On December 31, 1999 I was at the beach with my wife, kids and my sister and her family. I know it seems like a long time ago but if you can remember back 21 years a lot of bad shit was predicted to happen that night when the clock struck midnight. Not end of the world bad shit, though there were a few Flat Earth Society members barking that the end was upon us, but simple stuff, computer operated stuff, utility grid stuff, just silly stuff.
My former brother in-law and I played golf that day and got into the beer a little early and continued on for the rest of the day into the evening. By 9 pm I was toast and ready for bed. The kids were bouncing off the walls excited to be staying up so late but even their enthusiasm couldn’t keep me awake. With only 45 minutes to go I said my goodnights, gave out a few Happy New Year kisses and went to bed.
When I woke-up on January 1, 2000 the sun had risen like it has for a trillion years, I smelled bacon frying in the kitchen, the lights turned on, the toilet flushed and other than a bad case of dry mouth it appeared to be just another day. The so-called Y2K crisis never materialized despite all the handwringing, stock piling of food, guns, and ammo and mass paranoia.
“We have it totally under control. It’s one person coming in from China. It’s going to be just fine.” – Trump, January 22, 2020
In January, February, and March of this year most of us had no idea what we were headed into. Why? Because putting a plan together, a national response was simply too much work for the Psychopath sitting in the White House. My wife and I saw Bob Weir and the Wolf Brothers in Asheville on March 4th. A week later he had cancelled the rest of his tour. That’s when it hit me, this was the bad shit we were waiting for in 1999.
“The Coronavirus is very much under control in the USA… Stock Market starting to look very good to me!” – Trump, February 24, 2020
It took several months before I knew someone that had contracted COVID-19 but by the end of the summer the list of people that I knew had grown exponentially. I was hearing horror stories from friends and acquaintances of parents dying, and seemingly healthy people on ventilators fighting for their lives. My wife moved her office to the house and my office shut down for several months with just four of us remaining to man the fort and keep the lights on. Over the last few months, I have talked to several people, people that I know and people that I do business with that, thankfully and for some barley, survived their battle with COVID-19. What they describe is terrifying and they all have a growing concern about long-term issues they might have to deal with in the future. One friend told me that there was no way COVID-19 didn’t damage something, lungs, brain in his body.
“I think we’re doing a really good job in this country at keeping it down… a tremendous job at keeping it down. You have to be calm. It’ll go away.” – Trump, March 6, 2020
There is little doubt that 2020 has been a shitty year. 30 million Americans are currently receiving government unemployment benefits which is about 20% of our work force. Some of my favorite local businesses, retailers, and restaurants, have gone out of business in the last six months. The isolation and lack of social interaction has caused many families problems. Gatherings have been put off. Seasonal traditions cancelled. Older parents are spending time alone, getting older or even dying without the benefit and comfort of interacting with their family and friends. Saying it has been challenging and hard year seems like a real understatement but that is the best I can come up with.
“I see the disinfectant that knocks it out in a minute, one minute. And is there a way we can do something like that by injection inside or almost a cleaning? As you see, it gets in the lungs, it does a tremendous number on the lungs, so it would be interesting to check that. So, supposing we hit the body with a tremendous, whether its ultraviolet or just very powerful light, and I think you said, that hasn’t been checked but you’re gonna test it. And then I said, supposing it brought the light inside the body, which you can either do either through the skin or some other way…” – Trump, April 23, 2020
Obviously the one positive thing that happened in 2020 is that 81,000,000 Americans rejected another four years of the failed Trump Experiment. On January 20, 2021 America will once again have a human being occupying the White House. Someone willing to serve us rather than serve himself. Someone that understands hurt and loss. Someone capable of providing others with compassion and empathy. Yes, it has been a long year and an even longer four years but soon the orange clown will be but a sad, tragic postscript to an equally sad and tragic year. A year that saw 336,000 Americans needlessly die from a virus that maybe couldn’t have been prevented but certainly could have been handled differently if an adult rather than an eight year old had occupied the White House. Happy New Year.
“I don’t take responsibility at all.” – Trump, March 13, 2020