A year filled with new, old lessons

Things I’ve learned (or re-learned) in the last 12 months:

Taking off my sunglasses, turning down the car’s air conditioner or heater, or momentarily taking off my face covering will not help me hear the person on the other end of a drive-thru speaker. Removing my earbuds, which I have turned off to place the order, will;

We can land a rover on Mars but we cannot develop a plastic produce bag that will easily tear away from a giant roll of bags that cannot be easily opened without wetting your fingers tips or tearing it to shreds;

Not only is time relative distance appears to be, too. Six feet in distance does not mean the same to the ruddy-faced, beer-belly mountain standing behind me at the checkout stand as it does to me;

Requiring people to wear masks while shopping or in government buildings during a public health crisis has not ushered in a new era of dictatorial fascism in which the American Way is kneecapped. To date, we can still vote, demand a recall,or call elected leaders all sorts of names without fear of death or incarceration. (In fact, it seems face coverings actually came in handy to those who would plot to kidnap a governor or overthrow the federal government in an effort to Keep America Great);

Teachers are unsung, underappreciated and underpaid heroes we take for granted until we have grown tired of distance-learning, then they are cowardly, selfish public servants who don’t care about anybody except themselves because they express fear and hesitation at returning to the classroom unvaccinated in the midst of a pandemic;

We believe in science and demand it be followed when it comes time to send kids back to school and reopen the economy. But when they speak of the gravity of climate change or even the importance of vaccinations—even outside the confines of a pandemic—scientists are know-nothing hucksters perpetuating hoaxes;

We are selfless, as demonstrated by the money we raise and the goods we provide via charitable organizations to neighbors who need food or healthcare;

Of course the need for that kind of generosity would be mitigated by higher livable wages and equitable healthcare for everyone. But that’s a lesson we have been told before. Unfortunately too many of us refuse to listen.