Around our house, for quite a while, we have been using the euphemism “With everything that has been going on . . . ” We like it because it gathers up the collective burdens and tribulations surrounding CoVid 19 and tries to make it more palatable especially around a 12 year-old, who certainly does not need nor want to hear much more than that. So even with everything that is going on, we have some smiles, encouragement and tips to help you get through this slog.
Let’s start with a smile. In British Columbia, a 6 year-old boy was excited to set up a lemonade stand this spring. But with everything that is going on (see how we did that?), he decided to set up a drive-by joke stand instead. Callaghan McLaughlin works two shifts a day and uses a joke book he received as a gift. The jokes are free because Callaghan wanted folks to be able to use their money for groceries. We love the sweetness of this!
With everything that is going on, bicycling and pedestrian activities like walking, jogging, roller-blading, etc. are surging in popularity. Unfortunately, apparently so is speeding and, if you can believe it, street racing. With more people working from home and safer-at-home instructions in place, many streets have emptied out of vehicle traffic and some drivers are engaging in extremely risky behavior especially when you consider the increased number of cyclists and pedestrians using the roads for exercise. In London, police clocked a driver doing 150 mph. In Washington, traffic has decreased by 80% but speeding tickets are up by 20%. In New York, speeding cameras have increased tickets by 60%. And some fools are entertaining themselves by street racing and then bragging about it complete with videos on social media. In fact, experts have noticed that while traffic accidents are down substantially due to the reduced traffic, serious accidents are not following the same trend. So, please slow down. If you see reckless driving, report it to police. And if you are injured, we are here and ready to help.
Now, some encouragement related to the recently celebrated Earth Day. We are making less of a mess on our planet. Carbon emissions are down so much that the air quality in Los Angeles and China and other places known for their smog has improved dramatically. Rare reptiles are nesting in record numbers in Thailand, sea life has returned to the normally polluted canals of Venice. In short, an environmental silver lining has emerged.
Finally, one last bit of word play we have been using at our house. With everything that is going on, it is easy for bad news to dominate our family conversations. When one of us has reached overload, we have a code word that requires a change in topic with no further explanation. We simply say: Creamed Corn. I am not sure exactly how we arrived at Creamed Corn, but it does help us quickly change gears to more positive discussions.