He’s in the hospital after a stroke, per Jerry Pournelle’s blog, and doing better now. (Scroll down for a picture.) As you might expect with Harlan, even a week after a stroke he’s apparently talking a mile a minute and ruling the conversation. This is pretty impressive, as my grandma had a pretty good recovery from her stroke but was pretty much lying around with no energy at a similar point in time.
I can understand Harlan’s asking a Catholic hospital to cover his room’s crucifix (actually a fairly devout Jewish thing to do, so there’s an interesting psychological insight into Harlan). But I think it’s surprising that the nurses had to improvise a covering (maybe most people like the crucifix even if not Catholic?), and that the covering itself wasn’t particularly respectful. Not blasphemous, but not nice, either.
On the bright side, the hospital got him a Jewish roommate. 🙂