Mary Beth Writes

Today is day #21. It’s been THREE weeks already, guys. 

Thank you, John Denver for saying it so well. 

 “Let’s go to the bakery and watch the buns rise…”

I’m going to try to be something besides pissed-off today.  The writer of my fav non-consumer/frugality website posted something new yesterday. She eloquently describes how ANGRY she is right now. She’s an RN. She has a college kid living at home instead of at his college. She’s worried about loved ones in their 70’s.

As I read it my stomach flipped and my thoughts exploded.  She is a good writer and what she says is cogent and clear.  But I’m already living in the stew of my own anger; adding someone else’s is way too hard. 

As much as possible for the next few days, I will try to give you observations that don’t come straight from my anger. We need to find more than one path through this stupid, deadly crises that is breaking the world.

This is the website. Non-Consumer Advocate. 

Sometimes some of my neighbors don’t ‘social distance’.  I heard kids playing basketball yesterday.  I can see adults and teenagers as they stop to chat with each other when they are coming out of their shared apartment building.

These neighbors live in the low-income housing that runs most of the block behind our house. These are money-poor people and I don’t know many of them. The news tells us that poor people fare less well than the financially-secure when coronavirus hits.  In Milwaukee a big percentage of the fatalities are of African American men past age 50.  The stress of poverty and racism is real and lethal. Always has been; is true now more than ever.

So even though I think my across-the-fence neighbors should be more careful, I also see that when one doesn’t have financial security, then one needs community. My neighbors are casually but powerfully minding their most important investment – each other. Quite possibly sickness will eventually strike many of them, but their community will endure.

My purse always hangs on the coat rack by the front door. Even in normal times I don’t use it often. It’s more like a church/shopping kit with pens, paper, hand cream, some cash (what’s cash?), a brush and a small tape measure (handy when one is a Goodwill shopper). Today I looked at it and realized I haven’t used it in three weeks and am not likely to use it until this crisis is over.  I moved it to my clothes closet for the duration.  Weird.

Useful phrases for this time we are living in now.

If you awake in the middle of the night when it’s long past midnight but not yet dawn – do you know what time that is? I don’t know where I read this, but you really need to know. It is “Before sparrow fart.”

If you pull something off very badly – like the sourdough bread Len and I are still hoping might turn into something - this is called “An Arctic landing.” No runway, but you survived.

Nancy Drew naps on.













Leonard's picture

Although I like leave a little time out of each day to be angry. We can multitask.

I am angry, also. I read Katy’s blog this morning and felt it all. My three year old granddaughter should not have to say” I don’t want to die from this Coronavirus. I want to stay with this family. We wash our hands”. I should not have to worry about my daughters in nursing or my laid-off son and DIL and how they will pay the bills in a few months. THAT man and his cronies were alerted to this pandemic on Dec 31, 2019. Nero just fiddled. A thousand years ago I took a course about women and stress. We were told “ It is not really a problem if it just takes money to fix it”. All the money in the world cannot fix this. So, yeah, I am pissed.
Mary Beth's picture

There is no comfort zone on this. Maybe I am fine, but we all love people who are not fine now, will not be fine soon, will suffer loss of love, people, and stability. And it didn't have to be this way.

I read Katy's blog too. I "met" you through reading her blog. I am also angry, but I need to keep anger in a little compartment that I let out at certain times during the day, like the news, and anxiety. The rest of the time, I MUST focus on something else: the yard, learning a new skill, encouraging others, and fanning hope. Hope that he will be voted out NOv. 3. Please. Oh, please. Patricia/Fl

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Quarantine Diary #66, 5/24/2020 Zoom Birthday

This week we Zoom-celebrated (zoom-abrated?) the first birthday of our grandson. This was a very different kind of party in our family which ALWAYS celebrates kid’s birthdays. We always have over a few too many friends and relatives. We always have a mound of presents the kids doesn’t actually need. We always have appetizers and pizza, an activity for kids, and a cake. We always sing Happy Birthday too slowly while the kid stares at the candles.

Quarantine Diary #65 – 5/22/2020 Shontay & Irresistible Iridescence

Science Daily website reports this scientific discovery. Bats have an unusual mammal response to viruses they encounter; they don’t get sick to fight the virus like the rest of us mammals do. Instead they act as a kind of long-term host for viruses. A bat is a repository of the viruses it has encountered in its batty life.

Quarantine Diary #64, 5/20/2020 Twenties & Assets

First of all, tonight at 8:20 the time will be 20:20 on 20/2020. If you have kids, or if you are your own odd duck, I think that would be a good time to celebrate. When our kids were young we celebrated New Year’s Eve by piling, on a table on a tablecloth, a crazy stack of metal cookie sheets, muffin tins, bread pans, and bowls. When midnight struck they would try to pull the tablecloth out from under the stack, everything would teeter and then tumble with a terrific crash and the cats would run and it was satisfying.

New Photo & Old Column About Spring

The photo is from this morning and is for you, Michol! This dam on the Fox River is alive with rushing water.

Quarantine Diary #63 - 5/18/2020 Flooding, It's changing now

We had three inches of rain here yesterday. This is what the Fox River by Riverwalk condominiums looks like today.

While I was walking along here, an older woman (says me, ahem…) was standing on her sidewalk with her nervous beagle, looking at the over-its-banks river.

Quarantine Diary #62, 5/16/2020 - Invisible Crisis, Spring

Little Women Again: Louisa May Alcott volunteered as a nurse during the Civil War. She intended to serve three months but after several weeks she became deathly ill with typhoid pneumonia and went home. Typhoid was treated at that time with a medication made with mercury. She survived typhoid but would deal the rest of her life with an autoimmune disease possibly triggered by the mercury.  

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