There are a lot of positives about publishing a monthly newspaper compared to publishing a weekly or a daily. For one thing, we only have to layout, print and distribute the publication once per month, as opposed to doing all of that weekly or daily … but you probably figured that one out already.

There are negatives, too. For starters: A month is a loooooooong time, especially when stuff starts getting weird out there.

I am writing this on Dec. 23. As of now, the state of the pandemic in the Coachella Valley is OK-ish. COVID-19-related hospitalizations, case counts and virus levels in wastewater are all more or less steady. Omicron is beginning to cause havoc in other parts of the U.S., but it’s not doing so much here. Yet.

I am pretty sure that while our January issue is on newsstands, some degree of havoc will come. As for how severe it will be, I don’t know. Will we have a shutdown like we did in March 2020 or December 2021? I doubt it. Will we have some closures and event cancellations due to the virus? We certainly will.

The Independent has published (and will continue to publish) a bunch of fantastic coverage of upcoming events—all of which, to our knowledge, were still a go as of publication. However, things can (and will) change fast with this virus, so make sure you verify that events are still on, and venues are still open, before you go anywhere.

I encourage you to watch, and specifically our Indy Digest newsletters on Monday and Thursday, for updates. We’ll bring you the latest news on what’s going on (or NOT going on) in the Coachella Valley, just as we have throughout the pandemic and beyond.

If you haven’t gotten your vaccine booster shot yet, I strongly encourage you to do so. Please mask up, and be extra kind to retail workers, restaurant employees and everyone else you encounter in public. These are uneasy times, and kindness is needed.

I hope that by the time the deadline arrives for our February issue, the state of the pandemic will be calmer and more settled. Of course, I’ve had similar hopes since we put our April 2020 print edition to press … and more often than not, my hopes have been dashed. SARS-CoV-2 has proven to be a nasty adversary.

As we kick off our 10th year of publication, I ask you to please be safe and careful during these uncomfortable times. Be sure to pick up our January 2022 print edition, hitting newsstands this week—and, as always, thanks for reading.

This Editor’s Note was written for the January 2022 print edition, and is edited slightly here for the web.

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Jimmy Boegle

Jimmy Boegle is the founding editor and publisher of the Coachella Valley Independent. He is also the executive editor and publisher of the Reno News & Review in Reno, Nev. A native of Reno, the Dodgers...