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  • Gareth Ellis

Step Away from the Toilet Roll – Covid 19

So the Coronavirus is here and the world has hit the panic button.

Every day on the news we hear talk of countries being locked down, schools being closed and businesses imploring people to work from home.

The media has literally talked about it over a billion times (I feel like I have as well) and people have reacted in a host of different ways, from blasé to full on apocalyptic panic.

For me I don’t see what the reason for panic is. I certainly haven’t rushed out and bought 700 toilet rolls and scoured the black market for hand sanitiser. However, I have been taking care of myself and the family.

At work we’ve had signs installed to remind people to wash their hands. Now, I’m sorry, but who is going to the toilet, coming out and then not washing their hands? Seriously? I’ve heard horror stories from people at work who’ve told me that they know people who have come out of the cubicle and not washed their hands. I fear for the next person who shakes their hand in a meeting.

For anyone reading this I ALWAYS wash my hands. I did before and I will continue to do so regardless of whatever virus is the hot topic of the time.

The problem with this latest virus is the fear that has been spread with it. Various news outlets are reporting on the negative aspects around it, causing people to panic. However, I’ve not seen many reports on how many people have had it and survived for example.

The knock-on effect is the deplorable scenes of people fighting in supermarkets over toilet roll, those who are hoarding items just ‘in case of self-isolation, and those who think this is the end of the world. Please.

Don’t get me wrong I understand the severity of things, I just think that if we all bought things normally, and shopped how we always did then there would be plenty for everyone.

I’ve been looking in shops recently for paracetamol. Over the course of a few days I’d say I’d looked in a dozen different places and the only thing I can find is ibuprofen. I know, it’s a first world problem right? But it’s more of a problem when your wife is pregnant and the only thing she can take for a spot of pain relief is paracetamol. Now if people were a little bit more restrained when it came to ‘preparing’ for an outcome they’ve made up in their heads then there would be plenty of pain relief for everybody. (Note, I found some in the end.)

Of course right now there is a need for caution, there is talk of self-isolation for people over the age of 70 for four months! However, there is also a need for rationality. Yes it can kill, but so can the flu. Yes it’s new and scary, but so is that new Invisible Man film.

I just think we need to be mindful of our older generation (as they’re the ones most at risk) and for god’s sake make sure you wash your hands regularly, if you’re not already that is. And if you’re not why not? You filthy pigs.

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