Richard Fulton

Well, here we are.  If we are not at work we are shut up in our homes admonished not to go out or have contact with any stranger, maybe not even any friends or relatives.  

Even at work you tend to peek at your fellows and wonder if they have it, and whether I should speak to them let alone come within six feet of them. Everyone is under suspicion. 

Going to the supermarket can be an adventure with undercurrents of danger. Look at all those people not wearing masks, are they trying to kill me? What can I do to avoid them, pretend I’m really interested in that cumquat in the veggie section?

A person could become paranoid. Although some common-sense precautions surely can’t be all bad. Like running away from that kid with a runny nose. 

It’s virtually summer for heaven’s sake. We should be able to go out, enjoy the weather, commune with our friends and neighbors, go out to eat or drink, especially drink, find fun summer activities to join. Will there be summer softball?

But no. Precautions are the directives of the day. So, we tend to stay close to home and avoid crowds, or even small groupings. We watch television, do puzzles, play cards, look out the window longingly, hoping there somehow is a place we can go to enjoy the spring-summer outdoors.

There isn’t even baseball on television, and little hope of any coming soon. What kind of summer is this? A summer without the Cubs is a lost summer.

Oh, we could warm up to that living room chair and read the newspaper or watch what’s happening in the world on TV. But then all we get is a president who wants us to drink poison to avoid the corona virus. Or we get to ponder whether the president of North Korea is really alive (high on my list of concerns).  

Or we could get a jump on the political season by following the campaign of Joe Biden or watch the president stumble over questions of dealing with a virus (try poison as an antidote, why not?).  

We don’t even get a spirited race for the Democratic nomination for president, we just get Biden trying to find a way to make some news to remind people that he’s it. The nominating convention should be a real snooze.

The highlight of my week was going to get tested for the coronavirus. “Up your nose,” they said.  I was insulted there for a moment. I have no symptoms, so surely I’m okay.  

Even church is a remote affair. At least I don’t go to that church where the pastor pronounced that God would protect him so he held his service regardless. He came down with the virus, of course.

So, I hunker down trying not to do anything that might expose the household to the virus and trying to find something useful, or even fun, to watch on TV. Turns out I have discovered that reading books is not a bad thing.

Luckily, I get the newspaper, a couple magazines, and can watch the news on TV so, being a news junky, I can weather the storm. But since the candidates for president are already set and the other candidates find it hard to get time on TV or print space, it is turning out to be a ho-hum election year.  

Not to mention that sports on television is missing in action.

So, let’s all hunker down and hope that summer will bring relief and meaningful action in sports, politics, and outdoor activities. I mean, it could be worse.

Couldn’t it?

Richard Fulton is an emeritus professor of political science.  

 

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