Test Time

Now that Pandemic World has encased all of us in its groundhog day repetition of starting each day as if the preceding one never ended and tomorrow is already today, I’m certain that all my memories are now subject to review as to their veracity. Maybe you were already stuck in a unconscious time loop before the one you are consciously in now. Was your life progressing? Or did you simply delude yourself into thinking it was all working out just as you planned? Surely, no one plans to be unhappy, eh? If you felt less than satisfied, you assumed you could change that negativity into an ascending trajectory. But even if you now recall the imperfection of life before “life” essentially had to be officially shut-down, you’d welcome all that was then back right now, exactly as it was, right? Why not? You had to be happier then than now? Now, now is always stuck as now with virtually no then to distinguish advancement. Sick of it too! There’s no forward momentum in a covid vacuum. It just circles back on itself. ****************************************** Yeah, think back! It all made sense. You know that feeling? That restaurant over there. That movie theater. The myriad storefront shops. The salon. The fitness center. The museum. The music venues. The scared gin mill. So many options. Those and other easily accessed places filled in a lot of space in our lives once upon a time. Now it’s as if thinking about them is an act of self-flagellation. Or maybe not. For some, life has always been flush with lemons but very little lemonade. Now, Pandemic World is just another lemon. Rather, the only lemon. In that case, covid has consolidated your woes into one big psychic compartment. If anything, you can take satisfaction in knowing you have waaaay more company who now knows how you’ve felt long before 2020 erupted like Vesuvius on Pompeii. **************************************** Or, perhaps you were genuinely fulfilled and right on course as planned. Whatever that must feel like. Except, you’re in the same Groundhog Day loop now. Maybe the pandemic has drawn the curtain back on just how much of that self-satisfied world view was based on bullshit. Not that you admitted to it. Hell no. Well, bullshit that affected other people while allowing you to live comfy and cozy and self satisfied.. Now, you are literally out of business. Opps. Didn’t see this coming, huh? Covid19 is the great equalizer at its non-discriminatory essence. ************************************* I figure, most of us are in the middle ground here. You were okay enough then and had a realistic self-concept. You lived within your means. Had respect for your fellow human, regardless of race, religion, ethnicity or gender, and always kind to the elderly, little children and puppies and kitties, blah blah. Always seeing the glass as more than half-full, even when a personal drought came along. ************************************** 2021 is upon us. And a covid vaccine has been created. That’s a reason to feel this same day we have been living for at least nine solid months will finally flip into a tomorrow that allow us to go back to whatever we once had. But wait. That makes no sense. Go back? I doubt that. There’s still months and months left of Groundhog Day, and our memory lane stuff comes with an unavoidable critical analysis. We will not ever be the same after this passes. How could this isolation of the mind and body not render both altered to one degree or another? Self-reflection and self assessment of our individual occupation in this now strange and enervating world would seem to be as involuntary a function as is breathing. Maybe for the very, very old or very very young, this endless day will not have been imprinted upon them with any lucidity. For those of us who will never forget this current endless day, maybe that sounds pretty good, especially on the very very young side of the temporal extremes. My feeling is, this is the ultimate learning experience as far as who we really, truly are. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime lesson in how to see ourselves, and others, like never before. ************************************* Learn your lesson well. Most likely, it will not be offered again in anyone’s lifetime.

About jharrin4

mass communication/speech instructor at College of DuPage and Triton College in suburban Chicago. Army veteran of the Viet Nam era.
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1 Response to Test Time

  1. Your reflections on pandemic living are spot on. There is at last light at the end of the tunnel — but just how long is this tunnel?

    Like

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