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When I Grow Old and Wear the Bottom of My Trousers Rolled: 2020 in Retrospect

January 23rd, 2021 by Michael Dyet

I grow old… I grow old…

I shall wear the bottom of my trousers rolled

~ T.S. Eliot, The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock

Hmmm, will old men look back on 2020 and shake their heads at the calamity it became?

Picture me as an old man sitting by the window on a sunny day watching life unfold as it was always meant to. Armed with the wisdom gained from a lifetime of experience. Little left to lose by speaking unpleasant truths. Perhaps I might ask some hard questions.

How did the mutation of a virus that had been around for 20 years bring the human race to its knees? And on that subject:

Who coined the phrase flatten the curve, did they have any idea what it would spawn and did they come to regret that turn of phrase?

How did it happen that the trajectory of hundreds of thousands of lives changed forever, and not for the better, even though they were good corporate citizens and played by the rules?

How much wider did the gap get between the haves and the have-nots and was that an unfortunate side effect or a hidden agenda?

How is it possible that a pharmaceutical mega-corp that stood to make billions from its vaccine neglected to address its production capacity?

How did the state of affairs in one of the world powers come off the rails? And on that subject:

How did the battle between the left and the right become a virtual civil war, who was the instigator and did either side win or everybody lose?

Was the U.S. presidential election Trump vs Biden, the Democrats vs the Republicans or simply a battle of ethical attrition?

Was it all Trump’s fault or was he just an easy target that we fell into the trap of blaming?

And the overwhelming question:

Were we able to learn anything from a year that forced us to live behind closed doors or did we shamefully choose to never think about it again?

As an old man with my trousers rolled, I will reflect that life is a long paddle down an endless river and 2020 was a rock-strewn rapids of our own making. I will be grateful that I survived it but unwilling to believe that it had to unfold the way that it did.

~ Now Available Online from Amazon, Chapters Indigo or Barnes & Noble: Hunting Muskie, Rites of Passage – Stories by Michael Robert Dyet

~ Michael Robert Dyet is also the author of Until the Deep Water Stills – An Internet-enhanced Novel which was a double winner in the Reader Views Literary Awards 2009. Visit Michael’s website at .

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