Generally speaking, this blog is about toy soldiers. And math. Sometimes toy soldiers and math.
This is not one of those posts.
This is about COVID-19.
And this is posting feeling like a raw nerve. If it ends up clever, it’s on accident. If it ends up sounding a little angry…that’s on purpose.
Because we’re blowing it.
Why is this post ending up here?
Because the best articulation of what I’ve been feeling isn’t my colleagues and I watching in pained disbelief. It isn’t staring at another graph of another projection and feeling my chest tighten a little more. It came a couple nights ago when I was staring down at my printer, watching the first layer of a terrain piece go down in between working on COVID-19 related projects that once more devoured my weekend. I thought to myself “I really should focus on something. Your hobby time isn’t exactly plentiful right now, and NOVA isn’t actually all that far away.”
Followed immediately by wondering if there will be a NOVA.
Followed immediately by wondering if there should be a NOVA.
Wondering it it dwells in that brief window we’re all hoping for, in between now and the beginning of the season for most winter respiratory viruses when we might be able to take our foot off the gas for just a little bit. Or if the loss of political will to try to keep social distancing going will just drag the epidemic through the summer, and there will never be a window as states re-open even while their cases are going up.
States like Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, DC, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virgina, Washington, West Virginia and Wisconsin.
If I want to stand across from someone and try to play a game in a mask and a face shield.
And even more if I want to stand across from someone refusing to wear a mask as a political statement.
Just how many saving throws I want to make this year.
Because that’s where we’re at. 100,000 Americans dead. Likely to be 110,00 by mid-June. More Americans than have died in all armed conflict from the Korean War onward. 350,000 worldwide.
All we have are masks and staying home. There’s no promise of a miracle drug – antivirals are hard, and at the best of time work…okay. There’s no promise of a vaccine – vaccines don’t show up on demand just because we want them to, and because people are dying. Ask anyone with HIV. There’s no promise that the economy will be okay if we re-open – we’ve seen from other countries that widespread infection does its own number on the nation’s businesses.
All we have are masks and staying home, and we’ve got people refusing to do either. Refusing to take even the most basic steps to protect their fellow man. Acting like human empathy and recognizing that you live in a community constitutes the darkest of tyrannies.
It’s not even original.
I get it – I’m tired of this too. Even as an introvert, I miss – as Folding Ideas calls it – “Being alone in public.” I like air travel. I like not talking to people in Starbucks. And I really like playing toy soldiers with people. I want nothing more than to play demo games of AT18 with the local group to show them the way of the One True Game.
I want to go to NOVA.
I want to meet people there who I’ve never met before – and to not be, in the back of my mind, a little afraid of that.
I love this community – and I care about people in it that I’ve never met in real life. You all have meant a huge amount to me – from people checking in to see how I was doing to more of you giving me an outlet. A place to bullshit about overly elaborate conversions and awesome terrain and 9th edition rumors while I wait for another computer to finish running some code. Familiar voices in podcasts coming through my headphones while I set up yet another print run of yet another face shield.
I miss you all.
So please, take care of yourselves, distance as much as you can, wear a mask and…