I received the first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine Monday — and I’m happy to report that I’m neither dead nor a zombie controlled by Bill Gates and Co. Eligibility was recently opened in Alabama to everyone who’s 16 or older, so I signed up for the Pfizer vaccine at a site run by a local university. I know this is a political issue for a lot of people, but that honestly baffles me. We can disagree about whether such a vaccine should be mandatory — which I’m against — but as a voluntary choice, it seems like an easy choice now that it’s been safely given to millions of people. Is it a perfect preventative? Of course not. But the decision seemed obvious to me when looking at the statistics and evidence. I haven’t had any of the side effects that some people have experienced, but that’s supposed to be more of an issue after the second dose, which I’ll get on May 3. In the meantime, I’ll let you know if I grow a third arm — or if the secret microchip kicks in and someone starts trying to control me remotely. All kidding aside, getting the vaccine seems like a rational voluntary choice to me.
I get a lot of email from readers. Some of it is fascinating and useful. Some of it is full of confessions that people want to share with a stranger. Some people write to ask advice. What’s really surprising, though, is the small percentage that seems to come from mentally unbalanced people. When I started using the metaphor about being an alien — the tagline at the top of each page here — it never occurred to me that I’d start hearing from people who took it seriously. But every few months, I get a strange email — such as the one above from a few months back — from someone who seems to think I’m claiming to be an actual alien. The first time it happened, I laughed. By the time it became a semi-regular thing, I was simply appalled. For the record, I can provide no proof that I’m an alien, because … well … it’s just a metaphor. I do feel like an alien among human beings, but as far as I know, I’m just as earthbound as you are. It’s just a metaphor. Honest. Or at least, that’s what my lizard-beast overlords told me to say.
After Tampa Bay, Fla., musician Colt Clark had all of his gigs canceled last year for months on end, the entire family felt trapped at home as most of the world was on quarantine lockdown. His wife, Aubree, had an idea that would let Colt make music and involve the whole family in making music videos to share with their friends and family on Facebook. Aubree is a photographer and homeschooling mom to a daughter and two sons, who range in age from 6 to 11. After their friends started asking to share the videos, they made the performances public — and a few of them are now on YouTube, where they go by the name of Colt Clark and the Quarantine Kids. The younger son, Becket, is on drums. The older boy, Cash, plays keyboards, strings and guitars. Dad supplies lead vocals and plays guitar, while 6-year-old Bellamy mostly dances but sometimes does backup vocals. There’s even a dog who makes an occasional appearance. The Clark family has just raised the bar for what I need to create with my future children. And best of all, they seem to be having a great time together. I hope they make you as happy as they make me.