The year 2020 sure has been a wild ride, as our local community seems to be riding bump after bump. First it was the horrific bushfires that ripped through our nation, then the initial outbreak of a global pandemic, followed by Melbourne’s second wave of COVID-19 infections that has pretty much confined us to our homes for most of the year.

At the severe risk of saying we told you so, we delved back into our archives this week to see if there had been any forewarning about one of the most challenging periods in most of our otherwise blessed lives. And we found something! You see, back in September 2018, we reported that a local clairvoyant was claiming that the impending closure of Greensborough’s Blockbuster video store was one of the seven signs of the apocalypse. That same clairvoyant also claimed that quite a few of the seven signs had already occurred by that stage, including “the towering inferno that destroyed Smorgy’s restaurant in 2013 … and the burning of the Eltham barrel”.

Then, in November last year, we reported that a local man was suggesting that the infamous Greensborough McDonald’s blackout of that month he apocalypse, leaving us with not many more signs to spare. Which now begs a couple of poignant questions: did The Watsonia Bugle fall asleep at the wheel? Could our on-the-spot reporting have helped us to predict the mess that 2020 has become? Should we have used our ample world news travel budget and flown to Wuhan late last year to visit the wet market? Failing that, could we have headed into the big smoke and encouraged those randy security guards to keep it in their pants for at least two weeks?

We think not. But kind of, sort of, a little bit, we can’t say you weren’t warned that the end was nigh.