That’s the date in my personal pandemic time. I start with March 17, 2020, when the Bay Area shut down. That was the first shut down in the United States.
Back then, I figured it would all blow over soon. I recall saying “I’ll go nuts if this is still going on in May.”
Maybe I did go nuts. I’m certainly not at my best. I saw an article in the paper about older people — mostly people about my age, not the very elderly — feeling like some of their life has been stolen from them.
I feel like that.
The other day I said to my sweetheart, “Do you think things will ever get better?”
And he said, “Look around you.”
It’s not just the pandemic. Russia invaded Ukraine and the news from there is horrific — not just war, but obscene war crimes. The only good thing I can get out of all that is that for once the U.S. government is doing the right thing. It’s a difficult problem, bringing back the fears of nuclear war that all us boomers grew up on, but near as I can tell the powers that be are actually balancing doing the right thing with making sure they don’t trigger something worse.
California is in a serious drought. We’re going to have more fires, because this land was meant to burn regularly, but the way things are set up we’re going to have out-of-control fires in areas where people live.
The politics in the United States have crossed over into absolutely insane. We don’t ever get a reasoned debate on how to solve problems because the right wing extremists keep making up absurd claims that are irrelevant to everything we need to do. Much of that is rooted in racism and misogyny and is being used to disguise all the ways they want to make the rich richer.
Meanwhile, more and more people are living on the streets. And despite the fact that renewables are now cheaper than fossil fuels even if you don’t take into consideration all the benefits given to oil companies, we’re still refusing to take action to shut down coal mines and fracking for gas and oil.
So the pandemic continues, now combined with with a pretense that it’s over. Authoritarianism runs wild. No one’s doing anything like enough to address climate change. And even in progressive places like Oakland it seems to be impossible to actually fix the problems in our everyday lives.
I have a bad feeling that the rest of my life will continue to be pockmarked with all these things. And it makes me very angry. Continue reading “March 769, 2020”…