It’s been a while since I last penned a blog post and it’s unfortunate that this post is being written under a cloud of such uncertainty.
What you are about to read will probably come as no surprise unless you have somehow managed to avoid all forms of media over the last few weeks.
Retail store closures. Restaurant closures. Bar closures. Office closures. School closures. There are whole countries on lockdown and I’m sure the UK is not too far away from a similar situation. But there are thousands of people that are required to carry on as normal and there are many more that want to carry on as normal but are being restricted. This is an undoubtedly serious situation and one that must be dealt with collectively. As you will already know, it is of the utmost importance to take greater care of the older generation and those with pre-existing health conditions. We all want to limit the physical impact that this virus has already had.
However, the damage has also been caused in other areas. To me, this global crisis has shed further light on the perils associated with capitalism. As I’ve harped on about in other posts, capitalism ignites our incessant want for things we don’t actually need. And, it encourages a society of impulse buying and greed. This has been showcased by the mass panic and bulk buying of groceries of the last couple of weeks. Those that truly need these goods are being forced to go without. A large proportion of the population is only acting in their own self-interest with little regard for others. It’s sickening. A global recession is definitely imminent. Yet multinational corporations with the funds to survive during these times are the ones asking the government for hand-outs.
Just like numerous other small businesses, we are unsure how this is going to pan out. We are trying to operate as normal to the best of our ability. This crisis has reaffirmed what we at WAWWA already knew. The world has become accustomed to mass consumption on a daily, hourly and even a minute-by-minute basis. To those companies that are heavily reliant on this structure it is damaging. But it is even more damaging to those that don’t. We don’t encourage consumption on a mass scale. In fact, for the most part, we encourage our customers to assess whether they truly need something before consuming at all. This can be said for many independent businesses. So instead of fighting your way through the crowds at your local supermarket, why don’t you take a trip to your local shop for your tin of tomatoes or baked beans? Take a trip to your local cafe (if they’re still open), instead of Starbucks or Costa? If you do need some new clothes, why don’t you see what your local independent stores or even charity shops have to offer before buying from the bigger companies? By shopping independently and consciously in times of great economic uncertainty, your purchases will likely go some way to putting food on people’s tables and toilet roll in their bathrooms.
On a more positive note, it seems that taking this period of self-isolation and retreat from daily routines is doing the environment the world of good. In China, there has been a 25% drop in carbon dioxide emissions since late January. A large cloud of nitrogen oxide that was once hovering over China has since evaporated. In the canals of Venice, Italy the water has become far clearer due to the absence of boat traffic. Fish are now visible underwater and the clearer water has attracted swans and dolphins to the area. Scientists from Stanford University have also predicted that the Coronavirus outbreak might actually save more lives than it will claim due to the improvements made to the environment worldwide.
It goes to show that if we came together to the same effect to tackle climate change then we might be able to save more lives as a result. I may have gone about how this disaster has brought out the worst in some people. But it has brought out the best simultaneously. Almost the entire world has mobilised in an effort to prevent this virus from spreading. And, although I’m not a religious person, I have finally seen evidence of the phrase “love thy neighbour”. When it comes to crises, this isn’t the first one we’ve faced. We’ll see the back of this and return to normality at some point, I’m sure.
Stay safe out there peeps and cherish those close to you.
Wash your hands and hope for ghost wipes in the loo.
Peace and love,
Harry @ WAWWA x
P.S. We’ll be posting a few bits and bobs to keep you guys entertained in self-isolation. So keep an eye on our social media accounts and check your emails if you’re subscribed to our mailing list.
P.P.S. If you don’t understand the title, take a look at Bob Mortimer’s Instagram account (@realbobmortimer). His ‘train guy’ vids will keep you entertained.