Last Call!

Carefree on Miami Beach, 6/26/2020
Source: NY Post

As we stand here today, all 50 states and territories across the country are opening up, and safely and responsibly.

Vice Président Pence, June 26, 2020

Bars here in Florida are closing yet again. Darn the luck. I hadn’t actually gotten to one yet, but sitting amongst some charming, happy-go-lucky inconsiderates sounded like fun. Oh well, I guess I can make it up during the upcoming, third, or fourth wave. Living in the south does give one lots of opportunities.

In spite of Mr. Pence’s rosy optimism, the reason for the closings here and also in Texas are due to the dangerously high spikes in coronavirus infections. Both states reopened rather early, each responding to that catchy Twitter refrain of “Don’t let the cure be worse than the problem itself.

Funny how you don’t hear anyone saying that lately, eh?

This closing of the bars really wasn’t a huge surprise, at least to me. I knew we were in trouble a few weeks ago when some of the local communities around here started discussions on whether they could continue to schedule for the annual Fourth of July fireworks celebrations. That they were even considering it, I thought exhibited a fair bit of denial on their part. I easily visualized lots of young people — and let’s face it, families too — all crowding together, some wearing masks, but most not, “oohing” and “aahing” to a beautiful light show up in the sky. Ah yes, yet another petri dish in the making.

If a church choir in the state of Washington sickened 52 people through mere vocalizing, imagine what hundreds of people holding beers and screaming, “Party down, America, man!” can do.

My recommended 4th of July mask for you. You’re welcome.
Source: Sunstaches.com

I’m not purposely trying to be a cynic. It’s just that over the last several weeks, I’ve come to have absolutely zero faith in our fellow citizens’ ability to act responsibly during this time of crisis. Examples are everywhere lately: check out this fun gal who apparently didn’t like being told she has to wear a mask to shop at Trader Joe’s.

I’ve reacted similarly in the past myself, but only because that store tends to always be out of their addictive plantain chips.

Once the beaches opened up here, along with restaurants, bars, baristas, etc., there was a rush to get back to normal life. The problem is that now is not a time when anything can possibly be normal. You can deceive yourself into believing otherwise, but the pandemic has decided to stay for a while. It particularly likes us Americans, especially since much of Europe and Asia have done a far better job in containing it.

The virus absolutely makes no distinction between our northern, eastern, western, or southern states; nor does it happen to be attracted to blue or red voters. Whether you’re marching in the streets for police reform, or cheering for your candidate at an indoor political rally, you are more than likely endangering yourself and others.

I absolutely support businesses opening again. We do need to get money in the hands of workers. Likewise, municipalities are reportedly struggling to maintain basic city services such as street repairs, wildlife control, garbage collection, etc. Getting tax revenue back in their coffers is to everyone’s benefit. But doing all of this in a smart and safe manner is the challenge. I’m pretty sure that throwing a hissy fit in public because you’re asked to wear a mask isn’t helping. Nor is deliberately coughing on your fellow human for that matter.

Our gym shortly after reopening (June 2020)

Gyms opened back up earlier this month, and Gorgeous braved a visit to ours for a grand total of one time. Although they spaced out the ellipticals and treadmills so that exercisers could distance from one another, we both have agreed that neither of us are really all that comfortable in going. Somehow to me anyway, being in a gym isn’t all that different from the people singing in that Washington choir; you’re still with a bunch of people breathing heavy in one large room. I’d consider going and wearing a mask, but I’m all but certain that breathing in my own fumes would knock me out cold within ten minutes. For now I’ll stick to the morning walks outside in our condo development, sans mask.

Which does bring us back to the bars. We personally haven’t been to one since probably February, when I’m sure we visited the local British pub for their regular Sunday dinner. In the summer, we like to make regular stops in the Old City here at St. Augustine, where we’ll end a shopping visit by sitting ether inside or on the patios of the Spanish taverna, the Irish pub, or having a cold Singha under a table umbrella at the Thai restaurant. I do miss all of that, along with going to a movie theater, attending a concert, etc.

Oh, those days of yore (circa 2019)

But quit crying in your beers, folks. Since young people especially are refusing to take this seriously, what’s left of the brain cells of some state governors have somehow ignited a synapse or two to make the correct decision in closing bars for now. Of all the places and spaces, they’ve proven to be rather dangerous to the greater public. I miss them, but somehow I just have to believe we’ll all find them again when the coast is clear.

So be like me: stay home and have a beer. Look how happy I am about it:

Putting the “happy” into all happy hours since March 2020

Until next time…

30 thoughts on “Last Call!

  1. My gym is opening July 6. We started a slow opening this past Friday. So far I haven’t seen pictures of crazy crowds and the restaurants are limited to 50% capacity. I hope this works. I see you did get a haircut! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Gotta laugh or you die of heartache (my latest heartache? babies who are the targets of maskless coughers – different video, same creepiness; etc).

    And that ‘perfect’ 4th of July mask isn’t quite COVID-19 ‘perfect’. However, if placed over a complete clear plastic face shield…see, where’s there’s a will there are always options.

    BTW: I love your not-so-subtle referencing of dates in this post, too – 6/26 Pence declares all’s well in the USA and then Florida (of all places) announcing it’s shutting down bars.

    Stay ‘happy’, Marty!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. The Trader Joe’s and coughing women are real cutie-pots, aren’t they?
    You look hilariously miserable! 🥴 I’m not a drinker so I could care less about bars opening, but I was thinking about buying a new car…you know…to sit in my garage and rot. Bwahahahaha! 🤗

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We actually did buy a car at the very beginning of all of this, Laurel. It was before the shutdowns occurred by probably ten days; a very surreal experience, and yes the car sat there (and mostly still does)! Yes, those now-viral women have all the social graces. Ugh.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. “Karens gone wild” made it to CBS Sunday Morning! Seriously, it is always the young fit white women that are challenging my patience. I don’t get it. Drinking my wine at home, as always, here in Texas.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh, thanks for telling me about the Sunday Morning piece. I record it, but don’t often get to it till Tuesday or even Wednesdays. I will want to watch that later today for sure. I cannot figure out the ANGER in some of these people. Stay safe there in Texas, Tracey!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. When I need something I either order it online or go to the store, head in, grab it, check myself out, and gone. We’ve eaten out once in a parking lot, sitting at a picnic table, and calling in the order. We’ve adjusted to staying home and periodically getting take out. Today, the numbers here are decent, but tourist season is upon us so I’ll check back in with you later. I get not ‘wanting’ to wear a mask. They’re uncomfortable, hot, fog up my glasses, and make me feel like I can’t wait to rip it off, but I wear one every time I leave home. Some of these folks need to grow up and act like adults involved in a pandemic not just a late date for a latte. Good post.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree, Judy. To think of how the country all pulled together during the early 1940’s when rationing was a way of life because of the war. There were cheaters then too, of course, but I think it’s fair to say the majority of society pulled together and acted as one back then. Now we’re all fighting over the dumbest of things. And I definitely hear you about the fogged-up glasses!

      Like

  6. Sue Bowers

    Marty, that was the best picture ever of you not enjoying having to drink a beer at home! I love seeing all the crazy-ass Karen’s and other maskless shoppers who don’t get what they want. The cherry on top is they get to see themselves made fun of on twitter or the news. It’s the little things that make me smile…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. And indeed we have a lot of “little things” these days, Sue! The maskless shoppers fascinate me, really. They’re all either looking down or staring you down as if to challenge. I just smile and think all kinds of things. 🙂

      Like

  7. Elisabeth

    Thanks Marty,
    Frustrating 😦
    Looks bad in Florida, California and Texas, but we are not there yet either, although people are cautious.
    Cringe…, and I had to look this up; apparently Karen has a husband and his name is Ken.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Karen and Ken. Perfect. 🙂

      Yes, I think we’re only on the cusp of this particular wave (I’m not sure if it’s the second wave or not). Floridians and probably Texans too made way too many careless errors after we opened up. This was bound to happen. Ugh.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Hehehe 😂 that’s funny ! I still haven’t had my post COVID hair cut. I’m hanging out. My oldest have offered but she’s been busy.
    Our numbers are rising here. We had 41 and 49 last two days. The worse thing is they don’t know where most new ones came from meaning the virus is lurking in the community and they can’t trace it.
    Next few days they will decide whether they will lock down our hot spots or not.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think even after they come up with a vaccine, this will still be with us for a long while. We watched an in-depth report tonight with scientists working on one that there will probably more than one vaccine, years apart from one another.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Hi, Marty – Once again, you’ve managed to mix the perfect blend of frustrating and frightening to make us laugh–and think–at the same time. We currently have only one active case of COVID-19 on Vancouver Island which means that many locals (+ tourists) have become complacent. Scares the heck out of me. Time will tell.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We saw a fascinating news piece on CBS Sunday Morning earlier, Donna, that strongly suggested that we’ll be dealing with COVID for some time yet. The thinking is that more than one vaccine will probably be needed. We’ll need to keep our sense of humor somehow. 😏

      Like

  10. We Americans are so entitled and selfish… and, I’m sorry to say, woefully ignorant. That Karen’s “breathing problem” must come and go. She certainly didn’t have a problem filling her lungs during her rant. I’m glad to know that you are keeping safe and close to home… we are too. We’ve had a few “driveway happy hours” with some neighbors, but we are able to keep well away from each other (few people, big driveway)… and it’s definitely BYOB.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. They’re all coming out of the woodwork, aren’t they Janis? My sense is that even with a phone recording them, their anger is just too overwhelming to stop and think clearly. So all the ugliness comes out for the entire world to see.

      Glad to see you guys are still finding a way to stay in touch with friends. It’s awkward but better than nothing!

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  11. The charming, happy-go-lucky sounded like fun. The rest, not. My big decision this week is whether we encourage our two grandchildren (4 and 6) to have a sleepover at our house. This used to be a common occurrence pre March, 2020. We have had minimal contact with them, except for playing outdoors and still social distancing.

    Words used around here are, one slip can cause a significant rebound. Despite summer vacations, the virus is not on holiday. You may have heard the phrase, where we are in a perpetual game of whack-a-mole to contain the virus as it pops up. This phrase makes me smile. The virus does not. I agree with every point you make, Marty. Yes, stay home, have a beer and stay healthy. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah, I had never thought of the “whack-a-mole” phenomenon about the virus, Erica. But you’re so right, that fits perfectly. I do hope that you decide to have the grandkids over; somehow it’s good to re-introduce certain things, though I do understand your trepidation.

      I’ll continue to have my beers at home, don’t you worry. 🙂 Thanks for commenting!

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Nothing much is open here despite what Pinocchio Pence says. We thought we might go to a park, but found them crowded with families running around mask-free. So we stay at home, drinking our adult libations, and waiting for something good to happen.

    Liked by 1 person

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