Strange Days Indeed

Doing the Turkey Vulture Shuffle

Into week three of my self-induced isolation—now lawfully mandated here in Bucks County, PA—I don’t foresee an end to this COVID-19 crisis anytime soon in the U.S., nor anywhere else in the world; although, the tide of the coronavirus disease in China and South Korea seems to be ebbing. Hopefully the rest of the planet will follow suit.

We’ve yet to flatten the exponential curve of new cases in America, even though many states and municipalities have stay-at-home orders issued by governors and mayors. Even so, an outstanding decrease in traffic on the roads in the Philadelphia area, also under lockdown, is not overtly obvious from when I went out the other day to pick up groceries at the supermarket, and office supplies from Staples.

Usually, I put off doing my taxes until the deadline, which is April 15th normally. That’s been a tradition for me since the beginning of time. Due to the pandemic, Tax Day in the States has been extended to July 15th, which gives me three months more to procrastinate. However, with all the time available to do nothing during my isolation, I figured I’ll do my taxes and get it over with.

After downloading the necessary forms from the IRS’s and the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue’s websites, I discovered my printer had run out of ink, hence the reason for the second part of my escaping the stay-off-the-roads mandate on Thursday. The plan is for filling the documents out tomorrow and mailing them on Monday.

Why is it that printer ink dries up so quickly if it’s not being used? The cartridges for my inkjet were replaced last November. The device takes five cartridges for the different colors, one of which is for printing photos and graphics, and all of them together cost around $100.00. It seems like it would be cheaper just to buy a new printer instead.

Been heading outside for exercise, walking around my development to the Delaware River and environs, taking photos of the wildlife and scenery. Put together a video today that I’d like to share with you of my exploits and which ospreys have returned for the breeding season thus far. With the stay-at-home orders, which recommends staying off the roads as well, I haven’t been able to do a complete survey of the raptors, especially for the ones that are only seen from the NJ side of the Delaware River.

President Trump tweeted today that he’s considering a federally mandated quarantine order for New York, Connecticut and New Jersey. Things are getting bad around here. Anyway, here’s the video:

In other news, my drone is repaired and ready to go with spare parts a plenty; but I’m waiting for this lockdown to end before attempting another flight elsewhere. Too many people are walking around the neighborhood field where it’s been flown previously. I’d hate to give the residents unwanted haircuts by a crashing quadcopter’s propellers; although, with beauty salons and barbershops closed down during the pandemic, they might just welcome it.

The popular catchphrase for the times used to be “Practice Safe Sex.” Nowadays it’s “Practice Social-Distancing.” Been practicing social-distancing so often, by now I should be considered an expert. You should too. Wash your hands often and don’t touch your face. Cough into a tissue or the anterior fold of your elbow, formally known as cubital fossa. Be safe, well and happy, if all of that’s possible during these trying times.

Here’s a facetious reminder of what the world went through during the period of Black Death, or the Great Bubonic Plague in 14th-century Europe and Asia. Please take this in jest. It’s not for sensitive or overly offended individuals. Be forewarned:

Thanks for stopping by and for your continued support.

About Mike Slickster

As an early retiree with an honorary doctorate degree from the proverbial "School of Hard Knocks," this upcoming author with a lot of free time on his hands utilizes his expansive repertoire for humorous yet tragic, wildly creative writing that contains years of imaginative fantasy, pure nonsense, classic slapstick, extreme happiness and searing heartbreak; gathered by a wealth of personal experiences throughout his thrilling—sometimes mundane or unusually horrid—free-spirited, rock-'n'-roller-coaster ride around our beloved Planet Earth. Mike Slickster's illustrious quest continues, living now in Act Three of his present incarnation, quite a bit on the cutting edge of profundity and philosophical merriment as seen through his colorful characters, most notably evident in the amusing Thirty Days Across the Big Pond series, all of which can be found at
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