And a Very Merry Christmas to You Too, Gary

The Globe & Mail's in-house Grinch, Gary Mason, delivers his own brand of Christmas Cheer.

COVID-19 and its mutant iterations will be with us for some time, and possibly forever.

We need to begin processing that reality.

News of a worrisome COVID-19 variant, now known as Omicron, seems to have shattered the illusion many of us were operating under that we are close to the end of this thing. The fact is, it’s difficult to say precisely where we are with the pandemic, except in a lot better place than we were when the virus first exploded on a world unprepared for its stealth and deadliness.

We don’t know enough about Omicron yet to say whether the global panic its arrival has set off is justified. It’s the World Health Organization’s job to warn us when these viruses are detected, but this time around, it may have unwittingly caused worldwide alarm by saying the variant posed a “very high” risk to the planet while at the same time admitting there was much uncertainty about its lethalness and whether vaccines offered protection against it.

C'mon, admit it. You sort of knew this all along, eh? This coronavirus mutates like a bastard and even today's pharmaecutical wizardry can't seem to get ahead of it. Instead we're in a game of catch-up. 

Now, even as we live and breathe, there may walk among us some future Nobel laureate who will unlock the secret to how to kill this off for good. Until then, Gary Mason is probably right. You'll be making a trip once, maybe twice or even three times a year for some sort of new vaccine or booster.

Relax, it could be worse. Merry Christmas fellow maskers. And, to you anti-vaxxers, know this. You may be living on borrowed time. So just keep on rolling those dice.


  1. It's here to stay, Mound. But it's also here to be managed.

    1. Spot on, Owen. So long as the majority of us accept that managing this thing is going to require vigilance and perseverance. Like climate breakdown, the coronavirus will change the way we live - if we want to live.

      Since undergrad I've had a mild interest in fatalism - the causes, how it takes hold and eventually becomes the "new normal." If that begins to take hold we'll have trouble.

  2. For those rolling the dice, snake eyes would seem the inevitable result.

    1. I wish this anti-vaxx cult didn't insist on exposing those who want to protect themselves and their society to this virus. This is a public health crisis, not a conspiracy to deprive anyone of their rights.

  3. Apparently, the only disease that has been totally eradicated is smallpox. It seems likely that we'll have to learn to live with Covid.

    1. Check out this link that Sal left a couple of days ago. It could change your mind, Gordie.


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