Sunday night.

I’ve put 14 hours into my zombie game this weekend… That accomplished zero in terms of productivity, but it also distracted from, you know, the plague and all for 14 whole hours. In that respect, at least, it was useful. (Also, my character found a jolly Santa hat. Heh.) This is almost like the pre-plague times when I really needed a quiet weekend, except now it’s by necessity, not by choice. I find myself fantasizing about even the most mundane pre-pandemic interactions, like chatting with store clerks.

Speaking of which, I’m pretty sure I legitimately scared a security guard at the nearby grocery store. I had my usual outfit: two masks, a face shield, and a bottle of alcohol spray in one hand. I wonder if he thought that was overkill or if he thought I’m contagious. Life’s little mysteries, eh? Incidentally, I was the only shopper with that level of precaution. I was in a rush and wasn’t glancing around, but all the folks I saw had just one mask each.

By the end of this all, we’ll all look and act so differently… It’d be like the end of World War I, where every foot soldier had a gas mask (a nasty way to go) and a metal helmet – an artifact of the past made necessary once again by all the artillery. (Shrapnel is a bitch, eh.) A year ago, when so much was still uncertain, no one wore masks at all – not in Toronto, and likely not in the US, either. What sort of panic would arise at the mere sight of a risk-aware 2021 shopper, or the covid-related headlines we have today?.. Here is hoping next year won’t get even more horrifying.

In covid news, as of right now the US is at (or very near) 500,000 covid deaths. As always, that’s just the official count, which doesn’t include undiagnosed deaths, excess mortality caused by overflowing hospitals, delayed surgeries, etc. Even so, that’s more deaths than the grand total of America’s three biggest wars of the 20th century: World War I, World War II, and the Vietnam War. For what it’s worth, this grim occasion was commemorated on the front pages of the biggest newspapers. Will they do the same for 600,000 deaths, which will likely be in less than two months?..

In other news, I have to keep reminding myself to check my privilege… This article is quite eye-opening. More than 130 countries haven’t received any vaccines at all yet, while 10 countries have already distributed 75% of the world’s vaccine supply to their citizens. As inequality goes, this is… “horrific” is not the right word. Grotesque, perhaps. I keep complaining that I’ll get my vaccine in August/September instead of May-June like my US friends and relatives, but billions of people will not get their vaccine this year at all. Their lives will remain the strange game of cat and mouse with the ever-evolving dangerous virus, even as countries like Israel, US, Canada, and others return to normality. That is humbling, and horrifying, and really puts things in perspective, eh?..

Good night, y’all. Stay safe. Stay patient.