What a way to remember moms and do graduation!

There was a picture in the Bloomington Pantagraph this week of John Grimaldo, snapped while he was in his seat on his American Airlines flight.

Posted 5/15/20

Here’s what made it especially interesting:

John was the only passenger … on the entire plane.

“I never thought I’d have my own private plane,” he chuckled.

John says he got great …

Sign up to keep reading — IT'S FREE!

In an effort to improve our website and enhance our local coverage, we have switched to a membership model. Fill out the form below to create a free account. Once you're logged in, you can continue using the site as normal. You should remain logged in on your computer or device as long as you don’t clear your browser history/cookies.

What a way to remember moms and do graduation!

There was a picture in the Bloomington Pantagraph this week of John Grimaldo, snapped while he was in his seat on his American Airlines flight.

Posted

Here’s what made it especially interesting:

John was the only passenger … on the entire plane.

“I never thought I’d have my own private plane,” he chuckled.

John says he got great service. Airplane personnel called him by name. If there was any turbulence during the flight, that “seat-buckle” sign didn’t need to be flipped on; instead a flight attendant could just lean over and say, “Hey John, we could be better tossing your salad in a moment ...”

At this point, let us pause to reflect ...

This Covid19 pandemic is awful, a virus of such strength that it has brought an entire planet to its attention and then its knees.

But it’s also bringing amazing once-in-a-lifetime experiences.

Like for our moms on this past Sunday, on their special day.

Of all the Mothers Days, this surely would have been one for them to remember because of its weirdness. Hey, no hugs! Could someone please pass me a face mask? Are there too many cars out front for the police not to stop and disassemble this gathering of more than 10?

Or graduates.

As they ready for diplomas ... with no pomp and circumstance, no walk-across-the-stage to the glee of family ... it’s a very sad development. But they also will have one over all the rest of us.

They one day can say to their grandkids: “I graduated during that Pandemic of 2020, after the last two months of what were called ‘virtual’ classes. I remember once not getting out of my PJs.”

Who knew back on New Years Day that only weeks later the entire world would be so remarkably different? …

We have no idea anymore if it’s Thursday or Tuesday or even Friday, and we’re also discovering that’s not all that bad. I just had a pot pie for breakfast.

When’s the last time you even wore jeans? Sweatpants? Yep. Leggings? Yep. But jeans? Now, instead of getting home to pull on a pair of jeans, you take them off once home because jeans are too restrictive.

Gasoline is cheaper than bottled water. The gas price hasn’t been this low since Jimmy Carter and Billy Beer.

When will going to the grocery store ever again be remembered as moderately terrifying?

And who would have ever figured we’d begin having “One Way Only” grocery aisles, like out on the streets? Knowing where the pasta noodles are is great but figuring out how to get there while going in the correct direction can be tricky. Eventually we might need grocery-store GPS.

It’s a great time to drive your car because of less traffic and more open road. But a warning: motorists also seem to be stretching speed limits. My wife and I walk daily along B-N’s Constitution Trail, along a stretch adjacent to G.E. Road, and it can be like NASCAR now. I’m mulling one afternoon taking along a lawn chair, some sunscreen and Darrell Waltrip.

It’s led to endeavors that never would have otherwise occurred. Like, an “art group project” taking place these days among Patti Hursh, of Bloomington, and Karen Coughlin, of Normal, and all their friends across America who, in wake of this pandemic’s curious toilet-paper shortage, became amused at a TP-roll Christmas door wreath someone had posted on Facebook ... so they launched a “competition” among pals to make (get ready for it …) “toilet-paper-roll art.” It’s hilarious and quite creative. (You can see many of their artistic TP rolls online with this column.)

People are getting together in novel ways too ... like, in driveways. Other morning, Joyce and Kurt Moser in Bloomington rolled out a 10x12 rug on their driveway, put out a lamp table, some flowers and plants and they arranged chairs — six feet apart — to have a magnificent social get-together. Who would have EVER done that before now ... without at least having the police called because the “neighbors are acting real strange”?

Have you also noticed? During Covid19, all the rest of the news has gone away! Whatever happened to those wildfires in Australia? Or Beto O’Rourke — a year ago he was a Democratic frontrunner for President; now even a milk carton wouldn’t know where he was.

Yes, 2020 is proving to be an amazingly memorable year.

Who knew being 20/20 would ever mean this?

One last brain blurb: As people begin mulling life after full lock-down, it suddenly also is dawning: If you thought toilet paper was crazy, just wait until 330 million people all want a haircut appointment.

You’d better call ahead, Mom! And take your face mask!

Bill Flick is at flick@a5.com

Comments