Random Thoughts while Driving in Waco

By Jack Smith

Jack can be reached at jwsmith2@flash.net

People around the country are worried about Siri and Alexa listening in on their conversations when they haven’t been invited to the conversation. A person may be discussing getting a new mattress, and the next thing they know there are several emails advertising mattresses for sale. There is a possible answer to this perceived problem. Instead of the female voice of Alexa or Siri, there could be a male voice, maybe Alex or Sam. This would solve the problem because everyone knows that he won’t be listening to you anyway.

You may have heard about a new virus called the coronavirus. It’s been in the news. This column is printed about three weeks after it’s written, so who knows what will be going on when you read this. Things could be better, or all of us could be stuck in our homes. Some knowledgeable person said that 150 million Americans would have the virus eventually. It’s like the other viruses of the last many years (SARS, MERS, Ebola, swine flu, Zika) except it may be more deadly for some people, specifically older folks with other health problems. If you look up “older people with existing conditions” you may find my picture.

So am I worried about coronavirus? Nope. While there are an increasing number of cases in Texas, I’m not going to panic and stock up on hand sanitizer and face masks and other items. Why are people stocking up on toilet paper? I can’t imagine. I don’t think toilet paper will fight the virus, and manufacturers will still be producing lots of TP. So hoard something else.

Instead of TP, I predict that by now we will have completely run out of caution. Every few minutes you hear about something (like sports being canceled) as due to an “abundance of caution.” I think we have used caution up. It wasn’t that abundant anyway.

I saw that Corona beer sales are down due to people who can’t think very well. Remember, these people vote.

The best advice for avoiding the virus is to frequently wash your hands and not touch your face. I read where the average person touches his or her face 24 times an hour. I probably touch mine closer to 24 times a minute. My eye itches, my nose itches, my forehead itches. I scratch or rub. I couldn’t quit if I tried, which I haven’t. But I think maybe I have an answer. When your face itches, get your spouse or a friend to scratch it for you. This won’t necessarily solve the problem (the friend could have dirty hands), but at least you will be following the rules and not touching your own face.

On a recent Sunday, there was a wedding picture of a beautiful couple in the Waco Trib. When I saw it, I realized that for some reason wedding pictures aren’t in the paper very often these days. I wonder why. I guess it could be the expense, or maybe couples put their pictures on social media and think that’s sufficient. I miss the pictures and information about the couples and their honeymoon plans.

As a justice of the peace, I perform a fair number of weddings, although there are less now than a year ago. Don’t know why. I am no longer surprised when couples come to get married and bring their young children with them. Three is the most so far. If the kids are unruly, the bride may have to hold them in her arms, which interferes with putting rings on. Oh, well. It makes for interesting wedding pictures, which won’t end up in the newspaper.

IF I WERE KING: The pandemic would become a mandemic, and only men would get it. The ladies would take care of us, just like always. W