By Frankie Mesec ‘20

The sounds of bagpipes waking me up in the morning, while a sea of green lines the roads. The perfect atmosphere for the Southside Irish parade, the best day to be Irish on the Southside.

This is what I would have heard and seen if the parade wasn’t cancelled…


Just another out of many things cancelled by the coronavirus.

Schools, restaurants, flights, cruises, conventions, marathons, games, plays, and now the biggest parades in Chicago all cancelled by this virus. Just yesterday I found out they canceled E3, the biggest gaming convention in the world, because of the virus. What’s next?

I was looking forward to marching in the Southside Irish parade with my dad over the weekend, and now I can’t. Same with the 5k I was going to do at the end of the month: cancelled.

My dad, who is in the Stock Yard Kilty Band, said, “It is an unfortunate situation. The band works hard to prepare for the performance and enjoys playing for all the parade spectators. I am disappointed but understand the importance of the cancellation. There will be another one next year.”

Businesses are closing due to a lack of customers; the stock market is crashing. We are at the point where you can buy a plane ticket for just $37 (price to go to Miami). In some parts, it only costs $99 to go to Hawaii, while it would normally cost $410.

At school, many people have been talking about the NBA shutting down for the season due to the virus.

Packy Voves, a senior at Brother Rice, said, “I mean, I do feel upset, of course, just like any NBA fan, but I also understand the dark time our country is in. The health of people should ultimately be first over anything else.”

So many schools have recently closed due to the coronavirus. They aim to try and stop the spread of the virus but are affecting the year for many students and teachers.

Bro Hayes said, “I am concerned for my students and hope that the measures that have been put in place will bring a quick end to this present crisis so that life can return to normal, especially for high school students with spring athletics and activities such as prom and graduation.”

This virus is causing the whole world to shut down. Most shutdowns are for good reason, like flights to China or Europe. They want to stop the spread from the countries that have the virus –  makes sense.

Some of the shut downs are controversial, like the restaurants, since some people couldn’t get food from stores in time. If you didn’t stockpile, you’re in a bad position.

The only food options that are still open are drive-thrus, delivery, or places where you can call and easily pick up. To sum it up, only fast food.

Esperanza Moran, a close friend, said, “It doesn’t really affect me as I don’t go out much. But say I did, I wouldn’t have a place to eat. That would make me upset.”

All these preventions have the goal of trying to get people to become socially distant. They want people isolated so the virus can’t spread easily. I will admit, though, isolation is starting to get to me.

Personally, I think this paranoia is insane. Sure, the virus is contagious and has a chance to kill you, but it doesn’t mean we should fight for food and empty out shelves at stores. Some people are overreacting a bit.

I know people who have barricaded themselves in their homes and turned it into a doomsday bunker. Social distancing and all the shutdowns are to stop the spread, but it comes with paranoia. This is all serious, and the decisions the government made are smart, but stocking up like how most people did isn’t helping.

My opinion to stay healthy is to go outside and get some sun. It is healthy to get some vitamin D and fresh air. Also, go out for a walk. It is healthy to keep moving instead of being a couch potato.  For example, during what was supposed to be the Southside Irish parade, I went to get some waffles at a local Irish fest.

Of course, always wash your hands and not touch your face. That will reduce how many germs will get into you.

Stay safe and stay hopeful.