I Lived Again!


For the first time in months my wife and I bravely went out in public intending to recreate and grab a bite at a restaurant. After all it was July 4th and we had nothing better to do than to risk life and limb for some tempered social contact. We have already met with friends and relatives both at our house and at theirs but this was the first time in a long time we ventured out amongst a crowd of strangers.

More Social Than You Think?

Ever ask yourself, how social am I? In person social contact has taken on a new dimension these days given our expiring ‘shelter at home’ orders and phased re-openings. So now what have we learned about ourselves after being forced to social distance?

Before this, most people prized their alone time. Indeed, a certain TED talk made a compelling case that from time to time you not only needed to be alone but also needed to be bored for the sake of your mental health. And, per that talk, boredom is also necessary for your creativity. In my case, I can confirm that some of my best ideas for fiction have come when my mind can wander either by doing a mindless task or just contemplating my navel, figuratively speaking.

Why Men Shouldn’t Do Housework

The two men could hear their own breathing inside their radiation suits. Carefully they picked their way through the debris in the abandoned house that represented the center of the 200 meter dead zone. No one would’ve ever thought that such an event could occur in an American suburb but here they were a month after the incident with Geiger Counters measuring radiation. With floor plan in hand they located the cellar door.

Re-entering Life

Very soon, for reasons that could equally be called prudent or reckless, the economy will re-open with adequate testing capacity be damned. Depending on where you are will dictate how quickly this happens and in what stages. But as I understand it, there’ll be a new normal until a vaccine is perfected about 12 to 18 months from now. Please note that the 12 to 18 months estimate hasn’t changed for a couple of months. Shouldn’t the estimate be down to 10 to 16? But I digress. I’d like to imagine what the pre-vaccine normal will look like.

Am I A Luddite?

For the past several weeks now my iPhone is becoming less and less capable. I first started noticing things like the YouTube app refusing to work. Then phone calls became less and less reliable. Now the phone doesn’t connect at all and I can’t respond to people calling me. This is quite troubling given that it’s a PHONE. About the only thing it does still do are texts. And even those are getting a little suspect.

Now in fairness I am writing this on April 1st and perhaps by tomorrow the big joke will be revealed and the phone will revert to its peak functionality.

Coronavirus Hitting Home

A couple of days ago, I learned that someone in my extended family had reason to receive a coronavirus test. Results are due today. If, somehow, one failed to register that we’re in the midst of a pandemic that’s the kind of news that really brings it home.

The Joy of Reading Science Fiction

GalacticIn college I rediscovered recreational reading when I learned to buy books that appealed to me personally as opposed to my English teachers. The first book that kicked off this new found hobby came at the suggestion of a friend. It was War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy. No wait, that’s not right. What was it? Oh yes, it was Conan the Barbarian by Robert E. Howard.

Want to Get Away?

drmanhattanfromtrailer            Anyone see the movie ‘Watchmen’? I thought it was a great treatment of the ‘what if superheroes were real’ premise. The film was better than most at shedding light on how these real people handled the trials of their everyday lives while balancing their vigilante duties. The most compelling character and the only one with serious super powers was Dr. Manhattan, a naked blue skinned Adonis who sported the symbol of a hydrogen atom on his forehead. He burned it into his skin using his finger when prompted to adopt a symbol for brand recognition. Apparently, marketing is important even for superheroes.

Religion versus Star Trek’s Ancestor

forbiddenplanet01

A long time ago, Sci-Fi fans flocked to a big budget space opera movie called Forbidden Planet. It was in theatres in 1956. I had seen it a good many years later on TV and could see why some people credited it as the forebear to Star Trek. It’s set in a future where a united civilization of planets is patrolled by quasi-military space ships with alphanumeric designations. Unlike science fiction movies from that era it wasn’t an inferior ‘B’ movie monster fest. Even though it did have a monster, the premise was far deeper and the production values were superb thanks to a huge budget of two million dollars.

Superior Ability Breeds Superior Ambition

star_trek_into_darkness_poster_teaser  When I was a kid I aspired to be like my heroes. Most of us   did. I liked the superheroes but I also liked those without any super normal abilities too. The Lone Ranger comes to mind as one of my first heroes in that category. He proved that one didn’t have to be born on the planet Krypton to be something special. Ambition and training could transform someone as well. The theme of improved humanity, however, served as a cautionary tale in a memorable episode of Star Trek.