Martin Siecker: "Always look on the bright side of life"

Would I like to share my thoughts, analysis and emotions on how I experience the Corona crisis in 2000 characters? Not much for something disruptive like that, one character per century. But anyway, my thoughts are private and chaotic.

Everything is new, this is the first pandemic I’ve experienced personally. Searching on the internet I found a list with the 10 worst pandemics in history and I learned that the last one to hit Europe before Covid 19 was the Spanish Flu in 1920. And I may be old - but I’m not that old.

My partner is very contagious due to reduced resistance to germs and if she catches something she is extremely vulnerable to a chronic respiratory lung disease. So we are very reluctant to have contacts with others. That brings new experiences for both of us. She is more or less in self-chosen isolation to prevent being infected. And I have to do things she used to do before, like buying groceries. Pre-crisis, I participated, pushing the shopping-cart 1 meter behind her while she filled it. But now it’s different.

Pushing is easy; you just follow and think about creating a better world while she fills the cart. Since I have to fill it myself, I’m paralyzed with choice stress at every shelf. The shopping list asks coffee, the shelf offers dozens of different brands that all look the same. And what toilet paper do we need - with 1, 2, 3 or 4 layers? My wife knows which product she wants and where they are, we’re in-and-out in minutes. To me shops are labyrinths: only in the beer department I don’t feel choice stress, all the rest takes me hours - lost in maddening dilemmas.

I was surprised by the initial response of the Dutch towards the pandemic. They reacted unanimously and with solidarity. Unfortunately the human attention span turned out to be pretty short for a small group of entangled and otherwise deplorable individuals, within a few weeks their solidarity crumbled. People stopped respecting the rules, blamed the government for undermining their fundamental rights and limiting their four freedoms. So, in order to claim their unalienable right to party they filed law suits against the state - lost in raging madness.

Thank goodness we live in Europe, where democracy and rule of law are relatively well guaranteed (in most member states) and healthcare is pretty good compared to other parts of the world. Looking at how it affects different generations it’s clear the young suffer most of the virus that reflects their age. At 19 you’re supposed to date, to explore your sexuality and to discover that crazy little thing called love. In times of pandemics even innocent hugs are taboo. These kind of things make young people insecure - lost in unsatisfied desire.

The key question is what to do with the economy. A restart based on the principle ‘business as usual’ when the pandemic is under control? Or grab this opportunity, turn away from a system dominated by cannibalistic monopolists and move into an inclusive model with sustainable, small scale initiatives in peaceful coexistence with liable big businesses? the choice between going on with business as usual or change our lemming’s behaviour will define our future and decide if we will be alive or extinct - lost in the abyss of self destruction.

I wish you all a nice time, with meditation, reflection and – to whom it may concern – repentance.