Lent 2020 — Day 17

Low Hum of Menace

Things do not seem fine at all, but it’s hard to say why.


Ira Glass

“I got my teeth cleaned this week, and I was asking the hygienist how it was going with the global pandemic and all. And she was like, just yesterday somebody stole two face masks from the counter right there. And so I was like, do you know who? And she was like, yeah, she knew exactly who, because she caught her red handed, and the woman wasn’t sorry at all– wouldn’t give the masks back. I mean, there’s a national shortage, but still. . . .

“And I will end this show about the low hum of menace with this very theme appropriate program note. Just a few hours ago, as I was doing some last editing on the show, I learned that a few days ago I shook hands with somebody who now has symptoms of coronavirus, whose wife is a confirmed case. So the plan is I am going into quarantine myself when I leave the studio today, and we are shutting down our office. Most everybody in our office was already working from home.

“I just want to say I feel fine. Hopefully I’ll stay that way between now and next time I talk to you. Avoid contact with others as much as you can. Stay well, and wash your hands, OK? And by the way, if you’re tired of reciting the happy birthday song twice as you wash, turns out one chorus of the song “Stayin’ Alive” is the perfect length, and whether you’re a brother, or whether you’re a mother, just stay alive. Stay alive.”

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