Okay, so yes, this coronavirus is serious business and we’re all scared ’cause we’ve never seen anything like it before. But hello, there are some sort of nutty things about the reaction that I don’t understand. Like this thing about buying up all the toilet paper. What’s that about? It’s one of the few things that doesn’t come from China, and besides you can’t eat it.
One day at the supermarket, I could not find bell peppers, bananas and bread. Bread I get because with kids home from school a lot of sandwiches will be eaten. Ditto for canned soup, saltine crackers and frozen pizzas, which were also in short supply. Shoppers were grabbing and stacking them in their carts. (I’ve always said buggy, but I’m told I should say cart because that’s less rural sounding.) Anyway, my shopping takes place in Gulfport where huge ships come into port laden with bananas from Central America, but yes, we have no bananas today. Maybe I’ll rev up my courage and sally forth again today in search of bread and bananas.
I laughed when someone wrote to the local newspaper asking why this virus was named for a beer (Corona beer, get it? Of course you do.). Makes you wonder about our fellow citizens. By the way, to date there’s no shortage of the aforementioned beer in case you’re wondering.
However, there is really a run on wine and spirits. Don’t criticize — you know it’s that whatever-gets-you-through-the-night thing. Now we can add whatever-gets-you-through-being-stuck-at-home thing. My favorite package store was concerned yesterday that their state delivery truck didn’t come in. Horrors! Please keep those liquor trucks running.
Speaking of being stuck at home, I admire Pope Francis very much, but I like him even more now. Why? He is offering up prayers for parents who are ‘cooped up at home with children’ (his words). He was referencing Italy where no one can go outside except for necessities and many people live in apartments with no outside space.
So count yourself lucky if you have a yard where you can get fresh air and stretch your legs, but most of all if you are have a big ole stack of toilet paper.
» LYNN LOFTON is a long-time correspondent for the Mississippi Business Journal.
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