Covid-19 is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're gonna get. Mild cold? upper-respiratory infection? Death?
Statistically, as a 63-year-old man, Hollywood actor Tom Hanks has a higher chance than many of dying from his coronavirus infection.
Donald Trump well and truly killed off his beloved bull market with his failure to provide coherent, confidence-inspiring leadership.
Friday's bounce on US markets doesn't suggest any sense of calm on Wall St, which had its most volatile week since 1929.
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The path between over-reaction and under-reaction is a highly difficult one for officials to tread as we head into historically uncharted territory — consider the reaction by some people yesterday to New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's border restriction announcement.
It was predictable that Trump, with his sloppy, contradictory language and personal obsessions to the fore, would not handle this challenge well.
But the fact that Hanks offered up the most reassuring take I read on the pandemic last week struck as me as a worry, in and of itself.
There's plenty to worry about, of course, so excuse me while I pick something a bit peripheral to start with.
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Market meltdowns, the geopolitics of oil, economic catastrophe and the possibility of a widespread public health crisis can all get a bit overwhelming – especially when you spend every minute of your working day following it all.
It helps, I think, that Hanks' take was deeply personal.
It was narrow in focus. Hanks has accepted the reality of having the virus and has been forced to relinquish any semblance of control.
If you missed it, here's the bit I liked:
"Well, now. What to do next? The medical officials have protocols that must be followed. We Hanks will be tested observed, and isolated for as long as public health and safety requires. Not much more to it than a one-day-at-a-time approach, no?"
In short - listen to the experts and take things one step at a time.
It was classic Tom Hanks, a man who built his career on being the grounded every-man, that we wish every man could be.
There is a lesson there for those of us struggling with the relentless barrage of negative news.
When the enormity of a situation becomes overwhelming it's time to narrow your focus and deal with the immediate tasks in front of you.
That's something of a mantra in the sporting world right now.
Cricketers talk about playing each ball on its merits, focus on your technique, forget about the context of the game, scoring 50 or a 100.
Those larger goals are self-evident, but can distract from focus on the small things you need to get right if you want to achieve them.
Focus on applying your best technique, in the moment. Trust that handling the small decisions well will carry you towards bigger goals.
Two things are evident about the crisis. It is extremely serious - threatening lives via both health risk and economic risk.
And there is no sure-fire policy for handling this. This is a new virus and a new threat. It requires authorities to make judgment calls.
It puts governments in an unenviable position - trading off economic risk against health risk in an almost impossible balancing act.
There will be a measure of luck involved - the bounce of the ball, the rub of the green.
We could shut up shop now, as some of the most concerned citizens seem to want.
We could completely close our borders, cancel all public events and keep people at home. But the damage to businesses, jobs and people's lives would be devastating.
And there would still be no guarantees.
We may yet have to take some, or all of these measures.
The issue is timing.
Let's start by doing what we can - and doing it well.
So washing hands, adjusting our behaviour around personal space.
We may be not be able to stop the spread of the virus, but if collectively we follow the best medical advice we may slow the rate of the spread, reduce stress on our health system and lower the mortality rate.
But the economy is not some abstract concept.
Lives will be deeply disrupted, jobs will be lost and businesses will fail.
There is a physical and mental health cost to this crisis, too.
Those in power can't afford to be fearful any more than they can be blase.
Critics of the Government's strategic approach seem to be missing the point.
Our leaders are following the best expert advice we have.
If they are to be judged then it should be on the execution of that advice.
Panicked leadership is proven to be counterproductive.
We need clear communication.
That requires consistency and a capacity to adjust policy quickly and calmly as the facts change.
Right now, every day brings some new shock. Every shock takes us to new and uncharted territory.
We are still heading into this crisis and it is very worrying.
There may be darker days ahead, but when we can see a light at the end of the tunnel things will feel less grim.
For now, it's a case of keeping fear and panic at bay. They are the enemies of the clear thinking we will need to get through this crisis.