It had not crossed our mind until lately, but those who have personally faced the fight against ‘the bug’ may now face the stigma that was faced by Ebola virus survivors and to a far lesser degree even today, cancer survivors. So, we each should make it a point not to unconsciously shy away from associating with those who have suffered the pains of COVID-19 and lived to tell about it. The price they paid is high enough without (former) friends acting like they are still walking around spreading a highly contagious and deadly disease.

Kill the messenger! That is what might describe the attitude in Washington as the administration is critical of all the medical experts and tend to deny the current rise in confirmed cases of COVID-19 and the alarming increase in deaths from the virus. To encourage a cutback in testing, etc., because indications of increased infections might make some officials look bad, sounds horrible to this old country boy. Nothing we can think of in this whole wide world is worth sacrificing one single human life for political gain.

US gun sales have surged in 2020. The experts are noting that 40% are first-time firearm owners. Many of these are women who are concerned about their own safety. During this same time background checks are up a whopping 136%, according to the National Shooting Sports Foundation. The good thing are that a large number of these new gun owners are also signing up for training classes on how to use the weapon and the related safety practices associated with handling a loaded firearm. We have heard entirely too many people admit to owning a pistol “but I don’t know how to use it.” Frankly, we think that is more dangerous than not even having the weapon!

Don Siegelman’s book ‘Stealing Our Democracy’ has apparently been sliding off (if not flying off) the shelves following it’s official release by NewSouth Books. Amazon started taking pre-orders several months ahead of the release but then delayed shipping several weeks because of the surge in their pandemic related sales. Somewhere along the way there was a minor price reduction and us pre-order folks got a few pennies refunded! That was a surprise, but personally we didn’t decline the refund to our credit card account. Anyway, we were familiar with much of the information in the book, but with so many blanks the book filled in for us made the reading worth the time.

Someone sitting at home in pandemic isolation was thinking positive when remembering that the pretty maiden Rapunzel met her lover while confined in that high old tower in the forest. Of course, the latest version of Rapunzel is the Disney movie, but variations of the plot date back to at least the 1600’s. The Disney character follows the 1812 German version (which was adapted from a 1790 German version). Several other writers modified the original 1634 Italian tale. Today isolation has not lasted quite long enough for a maiden’s hair to grow as long as Rapunzel’s, but hopefully the current outcome will end as did this fairy tale with all living happily ever after.

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