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Disease Hotel ~ Livestream Q/A
May 16, 2021 @ 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm
The bedfellow of betrayal: naivete. There’s a promise, or the inference of one, and there’s a willingness to trade upon it, and there’s that subterranean thread of a desire to be rescued from the panic. A perfect storm of let down. Add a plague. Voila.
The body betrays, with no ill will that I can see. You imagine that you’re keeping your anxiety to yourself. You take a time out, go for a stroll, drink a drink, let some steam off. You imagine there’s a reset. Not likely. You might feel less, mistake that for ‘better’. It’ll do, in a plague, feeling less. But the body takes no time off from its weary weather. Its subtle symptom semaphore is as faithful as this life can be. Somebody asks: “So, how’re you doing?”. You come up with so many skews on the facts that you could qualify as a fiction writer. “How are you doing in a plague?” You’re a science fiction writer in the making.
Some days from now, I will with reluctance take myself to an airport, suited up for sanitation, and try to hold my breath for twenty hours of travel twilight. I’ll see my home country for the first time in months. I won’t see my home, though, not for days and days to follow. My country, in its panic, will protect itself from me. Plague-wise, it is in much worse shape than the place I’ve been in for months. But that won’t matter. For the sake of the common good, it will oblige me to take my transience to a disease hotel for several days and nights, and sweat out the test results, along with others who are similarly suspect. We will be warehoused, at our expense, and monitored, and there’ll be no walks or fresh air or the like. There might be a kind of vague police presence. I’ll wonder about the health of the workers there, for my sake and for theirs. The parallels to an old folks home as the plague roamed the halls are there. My own pulmonary proclivities mark me as a candidate. I am unnerved.
– Disease: early 14c., “discomfort, inconvenience, distress, trouble,” from Old French desaise, from des– “without, away” (see dis-) + aise “ease”.
Restricted pathological sense of “sickness, illness” in English emerged by late 14c.; the word still sometimes was used in its literal sense early 17c.,
and was somewhat revived 20c., usually with a hyphen (dis-ease). from Old French aise. Of uncertain origin. –
So I’ve got it in my head to do a livestream q/a with you, you in the customary comfort of your place of residence, me in a disease hotel in airport no-man’s land. We don’t have to talk about the hotel, or the war measures currently underway, or the panic. We don’t have to talk about God, or the ancient tower. We can talk about whatever you’d like. But me? I’ll proceed in the manner of a citizen of a former time in an undeclared occupation zone. Minus the drama. Plus the fret.
That should be something.
This livestream will be broadcast from an airport hotel room on Sunday, May 16th at 2pm EST.
A live-from-the-floor video will be streamed to ticket holders using Zoom. The call access link will be emailed to all ticket holders, once within 72 hours of the talk and again 24 hours before the livestream. This recording will not be available after the livestream, at least not as things stand. This is a non-refundable ticket.
Ticket holders are invited to submit questions in advance to us by Friday, May 14th. These questions will be read and considered and a selection of them will be presented to Stephen.
A technical note: You’ve had a ton of “content” rammed your way these last months with just about every presenter tricked out in the latest broadcasting trinketry. That’s done something to expectations. There may be iffy wiring, leaning on internet high voltage and velocity overload. We ask for your patience. This session is about ideas, not production values; it’s about citizenship, not cyberspace.