“We would be warm below the storm in our little hideaway beneath the waves” – The Beatles
At this very moment, what’s safer: an octopus’s garden or a yellow submarine?
I ask because that’s exactly where my mind flashed when a blessed Beatles standby stroked my wits the other day.
Is salt water a conductor for COVID-19? What about social distancing in a submarine? What about toilet paper?
Such is the fruit of a 24-hour virus-update world.
This is a deeply unsettling stretch, made more so by leaders at the top mostly concerned about staying there.
This winter has had a claustrophobic sense to it, with the tense exhaustion of impeachment and the desperation of millions – put me at the front of the line — to end the era of Trump. Post-impeachment, he lurks like a Hitchcock character trying to beat the closing credits.
Now add the incessant march of the killer microbe.
Millions of us feel shut in, but we need not feel agoraphobic – fear of the outside.
Start by opening a window. Then open the door and step out into the freshness. The backyard beckons. So, too, that walk you’ve meant to take.
Where I live in Colorado, the dormancy is done. We have green again in the foothills, though the peaks to the west still don white. Though avoiding crowds like MDs urge, I am not going to be a shut-in.
Sure, some contingencies are meant for a scary moment. But some are just good sense that ought to endure long after the moment.
Better hygiene. Better nutrition. And what about exercise? Yes, it’s how we all stay healthy.
Most of the provisions aimed at slaying the virus are simple common sense. We didn’t need it to remind us.
These precautions remind me of the steps aimed at combatting climate change. You may not want to buy into what climate scientists are saying about the greenhouse effect, but few can argue that the measures by and large are good for us and the planet regardless.
The only ones who’ll dispute the need to conserve fossil fuels, pollute less and save energy (also known as saving money) are those Armageddon types who think the world is soon to end and reserve the right to destroy it themselves.
I’ve heard commentators say, “Don’t go out.” They don’t mean it literally. They mean don’t go out to that favorite Starbucks or on the bus or subway.
Do take that walk. Do jog. Indulge the dog.
A report finds that many New Yorkers have taken to bicycles to avoid mass transit. With less traffic in the city because of the virus, this is an exceedingly healthful call.
One of the most heartening scenes comes from Italy, locked down because of the virus. There, people on their balconies sang songs together.
As communities, by and large Americans are doing the right thing right now to avoid a spike in infections that overwhelms hospitals.
A salute here to those who can’t do their jobs remotely.
As one expert said, we should all hope that when it’s over someone will claim that it was an overreaction. That will mean the reaction worked.
However, it is an overreaction to cloister one’s self entirely from a greening out-of-doors, to not appreciate a moment’s respite from rushing to and fro, for those of us who have that luxury.
Regardless, we can do this. We can make the most of this, while we wait for the waters to calm.
Longtime newspaperman John Young lives in Colorado. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.