Pardon me while I pick up this air guitar and sing you a little song. With apologies to Bob Dylan, whose time has already changed:
Come gather ‘round people in this time zone
And admit that the winter around you has flown
And accepting that soon you’ll awake with a moan
You’re losing one hour not saving
For the clocks, they are a-changing.
Sorry about that silliness, but right along with death, taxes and Facebook is that peculiar phenomenon called Daylight Saving Time. Spare me, please.
Granted, they say it became vital for war production during WWII when it was known as War Time, but I’m wondering if it hasn’t outlived its usefulness. To be honest, the only benefit I could ever see was that we could play outside until nine o’clock. That’s when our mom would call us in, but of course, half the time we were out of earshot, riding our bikes a couple of streets away.
But I digress.
If you think about it, it really doesn’t save anything, and since it happens at 2 a.m. on Sunday it costs an hour of much-coveted sack time. In light of this, I have a better idea. How about at 4 p.m. on Friday?
Anyway, we’re easing into the month of March, my favoritest, bestest month. I’m assuming here that other people think their birthday month is the best month.
Anyway, if you need something to celebrate besides my birthday, St. Patrick’s Day or the Vernal Equinox, March is Music in Our Schools Month, National Craft Month, Frozen Food Month, Irish American Heritage Month, Peanut Month, Women's History Month, Red Cross Month and Social Workers Month.
It's also National Nutrition Month. It's promoted by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics who tells us "there's no one diet that is right for everyone, so it's important to follow a healthful eating plan that's packed with tasty foods and that keeps your unique lifestyle in mind."
Sure, sure, easy to say, but sometimes it feels like we keep playing the “what’s good to eat-what’s bad to eat” game. For instance eggs, once thought to be bad, are now good. It all has to do with good cholesterol versus bad cholesterol. And the number of eggs you eat in one day. And the ratio of egg whites versus egg yolks. And whether they are hard-boiled or fried.
Stop already. I’ll settle for the creme-filled one made by Cadbury they sell leading up to Easter.
Oh, and hopefully the much-publicized bug coming out of China doesn’t put a damper on Easter.
As far as I tell - and I’m no doctor and don’t play one on TV - you can catch the coronavirus the same way you can catch influenza. It’s passed on through sneezes, coughs and contaminated surfaces. Scientists have estimated that each infected person could spread it to somewhere between 1.5 and 3.5 people without effective containment measures. That’s statistics for you.
Not to make light of those half-people, I am reminded of the Todd Snider song “Statistician’s Blues”:
64 percent of all the world's statistics are made up right there on the spot
82.4 percent of people believe 'em whether they're accurate statistics or not
I don't know what you believe, but I do know there's no doubt
I need another double shot of something 90 proof
I got too much to think about.
As Mark Twain once observed, “Facts are stubborn things, but statistics are pliable.”
Whatever the case may be, it can’t hurt to take precautions. I don’t know if you remember the bad flu going around a couple of years ago where some people were wearing those surgical masks and trying to avoid handshaking. That’s when the Elbow Bump came into fashion.
I remember hearing a report on KANW that basically said the Elbow Bump was “your good friend” during the flu season. It quoted a physician who said, “80 percent of all cold, flu and upper respiratory infections and diarrheal illnesses” are passed from person to person by their hands. Shocking, I know, but the worst part is trying to keep your hands from touching your eyes or nose. I’m thinking the best option is to go walking around with one of those white cones dogs wear when they’re sick.
An alternative to the Elbow Bump might be the Fist Bump. Or just a wink and a nod, but that might get you in trouble in some circles.
One thing’s for sure, any virus that gets spread around is no joking matter. I mean, it can mean the end of the line for some people. Me, I’m thinking of stocking up on hand sanitizers just in case. In the meantime, I’ll offer my fist as a friendly greeting.
And since March is also Optimism Month I’m hoping this will all blow over. Just not in my direction.