Not sick, and tired

I’m sick of trying to guess if the person walking toward me on the sidewalk is a good person or a bad one.

Daily dog walks feel like acts of attrition, a battle of wills one block at a time. Will they move? Should I move? Is there a car coming? Is someone on the other side?

After three months of this, I’ve gotten pretty good at telling what fellow walkers will do. Married couples usually move, as do solo walkers with dogs. Joggers are more difficult; the younger ones prove to be a wildcard.

The other day I was with my wife, 4-year-old son and our semi-large Georgia black dog on the tail end of our sojourn. Up ahead were two joggers — one wearing a Pylon shirt, the other wearing a Tragically Hip T-shirt (this is the only town you see that combination on consecutive joggers). I shouldn’t have to say which runner moved courteously to the side, suffice to say you can’t always trust fans of Canadian bands.

I’m sick of not being able to trust the numbers coming from the state department of health.

Something I did every day when this started was looking at the tallies from the Georgia Department of Health. The page was straight-forward and packed with good information. But right around the time, the state government was opening more parts of the economy, the DPH page was made over, with new, hard-to-follow charts.

They were also riddled with errors. Days were out of order, color bars denoting counties were jumbled up, and incomplete data were used as examples of a state with fewer cases when the opposite was true. Late last week 57,000 antibody tests were included with diagnostic tests totals, making it appear more people were tested for the virus when they weren’t. The state only found out when a reporter asked (read your local paper, folks).

If you have to fudge numbers to fit your narrative, you’re the bad guy. Three strikes and you’re out. It seems like the lack of baseball has people forgetting the rules. Which reminds me …

I’m sick that there are no live sports.

Watching taped sporting events is not my thing, I would find it difficult to be a coach for this reason. There’s nothing like live sports, and I miss it terribly.

I should be watching the French Open to see if Rafa wins his 13th title. Would Lebron’s Lakers or Kawhi’s Clippers be headed to the NBA Finals against the Greek Freak? How terrible would my K.C. Royals be (pretty terrible). I don’t even want to talk about the NCAA Tournament.

But I understand. I’m not happy about it, but I understand.

I’m sick of people driving like maniacs.

Did the state suddenly allow people to text and drive again? Did it get rid of speed limits? I thought it possible when newbie drivers were allowed to get a license without a driver’s test (this actually happened), but I’m sure I would have heard about the speeding and phone thing.

I’m sick of hearing about people without masks mocking people who do.

If you don’t want to wear a mask, that is your choice. I don’t agree with you, and almost every doctor, nurse, restaurant owner, waiter, waitress, shop owner, grocery store worker, gas station attendant, hairdresser, tattoo artist and any person trying to run a business doesn’t either.

But what difference does it make to you if I wear a mask? Do you chide people for wearing hats? How do you feel about car brakes?

I wear a mask to protect myself and those around me. I’m not wearing a mask to make a political statement. I just want to see my kids grow up.

I’m sick of the phrase “pre-existing condition.”

It was a series of words used by insurance companies to deny them the right to certain health care. I was born with a heart condition, which means I’ve never not had a preexisting condition (if you’re born with a certain ailment, shouldn’t it always be an existing condition?)

Too often when another person dies from this awful virus, the article notes they had a preexisting condition, not noting what that condition was. Can we just get rid of this detail? To read the comments is to think these people would have died soon anyway, which is nowhere near the truth. And even if some were, how many of those families would have wanted that extra time with their loved ones that the virus took away?

Knowing that a preexisting condition helped hasten the death shouldn’t make the living feel more at ease. We should all shake at the loss of 100,000 fellow Americans.

And as of today, I’m not sick. For that I am grateful.


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