“We’re leading our children into a long, dark tunnel…”



It did escalate. It escalates every day and now we are in lockdown. 

Today I taught Shakespeare from my home study: the characters of Richard III read by my students across 6 different countries while my own kids did their own work in their bedrooms. 

It is more than a war. It is humanity v… 

It is as bad as it could be without being an actual alien attack (though there are some who would say that this is precisely what it is…) I heard someone say that they need to change the batteries in the birds and that’s why we’re all locked down in our homes. I’ve heard others say that there’s some glitch in the mainframe and there’s an urgent need to get it fixed before people notice. People have started to notice – those noises that people were reporting all over the world; those eerie grindings and groanings seemingly coming from the very heavens were, they say, early signs that things needed fixing… 

I wonder if we invent these fictions because they allow us to distance ourselves from the real causes of the world’s woe.. these intelligent invaders from outer space that land on earth with the sole purpose of depleting our energy reserves (don’t have many of those any more) and setting fire to our homes and towns so that poor old we are suddenly the defenceless victims.  

When the aliens come down in these films and make contact – because they always do (they’re generally organised and aware) the first thing that we (apparently the US army is all of us) want to do is show them what big guns we’ve got and how we’d like to kill them, all of them. We watch these films and we’re meant to believe that all of a sudden we’re desperate to save our fellow human beings. 

No one ever rocks up, and there must be those out there drunk or high enough or simply with the balls to stand up and say “mate, we’ve fucked it all up already. Anything you do will be an improvement.” I’d go further that, too, and suggest that the wisest thing anyone could do – layman or politician or scientist – would be to communicate and ask for a loan of the technology so that we can get the fuck off this rock. But they never do that. 

In the end the alien is the saviour because it diverts all attention from our mess and mistakes and gets us all off the hook. I am getting a bit stir-crazy at home after four days but I am absolutely without doubt that there are a few people out there absolutely loving the current disruption. 

We are making a mess out of it and it is a travesty that it takes an event like Corona to make us pause and see it. And that’s all we do. We pause, some of us, and take the opportunity to look at our own lives and the way that we do things and maybe at least plan to do things differently in the future. Maybe. 

We’re leading our children into a long and dark tunnel and maybe the sane amongst us could usurp the politicians and the money and make our own little changes.  

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