by David Herman
Well we are by the time you read this in self-isolation for a month. It is not getting easier but it will not last forever and most of us will get through it. If we stop for a minute and look back over the past 100 years, we will see different events that were very similar in their devastation. I first recall from reading and hearing about it the Spanish Flue (H1N1) Pandemic of 1918-1919. It was first identified in military personnel in Spring, 1918. It has been estimated that about 500 million people or one-third of the world’s population became infected with this virus. The number of deaths was estimated to be at least 50 million worldwide.
Although we have no inherent immunity to this Corona Virus disease (COVID-19) currently (as of April 10), worldwide we have 1.6 million confirmed cases with 97,000 deaths; but we have almost 365,000 recovered cases. We are a long way from the devastation of the pandemic of 100 years ago, and with the technology and science available to us today we, the people, have the ability ourselves to flatten the curve and reduce the total number of cases, and from there the number of deaths, attributable to this disease.
There are a lot of misconceptions with how to protect ourselves. You see a lot of folks wearing disposable gloves. This really is not as safe as they think it is, as the gloves are meant for single use then toss and put on a new pair before touching something else. They are not meant for wearing for the day, or for hours as you do your shopping, and they need to be safely disposed of. Yesterday, as I was waiting in the car while my wife did our shopping, I noticed a big strapping guy with a Harley jacket on coming out with a cart of groceries and he had single use gloves on. He put his stuff in his truck and did the right thing and returned his cart to corral; but, as he returned to his truck, I noticed his hand were bare.
When I drove up to pick up my wife, I could see he had discarded the gloves he felt may be contaminated with COVID and left them in his cart for someone else to dispose of. Was this fellow thinking: “I have protected me and everyone else can clean up after me and look after themselves”.
For another perspective, I want to recognize and thank all the small shop owners who are doing everything they can to continue to serve their customers while respecting the social distancing, and doing all they can to protect themselves and their staff. I am not going to name them, as I am sure to miss some, so I just want to say thanks to you all. You are the people who make life in a small town so rewarding. I know some of you are worried every day you unlock your doors to serve your community, but we appreciate you all.
Last week, I republished a small poem on being able to afford to get married. I found another poem that, at first, I thought was more appropriate for Thanks Giving; but after reading it to my daughter, she convinced me that it has a worthwhile message for us today; so I have taken some literary license and changed it to make the season (apologize to the author)….Appreciate what we have, and look out for those not as fortunate as ourselves. My version goes like this.
A Good Easter
Said Old Gentleman Gay, “On an Easter Day.
If you want a good time, give something away.”
So he sent a great Ham to Shoemaker Price
And the Shoemaker said, “What a big Ham! How nice! And, since such a good dinner’s before me, I ought
To give poor Widow Lee the small chicken I bought.”