Its been one heck of a summer, from the covid19 pandemic, national lockdowns to the protests for #blacklivesmatter.
Every once in a while I have been putting out a few mixes under the new album/category of locked down and mixing out. The mixes have been good but I felt they each had something missing, so this is the best bits of previous mixes put together into something extra special.
Its the mix I am listening to when I get out with the Diabolo or go for a long walk.
While the pandemic raged,much of Asia flooded. The West didn’t take much notice — even though China’s largest dam isnow at it’s limits. And yet the megafloods Asia just experienced are just like megafires — natural phenomena that are getting worse on a seasonal, yearly cycle. Within a decade or two, these floods will also threaten habitability.
“Habitability,” by the way, is a polite, anodyne way to say: the ongoing survival of countries, cities, societies, economies.Whole gigantic chunks of our civilization are going to simply melt away like the arctic ice.
Are you beginning to get what I mean by “accelerating pulsation of disaster” yet? As we head into the age of catastrophe, a new range of calamities will become our dismal new normal. They’ll recur, in cycles. Only each time the cycle spins, they’ll get worse and worse. Megafires, megafloods, pandemics, extinctions.
Take another example: Covid.Covid isn’t an anomaly— it’s part of atrend.SARS, bad, MERS, worse, and Covid, world-changing. Many virologists were expecting a respiratory Coronavirus pandemic precisely because such a thing has been on the cards for the last two or three decades now, as respiratory Coronaviruses have gotten more widespread, become wider-spreading pandemics faster.
What’s the cycle of pandemic? It’s not a seasonal cycle, like flood or fire. It’s something more like — at least if take SARS and MERS as pointers — something more like a decadal cycle: every decade or so, a new respiratory virus has emerged. A decade or so from now, it’s probably likely we’ll be hit by another pandemic. Will it be worse than this one? If recent history’s any indication, yes.
His lasting point is strong and draws lot for us to think/reflect on.
Our World War, our moonshot? It’s saving human civilization.
And the problem is that while your gut knows exactly what I’m talking about, your brain’s still disputing it, because all this is outside the current range of human experience. And yet the megafires burn, while the megafloods pour, while the pandemic rages, while the planet burns, the ice melts, the animals die off, while the lungs and limbs of life itself choke and grow feeble — and all that is only going to get worse, year by year, decade upon decade.
This is not a drill, my friends.It’s time to stop acting like it is, burying our pretty vacant little heads in Netflix-and-chill and Instagram envy and the latest gender pronoun and Fakebook friends. That’s all, history will rightly say, garbage for the human mind and spirit.This is it. We’re not going to get another chance.
At this very moment the USA has surpassed China with the most amount of people infected. It doesn’t take a lot to see the problem of a pandemic with no public health care system.
Has a case has been made for universal health care providing a better defense against pandemics, as people are less likely to stay away from medical treatment over fears of the costs involved?
The case for universal health care was made in the years following the Spanish flu in 1918, when more people died at the hands of avian influenza than in both world wars combined. This event made it abundantly clear that, in the midst of a pandemic, it doesn’t matter if you are rich or poor, insulated by health insurance or not: Everyone was at risk unless society was treated as a whole. This is, I believe, the strongest possible argument for universal health care; by definition ideas of individualism disintegrate in a pandemic scenario.
When I mention public health that extends to sick leave too as Vox’s video also explains so well.
I have been working at home since last week Tuesday, a few days after most of my colleagues at BBC R&D. Like most of the country/world who could work from home, we work from home in the middle of Covid-19 pandemic.
For a lot of people working from home is very challenging, for a number of reasons including having kids, job which requires access to specialist equipment, trying to separate work and personal life for a long time. Theres also the mental, social and physical health sides of this all.
So I thought I’d share how I’m managing with staying at home most of the time. Of course take from it what you think is useful.
I now switched to my natural working time of 1030-11am till 7pm. I do get up and do all the things I usually do when going to work including getting dressed, having breakfast, playing podcasts, etc. Where usually I am in a rush for the door, I now relax playing a few podcasts in a row and across my flat.
Physically working I switch between using my standing desk in my bedroom and the sofa in the living room. I also have my dinner table but haven’t used that yet.
I take breaks when ever I want rather than a lunch break as such. It makes sense to me but I’m sure others will disagree
I’m using my Dell XPS 13 to the maximum memory wise (if I could add another 16gig to it I would, but it tops out at 16gig). Because of that I have to keep opening and closing the virtual windows 10 machine to check email. This is actually quite good because I’m answering emails then closing it while I do other things like writing gdocs, a lot of zoom calls.
Media beyond the news
Talking about media, I am currently playing podcasts as theres lots of podcasters recording from their homes, just like the mainstream media. At some point I will start listening to some of the audiobooks I have saved.
Been watching a lot of films and may start watching more TV shows but generally its audio in the morning and videos in the evening.
I’m also considering getting more into gaming as I’m not much of a gamer, but do have a Xbox 360 and Playstation one classic. I actually do have a steam account but never used it so theres something I might explore. I’m also looking for a good gaming site for casual gaming which can be played together with my partner or friends, but is respectful of my data? Any ideas do drop a comment…
Staying in shape
I’m lucky to have a communal garden so can sit outside with minimal risk to myself and others. Its also where I’m going to start doing the diabolo now its getting warmer (thankfully). I have been outside a few times, mainly to get food, post letters and go riding in the pennies on the scooter. I am planning to do some more serious walking for shopping and exercise.
Been wondering if now is a good time to order those Rollerblades to go with my skateboard?
I don’t live with my partner but we are talking everyday. Its good and we find new and good ways to do things together over the phone and videochat.
I have always been in regular contact with my parents but also connecting with my sister more. Been thinking about the massive family I have and I should reach out to them more too.
I’m also making a very conscious decision to everyday get in touch with people I haven’t spoken to in a long time. Think about it, everybody is at home and likely will be very happy to hear from an old friend. Its not like they are out or on holiday. So far its been great and I expect it brings delight to others too.
Keeping my mind in gear
I have a large task list of things to do, not only because of covid-19 but generally. So I can slowly work my way through that while at home. Some of it is computer based, some internet based, some hardware and some physical DIY type things. Been thinking I should physically take up the art of motorcycle maintenance with my scooter.
Taking a look at the list, there is always something I could be doing and I ordered that raspberry pi 4 before this became a pandemic.
I’m taking time out to practice self-care, relax and sleep longer than usual which is helping a lot with my mental health. I’m avoiding the news cycle as mentioned previously but also avoiding lots of the facebook nonsense as I don’t need to use it now volleyball is off for the foreseeable future.