The Authoritarian State of Canada

Protest Weather!?!

I have no idea how Canadians can feel like they’re losing their freedom. If wearing a mask is all it takes to make us feel like we’re living in some kind of authoritarian regime, we’ve got it pretty good. While I was hesitant to sign up for a vaccine in the beginning, I stopped worrying about it as the ranks of the vaccinated grew, mostly without any adverse consequences. Being as fat as I am, from that point forward, I was vying to be first in line for the next jab. I can still see some folk worrying about having to get a vaccine though. I’m of a mind that if some people don’t want it, they shouldn’t get it. If the majority, moral or otherwise, want restrictions imposed because of that, I’m really not sure how we handle that to satisfy everyone. We probably can’t.

Most of us wouldn’t want to send our kids to school without all the regular childhood vaccinations. Nor without all the other kids being vaccinated too. There are a lot of things in life like that. I don’t have the freedom to smoke in restaurants any more. But I doubt I’ll be starting a freedom movement because of that.

Now my purpose isn’t to waffle on about the rights & wrongs of people having the right to protest. Nor is it about the rights & wrongs of either sides’ opinions, I’m sure there are some great arguments to be made on both sides. Most of us have already picked our side & we’ll probably stick with our choice. I’m curious though as to why anyone would want to go out in -18Β°C temperatures to protest something that’s going away soon anyway. We’re all fed up with this covid bullshit & I’m way overdue for a trip back to Ireland. I certainly don’t want to pay an extra three hundred bucks for tests to get out & back again. I’m equally pissed that I didn’t get a winter break to the sun the past few years. With another $300 in test costs added to that holiday.
(Nice first world problems to have, eh!)

But the reality is that some version of normal is coming back soon anyway. Most people know that they’ll survive covid just fine & we all desperately want to get back to normal. Now that we’re over (hopefully) the hump of the fatalities, we can be reassured by the graph trending down & we’ll return to being statistically oblivious again. We’re a pretty shitty species, eh? But we probably have to be this way. We’ll lump the reduced number of covid deaths in with those from the flu, heart disease, cancer & accidents, & we’ll all get on with our lives again. It’s the way it’s always been. And if for no other reason than us telling ourselves we have no other choice, it’ll be the same this time around. So why spend time protesting stuff that’s about to change anyway?

You can’t help but wonder if we’ve all missed an opportunity to learn how to do this whole pandemic thing better. Instead of protesting & blocking streets, we should all be pulling in the same direction. If all that protest time, money & energy went into supporting our healthcare system, would we have been better off? If all the protesters volunteered their time & money to supporting the healthcare system, would that have helped remove the concerns about the stress brought on by the peaking of hospital cases? Would that, in turn, help remove the last of the lockdowns & restrictions sooner? And isn’t that what the protesters want at the end of the day? Stop whining about the problem & figure out how to be part of the solution instead.

Look, I really have no idea how realistic it is to have us all pulling in the same direction. I also have no idea how we can do pandemics better. And we probably should learn how to do it much better, for when we’re faced with a far deadlier & uglier bug than omicron. But I’m guessing that wasting our time on this kind of protest doesn’t contribute a whole lot. Besides, our politicians couldn’t organize a piss-up in a brewery, so I’m not too worried about them getting sophisticated enough to take away my freedom!

At the end of the day, I’m still worried about covid killing me. Despite that, I’ve had enough with some of the restrictions too. Just not enough to have me thinking that my freedom is at risk.

With or without masks, we’re still the true north, strong & free.
Be nice & polite to each other out there, Canucks! πŸ‡¨πŸ‡¦πŸπŸ‡¨πŸ‡¦

Still Doing the Work from Home Thing?

Work Wear?

I don’t even know how long I’ve been working from home now, but it feels like a long, a very long, time. Though I really worked from home pre-covid, it didn’t feel like that. Because I got to travel a lot. On the work front, we’ve all gotten much better at online meetings. So many phone calls & email exchanges turn into online meetings now.

We’re all much better at, & more prepared for, impromptu online sessions too. I keep a hairbrush in my desk drawer now, for example. I’ve moved the underwear-laden clothes horse out of my office. And I’ve swapped out the juvenile posters on my back wall with some hoity-toity Venetian masks. They’re a good talking point, while we wait for that important laggard to join the session. It’s all very streamlined & business-like these days!

All in all, the whole work from home thing is far more professional now. Far smoother. It is also quite effective. And very time & cost efficient. If everything went back to normal tomorrow, I think I’d still use the online get togethers. A lot.

But now that things are starting to open up a little more, I recently took the opportunity to go out for a mask-to-mask meeting & to bump elbows. I had to dust off my big-boy pants. I had forgotten that pants had creases. It took me a while, but I managed to dig out a belt that wasn’t a draw-string. Finally, I found a shirt with a collar & more than three buttons.

I was feeling pretty good about heading back into the real working world again. As I was pulling out of my driveway, good job I noticed that I was barefoot & wearing flip-flops!

How are you doing, as you transition back to the new normal?

You’ll have to cut me a little more slack on the weight-loss front though. I’ll come clean on that soon! 😜

It’s Not the Vaccine!

Flavour Bombs!

After decades of trying to pickle my tastebuds with alcohol & barbeque them with cigarettes, it’s no surprise that I might not taste things as well as before. You’d think that might help my weight loss efforts but, no, I like to think of myself as a fighter. Take away the taste of food & I’m going to eat even more. I’ll battle away eating, more & more, ’til I find something with taste! πŸ™„πŸ˜œπŸ˜

Then we had the pandemic. I got my shots. And I read something about the vaccine causing loss of taste. Or was that covid? Who cares, I had an excuse to carry on eating now. I didn’t even bother to look it up, having the excuse to eat was worth more to me!

Last fall, my nice neighbour was planting garlic & she stuck three bulbs into my flower bed for me. I harvested them recently & tossed them on a shelf in the garage to dry. The hint of garlic in the air was far nicer than the usual garage odour, especially coming up close to garbage collection day!

I just recently cooked with them, and … OMG!

There’s nothing wrong with my tastebuds. They work just fine. This stuff is to die for. No, it’s to live for. It’s absolutely ducking amazing. Where does the stuff in the supermarket come from? There is no comparison. It’s a good thing that I’m still restricted to online meetings these days! 😜😁

Same thing with the blueberry bushes & fruit trees I planted a couple of years ago. And the armful of rhubarb than my neighbour tossed on the porch. All that stuff tastes great too.

Now what does that say about all the bland takeout food I’ve been complaining about recently?

I’d buy more organic farmer’s market stuff, if it wasn’t so expensive. And if some of it didn’t look half dead. It might be a bit of a challenge this, but I’ll be doing a little more food hunting locally now. And cooking at home more often. Maybe that’s why I bought the pot of basil that’s turning into a little forest on my kitchen window! 😁

My next mission is to learn how to make a tart apple tart, without having access to “cooking” apples. I hear Bramley trees don’t survive the Canadian winter very well. I’m open to suggestions, please let me know if you have figured out how to work around this one.

And if you’ve never had home made apple tart, made with Bramley apples … my sympathies! 😜

Vaccinate by BMI!

Indian Sweets!
Part of my pandemic shopping program to support local businesses! πŸ€ͺ😁😷

I had my first vaccine shot a couple of weeks ago! Woohoo!

And now that I’m done, I can bring up something that was bothering me … why were we not vaccinating by BMI?

I kept hearing that obese people were among the most susceptible to bad outcomes, but nobody was pushing for fat people to get to the head of the vaccination line? Look, I’m not saying that other groups are not important. Health workers, front line workers, the sick, the elderly, & a host of others deserve priority. Some because they are putting themselves, & their families, in harm’s way. Others because they were more likely to die. The obese fell into this latter category. But nobody was pushing for us. Of course, I wasn’t even pushing for that myself then either!

Shouting about it before I got my shot would have felt a bit self-serving. Now I can shout out on behalf of other fat folk, who should be considered a priority. Where were all the non-fat people that should have come out on our behalf sooner? Were they afraid of fat-shaming us? Guys, for future reference, feel free to fat-shame me any time you’re trying to save my life!

Or do they still think it’s our fault we’re fat?

Though, to be fair, I’m beginning to wonder about that myself. I’ve lost all dietary control during the pandemic. It’s funny that. On other fronts, I’ve gotten things done that have defied getting a checkmark on any of my to-do lists for years. But, somehow, I’ve lost my vision for weight-loss & I think I may have hit an all time high. That’s sad.

I just realised a few days ago that I hadn’t posted for ages. Maybe I’m waking up again. Fingers crossed!

Mask up, get your shot, & shop on! πŸ˜‰πŸ˜·

Stay safe out there!

You Think What!?!

Covid Questions?
Are you Seeing Double, Blindsided, or Enlighted by Hindsight?

Are introverts really enjoying lockdown & all this working from home?

Are some people secretly delighted not to have to travel for work?

Should we continue to support local small businesses if they suck?

One year on, knowing what we now know, would putting up with a hard, one month, 100%, total lockdown really have been so bad last year?

Or would enough people still break the rules, that it wouldn’t work anyway?

Ever get the feeling that we missed a really big opportunity to learn how to handle pandemics better?

What if the next one is far more serious? More deadly?

Would we react differently if the death rates were far higher?

Or if a virus targets our children more severely, rather than the sick & elderly?

Or are we collectively that stupid that it wouldn’t matter? Maybe don’t answer that one! LOL

What about a virus that targets liberals or conservatives? 😜

Which country did the best job containing the pandemic?

Which one is doing best deploying vaccines?

Are the rest of us capable of learning anything from them? Maybe we shouldn’t answer that one either! πŸ™„πŸ˜œπŸ˜

Have you wondered if you’re one of those people susceptible to believing conspiracy theories?

Why don’t we give the real ingredients to the @#&$heads out there making fake vaccines?

Should we look at improving our country’s healthcare system?

Do we only worry about the less well-off countries after we take care of ourselves first?

What are the chances that we all answered all those questions the same way?

Is there anything we can agree on? πŸ˜‰πŸ˜

Stay safe out there all. πŸ™