Music ‘n Musings

Silver linings can be found in the darkest of situations

Music n Musings

It would be an understatement to say these last few weeks have been difficult. Aside from being shut up in the house and fighting boredom, it’s incredibly hard and disheartening to see all the pain in the world as a result of COVID-19. I’ve found it’s been kind of a struggle to find an optimistic outlook to help me get up and get on with my day.

Whenever I’ve needed a pick-me-up, I’ve started listening to “When the World is Running Down, You’ll Make the Best of What’s Still Around” by The Police. It’s one of my favorite songs, and it serves as a really good reminder to look for a positive light in a bad situation. Whenever I start to feel like I’m “running down,” I turn it on, and my mood improves tenfold.

It’s just one of those songs that makes me want to get up and dance, perhaps because of its driving new-wave sound or the chanting, rhythmic feel of the lead singer Sting’s vocals. I’m a big Sting fan, largely because of his amazing songwriting. He penned a large majority of The Police’s songs throughout the seven years they were together, and I think this song stands as one of his best less-mainstream hits. 

Set in a post-apocalyptic world, Sting sings from the point of view of a man left to survive alone with all of his favorite things around him, though he’s quickly becoming bored. But, throughout the song, he has to constantly remind himself to “make the best of what’s still around.”

I definitely don’t want to trivialize the seriousness of the coronavirus, but I think “When the World…” offers a good perspective for all of us facing this intense situation. It reflects the loneliness and monotony of this period of self-isolation, right down to the need to keep busy doing the same thing over and over. Just like the singer, I’m starting to feel like “I ain’t been out in years.” But the important thing about this song’s message is that the singer persists. Even as he listens to the same songs, watches the same movies and eats the same food, he keeps going.

I know it can be hard to find the silver lining in a situation as dangerous and threatening as the COVID-19 pandemic and even harder to try to overcome feeling lonely or sad about how the 2019-2020 school year ended. But I also know that it is incredibly important that we persist, as a community, as a state, as a nation and as members of the world. Giving up isn’t an option, and as long as we work together and do our part by staying home and practicing preventative health measures, things will eventually get better.

In the midst of it all, find the positive and keep going. Read a book. Draw or paint. Reorganize some furniture. If possible, go for a walk or sit outside. FaceTime, text, call or email someone. If we continue to be proactive about preventing the spread of the coronavirus and work to fight the heaviness of this period by embracing new hobbies and staying in contact with loved ones, the situation will improve. “Make the best of what’s still around,” because it will get better.