Okay, apparently I am not so smart …

“Only the Paranoid Survive”

is a book written by Andy Grove, founder & former CEO of Intel. He had every right to be paranoid, a brilliant and brave man, and an immigrant who at the age of 20 escaped the Nazis and Hungarian Dictatorship to the new world, New York with nothing. He worked as a busboy at restaurants and various odd jobs as an immigrant who barely spoke English to attend city college and … eventually get his PhD at UC Berkeley.

This book is however not about his hardship growing up but it’s a classic on managerial and leadership skills. As someone who relies on sense of humor to get through the day, it’s a book that makes someone like me realize I definitely had it too easy growing up and most definitely and clearly not a CEO material … at best, a personal trainer for one temporarily practicing this art of not being paranoid – you know it’s a yin to his yang tendencies. So you don’t end up with hypertension, blood clots and atrial fibrillation or something like nerves damage… shingles, insomnia … there are costs and health consequences to being overly paranoid, overly vigilant for too long. Even looking at ancient times, that function, the one to protect the community … there’s that elder, and the tribe members took turns with night watch. Taking turns – a concept learned in preschool.

Driving, I heard on radio it’s “smart” to stock up and be well prepared. So… I guess that means I am not so smart to focus more boosting the immune system than making that list part of the extensive TO-Do list – not a packing list for travel that many are now cancelling but a shopping list so we can hunker down at home for two weeks?

I found “Say You’re Stuck at Home for Two Weeks …” article written by Carla Lalli Music on Bon Appetit (google search it – a good read) captures where we’re at. I understand the need if you are a head of a household with children and teens or an elderly under your care there’s the need to be well prepared – you are that village elder. I really wanted to refuse to hoard toilet paper when there is no paper shortage but … are we coming to that? Is there a hurricane warning? An Armageddon? I am okay with 2 weeks grocery list but I refuse to stockpile paper items. I guess here again, I am not so smart. I see that people are going really over-board as though the world is coming to an end. To the dumb sensibilities of mine, it seems a bit shameful Isn’t 3-4 bags of 20 lbs rice more like 2+ months of supply not 2 weeks? That’s what causes the empty shelves; not someone thinking possibly 2 weeks of quarantine as worst case scenario but somehow it’s more like 2 months – even 2 years worth of stuff for the extremely paranoid ! Does that make sense?

Am I being naive? Am I going to be proven wrong and stupid? Isn’t cases of water more like for earthquake and fires when the water pipes are broken and when you turn on the faucet there’s no water? Is that what happens when we catch a flu to which most people recover from? Okay, just 8 out of 10. That is scary I admit. Yet, those who recover have stronger immune system and majority do recover under a better healthcare system is what I heard. They don’t have better supply of toilet papers . We are talking virus, not something that disrupts paper or water supply – right? I just don’t understand. Because, well, you see, I am not very smart.

Let’s wash our hands & stay calm. Oh, and yes, please stay home if you have the symptoms but if you happen to need some toilet paper and tissues, while stuck at home, I’d be happy to deliver them for you! Don’t worry so much! Stay well!

Thank goodness you are so smart while I am so dumb… Living in ignorant bliss yet another day. Surviving. Namaste.