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Unsung Heroes

Tonight (Friday) would have ended the greatest two days in college basketball. Wild finishes, upsets, busted brackets, wings and rings and beer and fans partying all over the country. With two more huge days coming up on what’s going to be another intolerable Cincinnati March weekend (climate change? this is the exact same March weather we’ve had in Cincy for my entire 63 years. When’s it gonna change already?).

Well, there’s no sense crying over spilled beer. Losing hoops (especially for Dayton fans)and Opening Day and the Masters is a bitter pill to swallow, but we don’t have to look very far to find real heroes in our lives. Maybe that’s true all the time but never more so than right now. Doctors,  nurses,  hospital staff, lab technicians, first responders, EMS, all are on the front lines of a pandemic which has yet to show it’s full fury here in the United States.

The six or seven people who stand behind President Trump every day during his press conference are getting only a few hours of sleep each night. Those people are the faces of organizations large and small who are busting their butts to solve this problem. Also, busting ass are the companies that have laid off workers only to call them back to help retool the factories to make ventilators,  masks, hospital beds.  Thousands of workers will respond as Americans always do in a crisis. Research doctors are racing against the clock to develop vaccines, run tests and clinical trials that might normally take years, except now the whole country needs results as soon as possible. Mayors, governors,  legislators are orchestrating the largest quarantine and lockdown in my 63-year history, trying to pull it off without civil unrest. Members of the clergy contribute to our spiritual needs. Bar and restaurant owners are scrambling to keep their businesses running, or at least afloat,  as are all business owners. And everybody is watching, for the fourth time in 20 years,  huge chunks of their paper worth disappear along with their retirement hopes. Did I forget anyone? Really there’s an entire country of heroes working together to get us through this terrible event. The same goes for countries around the world. Truckers, stockers, dock workers get a special shout out.  They are keeping us fed and civilized.

We can be heroes, as David Bowie once said. We can donate time,  money,  food, clothes. We can order carry out and tip big. We can try to find ways to support smaller, local businesses if possible. Mainly I guess we can try to stay well and keep others well.

Sports? Maybe later this year. I admire the sports talk shows,  locally there’s lots of Bengal talk as they bungle their way through free agency and the upcoming draft. And of course dismay over what might have been a fast start by a vastly improved Reds team. Nationally there’s draft and free agency and of course Tom Brady going to Tennessee. My cousin in Boston is NOT happy.

Soon I’ll wade into some of these discussions here on Chatterbox. I wanted to keep things in perspective first. Everyone who is fighting this pandemic in their own way needed recognition and my thanks. Now let’s beat this virus and get back to playing games.

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