Tuesday Is a Trousers Day

Been wondering when I’ll put on a pair again. Trousers, I mean. It’s been athletic shorts and a favorite pair of swim trunks for months now. I do a little better with shirts, but only because I prefer open collars over the tight ones of t-shirts. And socks? What the hell for, if I’m not going anywhere?

Donna longs for the days when we’d sit at the table for dinner. For years now we’ve been eating on trays while watching TV in the family room. We’d still set the dining room table for company, but those days are gone and it’s unclear if they’re coming back. We have a small bubble of trusted friends … actually pretty much just one trusted friend … with whom we swap unmasked visits (no hugs or kisses, though, which we miss), and when it’s our turn to cook she gets her own tray and watches old episodes of Justified with us while we eat. At least now I have a better understanding of Donna’s nostalgia for dinners at the table, because I’m starting to long for the days when I wore pants.

Today, though, is a trousers day, if only for a quick run to the library to pick up a book I put on hold last month. Our libraries are open for curbside pickup only — you call from your car when you get there and they bring the book out to you — so unless they peer in through my car’s window they won’t know if I’m dressed or not. I’ll know and that’s enough.

Mister B barked at us a couple of nights ago. He’d dug a ball out of the toy pile and wanted one of us to throw it for him. Before he got valley fever, he’d bark every evening after dinner to announce throw-and-fetch time, but it had been so long we didn’t know at first what he was trying to tell us. He’s definitely on the mend, and we couldn’t be happier.

A bit of administrivia: the Paul’s Thing header image is no longer visible on my desktop monitor, but is still there when I look at the blog on a mobile device. I’m curious. If any of you read this blog on a desktop PC or iMac and can no longer see the graphic on the home page, please let me know. If it’s a problem for you as well, then something’s broken and I need to fix it. Here’s what I see:

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Desktop view

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Mobile (iPad) view

Speaking of fixing things, how do you fix this?

I saw this video on Twitter yesterday, and thought hey, I know that store. Sure enough, the incident was recorded at a Sprouts I shop at, so while I’ve been bragging up the lack of maskholes in Tucson, apparently I’ve been viewing life through rose-tinted glasses. My, how out of touch I’ve become!

Anyway, I had a thought. These outraged anti-maskers can’t possibly have the energy to sustain performances like this every time they go out, at every business and grocery store they pop into. I suspect they actually don’t go out very often, that most of them are sheltering in place at home … which in turn suggests they’re aware of the pandemic and (stay with me here) in general taking it seriously.

What I think happened here is that this guy got onto an alt-right message board, one of those ones where self-appointed “influencers” rant and rail about “face diapers,” and got himself all worked up. I suspect his tantrum was a one-off. Trouble is, there’s an endless supply of other slack-jawed yokels reading those message boards and getting worked up for their minute of viral video fame.

The sons, and their actions, are the most interesting part of the video. The dad obviously had leaned on them to not wear masks during their outing, and while they probably knew he was going to initiate a confrontation in the store, they hadn’t anticipated how off the charts he was going to get. Not only did one of the sons literally pick his dad up and carry him out, the other sons seemed more than willing to skedaddle as well, probably embarrassed as hell.

Embarrassment isn’t going to be the worst part. Armchair vigilantes are busy trying to identify this guy, if they haven’t already. They’ll find out where he works and start sending messages and copies of the video to his boss. I don’t condone doxxing, but have to admit I smile a bit when I see tweets like this:

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Some 250,000 biker maskholes are in Sturgis right now, thronging streets, cafes, bars, tattoo parlors, t-shirt stores, hotels, motels, and campgrounds, and at the end of the week they’ll spread out across the USA. COVID Marys? Maybe. Probably.

I’m a biker. Sturgis and Daytona are our Woodstocks, and I’ve been to both. I’m not going to join the serves-them-right-if-they-get-sick-and-die chorus. Even though the bikers in Sturgis are mostly MAGAts, there are many in the tribe who are not, and I’m sympathetic to their desire to participate in what for many is a once-in-a-lifetime event. Also, too: the cluckers and tut-tutters have been clucking and tut-tutting about the lack of social distancing at Black Lives Matter protests … and so far, zippo. Protesters don’t seem to be bringing COVID home with them, nor passing it on to families and innocent bystanders.

Of course BLM protests are outdoor events. Most protesters wear masks. Sturgis, while the riding is obviously outdoors, is primarily a drinking-in-crowded-bars scene, with very few attendees wearing masks. That does seem like tempting fate, which when Oedipus does it is tragedy, but when we do it is pathos.

© 2020, Paul Woodford. All rights reserved.

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3 thoughts on “Tuesday Is a Trousers Day

  • My laptop no longer displays your header either.
    (of course, it’s a mid-2009 MacBook so who knows what I’m actually missing but hey, it still works!)

    Interesting about putting on trousers to go to the library.
    I wake up, don what I refer to as “comfy shorts” to make coffee, empty the dishwasher, and take my first cup (sometimes two or three) and greet the dawn. Then I step back inside to my desk where I write letters. But I always dress “properly” for my morning correspondence. It’s a personal thing for me, kind of a connection between me and the recipient of my morning scribbles, and it just doesn’t seem right to do so in less-than-appropriate attire. Even if I’m the only one who knows it.

    Dinner at the table is another thing we do regularly. Of course, with a 6 year old granddaughter living with us, it’s important (to us) that we have a family dinner. Phones, television, all electronics off and we converse. Each person shares one thing that made them smile that day. It’s an exercise in looking for something positive in each day and one I want to impart on the little one. It’s easy in this day and age to see only doom and gloom, but we find that which we seek. If she learns to look for beauty and joy in the world, she’ll be much happier as an adult one day.

    At least that’s the plan.

    Friends of ours are at Sturgis, one a physician, and the photos I’m seeing include masks at least indoors and they appear to be avoiding the overly crowded bars. So I suspect there are those out there this year who are paying attention but who knows how many. I’m sure those kind of images make for poor copy and don’t do much for ratings so we’ll likely never know. I feel better knowing at least 6 of the attendees are doing their best to stay healthy.

    I finally bought a handful of masks (I’d been using some I made from old hash shirts way back in March) They came packed in cellophane and smelled funny when I tried them on. Then I noticed the Made in China label. I’ve probably got the virus now right?

    And once this plague runs its course, and the schools find their new normal, don’t be surprised to have a couple of Virginians darkening your doorstep.

  • Well, shoot. I’ll work on fixing what’s wrong, but first I have to determine what that might be. We always ate at the table when we were raising children … but if someone entrusted a child to us now, at our age, we’re too set in our ways to change back. Good to hear your Sturgis friends are trying. But I remember how mobbed everything is, and keeping distance won’t be easy.

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