Panic Ends With a Whimper

On March 16, 2020, a national COVID-19 emergency was declared for 15 days – to flatten the

And now, a mere 1135 days later, the 15-day national emergency is finally over, with a
statement signed behind closed doors at the White House and this terse official statement from
the White House:

“On Monday April 10, 2023 the President signed into law: H.J. Res. 7, which terminates the
national emergency related to the COVID-19 pandemic.”

And, er, that was about it.

No ticker tape parades. No massive celebrations in Times Square with sailors grabbing young
women and kissing them. No honking horns. No two-hour specials on state-run TV networks
with Dr. Anthony Fauci reminiscing about the Good Old COVID Days.

So this is how the Panic ends, to paraphrase the poet, not with a bang but a whimper.

You couldn’t call it V-C day, because the Red Chinese flu is still around. But then, the scam was
never about COVID. It was about Trump, and getting rid of him. But that was years ago now – it
just seems like decades.

I couldn’t let it go, though without some commemoration. A couple of nights ago, I asked my
radio listeners for their memories of those magic moments.

Here’s a selection:

From area code 603: “Who can forget the COVID snitch lines?”

From 617: “Remember TP & paper towel shortages?”

From 617: “COVID took the weekends off. You could stay out an hour later at the bars on Friday
and Saturday nights and not have to worry about getting infected.”

From 267: “At my college they covered each individual banana with saran wrap to ‘mitigate the
spread of germs’ as if germs wouldn’t be on the plastic when you pick it up… and as if bananas
don’t come with their own natural covering that you peel off before eating.”

From 978: “So COVID lasted longer than JFK in office? Gross.”

From 603: “One percent death rate.”

From 781: “State House ‘working from home’…. Didn’t go to work before COVID and suddenly
they’re ‘working from home.’ Not a single hack laid off.”

From 978: “I remember you weren’t allowed to open the egg carton to check if there were
broken eggs. I was reprimanded once.”

From 781: “People at my nursing home were literally starving to death because no one was
allowed inside to feed them. Nurses and CNA’s do not have time to sit with some old lady for an
hour so she can get oatmeal down her stomach.”

Justin: “My doctor is still trying his best to make me wear a mask even though on the box the
masks come in it says ‘Not for medical use.’”

From Rambo 413: “How about the ‘no coins’ BS at casinos. Coins still haven’t returned to cash-
out kiosks, you only get paper money & lose out on the coins. Another win/scam for the house,
which always wins.”

From 603: “Sept. 2021. NH had returned to normal. Niece had a mask mandate at her outdoor
wedding. I politely sent regrets and have been disowned ever since by my family.”

From 508: “I blame the loss of my wife on the pandemic. While she wasn’t in the best of health
before it started, she was unable to get out for exercise and that led to her health failing
quicker. My experiences with nursing homes were criminal. She did not die from COVID but
having the medical system screwed up by state regs didn’t help.”

From 781: “Guys wearing the same filthy masks that they kept hanging from the rear-view
mirror in their trucks.”

From 919: “Local watering holes became speakeasies. Boards over front windows, had to go
around back and knock on door and know somebody to get inside. Not just bars, barber shops

From 508: “Charlie Parker telling us that pretzels or chips is not a meal so you can’t get an
alcoholic beverage but if you order a whole meal the virus will leave you alone.”

From 508: “Don’t you miss the daily updates on ‘the folks’ and ‘the community’ and Karyn
Polito’s keggers on Lake Quinsigamond.”

From 617: “How about social distancing? When COVID hit, bus service in Boston was reduced
so the few buses that still came by were packed with people breathing on each other.”

From 617: “The one-way aisles in supermarkets, then the suspended Plexiglas ‘shields’ they had
you stand behind at checkout, talking through a mask. But then when you paid, you had to rub
your hands all over the credit-card screen after the guy before you had wiped his nose on a
postage-stamp sized tissue.”

From 978: “Dr. Sudders. What a bunch of feckless frightened morons they all were.”

From 508: “I’m a medical courier. Hospitals closed their main entrances early each day causing
more hours of the day having to enter through the emergency-room entrances WHERE
SUPPOSED SICK PEOPLE ARE! Talk about backwards.”

From 617: “Count on this: 30 or so years from now, people are going to look back at the
‘pandemic’ exactly the way we look back on Orson Welles’ radio broadcast of ‘War of the
Worlds.’ The fake panic that people believed totally, as ridiculous as it was.”

The difference between then and now is, in 1938 the Mercury Theater was only on the air for
one hour, and then everybody realized they’d been had. This hoax went on for more than three
years, and anyone who dared call BS on it was cancelled, or shunned, or fired.

When the Cold War was winding down, somebody made a documentary about all the craziness
back in the Fifties with fallout shelters, air raid sirens etc. It was called The Atomic Café.

As I recall, it was kind of funny. If they eventually make The COVID Café, though, it won’t be a
comedy. It’ll be a tragedy.

Flatten the curve? To get rid of Trump, they flattened the entire society. Mission accomplished.

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