Catalogued and dusted. BERNIE PUCHALSKI

Surviving social distancing in Fonthill

Editor’s note: With sporting events cancelled, sports writer Bernie Puchalski suddenly has a lot of time on his hands. He tells us how it’s going so far.

Social distancing because of COVID-19 lingers on with no end in sight and I am starting to lose my marbles. (Some might say they were gone long before now, but I digress.)

I have almost finished sorting and cataloguing my record collection and I have breathed in enough album dust to make my allergies explode. I am scratching my head and wondering why I have two Culture Club albums and three copies of the Doobie Brothers’ greatest hits. Surely one would suffice. Who can even guess at the horrors that lie ahead when I sort my CD collection. The last time I catalogued, I found three copies of The Eurythmics’ greatest hits and two copies of The Village People’s greatest hits. What the hell was I thinking?

I have finished trimming the hedge in the front yard and have loaded four bags with yard waste. My collection is small compared to the 50-plus bags gathered by the guy up the street. I had no clue he was clear-cutting the Amazon jungle. While doing yard work, I talked to one of my neighbours for the first time ever. They moved in about seven years ago, but they live right across the street so it’s easy to see why we haven’t become acquainted. Another neighbour came by and offered to haul away all the tree limbs I chopped off. I am wondering if I can hide the broken deep freezer in my basement under said branches and kill two birds with one stone. If it was further into the spring, I would plant some grass and pray fervently that I end up on the right side of survival of the fittest for the first time ever.

I have gotten reacquainted with my wife and discovered she has changed jobs three times since we last discussed her employment situation. I am glad to see how well she is doing and that she will continue to be able to support me in the lifestyle I’ve grown accustomed to. Unfortunately, she is now working from home and my stories about how hard I work at home as a self-employed man have been exposed as a pack of lies. My day consists of wandering around in pajamas until noon, listening to 1980s music far too loudly on the stereo and eating Froot Loops in the living room while screaming at my Twitter feed.

I have had a few good chats with my children and shockingly discovered they are 20 and 17 instead of 17 and 14. I would never have guessed one is in third-year university but time truly does fly. Praise the lord that she decided not to study journalism. The younger one is finishing high school this year and I was stunned to learn that she no longer wants to be a musician/pet store owner. I will have to ask her for more details the next time she wanders up from her basement bedroom to eat or shower. That is normally the only time I see her but she’s usually pleasant enough, unless she’s hungry. Then all bets are off.

I have compiled a list of all the repairs that need doing around the house and decided we should move and try to unload this dump on someone else. I have heard Niagara’s real estate market has gone crazy which is the proper adjective for anyone contemplating buying this bungalow. Thank goodness it has a wonderful lot enhanced by my decision to let things look “natural.”

My wife and I have finished one of our favourite series on Amazon Prime and the last season of another favourite is rapidly approaching. I am open to any and all suggestions for more binge watching, except for shows involving fantasy, super heroes, horror, romance, snakes, bats, bear attacks, princesses, history, religion, plane crashes, car crashes, boat crashes, train crashes, scooter crashes, cannibalism, global pandemics, vampires, fashion, cooking, wine country, or Meryl Streep.

I have spent far too much time on Facebook and have come to realize some of the people I am friends with are conspiracy theorists with an even more tenuous grip on reality than yours truly. They are blaming the Russians, the Chinese, global warming, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, Donald Trump, Justin Trudeau, and Meryl Streep. (That last one might be me.)

There is far too much false information being spread on Facebook about the virus but at least it has cut down on the annoying number of cute cat videos. It has also brought to an end the endless number of animal fight videos on my Facebook feed: Alligator versus gazelle; python versus lion; hyenas versus wildebeest; crocodile versus bald eagle; anaconda versus zebra; raccoon versus rabid squirrel, toiler paper shopper versus Lysol wipe shopper, etc. Someone please tell me why these landed on my Facebook feed?

I went online to check on my RRSPs and have calculated that I have minus $250,000 worth, and I will have to work until I’m dead in order to feed myself. Thank goodness I will be able to move in with my grown children. I see them waging endless battles to determine who gets me the longest, knowing that the pot of gold — inheriting my CD and record collection — awaits the victor.

I am not sure what today brings but I am contemplating a long hike. It will give me a chance to reflect on all the progress I’ve made on my lengthy to-do list.

 

 

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