The Easter bunny is coming and so are the hard-headed people who won't listen

I have a feeling that there will be some churches across our country that believe it is an absolute priority to meet on Easter Sunday in defiance of state orders and federal guidance.

This is very troubling to me and the Bible is quite clear on the subject in Romans 13:1-2:
Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment.

Just wait until Sunday morning and keep an eye on the news if you want to see which "Christians" out there are missing this page from their Bible. They're probably missing a bunch of other pages also.

Maybe the police will have to be out breaking up Easter egg hunts also. 

The saddest week

It looks like we are in for a terrible week ahead, depending on who you listen to:
Earlier Sunday, Surgeon General Jerome Adams told CNN: "This is going to be the hardest and the saddest week of most Americans' lives, quite frankly."
The nation's top doctor went on to say: "This is going to be our Pearl Harbor moment, our 9/11 moment, only it's not going to be localized. It's going to be happening all over the country. And I want America to understand that."
Also Sunday, Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said the toll in the coming week is "going to be shocking to some, but that's what is going to happen before it turns around, so just buckle down."
The President's comments were slightly more optimistic but not without reality:
"I think we all know that we have to reach a certain point — and that point is going to be a horrific point in terms of death — but it's also a point at which things are going to start changing," Trump said. "We're getting very close to that level right now."
The president added that he thought the next two weeks "are going to be very difficult. At the same time, we understand what they represent and what that time represents and, hopefully, we can get this over with."
Still, Trump's own briefing also struck a somber tone at times. The president offered some of his most extensive comments to date to the families of those killed by the virus, urging the nation to pray for them and "ask God to comfort them in their hour of grief."
"With the faith of our families and the spirit of our people and the grace of our God we will endure," the president said. "We will overcome."
I think every leader tries their best to make us consider the light at the end even when we are in the darkest part of the tunnel. Shouldn't they? 
I still don't understand why we always look for the negative in everything the President says. I didn't vote for him and I'm certainly not in alignment with everything he says and does but I try to look for the positive in every leader we've had and I wonder what I would say if I had to stand up at the podium.
Would I only give the hard reality or would I try to give a little light also? I think we need both regardless of which mouth it comes out of. 
Yes, this is terrible, but we will persevere.
We won't persevere if we always have an element of our society wanting someone to fail. It happens with every President and I've seen the same attitude make its way down to local politics and even companies, organizations and families. 
We've become terribly divisive as a society and our attitude is attack, attack, attack when sometimes it's best to silently nod and move on and concentrate on what we can do instead of wasting our energy on anger that does us no good. 
The virus does not discriminate but we do. And by every account, the virus is winning. That should tell us all something.

Two quotes on writing

After a day spent mostly out on the deck under the big umbrella, I have almost finished reading The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien and I made a note of two quotes from the book about writing that I wanted post here under the label writing so they would be available for me to refer back to and also because I believe they are worth sharing with anyone who might stumble upon this post.

“But the thing about remembering is that you don't forget. You take your material where you find it, which is in your life, at the intersection of past and present. The memory-traffic feeds into a rotary up on your head, where it goes in circles for a while, then pretty soon imagination flows in and the traffic merges and shoots off down a thousand different streets. As a writer, all you can do is pick a street and go for the ride, putting things down as they come at you. That's the real obsession. All those stories.”

“Forty-three years old, and the war occurred half a lifetime ago, and yet the remembering makes it now. And sometimes remembering will lead to a story, which makes it forever. That’s what stories are for. Stories are for joining the past to the future. Stories are for those late hours in the night when you can’t remember how you got from where you were to where you are. Stories are for eternity, when memory is erased, when there is nothing to remember except the story.”

Big brother is watching you drive around

The governor of our state issued a statewide stay at home order today while we have been one in our county for almost two weeks as have most of the counties around us.

He said it is because more people are getting out and driving around and to prove this he had data from our Department of Transportation but also from a company named Unacast which is anonymously (supposedly) tracking our movements by our cell phones. That sounds a bit creepy to me.

But, this is how our governor does his job. He's blaming all of us for lagging behind other states and most of our own cities and counties in doing what he should have done in the first place. He takes none of the blame himself.

Even the chart they shared to prove his numbers doesn't prove much of anything.

Traffic is still at least 30% down year to year and the uptick he blames this on is because people went back to work on Monday at the places he himself deemed essential. And I am sure some people are out looking for work since we have lost thousands and thousands of jobs since all of this started. It's hard to stay at home if you have no money.

What a load of crap.

I went out to the store today for a few things and hardly anyone was out at all which is the way it has looked here for weeks. Every day reminds me of travelling on Thanksgiving Day or Christmas. It's eerie how few people are out.

The governor just doesn't want to admit the truth - he was slow to react and national pressure forced him to give in.

Where are all of the people?

I went to pick up lunch today at Chick-Fil-A which would have been the busiest place in town on Monday, March 2nd before the tornado came through. But now, there is hardly anyone there. Only the drive-thru is open along with them running out food to the car but there was hardly anyone in line and only two other cars waiting for food.

On the way back, I passed a sit down restaurant that is still serving to-go that used to have a completely full parking lot at lunch but today there were only two or three cars waiting for food.

It makes me wonder - is everyone cooking now?

Is it because a lot of people are not having to get out and go to work so they don't have to come "to town" and then don't need to go to restaurants?

Or, are there so many people out of work that they just cannot afford to go out and get food?

Or, are they all so scared of getting the virus that they don't dare eat restaurant food? If this is the case, I am apparently very stupid and they are all very smart.

We are cooking more but have also continued to go out and get food at different restaurants and that's partially because I don't feel like dealing with dishes 24/7 and partially because I want to keep supporting restaurants so we still have restaurants after all of this is over.

And this will eventually be over even with the worst days ahead according to the press conference last night and press conferences today.

It's an extremely scary time. I just now got a text that a relative who sews is making us all masks to wear when we have to go shopping. It's just surreal but it's necessary.

Hope you are well wherever you happen to be...

We have finally arrived at the last day of March 2020

I missed posting here yesterday because my goal was to finish the book I was reading and in the evening I decided to just flake out and do nothing of worth. I am proud to announce I was successful in both.

I spent as much time as possible yesterday outside on the deck because I knew that today would be like this:

It's another safe at home day here which means I won't go anywhere at all. In fact, I even have on the sweatpants of isolation, a declaration to the world that I will be staying indoors except to venture down to the mailbox.

It's been four weeks since we were in the disaster area with the tornado and now we once again sit outside of the disaster area looking in while terrible things are happening in other cities. The tornado was a short-lived event compared to the images we see from hospitals on the evening news. There is a feeling of dread caused by not knowing what will happen here. Will it get far worse than it is here or will the worst of it stay on our televisions? Who knows. It's a vicious thing, striking people with swiftness and entering their lives silently in many cases via a family dinner or a choir rehearsal or possibly just passing someone on the street.

All we, the ones hiding out and hoping it doesn't find us, can do is proceed as normally as we can. I will start another book today and add items to the grocery list for tomorrow. I'll complete my tasks at work and make plans on what I need to do in the yard once we dry out. 

Forward we go into the unknown. Maybe April will be better?

Present over past

I was trying to force myself to think about the past a bit earlier this morning and I am happy to say I saw no real reason to. Maybe it's wisdom that comes with age. Maybe it's the happy pills. Maybe it's a little bit of both.

I did this because something from the past popped into my mind suddenly and it felt disrespectful to me to outright dismiss it but I ended up doing that anyway.

This made me think about when it is profitable to think about the past and I came up with only two instances and both have to do with positively benefiting the present.

First, reflecting on good memories when something happens in the present that stirs up that memory. This can involve seeing someone you have not seen for a while or hearing a song that makes you recall that good memory.

Second, considering a decision you made in the past when a decision needs to be made in the present. Use your memory of a bad decision or a good decision from your pay may to help you make a good one now.

Aside from these two instances, I see very little benefit in revisiting the past. Those days are done and the weight of this truth should motivate us to make the best of the now that we can as the now is slowly slipping away from us all and we are reminded of that any time we turn on the news these days.