If You Knew A Pandemic Was Coming; What Would You Have Done?

A few days back we were sitting in a colleagues’ office discussing a leftover project from another colleague whom recently departed on long-term leave. As we sat discussing his fingers began rapidly entering data into the Excel spreadsheet we were working on. As he began to type in January 13, 2020. A short muffled giggle erupted out of no where, as I pointed up to the screen and said, “Hey you may want to change that date, as I’m sure no-one wants to relive last year.” He smiled acknowledging the mistake his right hand grabbed the mouse and jumped back to the date to make the correction.

After correcting the error in the Excel spreadsheet he leans back in his chair and says, “If you knew in January 2020, that there was a pending Pandemic about to besiege the entire world, would you have done anything differently?”

Looking around his office at blank walls… my thoughts went anywhere but to what would qualify as a “good” response to his question. “Honestly, I don’t really think I would have changed much in my behaviour. What about you?” This is when he stopped typing stretched his arms high above his head and leaned back in his chair with his prepared discussion points.

“IF, I had known in January 2020 that the world was about to hit the shit-fan and I knew the markets were going to go on a rampage throughout the year, I would have pulled a line of credit worth about $25,000.00 and played it conservatively into a variety of stocks. After three-months of crazy fluctuations I would have been able to dump enough stocks to pay back the line of credit and work with just the profits. The markets were MORE extreme than anyone has seen in at least a decade, if not more!” His smile grew wider and wider as he leaned forward in his chair cracking his knuckles. “That’s a pretty fascinating point of view.”

“Yeah, what makes this fascinating is I was actually contemplating this at the beginning of 2020 because the rates on a line of credit were extremely favourable. It wasn’t about playing it in the markets, but it would have been a great stimulus for our pockets in preparations for what was about to come.” True, I thought then smiled at him and said, “back to work hey…” followed by, “this is the fourth conversation I’ve had today about the stock markets. Its pretty funny how that happens. You, Jay, Rolando, Sean and Dave. Everyone is talking about stocks, day trading and the fluctuations in the market.

On the drive home, where most of my greatest thinking is done as its peaceful and no one is around to interrupt the many trains of thought I went back over the possibilities of “IF you knew in January 2020 that in 3-short months there was going to be a worldwide pandemic how would you have prepared yourself? Or what would have done differently?”

Thinking back over the conversation, what we actually did back in January 2020 and all the wonderful things happening during that time period, it would have been difficult to change-up as we were in full preparation for many upcoming events. Working out six days a week, preparing for 5-kilometre races in the snow and being extremely active with my training partner.

Twenty-two minutes down the asphalt along one-hundred and eleventh-street is when the answer revealed itself. In another six-minutes the truck would be pulled into the parking lot of our condo and we’d be backing into the parking stall.

IF someone, somehow would have said on January 15, 2020 that in three-months time the entire world was going to shut down for an unknown period of time. I would have jumped on the internet to buy a multi-leg plane ticket. This ticket would fly south of the border down into the central United States. Here I would visit family and extended family. Visit a museum with my seventy-year old mother, drink afternoon tea and eat lobster tails! Then I’d catch a flight out west to the state of Colorado to visit my brothers and their families. I’d stop in on a few friends, eat many meals in many restaurants, driven to the Colorado Rocky Mountains for a snow skiing back country session with old friends, grabbed a round or three of billiards at this little known dive-bar called The Dive Bar, and brought home a 12-pack of mixed-craft beers from the ever growing micro-breweries of Colorado!