When I sit down to write something serious, I tend to approach it as though it were to be written in stone, upon the largest and most important stone, where then this stone is to be lifted onto the visible side of the moon, where a very bright light will shine upon it for all time –and it had better perfect, because the truth of the moon rock is eternal, good, and useful, else it is unhelpful, unsightly, wholly contemptable; and why would I even set out to fail myself and others so?
Of course… a reasonable person would know that this isn’t achievable. Yes, I can hope and work toward having my writing displayed on the moon for people to read at night as they look to the stars in contemplation of their own existence… but, I should also be planning for a future where I am not a prolific oracle who would be thought wise while defacing the moon for questionable ends.
As before said, as I know, and as I think we would all like to see in practice, I need to just allow myself to write. Too much needless, self-imposed pressure and constraints.
Anyway, to follow my prior post, re: COVID-19 experiences in Toronto, Ontario, what’s to say? Actually, there’s probably quite a bit to say. I don’t believe I’ll be doing that, saying it all. I’ll share some thoughts in passing, and maybe a trend will come of this.
Apparently a function of international geopolitics, where on one side there are people believing one thing, apparently with good reason (Trump cannot be trusted, he is a fool, he is dangerous), and on the other side, there are those who ardently hold beliefs to the contrary, and seemingly without good reason (we must trust Trump –it is his critics who cannot be trusted); this same behaviour seems to be manifesting on the local level with respect to COVID-19 and associated measures, re: “Wear a mask, social distance, defer to public health guidelines on the matter of the evolving pandemic.” vs. “Masks don’t work, this is an attack on my freedoms, and the health experts are lying.”.
So, how is Toronto with COVID? The people so lucky as to be well informed on the subject, and who can afford to protect themselves and others seem to be trying to do just that. Those who think the pandemic and the associated measures are a conspiracy, or a hoax, well, they will continue to behave in ways contrary to the public good (and their own good, paradoxically), and this will always be an issue with respect to how this or any place recovers from the pandemic, and how humanity will face the next challenge to the common that also requires everyone coming together. Climate change, pollution, degradation of the biome, and the prospect of nuclear war, to name a few.
I had been going for runs, first with a mask, and then without a mask, but the latter was always-always done in a fashion where I could keep more than enough outside physical distance between myself and others. I still keep my mask in my pocket, during these runs, just in case I have to go anywhere, or to move through an area where physical distancing isn’t possible, or isn’t enough.
At the grocery store, they have someone at the door spraying down carts, and patrons are encouraged to take a cart, using these to enforce a sort of unthinking cart-length physical distancing.
Although it’s not a popular option, for various reasons, I find that using the self-checkout lane at the grocery store gets me in and out with the least amount of queuing, interaction with others. In all the time of the pandemic, I’ve actually not once had to wait in line. Not once. In, grab my stuffs (maybe/probably some cookies), to the checkout without delay, scan, swipe, and I’m on my way out the door, rubbing my hands in the hand sanitizer accessible on exit. At least for me, the system works.
As per the efficacy of masks, and of social distancing, and of not being in a workplace environment during these times, I have not been sick since late January, possibly early February of this year. In the years prior, honestly, 2018-2019, maybe I wasn’t washing my hands often enough, and/or I operated with complete and utter ignorance with respect to protecting myself from colds and flus out there in the world; during those two years, I had a cold… sorta all the time. And now, in COVID, nothing, not a single sore throat, not a single cough, not anything. It’s quite interesting a thing to behold.
I have not been to a friends’ houses, nor to a party, nor to a rave, nor to a restaurant, nor have I been on any dates, nothing. I’ve been either by myself, or within the bubble of my family. My goodness, how I would like to have a giant house party with all my friends once this collective headache is beyond us. Going to be so good. Ugh.
So far as I can tell, how we deal with COVID-19 is representative about how we deal with climate change, the propagation of bad information, and really any other problems facing civilization today. In each of the major problem of the day, we seem to have an entire political force that is based around acting to delegitimize and oppose efforts to effectively work together to fix the problems facing the common.
Unhelpful, backwards, dangerous leaders and political groups like Trump and the modern GOP find their power in subverting the actual good of the people, and instead preying upon the fears of the people, their distrust, their more base emotions and emotional baggage, and harnessing that for what is perceived as political gain.
It’s terrible, and it’s ever a wonder how and precisely why so many people would bring themselves to turn to a false idol like Trump, and to exchange so much for what is essentially cult worship of an obviously untrustworthy, disreputable narcissist.
To be sure, I think this is precisely what is occurring when we see anti-maskers, anti-vaccine folks (even though Trump, himself, is presently pro-vaccine, it would seem), and people who have the gall to share obviously false conspiracy theory “documentaries” on their social media, lifting on high a moron conman like Trump, amplifying the voices of individuals who agree with Trump his ilk, and then presenting themselves and their obvious misunderstanding of everything as a wisdom superior to reputable institutions of health and science. “Take the masks off. Liberate yourselves!”, the unfortunate minds loudly, and with their own names, with no shame, do proclaim.
It breaks my heart.
On November 3rd, whether or not Trump and the GOP are voted out of office, there will still be a great, great many people who are woefully misinformed, lied to, twisted by false and destructive narratives, and it sucks, and I’m sad for them, I’m sad for us all.
Despite so many who have been lost to a new world of rampant, effective disinformation, the rest of us are doing well enough to stay safe from COVID-19. I believe we will be able to navigate this, but we will have to do so with the other side dragging their feet, and this will invariably make it more costly, more difficult.
My first mask was picked off of a clothesline in west Toronto, as someone had prepared a number of colourful masks for pedestrians and neighbours to take as they need. This is the sort of beauty that we need to get through such problems, and in such beauty is the understanding that we are stronger, more able together –happier, better together.
That’s all for now.