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From The New York Times, I'm Michael Barbaro. This is The Daily. Across the country, nearly 100000 small businesses have now shut down permanently because of the pandemic, federal relief funding has stalled, and yet some cities are now preparing for a second round of shutdowns.


For the past six months, my colleague Jack Nicas has been documenting the experience of a single neighborhood bar in the Bay Area of California to understand the consequences for its owner, bartender and cleaner.


It's Tuesday, October 6th. Jack, tell me about that. So the hatch is the classic neighborhood bar I moved to Oakland in late 2015 and one of the first things you do when you move to a new city is you find your local dive bar, right. At least if you're me. And pretty quickly, I knew it would be the hatch.


It's just a really perfect neighborhood bar, in my view. It's unpretentious, relaxed. The beer is cheap. You can always find a seat. And I ended up just spending a lot of time there. You know, my friends and I would gather around the uneven tables upstairs and spend long nights talking until close. And we'd watch the NBA playoffs on a bed sheet that hung from the ceiling. And we just we made it our place.


Good morning.


Thank you for joining us here on Morning Sun two. It is Tuesday, March 17th. Bars, nightclubs and restaurants closed.


So when the pandemic hit and I realize that small businesses across the country were going to close, my mind, went to the hatch and I decided, let me follow this place for a few months and see what happens. Mm hmm. And so I check in on the hatch on March 17th. This is the day after Gavin Newsom, California's governor, has ordered the state bars and restaurants to close. So. So, yeah, why don't we just do one of our, by the way.




And when I get there, I find the bar's owner, who in the kitchen, everyone calls him Poncho, and he's packing up the bar's booze and basically is in the early hours of trying to figure out what to do with his bar. And it's a moment of enormous uncertainty.


I think the way that I've been processing it is what can we do to stay open in some capacity? Right. And so you guys are going to pursue this. You're going to do that. You're going to take a to try.


So at this point, he's thinking of moving to take out and it's pretty much the only option available for bars and restaurants besides shutting down.


We're going to see what it looks like, what it what it entails. I have no clue as hell right.


I'm the of and look like I'm curious what you're thinking at this point about whether ponche is going to be able to pull this off. Well, I'll say that when I first met Pancho, he actually struck me as sounding pretty relaxed about everything that was going on. And I didn't really know him. But as I learned his story, I got the sense that this is a guy who really has had to figure out how to deal.


Uh, yeah.


So I was born in Chegutu and that's basically Pancho grew up in the 1980s in a rural village in Zimbabwe, and he was the youngest of 13 kids. And when he was 10 years old, his dad, who was an academic, got a job at the University of Iowa. His siblings were much older than him, and he traveled alone with his parents across the world to Iowa.


So we get there and we are the only black family there. Right. And people like you talk funny and they're like, why do you talk to Buddy? Right. And I'm just like all these things like where I was. So I'm sure myself.


Then at 14 years old, something pretty drastic happened, which is what at that point in time, there was some sort of dysfunction that was happening in the family. Right. And to this day, I still have no clue what happened.


So when he was 14, his mother came to him rather suddenly one afternoon and said, I'm going back to Zimbabwe and I don't want you to see your father anymore. We're splitting up now. But I have rented an apartment for you, paid the rent for a few months. And here's some spending money and you're going to live on your own.


And I was like, OK. And just like I packed your stuff, let's go. Yeah, we set up. Right. So I was kind of surreal for one. Right. And the way that I was like, wait, what happened?


You know, suddenly, you know, he was a 14 year old kid living on his own.


How are you going to be able to get groceries or take out a movie? You know, I had like two or three dishes that I knew how to make, like, I know like pasta and eggs. And that's like my go to. Right. And like, the best peanut butter sandwiches ever. So that was just it. And then, like, whatever we had at school, like whatever school lunches that were happening, I would do like the frozen dinners.


I learned how to budget really early on. I was I was like I got a budget and it was like, what can I eat that can actually last me a long time. Right.


So he would wake up in the morning alone as a 14 year old in an apartment and make himself breakfast, dress himself, wash his clothes, go to school. And he just did that.


He was a kid acting as an adult. But at night, as other kids were going home to their families, he was going home alone to. His apartment, I mean, there's definitely a lot of loneliness, right? I mean, like basically goes up hard to sleep at night. So I'd go on these long nightwatch. It's like thinking about the future, really. Right. I just call them the future walks. Right. And just being like, well, what are the things that you want to do?


Or like the thought that I would always have would just be I'm like, well, I can't get any worse. And I'm like, this is where you're at now. And you can only go up. Right? And it does go up within a few months, he moves in with his best friends, family, and, you know, he finishes high school, goes to college in Minnesota, then he moves to the Bay Area, becomes a bartender.


And a few years after that, he decides to go it on his own and he looks across the bay where rents are cheaper. And he finds this old Hawaiian barbecue joint with orange carpets and he turns it into the hatch. And very quickly, Poncho found success. And when you say success, what do you mean?


They were busy from the outset. Essentially, he said that, you know, in his first months, he was serving drinks and red solo cups and he was sleeping upstairs in a couch. But the place was pretty packed. So fast forward to this past spring. The hatch is employing 17 people and then the shutdown happens and Poncho has to lay most of them off. And those employees are waiting to see if Poncho can keep the bar alive, survived the shutdown and ultimately bring them back.


And what do you know about these people who were let go?


So essentially at the hatch, like most bars, there is a front of the house and the back of the house and the front of the house are the bartenders who were musicians and artists and photographers. And, you know, they're mostly in their 20s and 30s and they're trying to make rent and some spending money to go out with their friends. And then there was the back of the house. And these are people in their 50s who are trying to survive and trying to support children.


So I wanted to know what the shutdown would be like for people on both sides. And so in early April, with the help of a translator, I started talking to Maria.


OK, OK, Maria.


Well, she's someone I had never seen before at the hatch because she would come in at the crack of dawn to scrub the floors and clean the tables. Were my friends and I drink.


And what did you learn about her? Probably the problem on the city of Mosul.


Maria is 55 years old and she is from the Mexican state of Michoacan.


Yeah, yeah.


And in the late 1990s, her husband crossed into the United States without documents.


And pretty quickly, she follows a deal with no one. So her and her husband and Maria's young stepdaughter all kind of start this new life in America and, you know, working on fake documents that cost about 20 bucks. Her husband is washing dishes and cooking in smoky kitchens across the East Bay here in the Bay Area. Maria's collecting cans to get by. And, you know, together they have two more kids.


So fast forward to a few years ago, the kids are grown and she gets a job at the hatch as a cleaner and she makes about 400 bucks a week.


So what does she do after a poncho has to make these layoffs? Well, after the shutdown, her entire family is out of work. So her stepdaughter loses her job at a Toyota dealership. Her son is no longer working in construction. Her husband is out of work. And her daughter, who is in her senior year at high school, is taking classes from home.


And really, this looks like what a lot of American families were going through. But the difference here is that because Maria and her husband are undocumented, there's no twelve hundred dollar stimulus check coming her way. You know, there's no additional unemployment insurance coming her way.


California has made five hundred dollars per undocumented immigrant available for every single day.


But she's too afraid to apply for it because she figures it's going to put her on a list.


So how is she getting by? So they're going to a food bank. They're eating more simple meals that I indicative of the more.


What we're going to have for. OK, and Maria suffers from intense back pain, and she even has to stop going to physical therapy to deal with that, but her biggest worry is her rent that she owes in just a few weeks and she doesn't want to get kicked out of her apartment.


And so she's not sure what she's going to do. So she was saying that she had a little baby that she was keeping for her daughter's graduation. She was going to graduate this year and she had eight hundred dollars for the graduation.


Really, the only savings at this point that she has is this eight hundred dollars that she's been saving as a graduation gift for her daughter. She doesn't want to spend it, but she says she has no choice. Mm hmm.


Can you ask her how she's feeling? And. Yeah, okay. Maria, from all of that, there's not a massive rescue for this young. It is not a good look at the in the lower. Well, let's look at the. This economic they're looking at the top of the hour from 11:00 a.m.. And. OK, so she's feeling a lot of sadness and she's very worried, mainly because of the of the economic issues, they worry and I understand.


Maria tells me that she's just desperate to get back to the hatch. She's much less worried about getting sick from the coronavirus, and she is about making money and paying her rent.


You want to say, OK. So, Jack, who is the other person from the bar that you followed, so the other person is Able Olson.


He's a 34 year old bartender and he's exactly the kind of guy you'd expect to be tending bar at a place like the hatch. He's got a bushy mustache, he wears vintage t shirts, he has lots of tattoos, he can't explain why people started working at the hatch last fall. He got along with the staff, love the customers. He was doing deejay nights upstairs and Jack.


But how are you? Oh, good man. Just, you know, killing time at home. Put a little video game right now, the all time.


So it turns out that the shutdown came at a really bad time for Abel, it just went on a big grocery run. He, you know, just paid off an overdue 270 dollar phone bill. And essentially, he tells me he's got about 20 dollars in his pocket.


I love you. Don't check to check. I live as a bartender. So when, you know, I have 20 dollars in my pocket, that is, you know, could be kind of a scary thing, but it's a temporary thing.


So now he's hunkered down in quarantine with his girlfriend, who's out of work as a bud tender at a weed dispensary in San Francisco.


Isolated. We're not spending a dime. You know, I like we both kind of cancel all of our subscription services. And besides paying bills and food where, you know, spending zero dollars.


But these are circumstances that are somewhat familiar. Table he spent much of his childhood in Portland with a single mom who was sometimes out of work. And he also lost his job as a bartender before when he was in his 20s and kind of was familiar with the unemployment process.


And I remember this system being, you know, very obnoxious. So and I was, you know, fully prepared for that kind of bureaucracy again.


So the day after the lockdown began, he immediately applied for funds. He applied for government assistance. He applied for this bartender fund. He basically fanned out and looked for every source of money that he could get.


That's the biggest problem right now, as you know, just waiting for these things to come through and, you know, going food shopping and trying to kill boredom. And that's kind of about it. OK, all right. All right. Stay healthy, man. You too. Thanks. So as of early April, Abel is waiting to see if he's going to get government assistance. He's applied for it. Maria is not eligible for any of that assistance and afraid to seek the benefits she could get from California.


And so she's running out of money. Absolutely.


Hey, thank you. Hey, there you are. Hey, how's it going?


So as I was talking to Abel and Maria in April, I also reached out to Pancho to see how takeout was going.


Well, you know, my guys started as a delivery service, was building it from scratch. Right. When you did you said you did two deliveries yesterday or today. Yesterday? Yeah, definitely. And how many you actually do? I did one delivery. Yeah, so take out is not going well in the first week, the hatch had nine orders and I was one of them. Wow. So that brought in three hundred and sixty nine dollars in the first week.


And that obviously wasn't going to be enough to help the business survive. Mm hmm.


And on top of that, he had, you know, multiple other complications.


And so that was a bit of a setback for sure.


The fact that he got locked out of the hatches Yelp account because of an overdue advertising bill.


And so they blocked all your ads. Can you clarify that? What do you mean says that we have to pay to have a bill that we need to pay so that people use we can advertise that we're open the and take out on it because it's not that bad.


And why is that important? It was important because without Yelp, in some ways it was very difficult for them to tell their customers that they were even doing takeout. Now, instead, I would watch the Hatch's Instagram account post these increasingly desperate pitches to get people to come in. One of the Instagram posts I remember is just Robin waiting, bored by the phone, being like, please call me. But people were no, obviously not. I mean, it was it was a really difficult start for the taco business.


And meanwhile, he was on the hook for more than 8000 dollars in rent that was upcoming. He had to cooks and his manager on salary and he had no money coming in at this point.


What are his options?


So around that time, Congress had approved a three hundred and forty nine billion dollar package of small business loans for people just like Pancho, right? PPY Exactly. So these are essentially forgiveable small business loans that are designed to help small business owners just like Pancho who are in this situation to get a lifeline and keep their businesses alive and keep paying their employees.


So immediately I will jump on this because I suspected every bit of it immediately.


Pancho applies for one of these loans through Chase Bank.


So put in the information and do a great job.


We can get confirmation, email, email never showed up and it's just completely a Kafkaesque experience.


Then five days later, I got another email and you're going to find out. And I was like, I'm pretty sure I did know. I've already applied.


Poncho understood that he was competing against literally hundreds of thousands of other small business owners to get this money.


Then we were like in panic mode and we need to reapply now. Right. Especially at that point. I'm like, oh, we are in so much trouble. So we applied and had cases like like five. You're not eligible at this time to get a loan. You know, somebody talk like this is this is the word. Wow, what a mess. Yeah.


And how would you describe his state of mind at this moment? Because this is a pretty grim situation.


It was this is a real crossroads for the hatch and for Poncho. And I know that Poncho is disappointed that he didn't get the money. Yet when I'm talking to him, he still has this kind of dark humor about the situation.


Mm hmm. I appreciate that you've got, like, kind of gallows humor. You know, I. I love it. You can laugh about it. Oh, well, it's it's it's one of the things I can't really afford to be down in the dumps about it. I think I have to be proactive because literally people are depending on it. Right. But so far, the thing to me to try I have to do going. I'm at.


Thank you so much. Really appreciate you talking to. It is Friday, it's May 1st and May Day, Pam. Yes, the Bay Area shelter in place order extended through the end of this month here in the Bay Area. We are still a ways out from restaurants reopening.


This hits Oakland especially hard. A lot of folks across the country, here in California and in Oakland dealing with the new unemployment numbers that came out again, just dismal numbers.


One in five workers without a job in California, many Bay Area renters.


That's true. Like, I don't think we're really planning on staying here for super long. How long you guys been here? Since October. I started I got this apartment and the job.


It has the same day in the beginning of May, I ride my bike over to Abels apartment. And he lives by the highway kind of on the edge of West Oakland. And he is in the backyard fixing up his little rider bike.


And we start chatting about the past few weeks about how have you been talking to many other people that had recently. Yeah, I talked to Control.


And how is Abel doing? He's actually doing pretty well. Yeah.


Yeah. I mean, extraordinary, you know, and some some interesting things have come out of that, actually.


So he's been getting unemployment now for three weeks. And through this combination of state unemployment assistance and this new federal money from the stimulus law, he's making more than a thousand dollars a week. And that's double what he made at the hatch. And he said it's more than he's ever made in his life.


Still more than what you have been making. Yeah. So what have you done with the money? So my computer actually died. OK, screen correct. In half. So I'm out of here last night, OK. Yeah. How much was up. I thought it was like nine hundred bucks. OK, so you know, that's really crazy. That's kind of something that works and sure. Heidrun Vedran ATM, I just saw the bills and the food, some rent food bills and.


Yeah I mean that's.


And so what did he tell you about his life during this period?


I mean he told me he was surprised that the government worked as intended here. He he was very skeptical at the beginning. But now, you know, the money was coming in and he was actually starting to pay off a bit of debt.


And if you don't consider it not working or she's still not working, she. Yeah. So it's actually been surprisingly it's been pretty good. Oh, that's nice. Yeah. We didn't have we never had a day off together. OK, so now we're like, you know, getting our fill of that. That's good. Yes. Good, good, good. Yeah. Do you feel like at a certain point you try to look for a job or are you just going to try to ride it out or I mean I'm going to just ride it out and go back to getting the money.


Right? Yeah. That there's that extra money goes through July. Yeah. Oh.


So if we're able the safety net is very much working and it is working as intended and able now has the luxury of being able to stay at home. And he's concerned about the virus. So he's not super motivated to get back to work. So I'm walking through downtown Oakland and heading over to the house right now, it's the first time I've actually been here, so I got to see Poncho with the hatch.


And at this point, business really has not picked up. He's making roughly five percent of what he made before the pandemic. He's burned through roughly twenty thousand dollars in emergency funds. He had set aside another 20000 dollars of his own personal money and his new problems. A few days earlier, someone had broken into the window above the door, climbed in and Rob Bash.


Yeah. So it came in like laptops, cameras, napkins. Yeah, liquor.


This guy cannot catch a break. He really couldn't.


So how much total should that they still I think we have it firmly that we can that we can keep track of about maybe thirteen thousand dollars, although it turned out that despite the entire mess with the loan process, he ended up getting one of these PPY loans from the government. Yeah.


So what so what happened with that? You got the money. OK, that's good. And it's a nightmare, OK.


But he said it turned out to be a nightmare itself and it was putting him in a bind.


Seventy two thousand five hundred. OK. Something like that. OK. Yeah. Why is the nightmare. It is a nightmare because we basically I now have what about seven weeks left or something like that. So these small business loans, they come with specific rules and specifically, Poggio has to spend 75 percent of the money on payroll within several weeks. Mm hmm. Problem was, he was running a takeout joint. Now, he didn't need 75 percent of his staff take.


Maria Poncey doesn't have the need for a cleaner like he did before the pandemic. And even if he was able to bring Maria back, she's undocumented so her wages wouldn't count against the payroll money he has to spend. Right. And then there are people like Abel. He's making more money on unemployment than he did at the hatch. So he has no incentive to come in and get a paycheck.


I called like this guy that he's worked before and also said, listen, I was like, what are you doing right now? I was like, you should come. Like, it's like the clock is a couple of. That is like is like I'm going to pay you really well because I got him with his money anyway. And he's like, yeah, well the thing is I'm making 4000 dollars a month right now, unemployment.


And and he's like so he's like, I don't really want to come to work. So I can't even get anybody to take this money so that I'm talking to the accountant and he's like, you're in the same boat. It's a lot of other people.


So suddenly he's sitting on top of all this money and he can't use it the way he probably most needs to, which is to pay the rent. Exactly.


And this was a common criticism of people from small business owners. You had to use this money towards bringing people back to work in fast. But in reality, you don't need this many employees to come back to work when your business is so slow. And on top of that, many of your employees would prefer to stay home and continue to collect unemployment. But as I was talking to you about this in the bar, I get an alert on my phone.


You guys saw San Francisco just put out it right now, rebates for way for phase four.


Yeah, it just came out. They said San Francisco was setting some dates for outdoor dining and eventually even indoor dining for the first time since the lockdown began.


I'll tell you right here. So I think it's June, June 13th is for restaurants, uh, outdoor restaurants. July 13th is like indoor restaurants as we. So how do a restaurant. That's June 15th. Yeah.


And it's hits Poncho that, you know, Oakland probably will follow suit soon. Right. And if so, that means he just has to survive maybe just a few more months before he can get back to normal. That's encouraging people to you good. Way back.


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It is Wednesday, July 15th, a neighborhood in Oakland is fighting over a wild peacock.


The Bay Area is taking another big step into reopening today. That means outdoor dining gets the green light to reopen. Officially, restaurants say reopening outdoor dining is a relief. And this has been kind of a confusing process for a lot of people involved. Christian? Yeah, a very confusing process for a lot of people in a lot of businesses following this very closely, as you said. So, Jack, by the summer, bars and restaurants were allowed to open for outside dining in Oakland, just as in San Francisco.


So what did that look like for the hatch?


So on July 20th, the hatch did reopen for outdoor dining. So they set up a few tables out on the sidewalk and they built a little takeout window into the kitchen. And, you know, they were starting this new model and hoping that it worked.


And what did the new model mean for the three people you have been following?


So for Maria, she probably was most eagerly awaiting the hatch to reopen of any of the people I have been following. But one day when I called her cell phone, her husband picked up and he was sounding panicked and actually told me that he was wheeling her to the emergency room because her back pain had gotten so bad. Wow.


OK, well, OK. You're OK with that. Yes, I was.


When I called back a few days later, I found out some terrible news I want.


I was say that Maria had been diagnosed with cancer in her hip. So all that pain she had been experiencing was probably from from that from the cancer. Right. And now, you know, she essentially couldn't walk.


It's not a simple thing. Look look at the system.


Fortunately, she does have some health insurance through a county program that provides health insurance to undocumented immigrants for a small fee. She is getting some treatment, but it is still in the early stages and it's not exactly clear how everything will turn out. But of course, she's in no shape to get back to cleaning the hatch and not being.


More of what they feel.


So before Maria really hadn't wanted to apply for this five hundred dollar benefit that California made available to undocumented residents, but now her situation had grown so desperate that she was willing to take the risk and try to get that money.


So she actually gotten through to belonging to figure that out. And she called ninety nine. Ninety, ninety, ninety. Yes, ninety ninety something times. And they did. They never got to do that so far and they just can't get a poncho, however, did need a cleaner.


And so he decided to give her husband some hours. The only problem with that was Maria joked that her husband wasn't a great cleaner and Poncho confirmed that.


But it sounds like the decision to hire her husband wasn't really about whether or not he was a great cleaner. It was about keeping the family. Financially, I guess, on their feet. Right. He was trying to help Maria and her family in this moment.


OK, Maria, good thing that's what we what we have in our area. So in that we have something good about the idea of your ideal. And what about Abel? But hey, man, are you so I called him up and he told me he was back at work. So first day, you know, when the staff all came back together, what was the mood like? Oh, man. I think we were just really happy to see each other after, you know, I don't know, for months or whatever, you know, had a round of shots and then put our house back on.


I got back to work. You know, it was positive. You know, I think we all really liked working there.


But the bad news was that, like Maria, health crisis had also emerged in Abels life so far as diagnosed with cancer.


And so she's going through chemo right now.


Oh, Jesus. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. So what kind of cancer? Colon cancer. It's definitely survivable, but there's definitely a reality that, you know, one could die from this. So it is. It's funny about this that, you know, it's like you. But to put it out, it's like life still goes on in the Penderecki now, it's like you can't expect like because there's this thing going on, you know, it's like that nothing else kind of like will fall apart.


And they're like, well, oh, shit. All this, too, right. His mother lives in another state, so he was concerned about his ability to go visit her by going back to work, but he was also at the same time grateful to have his job at the hatch as a distraction from everything that was going on. And what about the unemployment benefits that people had, which seemed like they were more than he was making at the hatch, did that affect his decision?


It did.


The extra federal benefits that were showing up in his unemployment checks were set to expire at the end of July. So people felt he had to get back to work in order to pay rent.


What are you making a shift right now? I think it's like a hundred bucks, basically like a shift before taxes, so it comes down to like like 80 something and then, you know, tips can vary dramatically, but it's probably thirty dollars or less.


He only had a few shifts a week now. And before the pandemic, he was making roughly 500 dollars a week and now it was a bit over 200 dollars a week. Wow. You know, all I can kind of do right now is try to stay positive as much as I can. Yeah, man, well, good luck with the rest of the podcast, and, yes, I can make you feel free to give me a call. Yes, thanks.


All right. A poncho. Jack, hey, how are you? I'm pretty good. Good.


So I got in touch with Poncho a few days after the reopening. Yeah, it was good seeing them, especially like after months, you know. So there's the part where I was like, yes, I'm glad everybody's here. But I did have this moment when all the staff came in and I was like, I wanted this is just a fool's errand. You know, I don't like and wonder, this is what we're doing here. Right. Was like and maybe all we're having is this moment where we're like we get to see each other and we get like two more months of this before everything completely implodes, you know?


So now, you know, it seems everything's falling into place. And yet Pancho has a lot of doubts about everything. You know, first of all, he's worried that there's going to be a second wave in a second shutdown. And then he's also really worried because Oakland was changing rapidly in front of his eyes. I mean, the unemployment was high in the city and he was just seeing, you know, on a weekly basis his friends and his customers leaving the Bay Area.


And then he was worried that the people who were left behind in Oakland wouldn't be enough to make his business survive.


For me personally, the best way to describe it is I was in the hatch and my friend stopped by and she was like, you look old, you look so old.


I was like, yeah. I was like, I feel old.


I was like, that is a correct assessment of that, you know? And she's like, yeah, she was usually just like so super cheery all the time. And I was like, it's kind of hard to be cheery because there's like everywhere you look, there's some sort of fire and there's like so many unknowns, like it's just hard to predict, you know, and it's like and you're constantly second guessing if you're making the right decision in any given moment.


It's almost like a war of attrition where you try to see, like, who can hold on the longest and get to the other side. And then you're like, am I doing a good enough job with that? Is like, am I even the right person to be doing that? You know, being in the situation like you feel helpless, right? Where like I was like, man is like, I'm really good at this, but I'm only so good.


So, Jack, it has now been six months since you started following Poncho and the staff of the hatch, ultimately, what did this experience tell you about what it takes to keep a small business alive right now?


I think what it takes is a true re-opening of the economy, and I think it's pretty clear at this point that that isn't going to happen any time soon. And so that means that a place like the hatch is left teetering on the edge. And that also means that people who rely on the hatch to survive, you know, its employees are also teetering. And these are people who were already on the edge. These are people who can't work from home.


These are hourly workers who don't have many, if any, savings. And so it's going to remain an important question of what happens to these people over the next months and even years. And I think it's important to remember that, you know, this is the story of my neighborhood bar, but it's also the story of your neighborhood bar. This is the story of everyone's favorite bar restaurant. And remember that before the pandemic, the hatch was successful.


I mean, this was a place that was, you know, pretty full just about every night of the week. And now Poncho is scraping to survive, you know, for the sake of the hatch and for the sake of his employees. And yet he's finding that there's really only so much he can do.


Chuck, thank you very much. We appreciate it. Thank you. So I'm walking down 15th Street. It is Labor Day weekend in Oakland, and we're just coming up to the hash. How are you doing? I have learned to have no expectations in 2020. How could you predict this new wildfires? You know, with the wild I mean, we had a showdown again yesterday, OK, two days ago. Why? Because the smoke. The air quality.


Yeah, it was in the red. So any time he hits orange, we just kind of just shutting down.


So that means like you've now you've now got a business that is required to be outside and you can't be outside. Essentially, you can't be inside a deadly virus and you can't be outside because of deadly smoke. Yeah, it's. We'll be right back. Chevron is taking action to address CO2 emissions by reducing the carbon intensity of their operations. In fact, they've built one of the world's largest integrated carbon capture and storage facilities capable of capturing up to four million tonnes a year.


Learn more at Chevron dot com slash possibilities. Here's what else you need to know. It's been more than 72 hours since his last Fevre oxygen levels, including ambulatory saturations and his work breathing, are all normal. On Monday afternoon, the president's chief doctor, Sean Connelly, authorized President Trump to leave Walter Reed Medical Center after four days of treatment and return to the White House, though he may not entirely be out of the woods yet.


The team and I agree that all our evaluations and most importantly, his clinical status support the president's safe return home, where he'll be surrounded by World-Class Medical Care 24/7.


Around six thirty p.m., Trump walked out of the hospital.


How many shots were fired? How many of your staff are? Thank you very much. Boarded Marine One and flew to his residence where he removed his mask, posed for photos on a White House balcony and defended the behavior that led to him contracting the virus.


We're going back we're going back to work. We're going to be out front as your leader. I had to do that. I knew there's danger to it, but I had to do it. I stood out front. I led. Nobody that's a leader would not do what I did.


Meanwhile, the outbreak within the White House continued to spread. On Monday, White House Press Secretary Kelly McKinney and two of her deputies also tested positive for the virus. So far, more than a dozen people who had been in contact with the president or attended White House or campaign events in the past week say that they now have the virus.


That's it for The Daily, I'm Michael Barbaro. See you tomorrow.