A New Old Weapon in the War Against the Pandemic

Early last Tuesday morning, an old friend of mine, a 72-tear old 112-lb. soft-spoken woman named (let’s say) Jane entered her favorite supermarket.  Fussy about her produce and her safety ,  Jane–face-masked and be-gloved– has  lately been  engaged in the  habit of  weekday shopping at 7 a.m. when the customer population is normally sparse.  That morning–with about 7 shoppers coasting through the aisles–was no exception.  After loading her shopping cart Jane tucked into the checkout line about seven feet behind the woman hauling her groceries onto the checkout belt.  Suddenly, behind Jane  emerged a man about the size (and mentality) of Rush Limbaugh, planting himself about two feet from Jane.  In her customary demure manner, she asked this Fox-Fan Fatso to please step back to observe the prescribed  six foot distance rule.  Provoked, Fatso proceeded to rail against her, bleating out menacingly, “You can’t tell me what to do.”  Jane stepped away from the line, dipped her dainty hand in a little daisy-themed purse and mined out a small container of pepper spray, and–pointing it at his jiggling mammoth double chin– suggested that Fatso keep his civilized safe distance or she would deliver some serious discomfort to his face. Muttering through a sheet of mouth drool, he obliged.

Now, I for one cannot advocate this powerful weapon of self-defense; pepper spray is illegal, as is mace.  I wouldn’t even know how to acquire anything like it.  But my take on the incident is:  Jane did Fatso a favor, perhaps a life-saving (his own, his family and any nearby victims)  favor, since he’s unlikely to ever again  nudge up to a stranger, for fear of  damaging, raging counterattack.

I do confess, though, that hearing the recent report of gunfire at a California “Coronavirus party.”  not one droplet of sadness ran a rivulet down my cheek.  I reckoned the shooter was probably an irate head-of-household who had  recently lost a loved one to the dreaded virus and–in his view– was enacting a drama of righteous vengeance.  I’m thinking that there will be far fewer parties of this nature staged very soon.  And more of us will be swathed in a coverlet of well-being, For the time being.




Filed under: Culture, Health, politics

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