3.21.2020 – Where is Friday night?

Where is Friday night?
What happened to Saturday?
When the world stopped

Sorry in advance but I am all over the place this morning.

In the once famous Scopes Trial in Tennessee, over the teaching of evolution in Tennessee schools, Clarence Darrow (for the defense) asked William Jennings Bryan (for the prosecution), ” have you ever pondered what would have happened to the earth if it had stood still?”

Darrow was asking about the verses, Joshua 11:13-14, “The sun stopped in the middle of the sky and delayed going down about a full day. 14 There has never been a day like it before or since, a day when the Lord listened to a human being. Surely the Lord was fighting for Israel!”

Darrow’s point was that had the earth stopped it would have been burnt to a crisp in seconds.

The Dayton County Courthouse today – the tables date from the Scopes Trial but the Darrow-Bryan exchange was out in the front yard due to the heat (my photo from a recent visit to Dayton)

I like Mr. Darrow.

I like Mr. Darrow a lot for a lot of reasons.

But I do come away from reading his stuff with a feeling that he was searching, hoping for answers that were in front of his face.

And I believe and accept as fact that at the battle in the Valley of Aijalon, the Sun and the Moon stopped.

But I digress.

And to digress some more (it is my blog after all)

In the classic science fiction movie, the The Day the Earth Stood Still, aliens from other planets grow concerned over the way Earth is being run. To get the world’s attention, all electrical power is shut off for 30 minutes around the world.

And the Earth stands still.

To digress further.

In an episode of Sponge Bob, Square Pants, the evil Plankton concocts a spray that makes all the people of Bikini Bottom as dumb as Patrick.

And that is pretty dumb.

Once everyone has been sprayed, they all gather in the center of town, staring at the STOP sign.

Where am I going with this?

I feel like the world HAS stopped.

I feel like the power is off.

I feel like we are all staring at a stop sign.

My Friday night was the night for take out pizza and eating with the family as the realization sunk in the I had the weekend.

I was going to sleep in.

I wasn’t going to drive to Downtown Atlanta.

Some Saturday afternoon adventure with my wife, driving somewhere in North Georgia, was possible.

We still got pizza last night.

I still slept in this morning.

Tomorrow is Sunday.

We won’t be going to Church.

Why have a big Sunday noon meal if we can’t come home from Church and open the door to the wonderful smell of baking chicken or roasting beef?

When will my Sunday night anxiety about the Monday morning commute kick in?

Where did Friday night, Saturday and Sunday go?

I have been working from home.

And I just got notified to plan on working from home through April 11.

I admit I am grateful I have a job that isn’t suspended by the flu.

I am grateful that I can work from home.

Still, we have stopped.

What happens when we start up?

Part of my job is managing clusters of video transcoding machines at a server farms in Dallas and Dulles.

(Yes I have got them mixed up. Once with near disastrous results.)

These machines are getting older and should have their systems updated.

But my boss is afraid that they have been running so long that if we turn them off to update them, they might not come back online.

So we don’t turn them off.

But the world has stopped.

What will and what won’t work when we start up again?

A puzzle to ponder.

A worry to worry about.

For that, we will just have to wait and see.

In the meantime?

Some reassurance would be nice and I found it in nature.

I was pleased to run across this in the Guardian this morning.

“The water is blue and clear,” in the Canals of Venice.

For a interesting side perspective on the social distancing, please see Nature is taking back Venice’: wildlife returns to tourist-free city.

The article starts, “

Look down into the waters of the Venice canals today and there is a surprising sight – not just a clear view of the sandy bed, but shoals of tiny fish, scuttling crabs and multicoloured plant-life.

“The water is blue and clear,” said Gloria Beggiato, who owns the celebrated Metropole Hotel a few steps from St Mark’s square and has a view over the Venice lagoon. “It is calm like a pond, because there are no more waves caused by motorised boats transporting day-tripper tourists. And of course, the giant cruise ships have disappeared.”

Under Venice’s strict rules of self-confinement to prevent the spread of the coronavirus – all journeys but a trip to walk the dog or buy food are forbidden – the ancient city has been transformed almost overnight.”

For me, there is a dark side that enjoy’s seeing the power of Nature.

Everyone talks about the weather but no one CAN do anything about it.

Nature’s storms, snow, rain, hurricanes, earthquakes and viruses can stop us dead in our tracks.

And once we stop, the Earth bounces back.

I find comfort in the story about the canals in Venice.

The God that built that much reserve power in the Earth is in charge.

We can all stare at the stop sign for awhile but the spray will wear off.

The power will come back on.

And when Joshua asked God to stop the Earth, it was the God who made the Earth and all of the natural laws that we have to abide by.

So the Earth did not get burnt to a crisp.

I wouldn’t be here writing this if it had.

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