Coronavirus: All The Things You Don't Know

Coronavirus: All The Things You Don't Know

Disclaimer: This is not your source for all things Coronavirus. In fact this is a moderately satirical take on the shit hitting the fan and how you can push through it positively (NO pun intended)

I wasn't going to say anything about it but then they cancelled the local Chinese New Year festival.  This turn of events so to say really upset me. Why? Firstly, this part of the country has yet to be affected by the virus. We have had no infected people, no precedents set at our airports and really no panic other than that xenophobic overreaction. Then there is the little known fact there aren't a lot of Chinese people here in this area. East Indians make up the majority of the minority population in North Carolina. In this city, we have a great concentration of Mexican, Pakistani, Indian and Nepalese. The last one is sort of startling for the typical folk around here ... White, conservative, Republican and racist. I bet money not one of them could find Nepal on a map. Now there are parts of North Carolina teeming with Black folk and other minorities but not here. On my street there is only us, the lady across the street and the family a few doors down that identify as Black and everyone else is far removed. The majority of our specialty supermarkets cater to Hispanic and Halal needs. We have absolutely nothing peddling Ghanian jollof, Cuban bread, Korean BBQ or Chinese dumplings. We have one Japanese family that owns and operates the only sushi restaurant for like a five mile radius. Most Asians who do have businesses on the outer lying areas are Thai or Vietnamese. So that festival was to bridge the gap for Chinese people and various others within the state. People would have had to travel great lengths to go and the event was sponsored by major brands and organizations. It would have been this past weekend and notice of cancellation was marketed more than the event itself. Canada and California had their events. But our cancellation was all over local news networks as well as the radio. And they weren't shy blaming "the Wuhan virus" for doing so. That shows how premature the pull was. The virus didn't even have its name and with this came a veil of xenophobia which is threatening the Nepalese people living here.

I am not going to list the phenotypes that make Chinese people differ from Nepalese people. I also hate lists. But it is quite obvious at least to me, a person that takes care in understanding and educating myself on such things, that there is a difference. I want to be well versed in cultures, provinces, cuisines so that I don't embarrass myself during my travels and epicurean adventures. I also think it is in the best interest of humanity for us to get shit right. Google is our friend. All it took was one search to know that this virus wasn't and still isn't pandemic. Also, whatever started it has not crept here into this piss ant town to wreak havoc via white washed fried egg rolls and children's dragon coloring contests. It was a community event to express love for diversity. A small moment for Chinese people to share their culture during an amazing time and we the ignorant ruined that. And then word spread causing people to begin avoiding Asian businesses and events of all kinds because ... stupidity. Just stupid. And now all the masks are running low at the hardware stores. And people are scared to say hello. And the one Chinese spot nearest to us seems to be mopping all the time to appease the stupidity that is Bible Belt America. The theories about this all being biblical are endless. A religious based cleansing. A response to eating things He wouldn't want us to eat. It couldn't be an innocent businessman having lunch or a woman from Shanghai now known as P1. It was all God.

I've had a handful of people give me unsolicited information about the Chinese people in response to this thing called Coronavirus. Just general synopsis' with confidence of what they believed Chinese people were all about. I allow these rants so that I can conclude it with an education. During the last conversation I politely explained that I understand the fear. I live in fear everyday here because there are constant food borne illnesses that don't exist in Germany. I told them how I felt uncomfortable buying groceries or visiting a doctor because of all the product recalls and infectious disease outbreaks. I also provided statistics showing that China usually ranks second to last in the world when it comes to infectious incidents. China isn't struggling with statewide measles outbreaks, listeria in lettuce or cruise ships giving all their passengers Hep B. Of course they were shocked by my plethora of facts but we quickly moved into the prestige. I told them their ignorance was creating a stigma that shouldn't exist. They surprisingly agreed and then the conversation changed to what they could do to stop perpetuating this stigma. Not necessarily to fight it but to save themself from further .... embarrassment. I explained that they could start by washing their hands after going out into public spaces, stop touching their face, be careful purchasing meat & produce and to vaccinate their unborn children. I could have gone on and on. To be honest, silence is golden in regards to our personal opinions or on who is responsible for this mess we are in. Lets hope the education they got was an each one teach one opportunity to be shared with the next bigot or pessimist. But I do shudder to think without stats I would have been reduced to an leftist opinion to be judged on. Ugh God again.

So now the memes and conspiracies fly as I am being told I cannot leave as Germany has fallen. All unleashed simultaneously worldwide by Chinese student spies from America. I mean our Lysol wipes have printed Coronavirus as something it can detect and prevent spread of in one lemony swipe. No one has informed the general public it is nothing but the common cold now gone rogue. Hence the cold and flu like symptoms not to be confused with strep throat, asthma and bronchitis. No, no this is the new breed of something we used to be able to kill. Partner that with ignorance around antibiotic resistance, antibody research and inoculations vs vaccinations the doom sets in. People are stockpiling food as if the hurricane is coming yet huddling together in a packed stadium sharing nachos in the midst of a public health emergency. There is no chicken left in the city but why God do those people keep up the Eastern tradition of eating the delicacies we have decided to pin this all on. And that alone opens up a door to a complete shitstorm of stupid. There is a "Good Ole Boy" stopping his F-350 truck for a smashed roadkill turtle or armadillo for tonights supper right now. No one questions if this is ethical, clean, normal, traditional ever. The foodways of America can be down right primordial in comparison to the rich culture of others. I also listened to what I thought was a decent modern day YouTube philosopher lose all points describing Chinese people during wartime famine tearing into pillows and eating the feathers. Yes, because a bat or a civet is an upgrade from goose down. No, possum or squirrel is more refined. Civet shit coffee too.

Right now I think the American public needs to get glad and serious about their privilege. New York City can turn into Gotham if they don't inform their citizens about the reality of this thing. I stood in a TJ Maxx (aka TK Maxx leute) and watched people reach for the same exact candle in line, then touch their babies which were inside of a dirty cart and moved onto licking their fingers to get their method of payment ready. There isn't enough hand sanitizer that can save you from these subtle exchanges. If it is as they say sitting on trains, planes and automobiles for up to five days we haven't seen the half of it. I think the most important way to go about this is to stay indoors unless you have to work or go to school. When in those environments you should log your contact with outsiders so that you can account for whom you interacted with. This sounds paranoid but considering the incubation time and rate of spread it might prove to be a good thing. You should wash your hands regularly and especially before and after using a restroom, consuming food or entering/exiting home. Disinfectant spray should have already been apart of your tidy oop routine and should now include a daily spray of your remotes, door knobs, drawer pulls, keys and phones. Those lil flu masks should be upgraded to whatever high grade N number model and when they get moist throw it away. If you don't have symptoms stay out of hospitals, medical and doctors offices unless you have a medical emergency. The Dogwood is already in bloom due to climate so manage your allergies accordingly and don't confuse it with this. And for fucks sake cough into your bow pit or a very nice scarf. Wi-Five and fist bump versus handshakes and hugs. MSG and wontons are not to blame.

You are.

P.S. I see a resurgence of disposable straws coming back real soon.