Elon Musk says, “the Coronavirus panic is dumb.” Let’s open this up shall we?
Clearly there’s a run on toilet paper, anti-bacterial wipes, and surgical masks. Soup and chili are running thin, along with bottled water, and peanut butter. I also heard there’s no milk and eggs on the shelves at Costco? These are trying times.
One of those items I can’t live without so rationing seemed the only logical solution. I put a limit of 5 squares per service if you follow, and let me be perfectly honest, people are cheating, by people I mean Larry. He’s the only other occupant in the house and I haven’t noticed Shaggy participating in the allotments.
Now what does this tell you?
Clearly spouses can be uncooperative, but more importantly someone is hoarding all the toilet paper, I blame Jeff Bezos, he has 25 bathrooms, and access to supplies if you know what I mean? Jeff send me a pack if you get a minute.
Seth Godin confirms the conflict of our time is between people who are challenging our shared objective reality by claiming their reality takes precedence over what we’ve discovered. We’re both in need of toilet paper and that might be our new common denominator.
Larry forwarded me an article from the Mercury News yesterday which strongly recommends all people over the age of 50 remain indoors in Santa Clara County until the Coronavirus threat is over? Never mind that we have jobs, people who rely on us, and restaurants to frequent.
I admit my initial reaction was not stellar, I scoffed at such extreme measures, the truth is I don’t have a degree in pandemic threats, and due to my current predicament I’m considering this whole debacle with new eyes.
I heard the same advice from an award winning scientist on the east coast, who’s approach seems alarming, he not only advised restrictions on travel, eating out, going to the movies, games, bars, and gyms, but he recommended closing all the schools?
Is the sky really falling?
If we refrain from supporting our local restaurants, travel industry, entertainment venues, resorts, sporting events, and health clubs, what will be left when the danger passes? Our current shared reality is kicking our economy to the curb, so what do we do?
We bought tickets months ago to participate in a surprise 60th birthday for a dear friend who lives in Texas, before the Coronavirus was a thing, before we understood how it tends to attack 60 year olds specifically, older people direly, and for those with compromised immune systems it can be deadly. The fear is real.
Feeling as if we had a slight advantage as we are hanging on to our fifties by our fingernails, we decided to throw caution to the wind, and wash our hands with the intensity of a surgeon.
The time we spend with old friends celebrating milestones is enormously gratifying. Our generous hosts made sure we were entertained, well fed, and appreciated Texas style. You’ve heard the homage, “everything’s bigger in Texas,” and that is certainly true when it comes to heart and hospitality.
By the way there was plenty of toilet paper where ever we went, back up rolls stacked on the back of the toilet, extras stored in the cupboard. It was reassuring. I resisted packing a few rolls in my bag, it’s lent, and I’m trying to avoid damnation.
When Gerald, the birthday boy, gathered us together to thank us for changing decades with him, he surprised me by speaking about accompaniment. Gerald made us feel as if his life were all the better because of our shared journey. It was a sweet moment, taking the most important aspects of friendship, and whittling them down to the primacy of accompaniment.
We are discovering more and more about the benefits of social relationships, not only do they enhance our well-being, but they bolster our immune systems, and bring down our blood pressure. This might be our secret weapon? In a world suffering from fear, stress, and panic I think our only hope to care for each other as tenderly as possible.
This Coronavirus is messing with just about every aspect of our lives. Seth Godin also claims divisions over this cultural reality are getting worse. Spin, widely spread, not only seeks to divide us, but resorts to insisting that the objective reality that is challenging those issues isn’t real. By seeking to deny the things we ought to be able to agree on, it sets us back. How do we help each other maneuver through these trying times?
Laxzlo Barabasi says, “an influenza virus moves through a continent with the speed of a sports car.” Damn. It seems airports, shopping malls, supermarkets, cruise ships, and schools act like petri dishes, spreading the virus as if a California wild fire, and has the added bonus of disrupting our global financial network. Is would be dumb to underestimate this little contagion, but don’t underestimate the clarity that comes with taking a deep breath, and refusing the appeal of fear and panic.
The current recommendation is for those of us in our 60’s to gather supplies, stay home, avoid all crowded situations. My husband and both daughters are now working from home, I call those the blessings of the coronavirus, we’re hunkered down in our chosen spaces, and there is something enormously comforting about that.
So how are you planning to utilize all that extra time you’ve created by not commuting? Is it possible to consider this as a rare opportunity for connecting with others in uncommon ways, providing leadership to a struggling community, and as if a communal lent how can we utilize this time for shared renewal. Now that we’re battling the same foe can we be more generous with each other? Nothing like a pandemic to bring us together.
Maybe this is our chance to take that online course we’ve been talking about, or help our elderly neighbors order groceries on-line, turn off Netflix and finally read Pride and Prejudice, consider the stock opportunities the market is now presenting. The point being is not to buy into the panic because that is not helpful to anyone. Seth Godin says the other path is to dig deep and figure out what’s next.
That being said, I have the flu, Texas style, with all the expected trimmings, and did I mention the run on toilet paper?
I’m Living in the Gap, ailing at present, don’t drop by just send a few rolls.
- Larry is growing a coronavirus beard, not shaving until he returns to work, I’ll keep you posted.
- My daughter Kelley made me homemade soup, tea, and eggs as she manically wipes down everything I touch with antibacterial sheets.
- I’m getting bed sores.