Oooooh, my little pathogen,
Don’t be givin’ me germs, #Corona
Ooh, you make me petrified,
Got it coming off o’ the flight from #China
My, my, my,
Did you sing it to “My Sharona” by The Knack?
The original lyrics are actually scarier/creepier…
Pandemic, more like Pant-demic, am I right?
I thought we all deserved a break from the propaganda of pandemic shopping (what’s with the obsession with toilet paper? Will t.p. be our future currency? Will people years from now be telling their grandchildren, “I was there for the T.P. Wars of 2020, it was ugly, a real sh*tshow!”. Do people not understand COVID-19 is a respiratory virus, this is not the Crappocalypse…Every time someone says toilet paper I think of “Seinfeld”, “No, I don’t have a square to spare. I can’t spare a square.” Really folks, are you going to be those type of apocalypse people who can’t even spare a square?
Also, thinking of t.p. makes me want to sing, “Love Will Tear Us Apart” by Joy Division, but that’s for a psychiatrist to figure out…). Pandemic shopping panic is spreading faster than any virus single-strandedly could…I have my pandemic panic shopping priorities straight, I stocked up on chocolate. You know what kills the most people?
And in the end, life.
Make no mistake about why these babies are here –
they are here to replace us.
~ Jerry Seinfeld
Finally watched “Rocketman”. As a writer, I adore Bernie Taupin’s mind (played by the delightful Jamie Bell), as a music
freak fan Elton John (Taron Egerton, who also sings the part, bravo!) is a tapestry on the castle wall of music. This film is: over-the-top, brilliant and self-indulgent, so basically, Elton John. People compare this with “Bohemian Rhapsody”, DON’T!!! Like comparing the Hope diamond with a million tiny diamonds on a huge pair of glasses, completely different, both dazzling.
Don’t you know I’m still standing, most of the time.
Looking like a tightrope walker past their prime.
I’m still standing after all this time.
Picking up the pieces of my life, kinda like a mime (ummm, on a windy street)
I’m still standing yeah yeah yeah
I’m still standing yeah yeah yeah
Seriously, disequilibrium is discombobulating
and even spelling them makes me dizzy!!!
What have you all been doing to keep COVID-19 from spreading and to stave off that beast, boredom? Have you been supporting one another, reaching out to offer help, or a kind word? Email isn’t cancelled. Texting isn’t cancelled. Calls aren’t cancelled. Kindness isn’t cancelled. Smiles aren’t cancelled. Goodwill isn’t cancelled. Some people are complaining they can’t get out, false, walking, cycling, jogging, running, hiking, all safe distancing activity that keeps you moving isn’t cancelled, just stay, stay hydrated and practice safe distancing.
It’s St. Patrick’s Day – wear green, eat green food, drink green beer, smile, get lucky, laugh, share some laughter. Support each other. Stop looking at the negative side and think about all the “me” time you’ve been missing, maybe without even realizing it. Some people are complaining there are too many precautions, maybe, but if nothing comes of this, guess what, that’s the outcome we want, nothing to happen.
Here’s things that have been keeping me amused while Earth is cancelled.
“The Alice Network” (not to be confused with “The Alice Project” or “Alice Cooper” or “Alice in Wonderland” or “Alice in Zombieland”…what was I talking about?) “TAN” by Kate Quinn, suggested by a friend, “thanks” cause I couldn’t put this book down!!! Seriously, my eyes got tired, so I logged onto the library, got the e-audio of it and let my ears do some of the heavy lifting. Ever read a book where the movie starts playing in your brain? Stark. Poetic. Mesmerizing. Unflinching. So many books sit on shelves, unworthy, taking up space, this book deserves a whole section to itself.
Words cannot describe how happy “Avenue 5” made me…Hugh Laurie (reminds me of his “Blackadder-A-Bit-of-Fry-Laurie-with-a-smidge-of-Jeeves & Wooster-glory-days), Zach Woods, Josh Gad, Ethan Phillips and so many more. A delightful disaster you can’t stop watching…more please?“Star Trek: Picard” is a gift to loyal Trekkies/Trekkers. Patrick Stewart reprises his role as the iconic Jean-Luc Picard (please commence arguments about who’s the best Starfleet Captain now) and with a whole host of new and oldie (but still-in-our-hearts) spacies: Brent Spiner, Jeri Ryan, Jonathan Frakes, Marina Sirtis, Santiago Cabrera, Harry Treadaway, Alison Pill, Isa Briones, etc. Not already a “Star Trek”
fanatic fan, probably not for you; for those who’ve spent a majority of their lives thrilling at: “Make it so”, “Set Phasers to stun”, “Engage”, “I’m a doctor, not a…”, “Resistance is futile”, “Highly illogical”, etc.…you get it, that electric energy zinging through you. And the cherry on top? Picard has a dog named Number One…wonder-filled.
“The Outsider” – I got chills, they’re multiplying!!! Watch the series, read the book by Stephen King and when your inner voice says “Don’t watch another episode before bed!”, listen to it, same goes for what your I.V. tells you about donuts (mostly, sometimes your I.V. is just bossy and should mind it’s own business!). Oh no, I have a scratch on my hand, yikes.
“Hunters” – weirdly reminds me of “The Watchmen” (the mind-blowing movie not the HBO series), but, like, hunting Nazis in the 70s…Al Pacino is still a master of micro-expressions. This is a reminder to trust government…seriously? Obviously kidding.
“Sex Education” on Netflix, there are no words, just watch (and learn?).
“Freaks” (isn’t this just sorta “Firestarter” again?).
“The Stranger”, “The Five”, Safe” all adapted from Harlan Coben books – What? What? What? Oh, the UK sure knows how to do a mystery up right.
Watched “The Hate U Give” and “Where Hands Touch”, apparently Amandla Stenberg likes to make me keep-the-tissue-box-handy because, ok, I’m welling up now thinking about both films, so amazing.
Too many books to list (just when I think I’m getting caught up on my to-read book list, I’m…squirrel! Yes, that easily distracted), for now, yet “F*ck No! how to stop saying yes when you can’t, you shouldn’t, or you just don’t want to” by Sarah Knight (author of one of my favs, “The Life-Changing Magic of Not Giving a F*ck”) stands out. https://yadadarcyyada.com/2020/01/26/aggressivesimplification/
So before we panic, er, even more (Don’t Panic! Be Cautious! Be Kind!)…
Frankly, I’m feeling a bit panicked about how upset people are about having to wash their hands! And asking how to wash their hands properly! Being put out at having to wash their hands more! Ummm, supergross…) and all the
stockpiling hoarding toilet paper, masks, hand sanitizer, medications, water, etc.
Not to downplay the loss, it’s terrible, but to put this into perspective, approx. 500 people die each day to firearms worldwide. Not to mention: cancer, heart disease, poison, fire, flu, diabetes, suicide, murder, driving while: texting, drunk, high, tired, smoking, sleeping, watching TV, checking their phone, hair, make-up, eating, and wow, seriously people, just drive the car, sober, rested, it’s not a toy.
I could go on. People die of preventable illnesses and “accidents” (is anything really an accident?). People are still starving, really, that’s still a thing in 2020? So before we continue to panic (which involves a lot of toilet paper I guess?),
let’s look back at all the things that went bump-in-the-night, the “scare-du-jour” that made us run out then and buy, buy, buy (currently residing in the “Where Are They Now?” files):
Ebola (since I was a teen I’ve been saying Ebola and other viruses are just a plane ride away, then again, I also wore a Hawaiian shirt every Thursday cause Magnum P.I. was on…so that happened).
Zika. Iran. West Nile Virus. Ozone Hole.
Y2K. SARS. Caravans. H1N1. Acid Rain.
Mad Cow (I simply can’t get a disease like Creutzfeldt-Jakob, I can’t even spell/say it correctly).
AI. Jellyfish. MERS. Sharks (landsharks?).
Global Thermonuclear War (seriously, watch “War Games” again, you’ll thank me).
Weapons of Mass Destruction (now plagued by Weapons of Mass Distraction).
Terrorism. UFOs. Comets.
Asteroids (also a cool video game).
Vampires. Pizzagate. FOMO.
AIDS. Momo. Rickrolling.
Remember the world ending in 2012? Mayans must be having a right good laugh at us.
Evil clowns, sorry, that was redundant…I meant, clowns.
Chemicals in the water that turn the freakin’ frogs gay!
Swine flu (that’s some pig!).
Eggs. Chickens and other birds (which came first?).
And my all-time fav, Killer Bees from South America.
Where are they? Did they take a decades-long siesta? Are they still coming? I need answers!
North Korea. ISIS.
Fear is used to manipulate the population,
to keep them docile and easily lead.
“What, me worry?” Worry is a weird thing to do cause stress/worry hurt your immune system which leaves you open to viruses…see where this is going?
Risk is part of life (and a magnificent game).
Maybe we need relax, take a deep breath, calm down and have some tea and some chicken soup (gluten-free, GMO-free, organic with no chicken for our frightened souls). I have just the thing. A delightful friend and tireless blogger, Cher P. Garman https://thechicagofiles.com/ has contributed to “Chicken Soup for the Soul: Think Positive, Live Happy (101 Stories About Creating Your Best Life)” by Amy Newmark and Deborah Norville (CSS) and good news, none contain tales of rushing to Costco, pushing people out of the way to stockpile toilet paper and hand sanitizer.
Cher’s inspirational story is #60. This ex-pat was a fish out of Canadian waters when her family moved to Chicago, but did Cher wallow? No, in the belly of the windy whale the blind taught her to see. Cher helped herself by helping others. You can’t feel alone or sad or frustrated when you give the gift of yourself to those in need.
“Chicken Soup” books are oft mocked as ‘corny’ or ‘cheesy’ (both corn and cheese taste good in soup, by the way), but they’re meant to remind us to see past the doom-and-gloom headlines and “if-it-bleeds-it-leads” stuff because it sells, sells, sells!!!
That the “Breaking News” crap and social media frenzies aren’t meant to motivate you, or to make you content or grateful or happy, they’re meant to disrupt, disturb, depress so you’ll be desperate and despairing.
I’m not dismissing the loss, the horror, the fear…germs are super scary, they’re a killer we can’t see, but really, so are a lot of things, Mother Nature is always trying to kill us and we’re doing the same to her. How about a truce?
Anxiety is my brain telling me to be careful, except fear isn’t using it’s inside voice. Panic, anxiety, worry, grieving, frustration, depression, etc. during these situations is normal, but if we amplify, then fear wins.
I feel sad for so many people in this crisis, including those told to stay home when they have no home. I’m going to rely heavily on science, I know, not popular in some circles, but it’s one of the few things in life that’s always tried to be honest with me.
My thinking is: stay home more, “social distancing” (hmmm, people with Autism were born for this), help “flatten the curve”, stay calm and we can do this…
Also, keep your risk perception under control, toilet paper will not keep you safe from COVID-19:
1) Wash your hands w/ soap often for 20-30 seconds. Use hand sanitizer when you can’t wash your hands. Stop touching your face so much! Seriously! Stop! Humans touch their face anywhere from 15-50 times/hour (what?!?). And clean your phones, they may very well herald the zombie apocalypse.
2) Human contact is important, but again, be cautious (a good general rule). Animal/human is also important, but this is zoonotic, again be cautious and be kind. Stop blaming bats, if we weren’t stomping all over their ecozones, their homes they’d just continue to hand around and be batty.
3) This is a good time to educate people on the risks (“Be careful about reading health books. You may die of a misprint.” Mark Twain would tell you 100x and more goes for the internet) and how to combat them.
Don’t Panic! Be Cautious! Be Kind!
I’m going with what the doctors/scientists/experts say, wash your hands. #WashYourHands #SafeHands
The world is a ball of wonder, don’t let the latest storm be your whole life’s weather forecast. Don’t just learn to dance in the rain, learn to dance like you’re in the rain, in a “Wham!” video!