Into the either.

A painting.

Like a painting. That’s what I tried to do. I like abstract art. That’s a good thing. Because that’s what I made.

The original image is a Swamp Lillie. I know. That’s not what it looks like. It wasn’t enough that I had to mess with it using Snapseed. Oh no. When I imported it into OnOne I had another go at it. See that stuff that looks like little veins? That’s from a filter called emulsion, which I turned way down.

At first I wasn’t sure. I was going to let you tell me what you thought. You still can. After looking at it for a while I sent it to my printer who is going to make a 6×4 print. That’s 6 feet by four feet. We gotta wall for it.

How about you? If you like it, can I make a huge print for you? Or, a little print? Prices are reasonable. Every picture that you’ve ever seen on Storyteller is on offer. I’ll even sign it. And, date it. Help a brother out. I need to make myself whole, somehow. That, or we are all going to find other ways to pay the bills.

That’s the thing.

I touched on it yesterday. Start up the country whenever you want. Now or later. Not everything is going to come back. We, in this house, will come back eventually. But, a lot of small businesses won’t. When I think about New Orleans, the ripple effects are stunning.

Our one industry is tourism. By cancelling Jazzfest, Essence Fest, and French Quarter Fest, not only did the musicians and support crews just about lose a fortune. So did all of the allied businesses.

Hotels, restaurants, tour guides, clothing stores and on and on and on count on these big events to make bank. Their earnings keep them going through the almost dead months of summer when rack rates and menu prices drop just to keep employees working. Now they have no cushion.

There already have been a few businesses that closed their doors forever. They can’t even pay their rent. When September rolls around we’ll see two things. A virus surge. And, the death of a lot of small businesses.

In order to save them, we are told to shop locally. I’m good with that, but they can’t get product. Given that food prices have risen by 2.6% in regional and national grocery chains what will a local grocery store’s prices be?

If Mardi Gras is cancelled because of a cold weather viral surge I don’t know what’s going to happen. That’s a time when a lot of global money pours into the city. Last years carnival has already been blamed for making us a hotspot. Nobody will want to come out for Carnival 2021. That’ll damn near kill this city. We might as well change locations to someplace like Fargo, South Dakota. Or, is that North Dakota?

I’m mostly just thinking out loud. What I’ve written might mean nothing, but it should tell you that I’m worried. Very worried. Remember what happened after the Black Death? The Dark Ages. Eventually one of the most creative periods in history came along, but the world lost a lot of knowledge.

The trick, I think, is not to lose anything but the things that don’t matter. The things that never worked and all the nonsense in between. We can build things better than ever. We can grow. We can thrive. Those are my hopes. Those are the things for which I can work. For which we can work. First, we have to get through as unscathed as possible.

Stay safe. Enjoy every sandwich.