COVID-19: What you need to know for March 13, 2020

Everything is cancelled

Rounding up the latest news, closures, health updates, and busting myths around COVID-19.

If you’ve been monitoring the situation in hot zones around the globe, then it should come as no surprise that Ontario moved to close its public schools on Thursday. All publicly funded schools will be shuttered for two weeks following the March break, the Ontario government announced on the recommendation from Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr. David Williams, and the COVID-19 command table.

Parents, monitor your existing plans for March break programming. As closures and cancellations intensify, you’ll want to plan to hit Toronto’s abundance of parks, lock-in those streaming service subscriptions, dust off the torrent machine, and unleash a dose of Pixar therapy for the kiddos.

Here’s what else is happening around Toronto and beyond.

The Good

A Canadian research team is out here flexing

From the pile of very good news, researchers from Sunnybrook, McMaster University, and the University of Toronto have isolated the agent (SARS-CoV-2) responsible for the ongoing outbreak of COVID-19. It’s a first step that will allow medical researchers around the globe to move forward with streamlining testing procedures and develop vaccines.

Virtual programming is in abundance

Hats off to the Seattle Symphony for its decision to offer free streaming broadcasts of performances. More of this, please!

More companies and services are climbing aboard the movement to lift barriers on access, including Down Dog, a popular app for practicing yoga at home.

Also, don’t sleep on free services like Kanopy, the Toronto Public Library’s FREE streaming service. If you’ve ever wanted to catch up on the classics and dip into some art films, here’s your hookup.

Social distancing is effective

It’s the news introverts have been waiting the entire lives for. Social distancing works. Our best shot at flattening the curve may rest on us all taking a break from one another.


The Bad

Truly, everyone is at risk

There is no VIP prevention method, as evidenced by positive tests from the likes of NBA stars Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell, Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson, and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s wife Sophie Gregoire Trudeau tested positive for COVID-19.

The aforementioned are reportedly currently in a good state of health.

…And then cancel culture came for everything

In this case, being cancelled is actually a good thing. Sports? Cancelled. Broadway? Cancelled. Schools? Cancelled. Concerts? Cancelled. Harvey Weinstein? Rot in hell ya filthy bastard.

It appears society is embracing social distancing, as most professional sports leagues, performers, and other mass gathering providers have elected to shut ‘er down for the foreseeable future. Even e-sports have logged off. North America’s largest concert promoters came together on Thursday to recommend the suspension of their concerts, too.

We’re going to get through this. We’re going to do it together.

The Really!?

The shit ticket shortage has been greatly exaggerated

No, you’re not going to have to ask your neighbour if they spare a square. There happens to be plethora of the raw materials required to manufacture arse wipe, according to one of the country’s authorities on onionskin.

“We’ve got all the raw material, we’ve got all the assets running, we have all the production, our sites are at full capacity to recover from this spike,” said Dino Bianco, chief executive officer of Mississauga-based Kruger Products LP, maker of Cashmere and Purex brand toilet paper.

“We’re essentially selling it at exactly the same price to all our customers. Ethically, we do not want to take advantage of a situation that is of great consumer and community need.”

Look at these assholes

Seriously… fuck these people.


A song for the times

Image via Wikipedia/Creative Commons