This is Day 326 of 15 Days to Flatten the Curve and Day 2 without a WuFlu Curfew.
You read that right — last night was the first time since November that adult Buckeyes haven’t had their bedtime dictated by state government. It also was the first night since July, when the state first issued an idiotic last-call decree, that Ohio bars and restaurants could resume regular business hours without the prospect of being cited, fined and shuttered.
This curfew always was, in a word, absurd. I’ve heard no argument that it had any effect whatsoever on WuFlu cases, hospitalizations and deaths — and even if I had, it wouldn’t pass The Laugh Test. And I’ll repeat what I’ve said here many times: Virtually no one cared about it. Citizens all across Ohio responded to the curfew with “patriotic disobedience,” a show of defiance that I found encouraging.
The governor’s manipulative color-coding system, created to put wheels on his pandemic goal posts, is still with us. Sure, he manufactured a way to tie lifting the curfew to declining hospitalizations — numbers that were certain to go down anyway — but that was just to save himself embarrassment. The truth is that Richard Michael DeWine is a beaten man now and he knows it. The People won this staredown weeks ago.
You gotta fight* for your right to party.
Because this governor is who he is, however, he had to follow yesterday’s good news with a not-so-veiled threat to reinstate the curfew if we don’t behave ourselves. After all the damage he’s done, all the lives he and his minions have destroyed, he has the nerve to scold us. He can kiss my ass.
Deb and I are fine today. The snow blanketing the Second Chance Ranch driveway has been, shall we say, addressed no fewer than four times over the last couple of days. I’ve hit it with the shovel twice myself, clearing a more-or-less token path to accommodate deliveries. The other day Deb paid a couple of local teenagers to run a snowthrower back and forth.
Then yesterday The Best Neighbor Ever dropped by with his quad and plowed it as clean as it’s gonna get. A base layer of solid ice remains. As my late father observed after retiring to coastal Virginia, sometimes the most effective means of snow-removal is patience.
In the 11 years we’ve been here, February statistically has been the snowiest month. This year, just a dozen days in, I wouldn’t be surprised if we’re on-pace for a record of some sort. We have a foot on the ground around the sheltered footprint of the Bumper Bunker in the back yard.
I’ve lived places with much colder winters and a whole lot more snow than central Ohio gets. I’ve pushed, dragged, thrown, plowed and shoveled. I’ve never been one to complain, and I don’t plan to start now.
That said, Nature can stop this nonsense any time. I have better things to do.
Only rarely do I watch the news — I listen, either to broadcast radio or to the audio feed of television networks. I prefer that medium because it’s less hypnotic than video and less likely to distract me for no good (relevant, that is) reason.
By some definition, it’s also less entertaining. That’s a feature, as the saying goes, not a bug. I don’t consume news and commentary for their entertainment value.
Pandemic Theater has exacted a higher toll on the spoken word, it seems to me, than it has on visuals. Granted, that mask the local news babe is wearing — my eyes are up here — obscures most of her pretty face, but what masking has done to her voice is criminal.
Field reporters come across my speakers like they’re stuffed in a barrel two rooms away. And whenever I hear Double-Mask Daffy try to speak through his CDC recommendation, he sounds like a drugged hostage. (Ordinarily he only sounds drugged.)
Dead air always seems to last forever, but now it’s worse and inescapable. Many (if not most) interviews these days are conducted via some sort of streaming service. Even some hosts participate from home using a phone or a laptop. The irritating streaming-audio lag, everyone talking over everyone else (because they can’t hear each other) and, of course, the excruciating wait for the interview subject to say, “You’re welcome” or “My pleasure” — and then saying nothing — are conspiring to drive me mad.
C’mon people, figure this shit out. Stop letting technology and Pandemic Theater cripple your craft.
Take care of yourselves, Patriots. Stay calm. Stay sharp. Stay free.
*Clearly a nod to the Beastie Boys classic, but I’ve learned from the impeachment trial that the word “fight” triggers Democrats and other progressives. Seriously. This is what we’ve come to.