The people's voice of reason

Things I Have Learned During Lockdown

It is amazing to me that so many people have had such a hard time during the lockdown. I am not talking about the financial issues that are affecting most people because those issues are real and agonizing for many. Never underestimate the stresses that others are undergoing. What I am talking about, however, are the people that are becoming increasingly restive to the point of violence because of sheer boredom. People are getting angry and irritated about some pretty stupid, meaningless stuff. Sitting back and watching the meltdown of some, I have begun to piece together some things I have learned during our Wuhan Lockdown. For me, this has been a time for reflection and thought. But here is some of what I have learned.

1. I love being home with my wife. Not so much that I have just now learned this, but every day it is hammered home that I do not mind being in her presence every single day. In fact, there is no other place I would rather be and if I do have to be somewhere else, I clearly want her there as well. I cannot believe all the stories, memes and video clips I see of people, hopefully they’re acting, that don’t like being at home with their spouse. That is certainly not my reality. When retirement does come, I will not be that guy who has to go push shopping carts at Walmart just to avoid being home.

2. Led Zeppelin. I love Led Zeppelin. I always have. During this lockdown, I have rediscovered how much I love their music and why, in my not-so-humble opinion, they are the greatest Rock band in history. Their music is just that good. The music that Page, Plant, Bonham and Jones made is magic. I was fortunate enough to see them in concert back in high school and I wish I had been able to fully appreciate them for what truly gifted musicians they were/ are. Now that I “play at” guitar, I appreciate their music even more. Rock on!

3. Professional sports. Here is something that I have felt for years now but has really come to fruition these past couple of months. WHO CARES????? Personally, I have come to really hate professional sports. For me at least, I don’t see how a grown person can go to a stadium, watch millionaires play baseball, basketball or whatever, wearing a jersey with some guy’s name on the back, cheer and get angry all while spending a ton of money to watch, did I mention millionaires, play a sport. One thing this lockdown has shown us is certainly one group of non-essential workers. I get it, people like to watch sports, as do I at times, but where the proverbial rubber hits the road, professional sports, to me at least, is way at the bottom of my “I could not care less” list.

There was an article today saying that some NFL players will test positive as they move ahead with the season. Without sounding too mean spirited, I just want to say, “I don’t care.” I don’t. Not one bit. Not about anyone getting the virus because that is tragic for anybody. But I do not care, not in the least, about the NFL season. My give-a-hoot level for professional basketball is even less. As an example of how much I hate professional basketball, let me paraphrase a routine from the comedic duo Stiller and Meara. As a married couple, they were having an argument, Meara says to Stiller, “You know how much I hate you? If I could take every grain of sand on the planet and write the words ‘I hate you’ on it, and then multiply that number by infinity, that is how much I hate you.” Yeah, that is me and basketball. Pretty much. But the bottom line of the lockdown, professional sports, to me, has proven to be quite worthless in the big scheme of things. Just don’t mess with my SEC football.

4. Hollywood. Want to talk about non-essentials? I love going to the movies with my wife. The popcorn, the candy, the experience. But in reality, is it that important? Not really. ’Nuf said.

5. Aggressive Drivers. Coming back into the post-lockdown world, although it has been slow, probably rightfully so, I have seen way too much aggressive driving. My brother said he read an article about people getting out of quarantine and basically losing their minds behind the wheel. I was driving down the Bypass the other day and was fixin’ to make a right hand turn into one of the shopping centers across from Lowes. As a habit, I always look in my rearview mirror to see if the person behind me is slowing down or if I am about to be pummeled by someone. All was good and as I was getting ready to make my right turn, from the right lane, I looked up one more time and I saw this young lady (I am being nice) speeding down the shoulder at around 40 miles per hour. I slammed on my brakes as this troll blew past me, kicking up dirt and rocks since the shoulder there is so small. She didn’t even slow down and sped off into the distance, probably on her way to pick up her phoned-in coffee order at Starbucks or more likely she was late for a meeting with her parole officer. Sorry, but no excuse here for that kind of driving. Just be careful out there peeps, I am sure many of you are going to see some crazy driving stunts out there. Protect yourselves.

6. Church from home is not the same. Not even close! Our church has done a fantastic job of live streaming church services, meetings with our pastor and others in our church staff and the creation of teams within the church where members remain in contact with others. But alas, it is not the same. Looking forward to things getting back to normal.

7. Our government lies. No surprise here, I guess. All most of us want is honesty regarding this Wuhan virus. Masks/no masks. Prisoners released will only be non-violent offenders yet almost every day we see stories of violent offenders killing, raping or robbing just days after their release from prison. Just the other day, some low-life career criminal who had been arrested some 70 times in his pathetic life was released and promptly stabbed an 80-year-old woman to death in broad daylight. Hey, if you are going to continue releasing violent criminals, at least let us know when and where so we can protect ourselves. The lies and misinformation seem to come almost daily. The infection rates are up, the rates are down. One state opened their beaches and within two days, supposedly, there was a huge spike in Wuhan cases there. But I thought you told us there was a 14-day gestation period. All we ask for is truth and transparency. Now, the CDC announced that the virus is actually not easily transferred from hard surfaces. But didn’t you guys say . . . . Never mind.

8. Joe Biden. Like I said in my last Robservation, get that man out of there.

9. Writing. Last of all, I really love to write and am getting a lot of it done these days. That being said, writing historical non-fiction on the scale of my current project is a lot more time consuming than I had first imagined. Most of my published writings have been WW II historical non-fiction because that is what I love. But the early writing stages in this genre is tough. As it should be. Most people do not want to write a book full of historical errors. For example, most mornings I like to write for 2-3 hours and try to knock out 5 to 10 notecards worth of information. Yesterday, in a three-hour writing session, I was only able to finish one card. The day before two. Why? Yesterday, for example, as I was reading over the notes on the card, my stupid brain went into hyper speed overdrive and said, “Hey, T8er. You do realize in such and such book behind you on the shelf, there are a bunch of original documents you haven’t thought of using yet. Think of this different angle. You can put all of this in the book.” So, there I sit with a desk full of books, my iPad, papers flying around and more and more information to make my case being shoved into Microsoft Word. Facts, facts, check, check, re-check, more facts and this is before I can even hope to get to the fun part, I mean for me the really fun part of editing and rewriting. So, at this stage of the book, it is sluggishly slow, minutia type of work. But I do love it.

10. As I was getting ready to send this in, I saw the following story about a racist Volkswagen advertisement in Germany. I watched it. Yup. Pretty much. And yes, all I drive are Volkswagens. Here’s the Link. Brother! My question would be, “Who the heck in Germany thought this was even close to a good idea?” ~

So much for my Wuhan lockdown. (Read Rob 2.0 on page 1C)


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