Let’s Just Shut Down the Week! Can we do it?


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You think I am asking that question facetiously. I am not.

The Law of Diminishing Marginal Utility goes like this: The first unit of any resource expended yields greater returns than the second unit, and so on. Think of it like beer – you might be craving that first cold one, then have a second that still feels pretty good, a third because why not, and so on…until you hit a point where each beer makes you progressively worse off. Depending on your age, size, and tolerance, keep drinking those beers and you’ll eventually be worse off than where you started.

All of this is to say, there’s a point in any endeavor at which you should just stop. When things are going worse instead of better, make like Liz Lemon and shut it down.

That’s what we need to do with this week. We woke up on Sunday to the news that rising music star Christina Grimmie had been shot dead at her concert. She was 22. Not only that, but 20 people were dead and dozens more injured at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida. By Monday, the death toll was 50. The injured, 53.

On Monday afternoon, it was announced that the Orlando shooting was the deadliest terrorist attack on U.S. soil since 9/11. We learned more about the killer over the next day – that he was interviewed by the FBI three times, that his dad is an Islamist nutcase, that his wife may or may not have been in on the whole thing. On Tuesday night, a little boy waded by the water at Disney during a family vacation. An alligator dragged him into the water. On Wednesday afternoon, they found his body. The wreckage of the downed EgyptAir plane had been found just a few minutes earlier.

It has been one gut-wrenching story after another, and it’s high time we just quit this week entirely. I’m not suggesting that we call tomorrow Sunday – that would mess up the calendar. Everybody could just go home and stay home until Friday at 5pm. Then, go about your weekend, hit the reset button, and we’ll try this again in a couple days.

Maybe the whole country can’t do this – but given that these major tragedies are happening in Florida, the Sunshine State ought to give it a try. Keep the essential stuff open (hospitals, police stations) but close the stores, the restaurants, the car washes, and so on, and then tell everybody else to work from home. School is out for summer break, so that part is already done.

Things will get better eventually…but until then, I don’t blame anyone who wants to hide out for a little while.

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