You will sympathise with my wife. Who would want to be locked down with someone who talks to the television, forever saying to news reporters, "Yes, but how many are in hospital? How many have died?"
I try to keep these questions silent but frustration often gets the better of me. Fearful predictions of hospitalisation rates and deaths, after all, are the whole reason we are here, confined to the house, all social life suspended.
I have been giving TVNZ's reporter in Sydney a particularly hard time lately. He has been describing the failure of Sydney's lockdown for more than two months, presenting rising daily case numbers as though infections were all that mattered. But he is no worse than most of the media everywhere in this pandemic.
If the Australian media could get past the subject of who is to blame for the Delta variant taking hold in New South Wales, they might notice that the failure to contain it presents an opportunity to check those fearful predictions of hospitals and morgues stretched beyond capacity.
If the state's rates of hospitalisation and death were rising at anything like Delta's infection rate, be assured we'd be hearing about it. In fact, serious illness and death remain manageable enough for the Federal Government to indicate this week it may end lockdowns and start re-opening Australia's borders once 70-80 per cent of the population are vaccinated.
That prospect has brought more dire predictions from epidemiologists of the consequences of re-opening at 70 per cent vaccination and states with Labor Governments (Victoria, Queensland, Western Australia) might continue locking down against outbreaks, but Prime Minister Scott Morrison has risen in the polls since he set out his thinking in an article last Sunday,
"Our hospital and public health systems are prepared," he wrote. "Our ICUs have the know-how, we have vaccines and new drugs like sotrovimab that can better treat those who are infected. This means we can battle Delta and seriously reduce the harm it does to our health, our way of life and our economy.
He also wrote, "We need to look beyond case numbers. Shifting our focus from case numbers to actually looking at how many people are becoming seriously ill and requiring hospitalisation will be increasingly what matters. After all, this is how we manage all other infectious diseases.
"So while right now our national strategy is necessarily about suppressing the virus and vaccinating as many people as possible, a one-eyed focus on case numbers overlooks the fact that fewer people are getting seriously ill, let alone dying."
At long last a national leader in this part of the world has stated the truth. But that single-minded focus on case numbers will not be easy to change.
In one of our televised daily press conferences this week, Dr Ashley Bloomfield mentioned there were seven people in hospital, none in ICU. Seven struck me as surprisingly high considering the case number was not much above 100 at that stage. But no questions were asked about it and it didn't make TVNZ's evening news or the next day's paper.
A day or two later we heard 12 in hospital, again none in ICU. It was just a footnote in the news that night. Why were those people in hospital? Were they unusually vulnerable and admitted as a precaution or were they ill? This seems to me more important than case numbers that in most cases mean nothing worse than a fortnight alone.
We are just four or five months away, hopefully, from beginning to open our borders. Will our hospitals be able to cope? Last Saturday the Herald's science reporter, Jamie Morton, reported mathematical modelling of a "two-year, open border scenario" without lockdowns after 90 per cent of the population, including children, had been vaccinated.
The model produced 11,400 hospital cases and 1030 deaths. Those figures do not look alarming. New Zealand's public hospitals handle about 1.2 million cases a year. Adding 11,400 over two years (0.005 per cent a year) is surely manageable, and 1030 is roughly the toll from flu over two years.
The report from Sir David Skegg's panel, just before Delta arrived, was scathing about the health system's failure to improve hospitals' capacity for dealing with inevitable Covid-19 outbreaks once the borders are opened. That was a reason they recommended the Government continue with its elimination strategy when international travel resumes.
Elimination means cracking down on Covid-19 as soon as a single case appears in the community. To continue the elimination strategy while opening the borders would be madness. It would mean more frequent, almost permanent, lockdowns.
We need to relax, stop worrying about case numbers, get vaccinated, get hospitals equipped for their task and get this country back into the world.