Well, it had to happen. It was only a matter of time. After all, the experts were saying things like, "It's not a matter of if, but when."

Of course I'm talking about the unwelcomed arrival of the coronavirus in our home state and later in our home county. As of this writing (on 3/16/2020), there were 22 cases statewide, which included one in Lee County and a single case reported in Montgomery.

Apparently, some people are trying to make the best out of the dire straits in which we find ourselves. Not to say that I don't appreciate the gravity of the pandemic thrust upon us,  I join them in their quest to find something to smile about during these difficult times. 

A friend of mine told me that after his first weekend with no live sports to watch on TV he found himself transfixed — staring blankly at his big-screen TV. He said after an undetermined length of time he realized there was someone else in the room. He squinted and the image of a woman began taking shape. It was his wife!  According to his post, he determined that she looked "nice enough." Talk about a left-handed compliment. It'll be interesting to see how he gets along with her after having to interact nonstop with his better half.

Another buddy thinks that when this whole coronavirus lockdown is over we'll see a spike in new born babies and divorces. We've all heard about the birthrate spiking after the "Great New York City Blackout of 1965." Sounds logical to me. The only thing different about the "Great Virus Lockdown of 2020" will be the unknown duration of the confinement. 

I agree with experts who think rocky marriages might not survive this manmade confinement.  In many cases, it has taken years of marriage to get both husband and wife comfortable with the amount of time they are around each other. Now suddenly that schedule is radically rocked with uncertainty. Working parents may find it difficult to have a house-full of kids underfoot 24-7. (Maybe I need to re-think the idea of a spike in newborns!)

Anyway, I figured taking a light-hearted look at ways to pass the time — other than fussing and fighting or finding yourself all hot and bothered with the one you love might be a diversion. 

Parents of young children who are at home until the all clear is sounded, might consider teaching the kids classic board games or showing them how jigsaw puzzles work. Then there's always checkers and chess. Take time to teach the little ones about games that don't require a power charger or make repetitive noises that can drive mothers and dads slap crazy.

If you have a lot of old pictures (not the kind on your phone), you might take time to show the older kids their ancestors, the family dog that lived with you when you were their age, and other family oriented things.

And when all this traditional game-playing, jigsaw assembling, and nostalgia gazing finally can't hold the kids' attention anymore — go ahead — ask them to show you the latest games they are playing. Just be prepared to be embarrassed.  I promise they'll get the biggest kick out of your performance.

Hang in there.

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