Timeout with Tim – Pandemic feels like “Twilight Zone”


Way back when I was a kid (during the pre-color and cable/satellite days), there was an iconic television series called “The Twilight Zone.”
Series episodes dealt with themes such as fantasy, science fiction, suspense, horror or psychological thriller.
I can’t think of a better way to describe our world in the midst of the coronavirus.
Take for example, fantasy.
Who would have thought a few months ago than a pandemic of this nature would have so greatly impacted our normal way of life? Pure folly, you would have said.
How about science fiction?
Something this bizarre could only have been invented in the mind of legendary sci-fi author Ray Bradbury, right?
Let’s swing over to the biggest factor, which is horror.
Hundreds of thousands of people across the globe have died from the disease.
While nowhere near the realm of death and illness, the genres of suspense and psychological thriller have invaded the world of sports.
Post-season basketball games and the state wrestling tournament were canceled in March.
High school spring sports were postponed in the middle of that month.
Suspense continued to mount every day as players, coaches, parents and fans wondered whether a spring season would be conducted.
Eventually, the Ohio High School Athletic Association canceled the entire season.
That had never happened before, at least in my memory.
We are now rapidly approaching the start of August, which means the beginning of fall sports preseason practices.
The suspense continues to linger.
Will high school student-athletes take to the various venues of their sports this fall?
No one seems to know at this time.
Teams have been working out over the past month and so far, they’ve been given the OK to begin preseason practices on Saturday.
As was reported in Wednesday’s Journal-Tribune, the OHSAA, however, has called off all football preseason scrimmages between different schools.
Another question that continues to boggle the mind is, will fall teams be able to go full-bore and begin seasons on time?
Who knows?
The suspense continues to linger, as it’s a day-to–day situation.
The pandemic has also done a number on folks’ psychological health.
There is nobody who can definitely say what’s going to happen.
Will we have a late start to fall sports?
Will fans be permitted to attend games?
Will there be a limited number of fans allowed to watch local contests?
What type of COVID-19 restrictions will be carried through for any length of season?
Will we even have fall sports?
Those questions are definitely playing with everyone’s mind.
The characters in “The Twilight Zone” series were generally left with their heads spinning over what they had encountered.
I think the same could be said for all of us with this pandemic.
We’re all in “The Twilight Zone” these days.
Maybe that’s why I’m hearing in my head that famous three-note “Zone” theme song, which older readers will remember.
“Do-do-do, do-do-do-do.”

Marysville High School freshman Bryn Hothem works out prior to the 2019 Division I state cross-country meet. The fate of high school sports for the fall of 2020 remains up in the air due to COVID-19. (Journal-Tribune photo by Tim Miller)

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