In 1937's "A Star Is Born," Janet Gaynor and Fredric March play two actors — one headed for stardom, the other for ruin. There are no musical numbers in the original version.
Over the years, the plot mutated. In the 1954 remake starring Judy Garland and James Mason, Garland's singing dominates. In the 1976 version, Barbra Streisand and Kris Kristofferson's characters are rock 'n' roll musicians. And the 2018 version with Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper launched multiple Billboard hits.
Mutations are a hit or miss proposition — and nothing demonstrates that more than the current rash of omicron subvariants.
Currently, we know that the dominant COVID-19 mutation in the U.S. is the highly contagious BA.5. In mid-July, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimated that it accounted for more than 60% of new infections. And BA.5 along with another variant, BA.4, accounted for 80% of new cases.
Those two are also fueling reinfections and hospitalizations. You can be fully vaccinated and boosted, or have been previously infected, and still get a breakthrough infection.
And there's another variant, BA.2.75, that has crept into the U.S. But as of this writing, it's too early to know what its risks are.
What is known is that if you're vaccinated and boosted, you help prevent mutations, and if you're infected you gain significant protection from complications such as brain fog and death.
That's why most experts (me too) advocate almost everyone 6 months and older be vaccinated and boosted, if they qualify.
And wear a mask in crowds. The more people who get infected with these variants, the more likely they are to infect others.