The Year of the Pangolin. The Year of the Bat.

The Chinese should add them to their animal zodiac. The Bat Year. The Pangolin Year. The Horrid Covid Year. The Death Year.

"Hello, darling! Fancy a pangolin or a cute little bat for a romantic dinner tonight? I'll rush to the market then."

(online publications say maybe he or she works as an intern at the Wuhan Institute of Virology)

In the 21st century, some humans from a town in China eating bats-and rats-and dogs-and cats-and snakes-and pangolins started a plague upon the planet. How disgusting to abuse and eat the poor creatures, or use their scales for primitive witchcraft branded "traditional medicine", how disgusting the government that allows this! And they expect to be accepted, integrated and treated as "civilised people", and get irritated and offended if this plague they caused is named The Chinese Plague, when they started it, with their weird and stomach-wrenching appetites - and unacceptable lack of hygiene, for that matter!; everybody has seen pictures circulating on the internet of how they cohabitated in that Goya-esque, hellish, unhygienic, awfully crammed animal market in Wuhan with all manner of wild creatures, breathing in each others noses; one can only imagine the stench coming from it (imagine the toilets of that Wuhan market?), let alone the myriad bugs. This bug. The Horrid Covid. This deadly virus. Like many epidemics/pandemics of recent years, this one is yet another Chinese land originated plague, more deadly this time.

The 1918 flu is still called The Spanish Flu, and the Spanish people do not get offended, although they should: it was not them that started it, it did not originate in Spain, but the Spanish journalists were first to write about it. So, I do not want to hear anybody lecturing me that I offend the Chinese by calling this The Chinese Plague. It started in China, nobody can deny that. This virus exists in bats and pangolins. How dare those Chinese hunt, sell, butcher and eat an endangered animal species? How dare they put all humanity at such absurd risk? Because the Chinese government allowed all this to happen? By the tacit "it's illegal but officially tolerated" practice, like the good capitalists&communists that they are? And they want to be considered "civilised people"? After the suffering, death, distruction, havoc, terror they caused all over the planet?

Yes, I know: it's not all the Chinese people, just a minority of them, oh stop vilifying an entire nation, yes I will, sorry, I need to vent my anger, this is a totally wrong version of my universe that suddenly became the only version, and I need to vent my anger and helplessness at the bat-and pangolin-eaters for the horrific ordeal and deaths they caused globally. And it's still not over yet, no, not over, far from over... And it's not just pandemic, it's financial slaughter as well, the depression and poverty and famine that are going to follow. They paralised and destroyed the planet, the world, the humanity, worse than any wars and terrorist attacks. Nobody talks and names what caused all this destruction, it's as if the plague fell out of the blue from somewhere in the universe on top of the planet. No. It's the pangolin-eaters that caused this. Or a lab escaped virus in the same China? Internet rumours (actually, articles on The Guardian and Daily Mail) say that it could actually be a man-made virus spiraled out of control, a leak from tampering with viruses in Chinese laboratories in the same Wuhan, 20 km away from the animal market (called "wet market") - which would be an even more ominous event; they were experimenting with bat viruses from a cave in Yunan. Either way, China is the source, the start, the beginning of this plague. Bat via pangolin. There is something about these bats, isn't there? From Dracula, to pandemic threatening all humanity on the planet...

Is it fair that 50,000 people died (until today) because of those bat-and-pangolin-eaters and the Chinese government that covered up, lied to the world, did not warn, and did not  - and still does not - tell the entire truth? That a million people suffer horrific illness?- read the harrowing survival stories that emerge on the internet, and stop taxing me as racist. Is it fair that doctors and nurses die, fighting to save lives, for lack of protective equipment, because their governments did not do enough or anything to provide PPE and basic medical supplies? Crying for having to choose which patient to let live and which to let die because there are not enough ventilators? And Chinese companies are selling masks and protective equipment and tests overpriced (and faulty!) on the online market - making a profit out of this pandemic they caused? ("making masks is like printing money these days" - boasts a Chinese, out in the open and proud of himself; google this statement, I am not in the mood of putting links)

I wish them all the best, those Chinese bat-and-pangolin-eaters, and I wish they will become vegetarians, all of them, forever, and until the end of all ages. And to the Chinese government I wish that they are never able to tell a lie from now on, ban the animal markets, and dismantle and disuse all their distrustful laboratories where they unsafely tamper with viruses; and I wish that they stop selling (junk) to the whole planet, and that the whole planet stops buying (junk) from them. As the EU Vicepresident puts it: "the morbid dependency on China [...] must stop". And I dread to think what else they experimented in their laboratories:

- in 2018 the world was shocked at the horrid "gene-edited babies" experiment in China gone wrong, babies died;

- in 2019 they shocked the world again with "the two pig-monkey chimeras born in China" or "China's mutant pigs" (and these are just two among dozens of examples of mindblowing genetic engineering underway in China; God knows what other monsters they're breeding in their laboratories);

- now, in 2020, they shocked the world again with this deadly Coronavirus plague, maybe from a lab-created virus. If humanity survives this, I wonder what will the Chinese shock the world with next?

Isn't it a bad and tragic joke that our lives always depend  on the choices others are making? That our lives are inescapably at the hands of - always - those others...? Not only the ones mentioned above, but the political choices as well. The worst is that, in those hellish times, we have the worst governments and leadership all over the planet. Trump, Boris, Putin etc etc etc. In almost all countries, with few exceptions. The way they mishandled this pandemic is almost as criminal as eating a pangolin. They were watching what was going on in China, then in Italy, then in Spain - and did nothing to equip their hospitals and medical staff (and pharmacies, for the population) with the basics: PPE, ventilators, or at least masks and gloves. What were they thinking? That oh, I am Boris Johnson and Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump, the virus is not going to dare hit me or my country? My people are immune because I say so? Or what? Maybe: some will die, let them die, it's natural selection? It seems that way ("the herd immunity" proffered by British Boris - who, in the end, finally got it - the virus and the seriousness of the pandemic, I mean)... Spain, in full pandemic swing, approved a 60,000 people marching through Madrid on Women's Day, and a 45,000 fans football game with Italy on 11th of March, and so on. Around that date I was in a hotel in Spain where there were hundreds of teenage football teams from all over the world (except Denmark, eh?) on a special training; I was watching them every day, incredulous at the lethargy of the Spanish government to stop all sport events. Just as nobody stopped flying planes not even today, crisscrossing the planet, diligent and efficient virus-carriers. And only now they disinfect airports? I hope they do. What about the famous trays in the airports where you have to put your luggage that has been dragged on all floors, and then on the same trays used by millions and never disinfected, you have to put your mobile phone, your jacket and all other belongings, and then, after they are scanned, you have to pick them up in a hurry, put everything back in your handbag and start using them again? Crosscontamination. If you do not hide in a corner to disinfect each and every item that was on those damn trays (as I always did) then you'd better go on the floors and eat your lunch from them - it's the same. And they still wonder how this bug infected so much so many?

Isn't it a bad and tragic joke that our lives always depend on the choices others are making? That our lives are inescapably at the hands of others...? Not only the ones mentioned above, but the global lack of hygiene that was, until this pandemic started, a real fashion exasperating me: humanity needed a pandemic to re-learn to wash hands?! and not tread with their shoes from outside to the bottom of the bedroom, and not put their handbags on floors and then on desks and tables, and not let their kids roll on the pavements and shop floors - why not let them lick the pavements for that matter, and why not let diners in restaurants eat directly from the floor since nobody was washing their hands before eating anymore, and they were branding the ones that did wash hands usually as having OCD - that is: hygiene became a syndrome, an illness, if you wash your hands it means you have OCD and you need therapy to teach you to NOT wash your hands? Lunacy, yes. Being hygienic meant being mental, having a mental illness. How ironic! It's exactly the lack of hygiene that caused many of those deaths. Surprising? Not for me. I was being ridiculed enough in my life for washing my hands too often, too many times per day and always before eating, I was branded too many times as a lunatic for insisting on hygiene, and telling people to take off their shoes when they enter my house etcetcetc. I am actually laughing at the tragicomedy of it. Humanity had to be told on the tv: wash your hands, your life depends on that, they did not know it?! No, they did not. They were living as in primitive times, before soap existed, and they were deriding the Victorians for re-discovering hygiene, for being too hygienic, and they equalled hygiene to being posh and aristocratic, hence reject hygiene became a fashinable socialist/labourist token. The miserable attitude, that became miserable indeed. The Year of the Pangolin - the Year that Humanity Re-Learned Hygiene.

Yes, humanity tragically and absurdly needed a pandemic to re-learn the basics of hygiene: wash your hands, wash your hands, wash your hands before putting anything into your mouth... Pathetic humanity. In the end. And to the end. I would like to see the faces of those preaching "do not wash your hands" until now, of all the therapists applying "do not wash your hands" therapy to their ocd-ish patients (you were considered ocd if you washed your hands more than 5 times a day), of all the parents and teachers that were not teaching the children to wash their hands argumenting their teachings with the fatal "let them be exposed to and get infected by as many bugs as possible to stimulate their immunity". The truth always was "to destroy their immunity". Oh no!, but they thought they were so modern and advanced in their preachings of dirt. They were preaching the dirt, the illness, the epidemics in fact. Are they happy now? They are directly responsible for the catastrophy, as much as the pangolin-eaters and the bad governments. But probably now they turned overnight into the most ardent preachers of hygiene. Hypocrisy and facade, as usual. I can hear them already on the social media: who, me? oh, but I always washed my hands, I always preached hygiene... Hypocrites.

We are not the masters of our own lives. Tragically, we are in this together (not at all in the merry way the media presents this slogan). My life depends on the others that do not keep the rules. They can kill me (indirectly) or let me live. I (and you, and each of us) am at the mercy of the others. Their choice of wearing or not wearing a mask and observe the rules can kill me or let me live. And I feel trapped. I feel horribly trapped. Because I have seen and known those "others". Each weekly trip to the food shop is another proof that I am at the mercy of the irresponsible "others". They do not keep the rules. Like Trump, and Boris, and Putin, they think they are invincible and untouchable by this virus... I do not want my life or death to be decided by them!

© 2017-2020 Lia Vernescu

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