Friday, October 30, 2020

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What’s your plan? (05/27/2020)

Home Opinions What's your plan? (05/27/2020)
I got caught up in a blast from the past. A certain song will play and my mind’s eye will immediately take me back to a specific time and place. The Beatles’ ‘Hey Jude’ will always be associated with the 1st dance I attended. It was a bold step! Me and a large crowd; it was a strange place for a 6th-grader from Arbuckle Elementary to be. To this day, I have a vivid memory of the music that night in the Grande Island multipurpose room. Along with the anxiety, the magic was in the meeting of a specific young lady. There are still times I second guess that moment and what she saw in me.

It wasn’t a song this time, for certain a deja vu experience. The socialite has decided that she wants a summer job (job prospects look a tad bit bleak, but something must be going right; we’re not even planting that seed). It was returning home from application hunting. I had the Tahoe tooling along and the job seeker and I were engaged in a teaching moment (mentoring her as to what to do next, I can muster a few thoughts). The almond trees were whipping by like a 100-mph fastball!

My heart started racing, I felt my breathing becoming shallow. My mind went into trickster mode and replayed one of those nightmares past when something was barreling up at breakneck speed and you trying to avoid extinction with every fiber of your being; fighting for survival in slow motion. I broke into a cold sweat. I hit panic mode and it was fight or flight.

Her demeanor extolled calm and collected. My daughter had no clue that we were jaunting through the countryside at starship warp and would soon meet certain death when we collided with anything. Yes, why was she at ease? I would like to fantasize that her current mindset was from being in proximity to her old man (I have been waited a lifetime to claim the title and to just say it of myself). It was time for action.

I needed to get a grip on the present situation, it might appear that the quickest method would be to get my whit’s about me. Should I let fear dictate my choices? After a quick, deep breath I noticed something that put things into perspective as I exhaled slowly. The speedometer read just under 45-mph. As I focused on this, reality began to become clearer.

There was once a time in my life where the seat of an International Harvester 1480 combine was heaven and those ten-hour days bless (no confusion please, only working a ten-hour day; I haven’t yet come across ag machinery that maintains itself). I could clip along in wheat. Harvesting corn seemed like the Indy 500. Rice, well, it’s another story. I have only heard of guys running with stripper-headers. I am accustomed to reals with drapers. I don’t recall traveling much faster than I could easily represent with the help of one hand and that was on tracks in standing rice. Downed men can crawl on their belly faster.

It was days like this that I found myself driving home after harvesting and feeling like I was burning up the quarter-mile in a top fuel ‘funny car.’ 45-mph would be the norm traveling home, it was comfortable. I appreciate the memories, but it was certainly not reality. When not in fear, I have the ability to see more clearly. 25-mph in town, 55-mph in the country, and 70-mph on the freeway (yeah, there isn’t much freeway stop and go these days). I have set the cruise control legally in Utah at 85. When one follows the signs, there is safety.

I recant what I said about my sweeping optimism of all local politicians being good from last week. After the debacle with our own Board of Supervisors, it just doesn’t hold true. There are four people on the county payroll that should have been terminated. At any other job, their actions and incompetence would have gotten them fired. This is a perfect example of second-tier welfare at the taxpayers’ expense.

Let me state plainly that I hold a person’s existence as most dear! The death of a single individual that could have been avoided is a tragedy. What numbers, data, or evidence are people looking at? We have come too far to fear that the sky is falling. Not sorry to be blunt, I personally know more people who have died during the lockdown from mental health issues than from covid-19. And for my arrogance, it would be difficult to out debate me on covid-19 pandemic issues. I will also have no problem working with you to move forward.

I cast a vote of no confidence in our local leadership today to be added to the one I hold of state and federal officials (I do stand for Trump if it isn’t obvious). It is time to be heard and called to action. This lockdown must end now! A few are selfishly trampling on the rights and liberties of the many.

Let’s focus on the real picture. We must start asking questions and turning up the heat. You can’t go wrong when your focus is caring for your neighbor. Triple-digit heat on the thermometer this week; stay cool and drink plenty of water. Get your sun and fresh air in the morning during the cooler hours. Maybe think of giving our leaders a respectful ear full. I am contemplating stepping off the soapbox for now.

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