This is dedicated to the driver of the fat Audi who pulled out in front of me this morning and then spent the rest of the journey driving like they were having a stroke. The fact they had chosen to decorate their rear bumper with an image of a baby in a hoodie, wearing sunglasses and the declaration ‘little dude on board’ only added to a very localised phenomena by which the temperature of my blood reached a similar level to that of the core of the sun. This is also dedicated to Priti Patel, who sounds like a bit of a cow, and to Joe Lycett who has changed his name to Hugo Boss in some kind of protest or other, but would actually serve humankind better by changing his name to ‘Unfunny Popinjay’ so that people would have a very clear idea of what they were getting.
Just as Brexit was starting to hit the dimmer switch so we got coronavirus to fill a void in our lives that can only be filled with misery, fear and misinformation. I may have been a bit out when I said it wouldn’t stick but at the same time it’s not exactly zombieland out there either. Or is it? As far as my life goes this virus has had next to no impact on me whatsoever; the only sick I am is sick of hearing about it. If anything coronavirus has simply served to swivel a light on to what a thoroughly stupid little species we really are. If onstupidity.com ever has a time to shine then it’s at moments like these.
Hark the advice from the World Health Organisation. Call me well brought up but doesn’t everyone throw their tissues in the bin once they’ve blown their nose? Where else would you put them other than that or down the toilet? Frankly anyone who just throws a snotted tissue on the floor or wipes it along the hand rail of an escalator or through the hair of a friendly Labrador deserves to be given coronavirus deliberately, let alone catch it by accident.
On the other hand (no pun intended) we have been asked to wash our hands for 20 seconds or sing Happy Birthday twice. I’m no scientist but I can’t really see how singing Happy Birthday twice is going to eliminate a super virus. Besides, it’s a dreadful tune. Of course I know exactly what they mean, but they’re really up against it because we live in a world with such a short attention span that 20 seconds seems an almost unbearable length of time: it gets in the way of teenagers trolling each other or getting gender realignment or having suicidal feelings. What is even more fundamentally worrying is that the W.H.O have assumed that some people need a handy hint in case they can’t get 20 seconds right. Fuck me, surely most people that aren’t on life support must be able to guess 20 seconds. And if not does it really matter? What if I guess wrong and come in at 18 ½ seconds? Do I get leprosy? What if you can’t roughly judge time or sing Happy Birthday?
So Boris has summoned up his poisonous, hooded snake and come up with all kinds of contingency plans for the nation. These could go as easy as not coughing in each other’s faces to as far as implementing martial law and limiting the number of tins of sweetcorn people can buy. Frankly you can have my sweetcorn Boris, because I hate it and if I had to choose between death and eating the stuff to avoid death I would go with the former. There is a reason it is virtually indigestible. The media fear factor is all over this kind of shit. We are starting to hear stories of people stockpiling tins of all kinds, which will probably get left uneaten because it won’t be as bad as they say. Or will it? And if it is that bad then the bottom line is this: if there’s one thing worse than dying in an apocalyptic event it’s surviving an apocalyptic event and having to start again from scratch; I’ll happily leave that onerous task to the fittest.
In terms of panic I am more interested in toilet paper and washing detergent, because I’d rather starve than smell bad or have to wipe my arse with my hand. I’m not desperately keen on someone else wiping my arse with their hand either. I’m not bothering with a face mask or antibacterial gel because they won’t make a difference and I don’t intend to wash my hands any more than I already do (and how often that is just happens to be my business alone). Needless to say I will continue to stockpile food for Hairy Mary because come the apocalypse it will still be important to have lots of expensive food that she can then refuse to eat. Should we reach the worst case scenario she can just pad softly over our decaying bodies and find someone else to look after her. She is very pretty, so her chances are good.
Nothing else is pretty though. The idea of a fifth of the workforce being off sick (I was led to believe that these days that’s par for the course with the snowflake generation) and global growth halving as just two of the potential impacts of coronavirus don’t really warrant a rosy cheer, but then look at all those twats who thought the millennium bug would be the end of us. And what did we do to ensure that we’d get to January 1st unscathed? We got drunk, and surely that’s the best solution all round. Getting drunk, preferably in self-isolation, means you don’t have to shake hands with people or attend large gatherings of over 5,000 or use public transport. I would also like to suggest that should you enter a phase of self-isolation and self-inebriation that all news and social media is cut off to you and so you can just fritter away the hours, safe in the knowledge that come good news or bad at least you can get some peace and fucking quiet from all this terrible bullshit. Who knows, maybe I’m right and coronavirus isn’t such a bad thing after all. It may even do us some good. Or maybe I’m wrong; it wouldn’t be the first time. Eek.
G B Hewitt. 04.03.2020