On a scale of one to ten, with one being the lowest and ten being phenomenal, my productivity level today has hovered right at a negative eight—below slug level. As is my right as a citizen of the state of Florida on this pollen-dusted spring day, I’m blaming my lack of progress on seasonal allergies.
Okay, the antihistamine is kicking in, I’m not sneezing anymore, but now I can’t keep my eyes open.
When did common sense become politicized? When did we stop thinking rationally? Honestly, I’m concerned. You see, most sane adults understand that there’s a pandemic that has taken the lives of more than half a million Americans and an estimated 2.57 million human beings worldwide.
We know that the virus is mutating and that even though there are now vaccines to mitigate the spread of Covid-19 only a small percentage of the population has received the vaccine as of March 5, 2021. We are not anywhere near the point of herd immunity.
And yet certain governors in the U.S. have decided that it’s time to do away with all the restrictions. They’ve opened everything up. No more masks. No more social distancing. No more limits on the number of people who can gather in groups. No more common sense.
Ah! Sweet freedom. Freedom to kill and be killed. Freedom to not care about our friends and neighbors. Freedom from common sense. God help us all.
Gracie is upset that I won’t allow her to go outside on the screened-in porch this afternoon. It’s an 80° day and the sun is shining, but there’s a breeze blowing the pollen around, and my allergies just can handle it.
So Gracie is making do with the next best thing.
That tail starts flicking about now and again leading me to believe there might be a lizard teasing the cat from outside the window. This cat leads a really tough life.
In my blog I occasionally reference the Texas panhandle as the land of my birth. I throw the word panhandle around assuming everyone knows exactly what I mean. But more than once I’ve had a commenter ask, “What’s the panhandle?” Allow me to illustrate.
Actually, someone already illustrated and labeled it for me. You see, the tan area? That’s the panhandle. At some point somebody thought it looked like the shape of a pan’s handle and named it accordingly. To me it seems too chunky.
Nowadays, I live in the Florida panhandle.
I drew a line around it for you. To me, Florida looks like a gun with the panhandle being the barrel and the peninsula the gun’s handle. I guess the term “Florida gunhandle” didn’t occur to those who had naming rights.
Other U.S. states have panhandles, but I’m tired and don’t want to bore you more than I have already.
We don’t see temperatures like this very often here in Florida.
We’ll bundle ourselves up in sweaters, jackets, and scarves and turn up the thermostats. It’ll be a great day for sipping hot chocolate and gathering around a fireplace.
In North Dakota, though, where Studly Doright, our children, and I lived for four years, three decades ago, 32° temps on a sunny December day might feel balmy, inspiring folks to wear short sleeves and even short pants while frolicking in the unexpected gift of a warm day. It’s all relative.
What’s the weather like where you are? Are you cavorting in summer clothing or huddling beneath a blanket? Inquiring minds need to know.
I rose early on Friday morning and went in search of a t-shirt in one of the shops near Seacrest Beach. It seems the frenzy of Black Friday shopping doesn’t happen in these parts, so none of the clothing shops were open at 8 a.m..
Due to skewed packing sensibilities, I’d managed to pack as if I were going to a mountain in Tibet rather than a beach in Florida. I needed a t-shirt, and while part of me was pleased that Black Friday hadn’t gotten its ugly hooks into this beachside community, the part of me that needed a t-shirt was disappointed.
Rather than drive the two blocks to the shops, I walked and enjoyed people and dog watching. After I found and purchased two very unfashionable, yet beach appropriate t-shirts, at a cool little book store in nearby Rosemary Beach, I stopped at a little cafe and bought a croissant.
As I sat there munching on my breakfast I looked up and saw these banners hanging on the wall:
Here in a little cafe in coastal Florida was a team banner for my kids’ alma mater, The University of Kansas. I’m not sure why that made me so happy, but I smiled all the way back to our condo.
Hope you’re all having a great post-Thanksgiving Day, and avoiding the crazy crowded shops.