From Pandemic to Pandemonium

One might say I'm a bad citizen for traveling in a time of the COVID-19 crisis. One might say I'm compromising society by exposing myself to others and that I'm not being "socially responsible".

First off, no. I'm not being irresponsible. I'm also not being inactive. The truth is I'm being sane in a moment of panic. But by all means, call me an outlier, the truth is, I don't give a damn, even if my activities somehow connect to someone's death, which will be impossible to do and horribly misleading. All of us share viruses and all our viruses come from someone else.

This weekend is my brother's bachelor party. He's getting married in a few weeks and he decided (before this virus hoopla) to venture out to Los Angeles to spend time with the cousins and have a good night with all the boys. It's been very interesting seeing the roads open up from Tucson to LA. It's also been interesting to see the chain stores empty of toilet paper, sanitizer and baby wipes. I had my doubts that it was already a panic situation, but I've turned my doubts into a full realization of irrational stupidity.

You have to understand that I teach about viruses and outbreaks while my brother is a trauma nurse who sees all sorts of crazy situations. Driving out of the desert to sandy southern California we had a lot to talk about relating to the virus, from to people's behavior and how odd it was for this entire situation to put everything on hold, putting an entire smart society indoors, and an economy in the dumps. We made the conclusion that there's really nothing to fear. We are two young men in their thirties - we really don't have any impending ailments or conditions. We also know that viruses are their own thing. We can't stop plagues. We never been able to stave off the flu and we still don't have a cure for Ebola. What makes COVID-19 any different? I would think what makes it different isn't the virus but the lack of understanding the purpose of a virus, wrapped in social media, memes and idiotic administration telling us everything's under control. I feel there's digital casualties on both sides and I honestly feel this virus is one gigantic conspiracy in itself. A self fulfilled prophecy of our grand sheep-headed social media addiction and the stupidity that wraps around myth, focus and behavior.

Remember, a virus is there to make more of itself, tricking the cells in a body to multiply more copies of itself until the host either destroys it or brings it under control. Like a computer virus the real virus penetrates in the deepest, darkest places. So thinking about this entire virus situation, what's worse: the virus or the reaction?

The media posts we saw: people scavenging for toilet paper and wipes, markets are limiting bags of food, and restaurants and large populated businesses are doing only take-out or shutting doors. The media plays into it ten fold, having a scared-faced reporter speak directly to the people about the eminent threat. Gun sales are going up while stocks are going down. Lemme guess, you'll decide to murder people because they could steal your precious Charmin ultra soft?  I'm glad and thankful I'm not one of these people who have turned this situation into a full blown preposterous circus. But you go ahead and buy up dumb supplies like it's a zombie apocalypse. I'd hate to see how our modern era would react if we were in a legit crisis.

So why do I write about such nonsense? It's because in a time of "crisis" I'd like to tell you it's also a time to buy up the markets. But Adam, gosh, you're so insensitive. Are you crazy? I don't see anyone yelling at Michael Burry when he shorted the housing market and literally millions of people lost their livelihood - now we glorify him as a genius. Now I'm no Dr. Burry but I do understand a discounted market when I see one. What better time to stock up? Even if you get sick, by the time you're out of quarantine you'll be in the money. The toilet paper that's taking over your closet space is no good and will literally turn to shit while your portfolio gets fat with sweet green. Keep in mind, as of this Ides of March, about seven thousand people have died from this virus. You know about three thousand people die from car accidents every day? You don't see any picketers telling people to stop driving cars, do you?

Am I being insensitive? God, no! But just to let you know, I've seen the carnage in Wuhan, China and I've seen the photos and videos of people literally dying in the hospitals and nurses crying in pain and suffering as Chinese officials force them to work. That pandemic isn't as bad as it is here in the States and even if it is, there's nothing we can do to stop the spread. The reality is instead of seeing some of it on the news, we now have access to all the carnage, all the suffering, and all the pain of the world. In fact it'll be so overwhelming, you'll get sick with depression and anxiety that you'll lose focus on your own life. People, wake up! Viruses get bigger, harder and smarter every generation. This generation just happens to have a camera at every corner. We've had plagues before and we'll have many to come - and usually the panic starts conveniently during elections, during pivotal points of a strong market, during grand times that'll test our wits and challenge our fears. We have to suck up the truth: people die from viruses everyday. All of us are at fault. None of us can hide from the circumstances. It's impossible to stay 100% clean and free of germs. I know people will die from COVID-19 too, but that doesn't mean I need to live in a bubble. I won't even tell you to wash your hands and be "socially distant" - we already are with social media and if you weren't washing your hands before, what's going to let you start now? Some doofus reporter telling you how to live your life? Ridiculous!

So for those who consider this a crisis, I'm here to tell you this is a consequence of our insecurity. For those who have passed from the virus, my condolences to you and your family. For those who are losing their shirt from the market, please buy up and patiently wait for the rising tide. And for those who are cool in a time of panic, I solute you. Fucking wash your hands at least. Take care of grandma.


Popular Posts