The son who will remain nameless looked out the window a couple of weeks ago and asked, you know what I’m not doing? Shoveling. He says I forced him to have shoulder surgery so it’s my fault that I’m the one who has to go out and shovel six inches of karma.
He had to have the surgery and I figured late November was a good time because, for one thing, it hadn’t really snowed the last few years. I was figuring snow was something we’d talk about like the good old days. Snow was only a memory, like getting a slice and a Coke for 30 cents. So much for that.
Anyway, dear reader, you know what I’m not doing? I’m not gonna write a column about the anniversary of Covid arriving in Rockaway. I’m not gonna write a Top 10 list like people do for movies or books. I mean, what highlights, what highlights are there anyway? Oh, remember that time we were down to the last roll of toilet paper? Remember the time the store owner charged a thousand dollars for hand sanitizer? Remember those close talkers who didn’t get the memo? Because we’re a polite people we just spent those conversations backing up, and backing up. And backing up. You were gonna get Covid because of this guy or get hit by a car.
Highlights were few. I guess the health official who read from a prepared statement deserves to be remembered. Wash your hands, she read. And don’t touch your face with your fingers. She then licked her finger so she could flip to the next page.
And speaking of turning the page, the most boring book I remember being forced to read was Robinson Crusoe. I think that was the genius of the Daniel Defoe novel. The guy washed up on an island and had to live there for 28 years. And it felt no shorter for you. He was there for 28 and it felt like you did 50.
Which reminds me of that old gangster who tells his lawyer who is trying to get him a deal, twenty years I can do standing on my head. Thirty-five years, I cannot do. I ain’t no Robison Caruso (the Italianization of the title character).
Anyway, as time inched on, Crusoe discovered his man Friday and I discovered Cliff Notes.
It was a boring book because the guy had nothing to do. It was like 2020. When he meets his man Friday it was like a vaccine. Finally, a little hope. But man, it took a long time.
Castaway was different. Tom Hanks had nothing to do for four years but it was covered in under two hours. If there were more highlights, it would’ve been broken into sequels. He got tanned and ripped. It was like he had a Peloton and a tanning bed. And he didn’t have to shovel. But his life did suck. Highlights were few.
I faked a smile and told the son who will remain nameless that shoveling wasn’t bad. It gave me something to do. Which is saying something. And then I thought, you know what I won’t do? I won’t make a movie or write a book about the pandemic. But I got the vaccine. So maybe I’ll write a book about the roaring twenties. Yay!
By Kevin Boyle