that I try to make clear.

    I’m not just reflecting on stories about an old friend.

    So please, think this over. It’s important to me. I’m not criticizing. I can see how you might read my piece that way. But that is not how I intended it.

    I will also politely point out that if your title is so long that it requires punctuation, you might consider tightening it up a bit. But if you feel the need to add punctuation to my title, for the love of all that is holy, please use something other than a freakin’ semicolon.

    Thank you for your consideration.

    So far the editors haven’t listened, or strongly disagree. They haven’t changed the title. Whatever happens with the title, the post remains both engaging and informative. My 2 cents, Doc…I like the editors title. It pulls in a reader by using an extremely contemporary focal point. But you are the author.

    • #14
    • February 23, 2020, at 8:08 AM PST
    • 5 likes
  15. Dr. Bastiat Member
    Dr. Bastiat

    cdor (View Comment):
    I like the editors title. It pulls in a reader by using an extremely contemporary focal point. But you are the author.

    Yeah, that’s fair. I disagree, but I understand your point.

    I’m thankful that they at least removed the cursed semicolon…

    • #15
    • February 23, 2020, at 8:19 AM PST
    • 5 likes
  16. MarciN Member

    Dr. Bastiat (View Comment):

    cdor (View Comment):
    I like the editors title. It pulls in a reader by using an extremely contemporary focal point. But you are the author.

    Yeah, that’s fair. I disagree, but I understand your point.

    I’m thankful that they at least removed the cursed semicolon…

    :-) :-)

    • #16
    • February 23, 2020, at 8:42 AM PST
    • 2 likes
  17. Dr. Bastiat Member
    Dr. Bastiat

    Update on Dr. Hopland:

    He hasn’t seen his wife of 55 years in 2 weeks. She is in a military hospital in Tokyo.

    He has been transported to a dorm room at The National Tax College in Wako, about 90 minutes NW of Tokyo. His luggage was accidentally transported with the evacuated Americans, and then accidentally left in a Texas parking lot. He has only the clothes in his back.

    He is in solitary confinement in a dorm room, which he says is about 50 degrees F – he’s freezing. He says the room is otherwise quite nice, and even has a balcony, with a view of the city from the 7th floor.

    He has WiFi. They bring him food that he doesn’t recognize, but he says it’s pretty good. His only job is to check his own temperature several times a day and post it outside his room. No sign of fever yet.

    Somebody with his personality would struggle in solitary confinement. He’s not sure how long they’ll keep him there.

    I’ll keep you all posted.

    • #17
    • February 23, 2020, at 8:51 AM PST
    • 13 likes
  18. carcat74 Member

    PHCheese (View Comment):

    Great post. I heard him on the radio the other day talking about his adventures on the cruise ship. He sounds very persuasive. I heard Rush talking about Trump and his description of Trump’s personality sounds much like Hopland. I had an uncle that received a masters in engineering from Carnegie Tech now Carnegie Mellon University and then went on the graduate first in his class from Pitt Medical School. He was a pulmonologist and was always tinkering in his basement workshop on medical stuff. I think he had several patients. His four sons are also doctors. One is an orthopedist and also has several patients for medical devices.. My dad said my uncle was a maniac depressive that was only maniac.

    I was thinking the same thing—Trump responds much like Dr.Hopland in many ways. His energy, lack of concern for failure (Trump has had bankruptcies and divorces—but he doesn’t seem to dwell on them.), his genuine approach to people—I could imagine Trump jumping off a fire engine ladder!

    • #18
    • February 23, 2020, at 9:29 AM PST
    • 5 likes
  19. Full Size Tabby Member

    Chris Hutchinson (View Comment):

    Dr. Bastiat: Unless you’re his sainted, endlessly patient wife.

    He sounds like an incredibly interesting gentleman. I’d like to focus on his wife though. I gave a presentation on entrepreneurship a few months ago to college students: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1Dp9ZT2T8dSi9rVYFO6h0PG1VfsOaHiCdof8975p59VQ/edit?usp=sharing

    I was asked to tie in my military background to my business success. Great! I love sharing positive things about military service. I talked about some shared traits and being born with them as compared to learning them. I talked about what I thought were some of the most important ones for success. I wanted to be original so in addition to a couple you always hear about I talked about a couple less often mentioned. I finished off telling them the absolute most important thing in being a successful entrepreneur was to have a great spouse. I wanted to be a bit provocative. I wanted to bring out some of my conservative and religious beliefs to young adults without being too overt. But it was 100% true in my case. I’m generally considered to have a lot of willpower as well as other needed traits. The things I did in the military attest to it. I live by a creed that stresses never quitting but I know for a fact that I do quit in business if not for my wife.

    I wonder where Dr. Hopland would be without his wife. I imagine more than just staying out of his way she knew exactly when and when not to suppress his relentless enthusiasm.

    I did read an article with Dr. Hopland’s wife’s name. It mentioned she’s contracted the coronavirus and is currently hospitalized. They are in my prayers.

    One of the important roles wives fill is to build a home nest in which husbands are rejuvenated, fed, and reassured so they can go out to hunt or do battle (or whatever metaphor you want to think about) the next day. 

    • #19
    • February 23, 2020, at 11:57 AM PST
    • 6 likes
  20. Stad Thatcher

    Dr. Bastiat (View Comment):
    For the love of Pete. Let me say again to my patient, benevolent readers – if you ever see a semicolon in my work, I swear to God that I did not put it there.

    These days, the only purpose of a semicolon is to show the world the writer knows how to use it properly. It’s like “who” amd “whom” . . .

    • #20
    • February 23, 2020, at 1:23 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  21. Danny Alexander Member

    #17 Dr Bastiat

    A gentleman of 5 foot 6 inches height should have absolutely no problem obtaining decently-fitting clothing in Japan; the good doctor should not have to make do with only the clothes on his back — please encourage him to make a loud and unapologetic case for the facility staff’s doing him the kindness of stepping into town to purchase at least some minimum change(s) of gear.

    I don’t know whether Bill Hagerty — who had announced the other month that he planned to retire from his appointment as US Ambassador to Japan (apparently in order to run for Lamar Alexander’s soon-to-be-vacant Senatorial seat) — has already decamped back to Tennessee; if Hagerty is still here in Japan, I hope that Dr. Hopland and Mrs. Hopland are benefiting from the Ambassador’s direct contact and support (not least concerning changes of clothes!).

    In this vein as well, it might be a very good deed — if he’s inclined to attempt it — if Dr. Hopland can (via pressure on the Japanese government courtesy of Ambassador Hagerty) additionally arrange to have Dr. Iwata (Iwata Kentaro), perhaps accompanied by a brave enough TV camera crew (or three), come to the facility in Wako for an interview. If Iwata is not a rash s[CoC]t-disturber as some (probably baseless, malicious) rumors have it, such an interview with Dr. Hopland might revive his (Iwata’s) public profile and enable useful pressure on the Japanese government to get non-bureaucrat-favored, genuinely qualified virologists (epidemiologists?) out in front of the public discourse on how to deal with this whole situation professionally and with the best interests of the public truly in mind.

    • #21
    • February 23, 2020, at 1:41 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  22. Chris Hutchinson Coolidge

    Stad (View Comment):

    Dr. Bastiat (View Comment):
    For the love of Pete. Let me say again to my patient, benevolent readers – if you ever see a semicolon in my work, I swear to God that I did not put it there.

    These days, the only purpose of a semicolon is to show the world the writer knows how to use it properly. It’s like “who” amd “whom” . . .

    Ha… this could possibly be the only thing I disagree with Dr. Bastiat. I did, indeed, prefer his title but if the other one is going to be used, it should be a semicolon, which I wish was used way more often nowadays. I’ve been working to bring it back.

    • #22
    • February 23, 2020, at 2:00 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  23. Dr. Bastiat Member
    Dr. Bastiat

    Danny Alexander (View Comment):

    #17 Dr Bastiat

    A gentleman of 5 foot 6 inches height should have absolutely no problem obtaining decently-fitting clothing in Japan; the good doctor should not have to make do with only the clothes on his back — please encourage him to make a loud and unapologetic case for the facility staff’s doing him the kindness of stepping into town to purchase at least some minimum change(s) of gear.

    I don’t know whether Bill Hagerty — who had announced the other month that he planned to retire from his appointment as US Ambassador to Japan (apparently in order to run for Lamar Alexander’s soon-to-be-vacant Senatorial seat) — has already decamped back to Tennessee; if Hagerty is still here in Japan, I hope that Dr. Hopland and Mrs. Hopland are benefiting from the Ambassador’s direct contact and support (not least concerning changes of clothes!).

    In this vein as well, it might be a very good deed — if he’s inclined to attempt it — if Dr. Hopland can (via pressure on the Japanese government courtesy of Ambassador Hagerty) additionally arrange to have Dr. Iwata (Iwata Kentaro), perhaps accompanied by a brave enough TV camera crew (or three), come to the facility in Wako for an interview. If Iwata is not a rash s[CoC]t-disturber as some (probably baseless, malicious) rumors have it, such an interview with Dr. Hopland might revive his (Iwata’s) public profile and enable useful pressure on the Japanese government to get non-bureaucrat-favored, genuinely qualified virologists (epidemiologists?) out in front of the public discourse on how to deal with this whole situation professionally and with the best interests of the public truly in mind.

    Thanks! I’ll pass this along to Dr. Hopland!

    Very kind of you.

    • #23
    • February 23, 2020, at 2:31 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  24. ShaunaHunt Coolidge

    Dr. Hopland sounds a bit like my dad. He’s an eternal optimist! It’s also what makes him a great businessman. Thank you for your post. We will pray for Dr. Hopland.

    • #24
    • February 23, 2020, at 2:33 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  25. Dr. Bastiat Member
    Dr. Bastiat

    Chris Hutchinson (View Comment):
    a semicolon, which I wish was used way more often nowadays. I’ve been working to bring it back.

    I’ve flagged this comment for an obvious COC violation. 

    • #25
    • February 23, 2020, at 2:35 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  26. DonG (skeptic) Coolidge

    Dr. Bastiat (View Comment):
    Somebody with his personality would struggle in solitary confinement. He’s not sure how long they’ll keep him there.

    He should join us on Ricochet!

    • #26
    • February 23, 2020, at 4:15 PM PST
    • 5 likes
  27. Dr. Bastiat Member
    Dr. Bastiat

    DonG (skeptic) (View Comment):

    Dr. Bastiat (View Comment):
    Somebody with his personality would struggle in solitary confinement. He’s not sure how long they’ll keep him there.

    He should join us on Ricochet!

    Be careful what you ask for.

    But you’re right – he’d be great! And I guarantee you that all of us would learn something from him.

    • #27
    • February 23, 2020, at 4:18 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  28. Kay of MT Member

    If nothing else we could keep Dr. Hopland amused. And pray for his wife.

    • #28
    • February 23, 2020, at 5:00 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  29. Stad Thatcher

    Chris Hutchinson (View Comment):

    Stad (View Comment):

    Dr. Bastiat (View Comment):
    For the love of Pete. Let me say again to my patient, benevolent readers – if you ever see a semicolon in my work, I swear to God that I did not put it there.

    These days, the only purpose of a semicolon is to show the world the writer knows how to use it properly. It’s like “who” amd “whom” . . .

    Ha… this could possibly be the only thing I disagree with Dr. Bastiat. I did, indeed, prefer his title but if the other one is going to be used, it should be a semicolon, which I wish was used way more often nowadays. I’ve been working to bring it back.

    Wow! You’re the first Semicolon Activist I’ve ever run into . . .

    • #29
    • February 24, 2020, at 5:39 AM PST
    • 4 likes
  30. Dr. Bastiat Member
    Dr. Bastiat

    Another update on Dr. Hopland:

    He is a serious coffee addict, and has missed his coffee. He has managed to acquire some coffee somehow. Dr. Hopland is good at acquiring things. He has no coffee maker, and just mixes the grounds with hot water from the sink, drinks it, and spits out the grounds. I expect that within a few more days he’ll have designed a coffee maker with coat hangers and bed sheets that runs on solar energy through his window or something.

    His wife swabbed positive for the virus, but continues to show no signs of the disease, thank God.

    He thinks they’ll be in Japan for at least another month, maybe longer.

    He was extremely unimpressed with how they handled the quarantine on the ship, calling it a floating petri dish.

    He is good spirits, as usual. He’s hanging in there.

    But I’ll bet he’s bored out of his mind…

    • #30
    • February 24, 2020, at 11:35 AM PST
    • 7 likes