Back to the Future

Greg Gnall
3 min readMay 15, 2020

As the wise man Yogi Berra once said: ‘It’s tough to make predictions, especially about the future.’” What’s even harder, however, is reconstructing the past as though certain events never happened.

So, as I hunker down in Maine, waiting out my self -quarantine so I can hit the golf course, and with my local Cabela’s fresh out of long guns that would allow me to protest state restrictions that deprive me of my God-given rights to eat a cheeseburger without a mask or cover my body with vulgar tatoos, I decided to try to envision a world in which the coronavirus stayed confined to Wuhan and we were all able to proceed merrily in our uncomplicated pre-Covid lives. These are just a few of the news stories we might have seen.

April 8, 2020:

After the concession of his remaining rival Bernie Sanders in the Democratic nominating contest, the presumptive nominee, former Vice President Joe Biden, announced that he had chosen NBA superstar non pareil LeBron James as his running mate. Explaining his reneging on a promise to choose a woman for that spot, Biden said: “LeBron was just too good to pass up, and, since we all know that the Veep doesn’t actually do anything, he will be able to continue his brilliant career with the Lakers.” After his 42 points led his team to a 102–53 first round demolishing of the Phoenix Suns, James returned to the court to lead a jubilant Staples Center crowd in a chant of “Joe’s No Schmo.”

April 10, 2020

The 25th iteration of the James Bond franchise, No Time to Die, opened to a record-breaking box office. At the press event introducing the film, retiring Bond portrayer Daniel Craig announced that he would be succeeded in the legendary role by Dr. Anthony Fauci. Fauci would play Bond as an aging epidemiologist battling to save the world from a deadly pandemic while facing off against a fictional narcissistic U.S. president played by (who else?) Alec Baldwin, who, unlike most thriller movie villains, does not wear a mask.

April 22, 2020

Following the astounding news that QB Tom Brady would leave the New England Patriots to join the perennially mediocre Tampa Bay Buccaneers, former WWE star Rob Gronkowski revealed that he would rejoin his former teammate on the Bucs. Drawing a contrast with his stylish supermodel wife Gisele Bundchen, Brady said: “I want to prove that I can lead a team with the ugliest uniforms in the league to a Super Bowl.” Oh wait….

April 30. 2020

Harry Windsor and Meghan Markle (ex-His and Her Royal Highness) disclosed from their new home base in Los Angeles that they would join the cast of Living with the Kardashians for the coming season. In the formal announcement, the once cute couple said, “since QE2 cut us off, we are practically broke and homeless. No one realizes how much it costs to be celebrities without an endowment. Even a two-bedroom condo not on the beach in LA goes for 10 grand a month.”

May 10, 2020

Behind two massive home runs by Aaron Judge and seven shutout innings by Gerrit Cole, the New York Yankees completed a sweep of the so-far surprising Baltimore Orioles to take an 8 1/2 game lead over the O’s in the AL East. Even New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, a lifelong Mets fan, crowed, “serves de Blasio right for being a Sox fan.”

May 11, 2020

At a raucous rally in Fayetteville, NC, over chants of “lock them up,” President Trump accused former President Barrack Obama and expected rival Joe Biden of unspecified “crimes” in attempting to undermine his 2016 election campaign. Without offering any evidence, Trump claimed that information about “Obamagate” would be revealed in the coming weeks. (Alas, except for the rally part, not a fantasy).

On a more serious note, here’s to all the health care workers who are putting their lives on the line every day to keep us safe and to all who are suffering financial hardship because of this unprecedented situation, I hope your fortunes improve and that our legislators do the right thing in approving additional aid and finally recognize that all Americans deserve adequate healthcare and the right to a decent wage.

Stay safe!