Are We Getting Soft?

Recently, I was reading the book John Adams by David McCullough. Evidently, in one of Adam’s many crossings to Europe, the ship leaked so profusely passengers had to bail water around the clock for the entire journey!


I refuse to fly anything below “Comfort Plus.”

I should be ashamed! I am descended from brave immigrants who knew real discomfort! Dad loved sharing stories of the hardships faced by our ancestors who cleared forests, built log cabins, carried water from springs, and grew or hunted the food they ate.

Last week I went to Marketplace Foods. They were out of pork tenderloin, which I found to be an annoying inconvenience!

Where did this modern mindset come from?

It surely wasn’t inherited!

I would hate to give up the creature comforts of my life. Unlike my ancestors, I am also fairly risk-averse. Like many, I carry insurance on our house, cars, health, and life, not to mention an assortment of recreational toys. A low risk profile comes with high premiums. That’s not to say it doesn’t pay off! Recently I backed our new minivan into one of our other cars. I was pleasantly surprised when our insurance policy covered stupidity.

Lately, I’ve been trying to figure out the risk presented by the Covid Delta variant for my family. I haven’t been able to find a fact-based answer, although there is no shortage of opinions. The correct answer depends on whether you read The New York Times or The National Review. The CDC isn’t much better. I am data-driven, so I looked into it on my own.

Statistically, the risk of a vaccinated person dying of Covid is 1 in 100,000. For comparison, the risk of being struck by lightning is 1 in 15,000, and the risk of dying in a motor vehicle accident is 1 in 106.

I don’t worry about getting hit by lightning, or driving for that matter. Then again, I get off the lake when I hear thunder, and I always wear a seatbelt.

We are vaccinated and don’t mind wearing masks in public. So here’s the question:

Is attending an out-of-state wedding in an area with low vaccination rates an acceptable risk?

To be clear, that was a rhetorical question. I don’t want to incite a political rant in the comment section of the blog. I’m just admitting that I’m concerned about the risk.

I’m pretty sure my ancestors would say I’m soft.

Then again, some of their family members probably succumbed to preventable diseases!

In one of my favorite Doors songs, Jim Morrison sings, “The future’s uncertain, the end is always near, let it roll baby!”

Who knows, maybe that’s right?

Then again, there’s more than one’s self at stake!


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2 Replies to “Are We Getting Soft?”

  1. Very interesting read. My parents grew up picking cotton in rural Alabama. They were blessed to get an education and amassed a nice retirement at 55. Yet, my father frequently says he grew up with nothing and he knows how to go back to living with nothing. I don’t think I’m soft. My issue is I don’t have the know how. He’s 86 and still grows anything you can imagine in his backyard, figs, potatoes, greens and even corn. For some things he even makes his on seeds for the following season. Me, if I had to go back to growing my own food. I’m sure I’d figure it out, but hopefully before my family all starves. If I had to I would, though. My wife’s not so sure.


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