I’m absolutely mortified to say this.
I’ve lived here for almost 11 years.
And only today I discovered.
That we have this amazing nature preserve 11 minutes from where I live.
I do have a bit of an excuse. There are many amazing nature spots around here, so one can end up missing a spot.
Happy workers’ day, by the way! Best wishes to those of us who are desperate to work but can’t because we are unnecessary. Or what do you call it? Non-essential.
If anybody is looking for something to read on the subject, I recommend Zygmunt Bauman’s Wasted Lives. Bauman explains that one the costs of modernity has always been the rendering of large numbers of people superfluous, unnecessary.
Traditionally, modernity dealt with this by expelling the unnecessary masses to the colonies. Places that are only now modernizing are still doing that. But those places that don’t have a physical locality where to put the unnecessary, “non-essential” people are coming up with other inventive ways of getting the “human refuse” out of the way.
It’s a short book, quite easy to read. And very pertinent.
Illinois has some of the harshest coronavirus quarantines in the nation. Our quarantine has been extended until June 1 with no promise it won’t be extended.
In the meantime, the Governor’s wife is traipsing all over the country, traveling to Florida on vacation, and the Governor yells at the journalists who try to ask him how it’s compatible with his “shelter in place” order.
Moral of the story: we are being duped. They don’t believe in any of it. Somebody who is morbidly obese and not young would never be OK with his overweight and not young wife running around the country and risking her own and his health.
It’s especially cute that MK went to a state where restrictions are much less harsh. Because it’s more fun to be in Florida than in the state her husband is destroying for blatantly political reasons.
These are the phrases that have been used to dupe us so many times that they now provoke nothing but derision:
– “two weeks behind Italy.” We will be told we need to hide from normal life long after Italy will forget there was a coronavirus. But we will still be two weeks away from where Italy was in March.
– “in two weeks” in any context now makes me break out in hives.
– “flatten the curve” should be somewhere up there with “weapons of mass destruction in Iraq” in terms of duping the public into something unnecessary and extremely costly. We’ve flattened the curve, we’ve bent the curve, but the lockdowns are tightening. What? They aren’t where you live? Then your governor must be a Republican.
– “stay home save lives” and “we are in it together” are a new way of saying, “I still get a paycheck.”
– “listen to science” means “get attached to the first piece of information on COVID you ever heard like it’s an article of faith and don’t abandon it no matter what new information comes in.
What am I forgetting?
In six months, it will be accepted wisdom that lockdowns were unnecessary and everybody totally overreacted to this. The number of people who will claim to have known that lockdowns are not helping will be overwhelming. And they will be completely sincere like alcoholics who say they can quit “any time” are sincere. The number of folks who’ll have the requisite mental health to say “yeah, I was really wrong on that one” will be, as usual, vanishingly small.