An interesting aspect of our very weird lockdown comes from the strange outbursts from people who somehow seem convinced that self-imprisonment is the answer to battling a weird virus that seems more sci-fi than reality.

Image of part of  a Sailing to Purgatory webpage to illustrate the article.
Home tutor ... When the State says you must study at home, it's a real help if you have a friend that knows the purrfect answers. Photo by Reuters on Twitter.
I mean, hear a government minister losing his cool today when the interviewer asked him when these ghost town-like antics will end.

The fellow lost his cool on microphone, insisting the public is not to be encouraged to think about afterwards.


A good friend gets so frantic about people simply going out-of-doors during our weird lock-down that I hold back from even mentioning my combined cycling exercise and shopping expeditions.

It might be more understandable had he been one of those who used to go on about the sanctity of Sundays when no business should be allowed to open on the holy day. But I've not heard such conformist bias from him.

I remember only too well what it was like in the army when people were confined to barracks.

You wouldn't see any conscientious obeying of sudden rules like that, and this by people supposedly learning about discipline.

They’d be out and over the walls the moment a safe means of return had been devised.

Impromptu demands

And yet here in peacetime large numbers follow the hardly more than impromptu demands of politicians. Very odd.

Has all the world gone crazy? A calmer and more understandable side of the madness appeared in social media from Germany, a country with far less demanding rules – and interestingly rather less cases of the virus.

Reuters tweeted the photo of pupil Kaethe Singer, of Jugenheim, near Darmstadt, stuck at home doing her school work but getting welcome advice from her cat.

‘Very cute!’ a Tweeter commented.‘We should always study with cats.’

A doubter commented, ‘She does not know how to hold a pencil.’

Another wrote, ‘Better holding a pencil like that and knowing what to write. Others know how to type and write nonsense.’

Cheering and clapping

Not everyone's militant here, of course.

Take last Thursday evening at about 8pm, for instance. I was cycling up steep Surbiton Hill after a semi-clandestine foray to Sainsbury's.

People suddenly emerged from their homes to cheer and clap, shouting what sounded like 'Any HS?' I took that to be a topical phrase for 'Any Home Service?' 'Not in my neighbourhood, I called back.

That was really nice and a welcome change from the demands for stop-at-home obedience.

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