I am, right now, wondering whether to reply to a message with the fact that it’s not the 21st year of the current century. I’m having to decide whether to reply would make me the asshole. I mean it probably wouldn’t given that the group of friends in that conversation are all well educated but I asserted yesterday that something else was incorrect and if I do it again it could make them think I’m the asshole.
I think I’ll leave it alone. I’m aware that my current mental state doesn’t lend itself to critical thinking and I’m starting to find this whole lockdown business quite hard. While it is the 21st century it is not the 21st year of that century. It is the 20th year of this current century. I know this because the year 2000 was the last complete year of the 20th century and the first year of the third millennium started on the 1st Jan 2001. This is caused by the fact that our year numbering convention started with the year 1 BCE rather than 0. The number zero didn’t really exist in Europe at the time the calendar was created. It’s also rather fucking arbitrary where you start the calendar and so ultimately no-one cares. You can start counting wherever you want. Just because rich white European people decided to have a calendar start somewhere and then invaded and assumed control of the world [colonised] it doesn’t mean there’s anything special about that calendar. Did I just use the Gregorian Calendar as a measure of oppression? Yes I did.
There are lots of things I have learnt over the last couple of weeks. I now know that if there are chocolate covered waffles [gaufres] in the house I will eat them so now I need to plan when I buy them and make sure they get eaten by the little ones. I know that my gas boiler pressure vessel is likely broken and I have to keep checking the central heating pressure to maintain working heating. I know that there’s an exhaust rattle on my car which I spotted when driving near to a wall at work the one day that I went in! I know that three screens is about the minimum required for a Teams lesson – I have one screen to draw on, another to see other information and chat and the third displays what I’m sending out to check the whole system is working. I know I miss the daily conversational contact with people at work. I’m largely happy in my little house but online teaching is remarkably tiring, I’d rather be in the classroom but I also understand that it is not safe at the moment. I know I look forward to my morning coffee from around 1500 each day. I know that the RAFAC bureaucracy is beyond sensible but something that I will do just to make sure the cadets get the best experience they can given the current situation. My wellington boots gave me a blister and that’s more than a little annoying.
So we wait. We wait to be told that someone unqualified [politician] thinks it’s justifiable to send everyone back to work. Notice I didn’t say “safe”. It wasn’t safe to return last September. It was probably the right thing to do but it definitely wasn’t safe. Even if schools followed the government guidance to the letter it wasn’t safe. The headlines were that schools were “covid safe” but much like “natural” and “original” on food packaging it doesn’t mean shit. If many are asymptomatic then there’s not just a two week delay to any action, there could be a six week delay as asymptomatic people pass the virus around unknowingly and then it kills some old people. This is such an horrific situation to be in and it’s made worse by a complete lack of leadership and understanding and brains at the top of this country.
I’m not happy about a lot of things. I guess I’ll be retreating into my Minecraft world as it’s nicer and more controllable in there. I’ve got plans for the home-base but I now need to go and get the materials so I’ve got a few evenings of mining up ahead and that will be nice. Just me and my pickaxe in the depths of the world finding lovely precious things. I’m getting out the house when I can and yesterday I had a lovely walk – I couldn’t be bothered to run – and I even did the Burham church loop along the Medway. Here’s a picture of the papermill I took.
Stay safe people.