Sunday, March 26, 2023
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We are in the midst of unprecedented times marked by extreme uncertainty. The world looks and feels different, and not always in a good way. Freedoms have been stripped away as we seek solutions to extraordinary and unfamiliar adversaries.

How the pandemic ends, is anyone’s guess for the time being. Hopefully sooner, rather than later, we’ll experience the recovery together.

By nature, I’m an optimistic person. I see failure as an opportunity to learn and improve. Rain can dampen things but without it, there are no rainbows. Obstacles are merely opportunities dressed in work clothes. And when a pandemic happens, it’s time to find the silver lining.

What can we learn from our quarantined world?

It’s difficult to focus on the positive when people are suffering through illnesses; when liberties that we may have taken for granted illogically mutate into unlawfulness. But there are positive signs around us.

Families are together much more. Home-cooked meals are regular. We’re spending less. The air is cleaner and the stars are brighter. Traffic jams don’t exist and the world is quieter. So while we long for “the good ole days”, let’s all enjoy the benefits of the togetherness as long as they last.

But when we return to normalcy, baseline or the new normal, whatever you want to call it, let’s bring along with us the things we learned during our locked-down days.

Recently I was on a Zoom Conference with several friends and one of the things that we kicked around the room was this question: “When the pandemic is over, what will you have learned? What do you hope for?”

The questions begged each of us to take a bad situation and make it good – to take a sad song, and make it better. (Thanks, Paul!)

These are my pandemic takeaways:

• I hope for a kinder and gentler world
• I’ve learned the difference between wants and needs
• I hope, in even the smallest of ways, to pay it forward daily
• To not take things for granted
• Hugs are so underrated
• To try and make someone feel better about themselves, every day
• The best music is the sound of laughter
• The best things in life really are free
• Freedom isn’t free

Most of my friends have similar takeaways from these strange days and collectively, the Zoom session served as a reminder to me that the idea behind represents a refreshing change – a welcome addition to the world of media that too often gets snagged in the negative.

Our daily goal is to make you smile, provoke laughter, perhaps inspire positive thoughts or share stories that capture the spirit of all we learned from the pandemic and more, as we move forward, together, in a changing world.

Welcome aboard.

I hope you enjoy the ride.


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Tony Lombardi
Besides his work here at Thumbs Up 247, Tony is the founder and His work has been featured on various sports websites and he hosts The Russell Street Recap. Among his favorite things in life are his wife, kids, family, friends, The Beatles, Breaking Bad, Gladiator, The Godfather, Guinness, orange crushes, meatballs and Key West, not necessarily in that order. Follow Tony on Twitter @RSRLombardi. Drop him a note at

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