By the way, I know I should have spelled out “eight” (as it’s under 10) but it pushed the headline to two lines. Certain things are important. And, it’s really day 11 today, if I count from the last time I went out of the house (except to walk dogs on our deserted cobblestone streets). And that was just to Costco and under extreme social distancing guidelines.
I haven’t been doing much except reading a lot. Not books. News. Online. Well, I did take a shot at selling the house again – the Canadian dollar dropped against the US and I realized I could offer the Chicago guy a hell of a deal (in USD) and not lose anything because of the currency fluctuation. Plus he could make an ROI of 6% on his investment because we would rent it back for at least six months (we aren’t going anywhere while the virus rages). He was interested – and it was a good deal for both of us – we gave him 36 hours – noting this was a currency exchange driven brief window of opportunity, during which hours, the governor of Illinois put the state he lives in under lockdown. So, with regret, he declined for now until this all settles down. We agreed to keep an eye on the exchange rates and the virus and talk again when it seemed appropriate. I would have been very proud of myself if I’d been able to sell it during a pandemic like this. But I do think he’s the right buyer.
This is how we sold the Winchester Street house – from Craigslist and over a long period of time – because the perfect buyer surfaced before the ducks were all swimming in a row. And it was a specialized house. The indoor pool that attracted us was apparently a deterent, not a selling feature. But we did sell it. To a doctor with kids.
The potential buyer for this house (his name is Miguel for future reference) is the perfect buyer. You just know when someone is right for a place. But the ducks are scattering at the moment – everyone’s. So that’s on the shelf.
Now I need a different project. Suggestions welcome. Ideally 2 – 3 months. I need a nice, little ‘how to’ book project – like The Move to Mexico Bible. I’m trying to antipate what people will need to learn as a result of this catastrophe. It is a catastrophe – as Umair says in: The Age of Catastrophe .
Maybe a “How to live differently” (concept not title) after a catastrophe. Or How to Rebound from a Catstrophe might be a better title. Looking at different sectors of recovery: social health, economic health, physical health – both individual and collective. And the things that have to stop. I dunno. Takes more thinking. My ideas are fairly vulnerable and easily crushed these days. Anyway, onward. It is starting to feel like Ground Hog Day (the movie) but I will talk to you tomorrow. No doubt.
Day Nine (or 12…I gotta pick one or the other, I’m going to say nine because I’m only as self-isolated as CW is…): Even before this, I would usually wake up between 4 and 5:00am and think with my eyes closed about different things that are going on. Now, of course, I think of Coronavirus and all that I’ve read and I try to sort it all out. Which is really not a bad thing to do. I usually don’t get too stressed. That happens when I play “what if?” – a very useful tool when writing fiction, be it books or screenplays, but not helpful in real life. Problem is, I kind of do it instinctively, I trained myself to do it for stories.
So I walk PJ in the morning and the dogs in the neighbourhood are all going nuts (as PJ was last night) and I think, “What if this virus is like rabies in dogs and they all have it and they’re all going mad?” And I shut that shit right down, believe me. I’d probably be good at writing scary movies. Turns out that there was a perfectly logical explantion. In a city of at least half a million (census in Mexico is a joke) – about three blocks into our walk in our deserted (at 7am) cobblestone streets – there were two horses loose and grazing on the side of the road. I thought about my phone in my back pocket but can you believe I’m too accustomed to this stuff to find it photo-worthy anymore. That’s sad, LOL. But, back to my point.
That’s also what happens with people during this pandemic. Stop with the “what if” scenarios and find out what the facts are and you’ll feel much better. This is a great article by Dr. William Hasetline – excuse the link source (snowballs in hell when I link to FoxNews) but the article is well thought out and quite calming. Do click on the link above.
A few things I noted this week that, along with TOTAL self-isolation of EVERYONE, could turn this pandemic around, given time.
- Antiviral drugs are showing promise in tests out of Australia and Japan. But it’s very important to test these and the combinations – overdoses are a risk. Trust your government to do the right thing (unless trump is your government, then read a lot of articles from other countries).
- Even in America, there are smart people speaking out and smart people listening. Your fucking president is a danger to the world during this pandemic. Please make him sit down and STFU and let the experts take over (sorry, that was an unplanned rant).
- They are developing a vaccine as quickly as they can – one is even in trials already. It will still take a year minimum but if people self-isolate during outbreaks and we join together, we can beat this back.
- There are brilliant scientists working 24/7 to help mitigate the reach of this virus.
- Factories in America (yay, Elon Musk!) are retooling to produce medical supplies. Musk was to begin to deliver 250,000 masks today and expected 1,000 ventilators ready to distribute inside of a week.
- We live in an age where we are connected – how do you think society would be faring without the internet today? Be grateful. And the reaction has been global – sharing information and sharing medical discoveries instantly.
Except trump, of course, who wanted to buy a medical company in Germany who is developing a vaccine – and offered $1 billion – for American use only. Let that sink in. Senators and their donors (and a few other elected officials, I am sure trump has been manipulating the markets since day one) heard about the danger of this virus all through January and February (from trump) and chose, instead of warning the public and the world, to sell off thoir stocks slowly as to not devalue them as they sold. Let that sink in. Why the fuck isn’t that illegal?
The US does have a super system when it comes to war, and it’s kind of ironic but it may save them – their military infrastructure will turn to establishing new hospitals and MASH units and the country’s factories can be ordered to produce medical supplies.
Now, books. I have come to the conclusion (thinking when I wake up without moving out of bed) that I can’t busy myself on such a serious book as I was alluding to above. That would screw me right up. I need something helpful, but lighter than save the world. Just in case you were going to make any suggestions.
And so here it is, not 10am and I’ve absorbed a shitload of news, I’ve written day nine to this point, taken the dog on two long walks, had breakfast (allbran and raspberries and oat milk) and fed the fish. I’m off now to check the news again. I have been up for five hours – and a lot changes in five hours. But I’ll be back.
I went for another dog walk (three to four a day) and lo and behold, they were back. I have no idea where they came from.
But just to wrap it up for day nine. CW has gone for a swim, we’ve got shake ‘n bake (type) chicken in the oven with potatoes and carrots (sheet pan dinner). Dogs have been fed one last time, 7pm meds for PJ and then I head for the tv room for an hour. I still read my phone while I watch TV. There’s nothing as compelling as news.
Then I go to bed and believe it or not, I’m actually starting to read books there. It was Tin Can Homestead for the last two nights. And then it’s peaceful, blissful sleep. We have to stay healthy. We have to eat properly, we have to get enough sleep. It’s really important folks. Hasta manana. There should be an accent over the first ‘n’ (tilde) but I don’t have a Spanish keyboard.
Well, not manana after all but Tuesday, Day 11. We decided we’d go back and republish the Sirius Mysteries – they were a young adult novel series we did some time ago (like 20 years). But the theme is timeless, the rights reverted to us some time ago and we need a project. And as publishers, we can make the cover look less like a Hardy Boys novel.
But it was so long ago that we don’t have an electronic copy so at the moment, we’re re-entering it from the book. I took the last half and am typing in and editing a bit or making notes as I go. It needs mucho updating in 20 years as you can imagine. Like referencces to the “net”. Egads, who calls the internet that anymore. And the kid wears a watch in the book and it’s part of a big set up. That won’t be happening.
CW, being less of a typer and less able to bend as I can – is using dicta speak into google docs. I can type faster. He loves to read out loud though, so this works. It’s a fun story. Recently under option again yet another time (this is getting close to two digits now, at least seven or eight bona fide options over its lifetime (to turn it into a movie or TV show). This option is all-encompassing of course, but the prime target at the moment is animation. We’ll see. It’s the story that doesn’t die at least.
Ok, that’s it for me today. Will start again tomorrow. I heard this on a BC radio station commerical (internet):
Be safe, be informed, be kind.
And that’s my sign off from now on. Stay hopeful. Smart people are working on this. And a pandemic doesn’t affect power, or water or food supply like a natural disaster does. And there’s no Zombie Apocolypse. It’s serious and we all need to #staythefuckhome. But we can do this. And then, we will have to do more. Talk soon. And thank you for reading.