Has there ever been a weirder time than this? No, it is not a rhetorical question. The time we are living in is weird beyond what I could have ever imagined. I am not used to riding around streets with so few cars. When I go to bed at night, I hope to wake up in the morning to normal. But it never seems to end. I just want my favorite Mexican restaurant – and my favorite waiter – to be there with my chimichangas and a big margarita. But they are only doing take up now – but the good news is that you can get a take out margarita with your dinner.
Your ever-lovable Grey Beard Biker feels like he is living in the movie, Ground Hog Day. Everything is a repeat of the previous day. Being used to traveling by air nearly every week, I have not flown since early March. That’s weird. I haven’t stayed in a hotel or rented a car since early March. Honestly, I do not miss any of that after having done this for 25+ years. But being in my home office everyday does cause me to get a bit restless. I wake up, brush my teeth, take my RA meds, go downstairs and watch the early national news, do some Twitter stuff, work all day, eat dinner, do some Twitter stuff, brush my teeth, read, go to sleep. And repeat. Every. Single. Day.
But, being a biker, as you know I am, I do get out of the house quite a bit to take rides. Last week there was a 365-mile day trip to ride the Calfkiller Highway. There was a Saturday ride to the Amish grocery in Charlotte. On Sunday I rode over to my buddy Rob’s house for some day drinking. This evening I rode a 60 mile loop around Montgomery and Robertson counties. But something still feels off – even when I am on the Grey Ghost. And I can’t put my finger on it. It feels like people have closed off from the world – even when they are out and about. They have closed the doors to their life and are in suspended animation. Weird, huh?
But There Is Light at the End of the Tunnel
Today, Tennessee governor Bill Lee, announced that the state would begin gradually turning on the lights over the coming weeks. Next week, certain businesses will begin reopening – although he did not specify which businesses would be targeted. He also announced that he would not be extending the shelter-in-place order which expires on May 1. But starting the entire economy back up is not like pushing the start button on the Grey Ghost. It will take some time. There are thousands of moving parts which need to be started in the right order.
Other governors, primarily in RED southern states are following suit. Beaches are opening again in Florida. So we are definitely seeing a movement to get things back to normal. Will it be a new normal or will it be like it was before we were slammed by the China Virus? Only time will tell. I do know, that in my industry, auto claims are way down. People are not driving their cars as much – so they are not having accidents. On the repair side of the business, many mom-and-pop businesses may never open their doors. Larger multi-site operators (MSOs) have furloughed thousands of their employees. Will all of them ever have a spot to come back to? There are so many unknowns about what our future holds.
Another positive sign is that many conservative citizens are beginning to protest the overreach of certain states. It seems unusual to see conservative protests, but they are happening. People are beginning to see through the ruse. They are beginning to see that the Deep State still exists. It still thrives on creating confusion about our leaders. The mainstream media is part of the Deep State and has been peddling lies and creating sensational narratives to try and deceive the American public. But we are not going to be fooled by them any longer. President Trump continues to call them out on the carpet and brow beat them. And they need it. Hell, I’d give most of them a fucking throat punch. They are spineless amoebas that only know one thing – they hate Donald J. Trump. End of the damned story. They suffer from severe Trump Derangement Syndrome (TDS).
While I have been forced to change my work habits, not travel as much and stay in the man cave more than usual, I have not stopped living. I continue to live every single day like it might be my last. I go and see friends. They come over for cigars and whiskey several times a week. I canceled a ride to New Orleans for last weekend, but I still ride more that 90% of so called bikers do when there is no limitations on what we can do. And all this is not changing. I will keep doing what I want to do. I will buy things I want to buy. I will keep my whiskey cabinet stocked with fine bourbons. My humidors will stay full. I am still going to ride to Colorado this summer. I will still ride to Panama City Beach this fall. I will go to a lot of bike rallies. Why? Because you can’t hold the damned Grey Beard Biker down. And my advice to you? Do the same. Live your damned life like you want.