The clever joke I wish I'd made. Oh wait... -- Griselda Heppel

Back in 2015, somebody made a clever joke that I wished - 

 a) I’d thought of myself (naturally) 
 b) the person had made it five years before, giving us so much longer to enjoy it. 

 It went something like this: 

 Prospective employer: So, Ms ------, where do you see yourself in five years’ time? 

 Interview candidate: I don’t know. I don’t have 2020 vision. 
No 2020 vision here
Photo by Ksenia Chernaya from Pexels

With 2020 behind us, that joke has taken on a kind of tragic grandeur, of Socratic irony even. Nobody had 2020 vision. Except for a few far-sighted scientists and medical experts who knew we were in for a pandemic but couldn’t say when. And if they had pointed to 2020, who’d have believed them? Yes, yes, we’d have said. Don’t worry, we’re used to flu. We’ll be fine. 

A wonderful thing, hindsight. By the time you read this, we’ll all have 2020 vision. Just, er, backwards. 

Spectacular sourdough
Photo by Jytte Elfferich from Pexels
Still, there is hope. Expert virologists all over the world have been working furiously to produce vaccines. Two are already approved and more will come. We just have to be patient. (And for goodness’ sake, take the vaccines when offered. Only a generation with no living or close family memories of what a polio/diphtheria/whooping cough/measles epidemic can do would hesitate.) 

Nor was lockdown entirely unproductive. For those lucky enough not to have gone through traumatic illness and loss, the enforced retreat from ordinary life seems to have led to all kinds of creativity, from churning out
Banana bread. Yum.
Photo by Polina Tankilevitch from 
spectacular sourdough and banana bread (both of which I love but, er, why now?) to taking up a musical instrument or mastering Mandarin. 

Not being able to lay claim to any of these, I am nevertheless delighted in what I did achieve. After years of drafting and redrafting, my third children’s book, The Fall of a Sparrow, is at last in production with Matador and will appear in April 2021. 

 So here’s a big Happy New Year to you all, with bright hopes for BETTER THINGS ahead.


Umberto Tosi said…
You put things in perspective nicely! Thank you, happy new year and good luck with "the Fall of a Sparrow."
Peter Leyland said…
I love the joke Griselda - just the way to start after all the funny cracker jokes we have read here, although I can't remember a single one now! Thank you too for doing the first blog of the year. My lockdown was productive because I was able to join this group and have enjoyed writing my pieces. Happy New Year to you and everyone and good luck with your book. A great cover.
Reb MacRath said…
Fine post, Griselda. As for me, I'm as relieved by the arrival of '21 as by the year I arrived at that age long ago.
Eden Baylee said…
Congratulations, Griselda on your upcoming publication!

Hope for a better 2021 indeed!

Griselda Heppel said…
Thank you all! Have to admit, doing the first post of the new year is always a bit daunting. Glad you enjoyed the joke.

Many thanks too for your kind encouragement. Onward and upward!

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