Social Distancing Now In Effect

I’ve often expected that a global infection of some type might occur in my lifetime, and so far, there is nothing about this one that surprises me a whole lot. If you’ve read my blog for a while, you know I’m a devout skeptic in regards to most human activities.  Lack of vision, lack of planning, you know…the usual.  With a blog title like, “Think Ahead”, you’d expect a little of “The Grasshopper and The Ant” mentality to show up here.  My kids will tell you that this particular lesson has always been a staple in my long line of tired parables.

In fact, I was in the process of writing a novel based on survivors of a worldwide pandemic, one that would change life forever, so you can imagine how current events are both fascinating and disturbing to me.  I was making progress on the book until the first few signs of a real pandemic started becoming evident.  The unfolding realities are now overshadowing the situations that I’d tried to create in my own mind.  Let’s just say that the book is on hold for now.

It’s all beginning to seem more “real” to people in my locale as store shelves empty.  My wife left for a large nearby grocery store late last evening to avoid the crowds, and texted me this picture of the noodle and pasta aisle:


Good luck trying to find rice or beans in any store within miles of here.  But she said there’s lots of potato chips and organic, gluten-free tortilla shells left over.  Grab ’em while you can!

Reports and articles trying to minimize the outcome of this exponentially growing global pandemic are now on the wane.  There are still a few holdouts, but I am done listening to anyone still enjoying the sleepy dreams of denial.  Some people had told us that it’s no worse than the flu and that most individuals will hardly know they’ve been infected.  And for some, that may be true. Suffice it to say that recent information from the most reliable sources available is painting a much different picture.

Everyone wants to get through this with nary a trace of damage, and most will.  But is it a bad thing to say that some of us won’t survive, or we may be left with permanent lung damage? Or are we not supposed to think about that?

There have been many criticisms of hysteria and hype.  But so far, I have not witnessed any type of behavior that I would classify as “hysteria”.  People are coming to grips the best they know how and are trying to prepare.  If hoarding toilet paper or pasta is “hysteria”, then I have no problem with it.  And for those who missed the paper products aisle, the newspaper may have to serve humanity in an even less dignified manner than it already does.  But lack of TP is a simple inconvenience; I can foresee much more troubling forms of hysteria taking place in the near future.

I have cancelled all unessential trips and social interactions, which were relatively few to begin with.  Over many discussions, and to be honest, frank exchanges with loved ones, this house may be soon be declared “quarantined.”  However, I realize there are unavoidable circumstances, and that there’s risk involved in every exception.

I’ve been watching other countries to see how they react. Some of them are merely weeks ahead of us as their hospital rooms overflow with critical patients.  I’ve learned that some of these countries were better prepared than the United States, with a much higher bed capacity than ours.  Although I have faith in the American people to make the best of this situation, the sad reality is that we do not have the health care infrastructure to handle what’s coming.  Not even close.

My approach, or should I call it my “survival strategy”, changes hour-to-hour as I try to get things dialed in.  I’ve been analyzing story after story, and I think I’m beginning to see the picture.  The severity may be a simple matter of degrees.

I like the following line that I picked up somewhere in my browsing this morning:

“Nobody ever said, “‘I regret that I prepared so much for emergencies'” 

I think I’ll frame and post these words in our front room, as if I haven’t already caused enough trouble.

Like all of us, I have many beloved family members who are at great risk due to age or preexisting health conditions.  I will do what I can for them when needed, and I expect the same from the rest of my family.

As a self-identified realist, I fully expect to see both the best and worst sides of humanity as this pandemic unfolds. I do agree that a part of being helpful is to understand the benefits of self-imposed “distancing.”  I don’t blame anyone for taking steps they feel necessary to protect their own families, even if others refer to it as “hysteria.”

I’m definitely hoping for the best, not just in my own circle, but for the entire world.  We need to work together to minimize the spread as much as possible.






9 thoughts on “Social Distancing Now In Effect

    1. I don’t see an end to this until we reach herd immunity, which will might happen before the vaccine is distributed. I really have no idea, but neither option is very encouraging. Thanks Neil. Des

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Your two dogs have the perfect message to all who are experiencing panic and anxiety attacks over the pandemic. Keep your distance and relax. My wife and I have the same calm attitude. We cancelled our reservation to a world-class spa, postponed our family trip to Victoria to celebrate the second birthday of our granddaughter, go out for our daily walk to the lake weather permitting. and take a wait and see attitude. What else is there to do?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, my dogs got the idea early, Peter. I’m sorry to hear you had to cancel what sounds like a great vacation to Victoria. I hope you stay safe and are able to make the most of your time at home.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. The fear of the unknown is so hard. We still have groceries at our stores, and some even had toilet paper yesterday. I think it varies from location to location. I agree we will see both the best and the worst of human behavior as this plays out….we already have, I think!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I don’t know how the goods supply chain situation will play out, but you’re right, we already have seen some bad behavior, and I don’t expect that we’ve seen the end of it.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. On the upside, I just saw on CNN that not only is toilet paper made in the States, but that it really isn’t one of the things we should be worrying about becoming in short supply. There really is enough to go around, if people stop buying 10 million cases of it apiece!

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I wrote today about the realists in my family who taught me much about life. I, like you, expected that something was bound to come along,whether illness or war I didn’t know. But we humans have always faced huge challenges. No one exempted us.


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