The NEW Normal

Hard to believe we’ve been printing in Salt Lake City for 16 years. It’s even harder to believe after the year we had in 2020. Who are we to complain though? Our doors are still open when so many other print shops and businesses aren’t. You can thank Ron Crandall for that. He’s our owner and founder. Ron is a smart guy. He always lives lean, when business is booming or when business is COVID he lives the same. Lean.

So here we are, already into our 3rd month of 2021. Optimism is high in the city, state, and country. When everyday of 2020 seemed to bring either bad or worse news, 2021 feels different. It feels like everyday the news gets better. It’s a very odd feeling. It was this time last year that the odd feeling was a movie-like apocalypse. A real feeling that this was the end of times. So to be living the opposite of that now is something that will take some getting used to. Remember what it was like getting used to masks, no hugs, no hand shakes? I’ve even gotten used to no smiles; no smile on my face and no smiles on anyone else. Unless it was a printed smile on a face mask. Which we do by the way 🙂

So where does that leave us? What role does NorthAmerican Printing play in this 3rd act of COVID-19? The seemingly endless tragedy that that saw hero after hero after hero die with no end in sight. Spring is coming. Literally and symbolically. In more ways than one really. As nature emerges from the snow and the cold and as the country and people and businesses do the same thing. What now?

I’m not really sure to be honest. I mean I have my ideas, but who knows really? We all have our hunches and our hopes, but nobody knows. But then again, a year ago we were even more clueless. Remember how scary it was? Talk about not knowing what to do or how to act. A year later and too many of us are still trying to figure this out. Maybe all of us in a way. I know my mother-in-law is. She lost her husband to COVID in early December of last year. My wife and her family are still navigating that and will be for a long time. Ever been tasked with writing a loved one’s obituary? That’s a sadness I experienced for the first time that I wouldn’t wish on anyone. Now imagine the other 500,000 newly christened obituary writers. That’s a lot of sadness.

I don’t know what the future holds. If I did I would’ve invested in GME and retired with “diamond hands”. Life isn’t about knowing or predicting the future. Imagine how boring that would be if you knew what was going to happen tomorrow? As much as we might wish we knew what the future held, I think it would stink. The excitement of life is not knowing what’s going to happen tomorrow. The excitement is in the risk of tomorrow. So even though tomorrow is never guaranteed and even though I can’t see the future, I do have a feeling.

I have a feeling that I’m going to enjoy tomorrow.

I’m going to enjoy tomorrow, and the next day, and the next day, and the day after.

I’m going to enjoy taking off the mask for the last time.

WE, those of us here at NorthAmerican Printing, are going to enjoy having people walk through our doors again, and shake hands, and see smiles, and give hugs.

This is the feeling I have. A real, honest, true sense of hope. A hope that ran out for cigarettes a year ago and never came back.

So here’s to finding a new normal for 2021 and enjoying every freaking minute of it. Here’s to all of my fellow obituary writers who still think of their loved ones everyday. Your father, mother, brother, sister, aunt, uncle, friend, co-worker, each and every one of them want you to be happy. So let’s make happiness the new normal. Let’s find joy and healing in the journey of finding the new normal together. So when you’re sad or made or whatever, find someone to hug because we all need one and we all deserve one.

I know we’re not through it yet. We still have a long way to go. But at least we can finally see the light in what seemed like an endless void. There is light. Finally, there is light.

We look forward to seeing you and hugging you in 2021.

From all of us at NorthAmerican Printing, we love you and miss you.

Sincerely,

-Chris Grimm

VP Sales/NorthAmerican Printing