COVID-19’s elder virus brother, the Spanish flu

An estimated 500 million people contracted the Spanish flu, and the death toll was between 17 million and 50 million

COVID-19’s elder virus brother, the Spanish fluAs our world deals with the coronavirus pandemic, a couple of interesting personal stories came out of Europe on March 29. The Guardian reported that Hilda Churchill, a 108-year-old woman in Salford, England, became (quite likely) the oldest British person to die from COVID-19 symptoms. And Turkey’s Anadolu Agency and Fox News reported that a…

You’ll never find a better excuse to quit smoking than COVID-19

Recent wake-up calls began when a Chinese article reported smoking increased the risk of becoming sicker by 14 times

You’ll never find a better excuse to quit smoking than COVID-19The coronavirus is not just a threat. It’s an opportunity. The COVID-19 pandemic offers every smoker and vaper with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to quit: a wake-up call. The novel virus causes a respiratory disease that’s worse with lungs that are already vulnerable, whether because of age or disease. Lungs are also made vulnerable by smoking…

How will you choose to reset after COVID-19?

We’re living in unprecedented times, and perhaps that's exactly what we needed to shift our priorities and our energies

How will you choose to reset after COVID-19?I’ve spent more time on social media in the past 10 days than in the past 10 years. I confess it has done very little for my enthusiasm, motivation or equilibrium. I feel the same way about televised news. Sure, there are the odd amusing posts that keep me chuckling. I especially liked the memes…

Is Canada heading to a national emergency?

Ignorant, selfish actions by some Canadians put fellow citizens in harm’s way. It must stop now, even if the measures are drastic

Is Canada heading to a national emergency?“We’ve all seen the pictures online of the people who seem to think they’re invincible. Well, you’re not. Enough is enough. Go home and stay home. This is what we all need to be doing. And we’re going to make sure this happens, whether by educating people more on the risks or by enforcing the…

Don’t let COVID-19 permanently change Canada

The speed of the spread and the rise of the body count prove something menacing has us at its mercy. How we deal with it is crucial

Don’t let COVID-19 permanently change CanadaThe Quebec government recently ordered the province’s cathedrals of commerce – also known as shopping malls – to close. The edict followed another imperative obliging all places of religious worship to lock their doors. Yet Prime Minister Justin Trudeau subsequently suggested Canadians might not have seen anything yet when it comes to draconian measures to…

Don’t let self-isolation destroy your business

How to stay connected to your audience through your online platforms during the COVID-19 crisis

Don’t let self-isolation destroy your businessThe COVID-19 pandemic is wreaking havoc on business owners across Canada. From major retailers to small mom-and-pop operations, business owners everywhere are shutting down for anywhere from 14 to 30 days to indefinitely. This needs to be an opportunity for you to show your audience how much you care. Whatever industry you’re in, whatever the…

We can’t afford to be casual about COVID-19

The coronavirus won’t be here forever but we need to take preventive measures now to minimize it’s impact in Canada

We can’t afford to be casual about COVID-19It seems like only yesterday we were discussing the Wet’suwet’en solidarity blockades, Teck Resources’ withdrawal from a $20-billion oil sands project and the Ontario teachers’ strike. These issues (and others) have mostly been placed on the back burner due to the coronavirus, or COVID-19. This global pandemic started back in late December 2019. Chinese health…

Blowing coronavirus all out of proportion

Politicians and sports officials, wary of a negative media broadside, are taking no chances about infection. If they have to hobble the economy, then so be it

Blowing coronavirus all out of proportionLike dominoes, high-profile sports and cultural events are falling to the spectre of the coronavirus threat. The 2020 World Women’s Championship of hockey in Halifax was cancelled last weekend. This week’s Indian Wells ATP/WTA tennis tournament has been cancelled over the perceived coronavirus threat. The LPGA cancelled an entire three-event swing through Asia. Chicago State…

What’s in a name? Plenty, if it’s a disease

To suggest the disease naming process of an international agency may have affected sales of a beer carrying a similar name tells us something about our risk-averse society

What’s in a name? Plenty, if it’s a diseaseA survey this week suggested that 38 per cent of Americans aren’t drinking Corona beer due to the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak, formerly known as the coronavirus. There’s obviously no link between the beer and the virus, but the survey suggests a mental association between the product and the disease may be too much to bear…

The Coronavirus – 1918 all over again?

We are no better prepared than we were for the great influenza pandemic of 1918

The Coronavirus – 1918 all over again?Clusters of a dozen or so deaths may get nonstop “if-it-bleeds-it-leads” press coverage. But the lack of preparedness for the really, really big threats may be met with virtual radio silence – until panic breaks out. The worst, possibly existential, threat is the stealthy, invisible one that multiplies exponentially –  in the accurate sense of…
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