Notes From the Northern Colony

plaguediary

“You want it to be one way, but it’s the other way.”—Marlo Stanfield, The Wire

The stay-at-home rule was lifted yesterday. Since then, Covid cases in Scotland have risen by 414, and Scotland has the highest infection rate in the UK. Professor Jason Leitch, Scotland's national clinical director, says this should be “a warning to us not to go too fast.”

But we are going fast, heading towards a further lifting of restrictions on April 5, and bars and restaurants starting a phased reopening on April 26.

Yesterday and today, the weather has been sunny and warm in Glasgow, so parks have been crowded, with few people wearing masks.

I had my first dose of the AstraZenica vaccine on February 21, but my behaviour will not be changing with the rules. I will continue to go outside as seldom as possible, always masked. If the ending of lockdown is not cancelled, it means Scotland is in life-threatening denial. There is what we want, and there is how it is, and how it is always wins.

“Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.”—Philip K. Dick

#covid19 #coronavirus #scotland #pandemic #lockdown #plaguediary #scottishblogs

—GM Stevenson

Email: contact at stevenson dot scot

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Even in lockdown, essential services continue. And, when a woman has been murdered by a cop, protests and vigils are essential services.

#saraheverard #policeviolence #acab #misogyny #violenceagainstwomen #patsystevenson #plaguediary #covid19 #lockdown

—GM Stevenson

Email: contact at stevenson dot scot

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Laura Henderson Photo: Cube Housing Association

Dear Landlords,

I remarked today to a fellow tenant (or “customer,” as you call us) that communicating with Cube is a bit like praying. But then I corrected myself, because when praying we do not know for certain that no one is listening or that our supplications will be ignored — which we can be certain of when communicating with you.

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A week after I posted this, the stairwells and lifts in the high flats on Wyndford Road are no less manky. I sent the link to Laura Henderson, Cube's Managing Director, right after I posted it, but I have had no reply from her, or anyone else at Cube. I did not expect one, but I hoped to be wrong.

But at least one tenant (or, as Cube calls us, “customers”) has a sense of humour, as evidenced by this in a stairwell:

#cubehousingassociation #wyndford #maryhill #glasgow #healthhazard #laurahendersoncubehousingassociation #scottishblogs #plaguediary #pandemic #covid19 #wyndfordtenantsunion

—GM Stevenson

Email: contact at stevenson dot scot

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This is after cleaning

In a time of plague, Cube Housing Assocation's neglect of the health and safety of its tenants is medieval.

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The anarchist ideal and the libertarian ideal have something in common: they cannot work, because they are based on the assumption that people are sensible and well-intentioned, a thesis that can be disproved these days just by going outside, where you will view:

People wearing masks around their necks, not their faces

People wearing masks over their mouths, not their noses

People not wearing masks at all

People taking their masks off to cough or sneeze

People in any of the above categories standing close to strangers, and becoming angry when asked to distance

There is, as Marx wrote, a lumpen proletariat, but there is also a lumpen bourgeoisie, and the most sensible rules of lockdown will not contain the plague unless they are enforced.

#covid19 #coronavirus #pandemic #lockdown #plaguediary #scottishblogs

—GM Stevenson

Email: contact at stevenson dot scot

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Despite the denial, it's hard to be unaware of death if you pay attention when you walk around Glasgow. On fences and bridges, there are so many memorials to people who have died. They usually include football scarves or jerseys. Some shrines are new, and may only be there for a short while, others have been there for years.

And you can hear the reminders too. On a stretch of the Kelvin Walkway, dense with unmasked people, someone says: “She was feeling better. She was starting to eat again...”

#death #mementomori #glasgow #scotland #scottishblogs #impermanence #mononoaware #plaguediary

—GM Stevenson

Email: contact at stevenson dot scot

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Outdoor life in Glasgow today was like an enactment of China Mieville's novel The City and the City. But, instead of two different nations in the same place, there is a Glasgow where there is a lockdown because of a pandemic, and a Glasgow where there is no plague, and no such law has passed.

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Mammon The Worship of Mammon by Evelyn De Morgan

The Scottish government has announced that, instead of letting people spread Covid-19 for five days at Christmas as previously planned, it will now only allow it on Christmas Day. This is one day too many, but obviously better than five.

Because of this, some people are complaining that Christmas 2020 has been cancelled.

It has not.

Rampant consumerism and partying have been put on hold (not cancelled either). But neither of those things is Christmas. Christmas will go ahead this year as it always does.

#christmasduringpandemic #covid19 #coronavirus #scotland #scottishblogs #plaguediary

—GM Stevenson

Email: contact at stevenson dot scot

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danse macabre

The Scottish government has not announced any plans to ease the laws against robbery, assault or drunk driving.

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