I went to the river to run today. It was the first time I have been since they re-opened the trail. It was packed … cars lined up like before the virus. There seemed to be a sense of calm though … everyone waiting patiently, no line jumpers. It didn’t used to be that way. Eventually, I was able to grab a spot and hit the trail … eight miles today. As I approached other runners, it was difficult to not think about social distancing. It was still in my head. The river was peaceful though, cleaner than I could recall. It reminded me of how I need to get back to Italy, Venice specifically. I would like to see the blue waters of the Venice canals. I hope they work to keep it that way.
On my way home, I reluctantly turned on business radio. I heard them talking about a new bill that was likely to be passed called the “Second Career Initiative” where college tuition is waived for anyone interested in pursuing an education towards a new career. A great many people put out of work have decided they need a more secure income path. Smart idea. I also heard a small group of university presidents just concluded a summit. They are proposing an “Equal Tuition Act” to do away with out-of-state tuition, a hardship on many families especially those who had to vacate campuses during the transition to online programming. Never really thought that out-of-state model was equitable.
We had dinner out this week for the third time, not because we don’t want to cook or even because of the recent cabin fever. We know the restaurants need us now more than ever. And the “Tip 2X” that people starting doing organically seems to be catching on. It’s the right thing to do. I also noticed not a single diner had their phone out. It was like dining 10 years ago. People seemed to be engaged at the table. I was one of them, admittedly a character flaw from my past. It was refreshing.
Also heard some politicians on both sides of the aisle aggressively pursuing that 1% who sold a great deal of stock during the peak of the crisis. They too have a progressive concept on the table. Seems like everyone agrees our prisons are taxed. Adding more people just adds more burden on the economy. So it looks like they are proposing white crime options. All the money accumulated from stock selling goes to a “Worker Relief Fund.” They’re talking about close to a billion dollars. And these smart titans of industry, they can go back to work, but 50% of their new income will be garnished, filtered into that same fund for the duration of what their prison term would have been. Sounds like another practical, but progressive idea to support those hardest hit.
My son is back at college. Since he returned, we find ourselves using FaceTime more. Text, even calls, seem so impersonal these days. Kind of refreshing. Time to get to work. It’s a Brave New Day.