Wednesday, April 7, 2021

The COVID-19 Blues - The Story of US

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The Covid-19 Blues ... The Story of US
Blues Legend BB King
By JV Howard

Although instrumental accompaniment is almost universal in the blues, the blues is essentially a  vocal form. Blues songs are lyrical rather than narrative; blues singers are expressing feelings rather than telling stories.

The emotion expressed is generally one of sadness or melancholy, often due to problems in love. The COVID-19 blues could be serenaded into problems feeling about life during a pandemic.
 
Yet nothing speaks to the story of us - in some ways - than the silence of clubs and musicians in the city of New Orleans. It’s said NO has never been so quiet especially with the passing of notable jazz pioneer Ellis Marsalis, to Covid. Taken Covid-19 fallout and NO silence with no carnival together one could sense with immense sentiments the reverberation of BB King’s “the thrill is gone.


  
It’ been a long year.

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Article & Video On The COVID-19 Blues Continues Below...
"Queen Of The Blues," Ma Rainey


To the untrained eye and the unkempt mind the measure of issues we must confront is way over the top, exorbitant, overwhelming, exceedingly stressful and in some cases debilitating. You  may presuppose I'm talking about the political climate or the climate itself or you may  comprehend it as microscopic complications lucid on that over pixelated smartTV.

But it all  amount to being TOO much. It's not the enhanced visuality of a world gone mad it's the streaming of helplessness that makes us SAD - not Seasonal Affected Disorder per-se but melancholia associated with daily life interrupted every day.

It’s the content of our lives we  should be able to control. The conundrum: both of what we can and can't control seems to be  one and the same.

Our mundane routines keep getting interrupted by “breaking news.” News that break up lockdown normalcy to the point where - via coerced behavior modification - we have devised  and deployed the ultimate work around, the consummate category, or the proverbial pretext to  circumvent compounded copious obligations.
  
As a process ‘It is what it is’’ function as a concession of acceptance. We tend to concede - to a  plethora of issues which confront our moral, ethics, politics, and values.

Case in point: our  inactive response to an highly volatile active weather persona can't be dismissed “as it is what it  is” because as man is the main culprit we find who we are. Who are we? We are profit over  people motivated.

We are the perpetrators of 500k plus COVID-19 related deaths due to  ineptitude, resource malfeasance, and gross apathy. By way of lockdown fatigue, stream  saturation, and plain weariness the abyss of ugly behavior (storming capitals) gets deeper while we tire of man made calamities (climate deniers) running amok. Bottom line: We are not ours brother keeper.
 
There are times during our normal conversations about the pandemic fallout, family, working from  home, or just life that we inevitably get to the point where we say ‘hmm let me get back you' or  ‘ let me think about this.’ This vernacular throwback (old school) punctuated our dialogue with  regularity but is use less and less as ‘I get it’ or ‘ it is what it is’ get deployed strategically.

The  strategy involved averting the deeper dive some issues necessitate or the time to talk things  through - therapy 101. Some have turn to reading books like “ How not to give a F...” or YouTube  ‘How to function during chaos.”

While I don’t think we need to go that far I do get the premise.  Upon analysis it appears more of what gets classified as ‘it is what it is ... isn't....it’s just the blues.

Basically ‘it is what it is’ is a response of ill repute. It’s an issue to discuss no further, a question  that doesn’t get answered, a statement ignored, a revelation unexplained, a stream of  information, data, or meta data that is outside our lane, and simply not worthy of deep dive  analysis.

Why does rudimentary debate seems more like paralysis than analysis.? Possibly  because empathy is a key component of emotional intelligence and it takes energy - which is at  its nadir - to stay engaged.
 
Here is the thing - We disengage because we lack the emotional bandwidth to emulate the streaming bandwidth of all things targeting us. This relentless streaming " of life matters" from  the bottom of the screen to the top of our to do list is mind boggling. Example: your phone,  iPad, laptop, smart watch, pc, smart ring, tv, and ring doorbell is in engage in, covert and overt,  incessant subterfuge to reach you anytime anywhere.

Pop Up ads are now anticipatory and predatory by the way. Just so you know the post office will X-ray your mail and send you  pictures, AI (artificial intelligence) has debunked you a mystery just as Amazon highlights your  viewing history. And I promise to seek therapy if, you can explain why my smart tv ask me if i am  still there when i leave the room.
  
You may claim to eschew the many screens in your life or turn these things off but subliminally the reality is - admitted or not - we’re addicted.

We are addicted to be fed information, good or  bad, push data, informative or not, and reminded what to do when you don’t want to know. In a  world where fake news, deep fake imaging, and mass prevarication beckon normalcy it gets  complicated.

The red light marking you, the blue light connecting you, and the centennial virus stalking your respiratory system wants it to be unequivocally clear there are, literally, figuratively,  and technically, eyes on you.
  
This is not BB king’s rendition of “seems like I have the blues everyday,” ; this is what it is.  The rate of addiction, mention earlier, is 45% as the amount of download, streaming, 5G, and  WiFi speed exceed our ability to push back.

No longer a society that is sleep deprived, due to  unconscionable obligations, we are a wake deprived society nurturing robot tendencies...this is  untold story of us - inundated - during the blues of COVID-19.  Even before COVID-19, medical experts were concerned about increasing rates of insomnia and  its impact on physical and emotional health.

Now, with COVID-19 stress, the huge changes in routines and the decreased activity for many people, sleep experts say the coronavirus has  caused a second pandemic of insomnia.  A possible explanation!

You don't have enough 'non-time' in your schedule. What is 'non-time'?

As The Art of the Impossible author and TED speaker Steven Kotler  explained recently on the TED Ideas blog, non-time is basically a fancy word for quiet alone time  when you are insulated from the world's noise and demands. Steven notes that neuroscience shows blocks of disconnected quiet time have profound effects on our thinking and creativity.  Being time-strapped, then, can be kryptonite for creativity," he explains.
  
The take away, if you will, is to consider the inherent value in the quietude, solitude, absence of glee and confetti in NO, to close the hole in our soul that's making arrested development a new  normal.
  
Who are you during a pandemic? Are wake deprived, are you engaged or disengaged, are you  addicted but in denial?

Will you vaccinate, double mask, don germaphobe tendencies, zoom  meeting in shorts, skype meeting in pajamas, stream Netflix, home repair, or find the down time  to disconnect with your kindle, a book, or segue to jazz with Miles Davis’s quintessential album  “Kind of Blue” as he serenades loudly, "So What.".... Too the Covid-19 blues.


The article ideas expressed are those of freelance commentator JV Howard and may not be totally reflective of Scoop publications.  You can reach JV Howard at: jvguru@outlook.com


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Posted by community events coordinator, Nzinga Lonstein Austin, is a prolific blogger who writes on the entertainment industry and issues for people with developmental and physical challenges.

She is presently in high school looking to have a career in video, film, and media. You can see more of her entertainment writing on Lonstein Movies.


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