A modern Huckleberry Finn on experts and the corona virus.
My name’s Johnny Jasper Wilkins Smith. Most people stop at Johnny, which is fine by me, cause it saves a lot of time, and time is somethin people seem to hold dear. Although for all that, they sure do seem to waste a lot of it. Especially grown-ups, who are always askin and sayin things that seem pretty much already decided.
Like the weather for example. Even though it’s right there when you open your door, and you can see it and feel it, they’re always askin for what’s called “a second opinion.” I’m not much for second opinions when it comes to things I can see and hear and feel for myself.
I asked my father what an S’pert was, and he said they were people who went to school for years and years and years, studyin only one thing. Sounded pretty boring to me. I like to learn about a whole lot of things, whenever I get the curiosity and the position. Seems silly to ask an S’pert about the risin of the sun, when the sun’s been rising for millions of years, and don’t much care if you studied on it or not. Grown ups are always tryin to seem important. It just seems like more time-wastin to me… makin a simple thing complicated.
My best friend Bobby and I believe in only one thing, havin a good time. We play baseball most every day, with a bunch of other boys and a couple of girls with good arms… a strike is a strike far as I’m concerned. Sometimes we argue over a suspicious call, but for the most part we just play. Sometimes we keep score and sometimes we don’t, mostly when Jimmy Nevins is playing, cause he gets really hyper about it and ruins the whole game.
His father is a lawyer that mostly defends people who kill other people by accident. I never did understand the accident part, since I myself never even killed a fly lessin it was on purpose. But he said sometimes people get what’s called, “temporary insanity.” That means when you go crazy for about a minute, and then regain your senses. But it seems to me that some of the people in our neighborhood never got to the regainin part. We pretty much stay away from their houses when we’re sellin candy, cause there ain’t no point in gettin shot for a dollar.
Sometimes when we go to Jimmy Michael’s house to play video games, we hear his father yellin really loud at the TV. We ask Jimmy if his father knows that the people on TV can’t hear him, but he says that that’s just how his father gets when he watches the news, and that his mother says its best to just let him do it, cause better he yell at the TV than at her. He says that they fight a lot because she likes this old man named Biden and his father likes this other old man named Trump.
Seems like there’s a whole lot of trouble over these two old men. Sometimes even us kids get into fights cause of it. Like the time Jimmy and Tommy T. got into a fist fight, because Tommy said that his father wanted to build a wall and Jimmy said that that was whack, because then the dolphins couldn’t get in. Then Danny Nunez broke it up and said that they were both stupid, and that the wall was supposed to keep people out, and that the old man with the orange hair didn’t like Mexicans, and neither did the other guy, really. Then Tommy changed his mind, cause Danny is his best friend. None of us could make any sense of the dolphins though. Then Bobby said that we were all retarded, and Barbara said that her mom said that word was against the law now and he had to call us “challenged”. Everybody got so confused finally, that we decided to stop talkin and just play baseball.
Then somethin called the corona virus started gettin people sick, especially old folks. Jimmy’s parents kept fightin over which old man should get it first. They pretty much left us kids alone though, so we just kept on playin baseball, s’ept when we got home now, our mothers wiped us all over with bleach and we all got to smellin like clean toilets. Barbara brought wipes and kept wipin the baseball, and Tommy said it was just a cheap trick to get slippier sliders.
Some of our parents started wearin masks like ninjas, and sometimes they would fight with the parents who didn’t, but Jimmy said that that’s not what they were really fightin about, and that it was about the two old men again. Bobby said that he couldn’t understand why they just didn’t send the two old men that were causin all the trouble, to what’s called a retirement home, like they did to his grandparents, and let them play bingo all day. We all agreed that that would be a pretty good solution.
Barbara said that there used to be this other old guy named Bernie who had loads more energy and common sense, but that the grown-ups wouldn’t vote for him cause they were scared he was a communiss. He was what’s called “unpredictable”, they said. Jimmy said that that sounded like the time when his sister couldn’t decide between two boyfriends, one of ‘em nice and sensible, and the other, her grandma said was too wild. Turns out she finally decided on the nice and sensible one, and now his sister and grandma changed their minds, and always call the other one, “the one that got away”. Barbara agreed that that’s pretty much what happened with this old guy.
Bobby came yellin and runnin onto the field today to tell us that school was closed because of the virus. We got to hoopin and hollerin with such ecstasy… till Barbara had to open her big fat mouth to say we probably shouldn’t be so happy, on account of the fact, that her mom said that the whole human race could be facin x-tink-shen. We thought on it for awhile, weighin the pros and cons; which was a whole lot easier after she explained what x-tink meant; and decided that it probably weren’t right for the whole human race to go x-tink just so we didn’t have to go to school… but I don’t mind sayin… it took us a while to come to it.