Sunday, March 15th, 2020
I do not know anyone who has the Coronavirus. I have not yet even heard from someone, who knows someone, who has this virus. Yet I am mentally preparing for a scenario where my business is forced to close for a period of time.
Am I falling prey to the overzealous news cycle?
This appears to be the prevailing opinion. That our national press is the main cause of the current level of panic. Believing this would imply they are the cause for the National Guard being called out in New York, for the closing of schools across the nation, and for the cancelation of every major sporting event.
Instead of focusing our national anxiety internally, maybe we should open our eyes to what is happening elsewhere.
An Anxious World
COVID-19, the Coronavirus, is currently placing a strain on infrastructures around the world. The country of Italy, and now Spain, is shut down. France closed all of their restaurants and cafes this weekend.
Is the press the primary cause for the current level of global fear? Have our sporting organizations in our country cast aside millions upon millions of dollars of revenue just because the press is supposedly fomenting fear?
Writing these questions carries a rhetorical feel. I believe some very tough times are on the horizon for my community, my country, and my friends.
I don’t feel as if I’m panicking. I feel like I am reading between the lines, so to speak. Between the lines of fear and panic from what I am reading on social media, and what I am reading from our press.
Yes. The press foments fear. They are probably the current financial winners. I am certain advertising revenue has to be at a near all-time high right now. No numbers to back this up. Just a feeling I have.
The viewership ratings have to be skyrocketing, right? Welcome to irony. The people complaining about the press causing fear are the same people watching the fear day in and day out.
From the constant headlines appearing on my iPhone, and the articles I have read today, here is what I believe. This is a global pandemic that is going to affect your next door neighbor. My community will not be isolated from this, no matter how much we try to isolate ourselves.
Times. They Are A Changin.
Accurate information is crucial. It is crucial to know how to react and how to implement procedures which can help to mitigate future challenges. Good luck trying to find accurate information. There is so much. Trying to consolidate all of it into a plan of action begins to feel overwhelming.
I believe this global pandemic is going to affect our way of lives. In the near future, and the far future.
I plan to implement some changes at my place of business, beyond what I did last week. Hopefully they will be effective in mitigating the chances of my employees getting sick. Hopefully these changes will help to reduce the chance of spreading this disease.
But I’m also formulating contingencies. What if I have to shutter my business for a week or more? If I get relief from my debtors, will I be able to reopen? If this spells the end for my business, will there be jobs for me?
I have never known a time in my life where uncertainty of this magnitude existed. I’ve confronted challenges which left me with some degree of doubt. More than once I doubted whether my business would remain open for another month, or another year. But I had confidence I could overcome those challenges via step A and step B.
This evening I don’t know what step A and step B is. Not when it comes to the long-term viability of a coffee shop in today’s climate. Maybe tomorrow I’ll know.
My near term hope is to eventually have that information.