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Posts Tagged ‘Atlanta’

Dear Gov. Kemp:

Can I call you Brian? What about Ronald ’cause YOU’RE A CLOWN.

Right. I’m not a comedian. Got it.

Look, I understand that I’m not running the state (not that you really are either, with any success, in my opinion). I understand that you are trying to balance pressure from a variety of sources. I understand that you can’t please everyone.

But dude, the CDC is — as we say in the South — just down the road a piece.

I’m not a scientist (in this case, being a communications researcher doesn’t count), so I will believe those who are. And you can’t swing a cat without hitting one at the CDC. So I’m guessing NO ONE was surprised at this headline after you “reopened” Georgia last week.

Even Trump criticized you. Trump! That’s a surprise.

And you’re doubling down. That’s not a surprise.

In my mind, your actions led to this:

That’s from last weekend, Gov. That’s a flock of people who don’t care about social distancing. Many of them were out to watch the Blue Angels’ tribute to health workers.

Um.

  1. If you don’t want people to gather, don’t stage this event!
  2. That flyover cost taxpayer money that I — a taxpayer — would prefer benefit small businesses.

I’m not blaming you for the Saturday event. I am blaming you for letting people think the fight against Coronavirus is over. It’s clearly not.

I mean, I guess I should be happy that I’m in Atlanta, instead of cities such as Chicago, Los Angeles, Sacramento, Lansing and Raleigh where people are protesting stay-at-home orders, claiming it is an overreaction. Of course, they are doing this WHILE WEARING MASKS.

 🙄

Listen, I’ve been trying really hard not to write about politics here. (In fact, it has been more than three years.) In these polarized times, any criticism of a Republican brings on name calling of the “libtard” and “snowflake” variety (among other names not suitable for a family blog). I’m technically an independent voter. I do, in fact, think for myself when I vote, instead of voting along party lines. But, full disclosure, I didn’t vote for you because I think you are kinda dumb, just like the masked protesters.

Sorry. Not sorry.

You know what Forrest Gump’s mama always said.

You can fix that by listening to people who know more about a subject than you do.

I know you want Georgia to be No. 1 in something.

Can it just not be cases of COVID-19 and deaths?

Thanks for your consideration,
Beth, a registered voter who has a valid ID and votes in every election

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Dear ‘Rona:

One of the things you have forced us all to do is to spend more time with the people in our house — for better or worse. I like to look on the bright side, so I’m trying to focus on the things I’ve enjoyed.

1. Playing board games with the family. Even the arguments have been fun.

We played Payday. The miser (aka Gideon) climbed to the top of the paper-money ladder.

Dominic played Monopoly for the first time and landed on Park Place his first trip around the board. Then he rolled snake eyes. Before long I was out on a corner with a cardboard sign (virtually, of course).

2. Playing video games with the family.

Mortal Kombat 10 doesn’t have Sindel? I’m out.

3. Playing games with friends via Houseparty.

This is (supposedly) a jaguar. Look: I know. Take it up with Royce. He drew it.

4. Harassing Dominic regularly.

“Lord, MAN! Please sit up straight. You are KILLING me.”

“Stop guzzling the orange juice. And shut the refrigerator door!”

5. Watching trashy reality shows with Gideon. (He’s my regular TV buddy.)

I like Jersey Shore Family Vacation this time of yee-ah!

6. Recreating trashy reality shows in the privacy of our own home.

Eddie set up “Love is Blind” in the garage as a fun treat for me.

7. Taking a road trip with Gideon, as he also is going crazy.

We went to Athens to visit the tree that owns itself. That’s right.

Look how happy we are to be outside!

8. Riding our bikes to the store.

My thighs were BURNING. That’s why we are walking the bikes. Y’all: I miss my Biddy Boot Camp at the Y.

9. Having time to color hair if asked.

Gideon wanted red hair.

So he got red hair.

10. Being ecstatic when someone else shaves his.

Doesn’t he look great?

11. Obeying social distancing rules with friend-who-is-nearly-family Kalen.

We are both rule followers.

12. Taking up new hobbies.

Hand knitting with chunky blanket yarn!

Two different blankets, two different stitches. When I take on a hobby, I TAKE ON A HOBBY!

See! I’m trying to stay positive in these trying times you caused.

But I can’t remain optimistic forever.

So please go away.

Thanks!
Beth

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Dear Fred,

Thanks for tagging me in the “10 albums” challenge on Facebook. I don’t trust myself to remember to go on Facebook every day to post an album, so I’m going to just do it all at once here. And I’m going to break the rules again by adding commentary. I’m also adding parameters.

The following are the important albums of my “formative years.”

1. Shaun Cassidy, “Shaun Cassidy.” Shaun was my first celebrity crush. The garbage man was my first crush, according to my bemused mother. My mother made the mistake of telling me that Shaun was performing in Atlanta but that I was too young to go. I wept so hard my album (yes, I still have it) has watermarks from my extensive tears. Side story: I was singing “Da Doo Ron Ron” when I flipped over the handlebars of my bike and knocked out my front tooth.

2. Donny Osmond, “Donny Osmond Superstar.” My mother, God rest her soul, did not learn her lesson with Shaun. Once again, she told me he was performing in Atlanta, and, once again, I was deemed too young to go. Again, I wept. The cardboard album cover bears witness.

3. The Monkees, “The Monkees.” I watched the TV show in repeats on one of the three channels we got. Micky was my favorite, and we were supposed to get married. Perhaps he is the reason I have such a penchant for the rhythm section.

 

4. Duran Duran, “Girls on Film.” Getting cable — specifically MTV — changed my life. This began my habit of jonesing for Brits.

5. Adam Ant, “Friend or Foe.” Adam broke from his Ants to make the album that made him a household name. Though we recently broke up, I wish him well.

6. The Romantics, “In Heat.” I was in heaven when The Romantics toured with Adam as the opening act. This album also brought about one of my most painful memories. All my guy friends were into Rush and AC/DC. I suggested they listen to this, and gave one of them a cassette. A few days later, I got the cassette back — the innards in a pile on my desk. My “friends” were looking at me slyly to see my reaction. I felt my face begin to burn, and I left the classroom so they wouldn’t get the satisfaction of seeing me cry. These fellows have grown into lovely people, but I can’t erase this memory.

7. Van Halen, “1984.” Van Halen is only Van Halen if David Lee Roth is singing. Fight me. (I’ll DM you a Zoom link.)

8. Living Colour, “Vivid.” This was the first CD I bought. I played it and XTC’s “Oranges & Lemons” over and over on my five-disc CD player.

9. The Replacements, “Pleased to Meet Me.” The Placemats joined Sonic Youth, Soul Asylum, Hüsker Dü, Butthole Surfers, Love Tractor, Dead Kennedys, Big Audio Dynamite, Black Flag and the Pixies on heavy rotation during this period. That reminds me …

10. The Pixies, “Doolittle.” I recently saw them in concert. Still amazing. I do miss Kim Deal, though.

There you have it, Fred: My walk down memory lane.

Thanks for the prompt!
Beth

 

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Hey all you cool cats and kittens!

I like to try to make people laugh. If you haven’t figured it out yet, I am Chandler. I like to pretend everything is OK.

Everything is not OK.

  • There’s so much uncertainty.
  • I don’t like staying at home.
  • I burned the gyoza I took so much time to make because I was preoccupied by being sad.
  • I’m rarely sad, so that was a surprise.
  • There’s a woman at work who hates me, and I don’t know why.
  • We don’t have any toilet paper. (I’m kidding. Old habits die hard.)

I miss working out. There: I said it. I know you’re shocked.

I miss all of you.

I miss normal life.

I took going out to see live music for granted. Going to restaurants. To festivals. To the beach. Seeing friends and family whenever I wanted.

I have so much to be thankful for:

  • I have a job.
  • I have a job I like.
  • I like my boss.
  • Eddie is a funny person.
  • He has a job.
  • The kids are great. Really!
  • None of us has the ‘Rona.
  • I have fantastic friends and family with whom I can chat via Zoom, Skype, Hangouts, What’s App and Houseparty. I have options!
  • And a bidet. 😉

But the reality is that none of us knows how long this will last. And the leadership in this country is woefully inept.

For example, Gov. Kemp opened the Georgia beaches, superseding more restrictive local orders. He also said he didn’t know sometimes people were asymptomatic. 🙄

Sigh.

It’s hard. It’s harder for some than for me, but let me have my moment.

I’ll be fine tomorrow.

Take care of yourselves. I love you all.
Beth

 

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Dear Friends and Family,

It’s Day 12 of captivity. I’ve gained two pounds. I have to resist the urge to eat cheese all day. It’s bad enough I take my vitamins with wine.

I’m still going to work for a few hours each day for a change of scenery. I’m not a dress-down-for-work kind of gal. Yesterday, I wore a skirt and heels. Just for me.

I rarely see anyone when I’m there. Yesterday, though, I saw the CFO at the water cooler on the second floor and the woman in charge of special projects down the hall. We all paused in our tracks, giggling nervously. The CFO went back into his office, and Special Projects let me go into the bathroom before she continued down the hall. Six feet of space, people.

Later in the day, I crossed paths with the CFO again. Same situation.

Him: Stay on your floor!
Me: I don’t have a bathroom up there. Unless you want to spring for a Porta Potty, I’m coming down!

When I was at my university the first time around as an English major, I won a major award for writing. The prize package included “Love in the Time of Cholera.”

In our house, it’s “Love in the Time of Corona.”

Gideon broke up with his girl Peyton. He informed me last night:

I don’t want to be in a relationship anymore. It takes up too much of my time. My precious time.

Incidentally, I won the award for a short story I wrote called “The Pot Roast.” It was about my weird grandmother wanting raw meat as a Christmas gift.

Last night, I made the dish.

Gideon, girlfriend-free with precious time on his hands, roamed into the kitchen.

Him (peering into the pot): What’s this?
Me: Pot roast.
Him: We haven’t had that in a while.
Me: Yep. I’m bringing out all the hits.
Him: Top 20?
Me: Top 20 from the 2000s.

After dinner, the family decided to play Twister. Yes, Twister. I’ve still got it! I managed to keep myself up plus Dominic. I bowed out when a spin for me would have required me to sit on his head. Let’s not get crazy in confinement.

Nighttime also is TV time. Even “sheltering in place” cannot help me get through the treacly “This Is Us.” I deleted all episodes in my queue, and instantly feel better. (Honestly. It takes itself SO SERIOUSLY. It’s like a DC Comics movie.)

I’m still taking CORVID-19 seriously. Perhaps too much. I got a little worried earlier this week because I had a sore throat and a headache. Insert panic. Then I realized it’s springtime in the South — an inch of pollen everywhere.

Maybe that explains the guy restocking at the gas station. He emitted a small cough. The cashier and I whipped around on him.

Me: How long have you had that cough?
Him: (Scurries quickly away from the loud lady)

Stay safe, and don’t get Corona-ed,
Beth

 

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Dear COVID-19,

Pack your knives and go.

One day you’re in; the next day you’re out.

You’ve been chopped.

But yet you’re still here. And where am I?

Trapped on the couch watching way too much Reality TV. Clearly.

I even managed to get through some of my “Ridiculousness” backlog.

I still have a ways to go.

It’s only been a week of intense social distancing, but it has taken a toll on this extrovert who loves nothing better than to be out of the house.

I remember my mother and father always being aggravated with me:

Mom: Why can’t you sit still?
Me: I just can’t.

Dad: You are going out AGAIN?
Me: YES!

My boss told me I could work from home.

I said I had two teenage boys at home. No WAY I want to be there.

So I’ve been splitting my time.

Answer emails. Walk to work. Answer more emails. Advise students via Zoom. Talk to whoever might be around at a safe distance. Walk home. Answer more emails. Read industry reports.

Lather. Rinse. Repeat.

On Friday, I spoke to two people. It was a big day.

I’ve been doing plenty of cooking and cleaning. Talking to people ON THE PHONE (!). And drinking. So much for the good done via Dry January.

I just read a horrifying article that indicates this could go on for 10-12 WEEKS.

If that is what it takes to keep more people from getting you, COVID-19, then I understand, and will try not to complain.

But I really wish you would take the hint and LEAVE.

The tribe has spoken.

Impatient and unhappily housebound,
Beth

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Dear Self-isolating Friends and Family,

What a time to be alive! It is unprecedented weirdness. I don’t know about you, but some aspects of life are totally normal (my boys fighting) and some are totally bizarre (no toilet paper or cleaning products in stores).

I received the email below. Ordinarily, that would send me into a tailspin. You know how I love my Biddy Boot Camp.

But you also know that I am an optimistic person. So here I am looking on the bright side:

1. Atlanta traffic has been reduced to early-1990s levels.

This is lunchtime on I-85 where it joins I-75. It’s usually a jam.

2. No line at The Varsity (no eating inside either, for better or worse).

3. No one is sneezing, coughing or sniffling in public. (I’m thrilled. I hate this. Pandemic and non-pandemic advice: If you are sick, STAY HOME.)

4. Family time (again, for better or worse). I’m not ready to kill the children. Yet.

5. Home cooking. Last night, I made Pommes Anna from a recipe by Chef Anne Burrell. (I watched “Worst Cooks in America” during my isolation this weekend.) It’s basically scalloped potatoes with a twist.

Yum!

6. The potential to watch shows on my (long) list of suggestions. Although I find myself rewatching “Schitt’s Creek” in preparation for Season 6.

7. No cancellation fees on the annual cruise we had to reschedule before Coronavirus came calling.

8. Faculty at my university are forced to try online learning. I’ve been singing this delivery method’s praises for years, but some of my colleagues have been reluctant. It’s not perfect, but it works. And it compels people to learn new things and be creative to improve the experience for themselves and for students.

9. The chance to do things that have been put off for way too long. We moved to a different place in the same neighborhood the weekend before everything started changing substantially. With the forced down time, we have unpacked everything, put up shelves, cleaned the place, etc. I also rewired our speaker system — something I needed to do since we moved back to Atlanta.

10. The constant reminder to WASH YOUR DAMN HANDS. I’m continually appalled by the number of people who do not wash their hands after going to the restroom. Gross!

Join me in optimism: Tell me about your silver lining.

Love and air kisses from at least six feet away,
Beth

 

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