while many in 184 countries around the world are rising to do their civic duties to adhere to pandemic-time protocols, obediently sheltering in place, i am sitting, alone in my remote room, staring out the window wondering…
…what is “zoom” …and does it cause permanent whiplash?
you would think I would have enough hours in the day to investigate such an important aspect of the spring of 2020… but I just don’t have the time. too much to do. too many places not to go. too many books not to read (the library is closed).
there are bills i cannot pay…because…”they” are closed. there are forms to file….that i cannot file…because those forms need to be returned to offices that no longer exist. there are companies i need to contact that no longer have phone numbers to call. quite frankly, life as we know it, has become like a Socratic dream, a Platonic nightmare.
so…forgetting those bulleted one liners in my appointment book, i have chosen to engage myself in creative endeavors to pass the time…and to give my brain time…to remember what i actually do have to do today…or tonight. purposeful pursuits, one might say.
and i preface these with…now that i have the time…. as in…
now that i have the time, i can do endless 5 minute word searches from…actually, I do not know where you get word search books anymore.
suffice to say, one must engage one’s mind to keep one’s mind fresh. after all, it is a pandemic, and we all had better sharpen up on our PHD-level medical skills. because…
now that I have the time, I can catch up on all the latest testing platforms identified by the CDC, NIH, FEMA, MRT, BOX…or outside the BOX.
then again, maybe you would rather spend your spare time wisely, since a
2. read a romantic tale of life in the Bubonic Plague…probably easily found on Gutenberg.org. (Where all the juicy stuff is)
3. Do a search on The History of Ferret Farming…
4. text all of your classmates in Abnormal Psych Class….and learn from their behavior…
5. do a public reading of “The Old Man and The Sea” from your front porch, from 8am until you fall asleep from boredom…
What would you suggest people do in their spare time while sheltering in place?
if you’re going to have to stay inside anyway…why not have a surgery or two to keep you occupied? it certainly has worked for me.
in the morning, as daylight spills over the hills…I am so pleased to be able to peak ’round my floor-length curtains to see my vehicle safely taking up space in front of the house, so no one can park backwards on the wrong side of the street (current teenage craze for some weird reason). of course, having had a surgery, it takes enormous effort to slip back down into my cozy covers to rest from the rigors of the ordeal. likewise, if I sit on the edge of my chair in the office…making sure not to squish the extra hardware inside my body…watching Covid-19 Where are You?…and secretly hoping the next directive is much more exciting than closing bait shops, I have to pace myself, or I will start to nod off toward one of the floor lamps. Mama never said there would be days like this, and I often wonder if Mama ever really had to recover from anything at all. truth is, it is a tough life recovering from surgery.
….but tougher if you have to go in for # 2. and I do not mean surgery of the anus. I mean going through the same kind of procedure again, because, well, they have to go finish the job. finish the job…because someone…someone…neglected to do a thorough enough job years and years ago, so now, it is like a showing of a 4 hour movie….and, well, we just can’t have that. so, I have to go in….again.
this second surgery allows me to be a vegetable…preferably a green leafy one….until about the time when the government has to make more decisions about the pandemic.
Also, TV will be utterly useless during this time as no sport in the world…other than Marbles…and it is questionable who really has theirs…will be playing on the tube. I have already watched The Waterboy more times than my medulla oblongata can take, and I have seen every funny clip from Star Trek, Still Game, Alf, and everything in between. I tend to loathe most television anyway, as watching it causes me to feel like I am eating pop rocks for the brain.
It is highly unlikely that anything apart from the Vitamin C-less Virus will dominate any waking hour of any first world citizen during this planned recovery, so I will gladly find a comfortable den within my blanket-womb to enjoy the rest of March, until my body deems it necessary to return from hibernation.
I can enjoy this lovely little world of microfiber fluff primarily due to the presence of an excusive, technologically advanced bedpan; a ’70’s dinner tray; and a cup holder invented by a super genius. These tasteful items make my long day in bed, alternating between pain medicine and proficient peeing, a pleasant and relatively uneventful blur. As I glance up at the calendar on my door, the days trickle by like a stream that knows no ending…
…and that is why I still look forward to Surgery Procedure # 2, when I will able to glide across the cold hospital floors in my very own surgical steel bed, and wake up later having missed another news conference, another state directive, and another series of criminal activities involving the taking of toilet paper…
when the world isn’t making much sense…does this help?
well, lads and lassies…it has been nearly a decade since I first sat down to compose my first WordPress post. some of you may have been there for the first post…but most have gone the way of wind, driven off to some other venture. for those of you who have been around for nearly a decade, I would like to congratulate you on continuing to support WordPress as a free beacon of speech and civil expression. while I cannot promise another 8 years producing like I did in the first few, I do not intend to disappear from the blogosphere anytime soon. despite more aches and pains, I am not leaving.
all the world’s an app….but none of them really work right. the google play store is like a playground with too many merry-go-rounds. someone please get me off of here.
on one of my more particularly pleasant trips on the merry-go-round, I discovered some nice language apps that creators swore were “magical,” “transformational,” and everybody’s favorite…”engaging.” for the myriads of reviewers of these promising products, these descriptions might be a bit lacking. as in “one star,” or the more existential “one point two stars.” not sure what that is, but it is transformational for me.
one was particularly essential, having the ability to translate to and from Irish and English, and hold your breath here came with real Irish pronunciation. such a grand thing never happens on the Irish apps, though every site has someone with a thorough background in Guarani who will translate and enunciate Guarani words in every dialect known to man (…and women, snakes, and llamas) since 1620.
Perhaps that is why the app translated “glasrai” to “glossary.” No, that is not me slurring words, it is an Anglo-centric software app. It must be racist.
OK, let’s try something harder. “Ta se te…” It is warm and rainy today…
The English app translated “your pooping good.”
Apparently, an 11 year old fixated with his butt crack, translates the Irish into whatever he wants. The app makes no apologies. Irish is included…but it is obviously a “low risk environment” to translate to “Irish speakers.” Yer man sure would not get upset with a mistranslation like the average Elamite or Hittite speaker would….but, how off can you be?
On the other hand, the English translation …from every other language known to women, men, and their dogs…worked like it was backed by a team of Oxford scholars. with their shirt tales in. on a sunny afternoon. while watching cricket. in the yard.
maybe more to ponder….later….perhaps.
moving around a pile of dirt into ridges, leaving the trenches the dirt came from next to the ridges…well, even to the most ardent archaeological student, the said formations are about as exciting as watching toast burn.
…and this is an important cultural site for a pre-Columbian people group? Random ridges some people imagine are shaped like a figure or ring or….I mean, you have to really, really stretch the imagination to believe this dirt pile was an important site to any civilization.
but that is what the people at Newark Earthworks would tell you.
sure it is one of the largest piles of organized dirt in America…but really, who cares? any group of people can put together an endless stream of ridges…just for fun, or out of boredom. remember, they did not have Netflix, selfie sticks, or smartphones to mindlessly tap…they had to find something to do, after a hard day of sitting around making sharp pieces of flint.
I can imagine….
“Hey, let’s build a bunch of wiggly ridges over the next ten years. everybody who comes through here will leave us alone because they will think we are super-geniuses.”
and if you throw in some chipped pottery, some jewelry that looks like it was made in China… what have you got? a civilization? sadly, theories of civilizations have stood the test of time on such fodder.
meanwhile, there are other archaeologists who have found piles of treasure in old garbage dumps, in caves, and tombs throughout the world. the question for my friends in Newark is this- how much material does one need in order to constitute a sizable enough number of artifacts to say we have the “authority” to call anything a historic site of this people and that culture during this time?
it is a question for the layman, enthusiast, and professional all to ask. especially when the people of the future are presented with random ridges of dirt.