Catch-22

Ever been there?  Caught in a situation where every escape route leads you back to the same problem?  That’s where I am this morning.

                In August of last year – 11 months ago – I purchased three event tickets for my son’s birthday.  These were not cheap tickets and the event was almost six months past his birthday, but the group is so popular I had to buy them that far in advance.  Then the virus lockdown struck.

I received a nice email stating that the event was postponed and I would be notified when it would be rescheduled.  That is still, six months later, the position of the event holder.  However, given the time passed (almost a year) they are also offering me the option of a full refund.  How nice!

                Well, here is where the struggle begins.  The credit card I used to charge the tickets is no longer valid.  I closed that account about three months ago.  It isn’t affiliated with my personal bank so my ties to that institution are no longer in place.  And, of course, the ticket vendor will only refund my purchase price to the original purchase method – to the original CARD used to purchase the tickets.  Here we go. . . .

Fortunately for me, I was SMART when I purchased those tickets, because they were so expensive.  I purchased cancellation insurance!  Woohoo!

                I searched through my email and found the policy, clicking on the ‘file a claim’ link.  Churn, churn, churn…..and then there it was in front of me, taking up the entire screen:  NOTICE:  WE DO NOT HONOR CLAIMS THAT ARE A RESULT OF THE COVID-19 VIRUS.

                So here I am, once again low man on the totem pole, supporting not only the popular group but also the event organizer, ticket vendor, and the ticket cancellation insurance company.

I have seen this so many times in my life but never so much as during this virus.  Everyone tells me ‘big government’ is footing the bill.  Not so.  You and I are footing the bill.  Beginning with situations such as I just described and ending with the tax bill that is waiting for us around the corner.  Big business will escape as they simply won’t pay their vendors and subcontractors (who will go under).  The little business guy in your neighborhood? – he is hurting and probably won’t survive.  And people like me?  We do without.  Not that I will starve (I have family and church family that will see to that) – but the funds that have been stolen – that’s right, STOLEN – from my hands and yours will never be returned to us.  The money I saved to give my son a really good present on a very special birthday is forever gone.  Consequently, we will adjust our spending habits, tighten our belts, reduce our expenditures wherever we can, and continue to be the supporting structure for the rest of the country. 

So what is the point of this rant?  It is to say “be kind”.  Be kind to one another and be generous of spirit, and if you are able, of wallet, in these unprecedented times.  Recognize that everyone you meet is in some sort of struggle.  We’ve lost friends, loved ones, jobs, homes, families and hope. 

                It is time to love one another with all that we have within us because there is no guarantee that the face you are staring at today will be here tomorrow.  LOVE like there is no tomorrow.  FORGIVE like it is your last day on earth.  And LET GO of all of the things you can’t control.  It isn’t worth holding on to.

John 13:34-35 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.  By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

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