What is really gruesome about Ebola is that for the four+ decades we’ve known of its existence, the West has been kind of ok with it – because it was just killing Africans. And let’s face it we are used to watching desperate foreigners die of poverty or disease or preventable illnesses or the results of the exploitation of the developed world – and getting on with our tea.
Suddenly we are interested because it looks like the virus might have the bare faced cheek to come over here. (For previous comments on this issue check out blogs 12. Armageddon will not be televised and 95 Trump is a chump – again).
In lieu of anything new to be said about this disaster and certainly anything humorous, I will instead insert here an excerpt from my short story The Remainder published last year in ROOT.
(entry - 223)
I hoped the false lavender would trigger a sensory memory of the real thing but it’s too long ago.... The material disintegrated even though I tried not to handle it. During the great plagues of 2103 when a cloying, fetid stench fouled the air for months, I forced my precious lavender pouch to my nose even though there was only the faintest trace of its aroma. I tried breathing through it, ignoring the muggy brown air which was like my own fear. In those days the air was always adulterated with some chemical or other. Every year the food developers created new seeds to keep ahead of the mutated crop diseases. I vaguely remember a seven-year cycle. But eventually the developers found they were only two seasons away from earth zero. That was when the super-plagues arrived. Also the nightmares that I still have. Millions were already weakened from unwholesome synthetic nutrition. It was in 2103 that we took our biggest hit. Food supplements could not prevent starvation, even in the Priority Nations. The Sub Nations ceased. I can hardly visualise a Sub Nation now. They are a shameful footnote; areas bombed for their oils and natural resources by coalitions controlling the peace weapons. Even in grandmother’s time it was accepted that there was little practical purpose in shoring up the fragile populations of countries that, in the pre-plague years, failed to hand over resources to the Democratic Council of Nations. We were taught at school that areas of the globe historically suffered from famine and various economic and geographical crises. There was an unspoken understanding that it was the natural order of things that these branches of the human tree be allowed to whither for the benefit of The Remainder. Lots of things are unspoken now. These are the things that hurt my head. The ‘natural order of things’ isn’t much used as an argument the rest of the time.
If you haven’t already downloaded Casey & the Surfmen for the kids DO -
Part 1. Down by the Sea
Part 2. Ripping the Earth
can both be found at