Words & Banter

A COVID-19 Circuit Breaker?

Red, like many people, is concerned that between coronavirus fatigue, the desire to open things up, and the emergency approval of vaccines, people are becoming less diligent and more careless. Too many people are acting as if the worst is behind us although the experts are telling us that the worst is still to come. It reminds her of the children's story, "The Tortoise and the Hare." The idea that slow and steady wins the race.

Black, who in her corporate life used to crunch numbers to prove a point, recognizes that having good data is critical. Yes, everyone's excited about the new vaccines, but that's not an overnight solution. And testing remains critical. Until a large portion of the population has been vaccinated, Increases in the number of cases due to increased testing may continue. As long as the percentage of people who test positive is decreasing, then we're making progress, but that you still need to watch the hospitalization rates. It's also important to note where the increases occur. If they're in places where social distancing is extremely difficult (such as nursing homes, food-processing plants, and correctional facilities) then that skews the numbers, but stresses the ongoing need to test-trace-isolate.

Knowing that Red's eyes tend to glaze over when Black starts talking numbers, ratios, and statistics, she points out to Red that the decision-makers need to have "circuit breakers" in place. That way, if the numbers go in the "wrong" direction, appropriate action, and restrictions, are automatically implemented.

Red doesn't disagree, but points out the obvious …

Black's the pragmatic one and the data geek, not me.I'm a mom and concerned about my family, and all I want to know is how long we'll be on the COVID-19 roller coaster – we're opening up, then shutting down again, never knowing what's around the next curve.

Red was your typical straight-A student, getting great grades starting in kindergarten straight through to graduating from college.(Black’s grades were less than stellar, plus she was a discipline problem – some things never change.) And then, excited and proud of herself, Red thought she was done. Black, on the other hand, thinks of education as something that never ends, and much to the chagrin of students, will tell them,

Homework never ends; it just is called “research” when you get older.

Over the last few years, Red has come around to Black’s way of thinking and realizes it’s a mindset. And that education is more than the classes you take in school.

September is when students of all ages are back in school, but it’s also National Literacy Month, which is about so much more than reading and writing. Literacy includes things like Digital Literacy, Financial Literacy, Health Literacy, and even News Literacy. (As the linked Conversation Starters indicate, Red was the “poster child” of a highly educated person who lacked many of these basic literacy skills.)

So, we challenge you to find a topic that interests you or one you could benefit from learning (personally or professionally) and start doing your homework.

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For many of us, Labor Day marks the end of summer (temperatures aside), and as we switch from a summer holiday mindset back to the “real world”, we can’t help but feel overwhelmed.

You don’t need us to tell you how falling back into a work or school routine can be challenging, especially if you’re facing a backlog of tasks and responsibilities. And, if that wasn’t bad enough, the “silly season” is just around the corner. (Red has been seeing Halloween decorations since mid-July, which means Thanksgiving and all the winter holidays aren’t far behind.)

But you don’t need us to tell you why you feel overwhelmed; you need help dealing with being overwhelmed.

When our new website goes live next year, one of the major sections will be THE DAILY HELP, where you’ll find easy-to-implement tools to get your day back on track and feel more in control.

But that doesn’t help you … NOW. So, here are a handful of our favorite posts to help you deal with daily challenges we all face. (Red admits that she picked the ones she felt she needed to reread.)

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red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

We’ve been posting new content on our website multiple times a week for what seems like forever, so it will be strange to only post a few times a month.

Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

And, do not forget we also have been “feeding the beast” known as social media. But, if it makes you feel any better, we will still be issuing our newsletter every week and providing our followers with inside information on what the New Year will bring – a new website … and our new approach to Red & Black.

red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

I’m so excited as it’s going to be fun, animated (in more ways than one), and help people take control of their lives vs. their life controlling them. Which, to some extent, is what we’ve always tried to do.

Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

Yes, except our current site has almost too much information, and you do not know where to turn first. Or, where to go if you are looking for specific help.

red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

I know when I first had my crisis, I turned to you, looking for you to tell me what to do. Instead, all I got was questions. Lots and lots of questions. But those questions were how you helped guide me. I think that’s why our book became a bestseller … because people could join me on my journey.
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