I find it hard to believe I used to write in a journal nearly every day. Where did I find the time? What did I write about? What happened to my mental capacity to produce subject matter and text? My guess is that it all resided in my addiction to nicotine. Nothing made me type as well as a freshly-lit cigarette.
My smoking days are long behind me, and so is my ability to write anything timely. My goal is to publish a little something every week, and to have a few posts queued in case I’m unable to write for a while. But lately it seems that by the time any topical posts are live, they’re redundant. I know I sound like someone’s gran when I say that everything is moving incredibly fast these days.
And everything feels incredibly weird. Work is strange. Our orders are down and we’ve reduced the size of our premises to save money. It’s quite depressing and claustrophobic. Staff are worried about the dip in sales, the ultimate result of Brexit, and Coronavirus. It’s my job to reassure them, but I find it difficult. The Government may be saying everything is ok, but we have eyes and ears. We know things are a bit shit right now, and that they’re likely to get worse.
I’m still preparing for a big downturn. We’re exchanging our car for a cheaper model at the end of the week, and I’ll be relieved when it’s done. Knowing that a lot of the battery materials for electric vehicles come from China, I expected there would soon be production delays on EVs. This morning, I read about a lithium shortage. Anyone can see where this is going to go, but amazingly, there are folk saying it doesn’t matter. It’s this lack of joined-up thinking that’s brought us to this point, and it’s the main difference between remainers and leavers. The former can see beyond the present. The latter can only see the past.
Today’s news is that the whole of Italy is locked down, several countries have banned mass events, and the number of infected in the UK now stands at 373. Yet amongst the dire headlines, I can still see a travel article promoting rural France, and another purporting to know the best places to dine solo in Paris, no doubt written before Coronavirus was a western worry.
This piece will publish in a week’s time and I can’t help but wonder how incongruous it will seem by then. Will there be sick world leaders? A lockdown for the UK? A banking crisis? The world economy in a tailspin? I suppose the one thing we can count on is plenty of denialists and charlatans invited onto the BBC to talk nonsense. No matter how mad things get, that’s always a safe bet.