It’s been a fascinating stretch, hasn’t it?
Gov. Eric Holcomb called it the new normal. That pretty much nails it.
Two weeks ago if someone told you that schools would be closed, March Madness would be canceled and that you wouldn’t be able to find toilet paper this side of Antarctica you would have laughed.
Two weeks? Was it really just two weeks ago when none of this was part of our lives? Two weeks? Social distancing? Self-quarantine? I thought that was what girls in high school did with me at sock hops.
Yet here we are.
Adapting.
Almost taking it in stride.
I wish it was going to be this easy. It won’t.
Here’s the thing – you aren’t going to hear me say that this is the coming apocalypse, like some. Nor will you hear me say we’re making too big a deal out of it, like others. Trust me, I’m not the smartest guy in the room but when folks who know a lot more than I do say this is important, I believe them. You should too. Why? Because if these precautions help us dodge a bullet, then good on them for the heads up. And if things don’t turn out so bad then good on them, too.
We just don’t know what we don’t know and about the only thing we do know is that things are changing. Daily. Almost hourly.
So for today, all I know for sure is that people like Amber Reed, head of the local health department, deserve our deep gratitude. I can’t imagine how tough her job must be. Ditto our superintendents and school boards. They’ve made some tough decisions and face even tougher ones coming up.
We all do, because there’s no way we’re coming through this unscathed. Ask a single mom who two days ago held down a job as a waitress at a local restaurant. That paycheck and tips put food on the table. Where’s the food or rent money going to come from now?
People are losing jobs. If things don’t get better quickly, more will. Businesses will go under.
Tough times, indeed.
An older gentleman came in and asked me if I was going to write about all this stuff. I told him I was thinking about it and he shared a few thoughts.
First, did you know that high school seniors are considered the 9-11 babies? I didn’t. Those kids who were born from a disaster may well lose the most fun part of their senior year to another disaster. I shudder to think what might happen on their next big milestone.
He also talked about the last time our country went through something like this. He said he was a kid during World War II and remembers rationing particular items (although not toilet paper) as well as being told to stay in the house and off the streets.
We’re a resilient people, he said. “We’re tough. We’ll make it through this and we’ll be stronger for it.”
The gentleman didn’t have a crystal ball – didn’t need one. He’s lived life. He knows that things pass. Sometimes they leave a mark, sometimes they don’t. This event is likely to leave several. But we’ve come a long way in almost 250 years and have the marks to show for it.
We’ll focus on what’s important and we’ll do what he said – we’ll get through it.
It’s who we are.

Two cents, which is about how much Timmons said his columns are worth, appears periodically on Wednesdays in The Paper. Timmons is the publisher of The Paper and can be contacted at ttimmons@thepaper24-7.com.