2020….Entombment with Netflix and HBO

To say that I’m relieved that 2020 is over would be a vast understatement, as I’m sure it would be for most of the people I know. Phone chats and computer communications aside, it was a lonely, painfully isolated year during which even brief chats with neighbors over fences and hedges were social events of convivial importance. My face-to-face communications were few, making even Silas Marner look like a sparkling socialite by camparison. It’s sad to me that one of my most convivial experiences last fall was a visit to Walgreens for my flu shot, after which the nurse and I chatted happily for almost twenty minutes, laughing as though we had just polished off a bottle of Champagne.

When I took the dog to the vet for his booster shots or when I went to my doctor for a check-up, wearing a mask made me feel like a bandit, but my chronic bronchitis sadly made it necessary to take every precaution, as I am now 75 years old and could be snuffed out like a candle if I caught the Covid virus, and there was also the discomfort others might feel had I not bothered with a mask anywhere in pubic. The political ramifications were silly but real from time to time. The look of “Are you one of THEM?” became somewhat laughable on one hand but sad on the other.

In any case, I know that the calendar changing from 2020 t0 2021 is mostly symbolic and doesn’t mean that we’re out of the hole yet, despite the vaccines, which seem to be experiencing rather a slow start anyway. Being overly confident is still dangerous for many of us. Bravado means nothing but a vain pose, particularly with the new strain of the virus, which is no more lethal but is much more easily transmitted.

Regardless, I see light at the end of the tunnel, though I can’t yet tell how long we’ll be winding our way through that tunnel to experience the fullness of that light. Thank goodness for books, crossword puzzles, DVD’s, Netflix and HBO. They’ve spoiled me through distraction and escape when I needed them. The news about the vaccines was almost enough to make me try a cartwheel in my front yard, but being hospitalized for hurting myself that way seemed too embarrassing a prospect, so I went back into the house. When the Covid nightmare ends or is officially under control, I want to party in the streets with family, friends and neighbors again. I’ll bring the wine!  JB

About John

About John John Bolinger was born and raised in Northwest Indiana, where he attended Ball State University and Purdue University, receiving his BS and MA from those schools. Then he taught English and French for thirty-five years at Morton High School in Hammond, Indiana before moving to Colorado, where he resided for ten years before moving to Florida. Besides COME SEPTEMBER, Journey of a High School Teacher, John's other books are ALL MY LAZY RIVERS, an Indiana Childhood, and COME ON, FLUFFY, THIS AIN'T NO BALLET, a Novel on Coming of Age, all available on Amazon.com as paperbacks and Kindle books. Alternately funny and touching, COME SEPTEMBER, conveys the story of every high school teacher’s struggle to enlighten both himself and his pupils, encountering along the way, battles with colleagues, administrators, and parents through a parade of characters that include a freshman boy for whom the faculty code name is “Spawn of Satan,” to a senior girl whose water breaks during a pop-quiz over THE LAST OF THE MOHICANS. Through social change and the relentless march of technology, the human element remains constant in the book’s personal, entertaining, and sympathetic portraits of faculty, students, parents, and others. The audience for this book will certainly include school teachers everywhere, teenagers, parents of teens, as well as anyone who appreciates that blend of humor and pathos with which the world of public education is drenched. The drive of the story is the narrator's struggle to become the best teacher he can be. The book is filled with advice for young teachers based upon experience of the writer, advice that will never be found in college methods classes. Another of John's recent books is Mum's the Word: Secrets of a Family. It is the story of his alcoholic father and the family's efforts to deal with or hide the fact. Though a serious treatment of the horrors of alcoholism, the book also entertains in its descriptions of the father during his best times and the humor of the family's attempts to create a façade for the outside world. All John's books are available as paperbacks and Kindle readers on Amazon, and also as paperbacks at Barnes & Noble. John's sixth book is, Growing Old in America: Notes from a Codger was released on June 15, 2014. John’s most recent book is a novel titled Resisting Gravity, A Ghost Story, published the summer of 2018 View all posts by John →
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