S2 E44 — Celebrating Emma the Baroness Tribal Quarantine Style

I couldn’t bring myself to deleting her phone number from my contacts app. Nor could I turn off those pesky reminders to call her every Sunday.  I just couldn’t … Happy Mother’s Day, Mom!

The Tau of Steves: What You Don’t Know Could Fill a Book

“5”  Steve Greene, 34; Steve Guttenberg, 61; Stephen King, 72:When you’re around easygoing people, their attitude rubs off on you.  This is true even virtually.  If your social media feeds are not filled with like minds, now is the time to change that.  Virgo

Hi and welcome to Sunday’s Episode 44 in Season 2 of  “My Pandemic Year Experiment” on this tenth day of May in the spring of 2020.  

Season 1 and 2 are a two-year examination of how bits of wisdom changed during the “normal” pre-pandemic and then in this unfolding pandemic year.

Previously in Season Two, the Pandemic Year

S2 E43See What You’ve Been Missing …; S2 E42It Was Short and Sweet, but Heart-Felt; S2 E41A Pandemic End to Real Estate and Consulting? 

Related from Season One, the Normal Year

S1 E44Google Me Some Chopped Liver; S1 E43Desperation on Such a Summer’s Day; S1 E42Love on the Run; S1 E41The Dream Was Over, Long Live the Dream


The current, local members of the tribe gathered in our back patio to celebrate Emma the Baroness’ Mother Day’s — self-quarantine style: 

SLO Girl and Shaggy recounted how asparagus grows and how you keep cutting it back once the root ball develops and how that’s what you want to buy for planting.  

They recalled part of their trip to Vista during the COVID-19 scare when Shaggy phoned Eric the Red and Lady M as part of his contact tracing false alarm. 

I brought up working remotely and what will happen next.  Jazzy and Delta Girl might consider moving to Idaho for closeness to snowboarding.  

“Won’t you miss surfing?” Shaggy asked.  

Jazzy smirked and said he fly back inferring in August sometime Delta Girl would return to Delta, but now she’s making more money on furlough. 

I spun stories about the challenge one of my former clients and recruited mentor had us address when Prudential Real Estate and Relocation forced sales operations to work remotely having clawed their way to “Mahogany Row” with executive assistants shielding them from unwanted interruptions and cover for their indiscretions. They weren’t pleased.

The Sam Harris podcast came up.  “Automattic is the parent of WordPress” Shaggy said. He read to us from his iPhone to prove it.

“Automattic Inc. is an American global distributed company which was founded in August 2005 and is most notable for WordPress.com, as well as its contributions to WordPress. The company’s name is a play on founder Matt Mullenweg’s first name.”

Next topic settled by Siri felt sad to me.  

SLO Girl worked at the Ocean Institute educating kids about marine life, until they closed down to a skeleton crew, another victim of the pandemic.  

In the Dana Point Harbor, moored to the institute’s wooden dock, the Pilgrim sank — a replica of Richard Henry Dana’s ship upon which he drew experiences included in his “Two Years Before the Mast.”  

He described Shaggy and SLO Girl’s home,  San Juan Capistrano, as “the only romantic spot on the coast”.

But the loss of the tall-ship made me wonder out loud.  One that even SLO Girl had never heard.  

“When Emma the Baroness and I were hopelessly in love co-workers, we took the clandestine way to our home in Corona del Mar, right dear?”

And on our way through Costa Mesa neighborhood streets we noticed this backyard vessel being built and wondered what was this guy doing and what was he going to do with it when he finished it.

“Oh, yeah I remember that.”

“I figured he’d never finish, because it took so long.”

“Yeah, me too.”

Over the years we’d pause as we drove by to check in on his progress.  It seemed he was always replacing older sections of his hull with wood that might have been rotting in the open air of his tiny back yard.

“He even built a door into the hull so he could enter when he worked on the interior,” Emma the Baroness recalled.

“And this kept on until one day it vanished.  Was he evicted I wondered? And, if so how in the hell did the landlord get rid of the tall ship?”

“What happened to it?” Shaggy asked. 

It was one of those dead at night stories.  To truck it to the ocean he was supposed to get permits.  He needed both Costa Mesa and Newport Beach permissions to prop up power lines for clearance as he moved it slowly down Harbor Blvd into Newport Blvd and then to where he could launch it before anyone was any wiser.

“I guess he was willing to pay any fine they wanted to stick him with after all those years.”

But, he kept his fingers crossed hoping once it floated, the wooden planks would expand keeping it mostly above the harbor’s surface.

“Really?  Wow, I didn’t know that.” SLO Girl said, But, she wasn’t convinced it was the Pilgrim.

Shaggy checked Siri and confirmed her suspicion. “ The Pilgrim was built in Europe with authentic wood for the time and sailed to San Francisco first.”

Emma the Baroness and I exchanged are-we-crazy looks.  

Shaggy said, “Wait, there’s more.  Another tall ship named The Spirit moored near by was build in Costa Mesa.”

We thought how ironic that the backyard built tall ship outlasted the exact replica, when I was so certain the Spirit wouldn’t even survive sailing it south from Newport Harbor to Dana Harbor.

The back patio bonding, though socially distant, felt normal, but the pandemic was still in the back of our minds.

Questions were also fresh in my mind  — like these from a survey or newspaper article I read earlier in the morning, but just can’t source right now. 

      • How do you think our economy and our daily lives, should look as the stay-at-home orders are lifted and we try to return to work? 
      • We want to hear about your experiences, your hopes for the future and what you want to see changed.  
      • What is the most important thing you want to see changed about life in California after the pandemic?  
      • What is the most important issue you feel the pandemic highlighted that should be addressed immediately? 
      • What would a more fair economy look like to you?  
      • If you lost your job, lost hours, took a pay cut or have trouble paying your rent of your mortgage, please tell us about what.  
      • What would a more robust healthcare system look like to you?  
      • If you made use of the healthcare system for testing or treatment during the pandemic, please tell us about that.  What worries you most as you think about returning to work or school?


“5”  Steve Zahn, 51: “There are those who can be trusted to spread the word quickly.  Instead of thinking of them as gossips, consider them your broadcasters and give them the information you want everyone to know.” Scorpio

You know when I first discovered this scheme?  Right after I transferred journal notes when I was between jobs into Hypercard Stacks — the Swiss Army knife of searchable, linkable, electronic “3X5 cards”.  

I created contact cards for everyone in my network as I navigated from one to three of my requested referrals and then to three more from each of the three I interviewed.  

Soon enough you sensed when synchronicity was at play and you could easily seed the network-as-an-audience to cultivate opportunities and offers that a decision-maker would want me to fill.

Random ones that make me want change my sign.

“3”  Steve McQueen (1930 – 1980): If you can make yourself do a thing, you can inspire others to do the same thing.  Work on you first.” Aries

Not you usual parent admonition of do as I say, not as I do.  Real leaders model the behavior and the talent culture they want to nurture.  Even in a hybrid restructuring organically taking place now.

“4’’  Steve Smith, 30; Stevie Nicks, 72: You live for things other than money and fun, which is why you still have a firm footing in life when those things aren’t in flowing supply.” Gemini

I always wanted to live by my wits.  It didn’t always work out well with variable income, so I get what’s it’s like when money isn’t flowing — it’s not fun.  

“5”  Steve Carrell, 57; Steve Martin, 74; Steve Wozniak, 69: Remind yourself about what’s within your influence these days.  It’s a lot, but it’s maybe not what you’re focusing on.” Leo

Like everyone else I’d rather take the low road, point the finger and complain.  Okay, now that’s off my chest, I should focus on the piddly amount of things still within my control.

“5”  Steve Greene, 34; Steve Guttenberg, 61; Stephen King, 72:When you’re around easygoing people, their attitude rubs off on you.  This is true even virtually.  If your social media feeds are not filled with like minds, now is the time to change that.  Virgo


What’s Going On

Literally Bottled and Set Adrift from KnowWhere Atoll 

    • @knowlabs followers of one or more of my 35 digital magazines grew from 2,170 to 2300.




    • Just picked up “Bob Dylan In America” by Sean Wilentz.  Maybe because of the subliminal messaging like the times are a changing and the answer is blowing in the wind, but I kinda like Sean’s fanboy becomes music critic becomes historian surrounding Dylan’s life and times. 
    • Saw the movie, didn’t realize that one of my favorite authors, Michael Connelly — his detective Hieronymus (Harry) Bosch book series and Amazon Prime series — also wrote, “The Lincoln Lawyer” which I just finished. Gotta tell you I can’t not see his lead character (Mickey Haller, Bosch’s half brother) as anyone else but Matthew McConaughey. 

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Inspired by: Holiday Mathis – Creators Syndicate


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