By now I’m sure that most of you know about the pandemic that is sweeping our already-troubled world. All I can add to the information already out there is a few special thoughts for musicians.
I expect that you already know how to wash your hands properly, and if you don’t check for a video by your favourite musician and they probably have one along with one of their songs to sing while you wash. Remember to pay attention to the backs of your hands, especially your nails and UNDER your nails. Many of us use our nails to play and we don’t always think of what might be under them. I’ve even heard of musicians avoiding washing their nails for fear of softening them. That’s a small concern compared to potentially getting deathly ill or worse, killing someone else by your negligence.
Remember that soap “kills” the virus by breaking up the fatty (lipid) layer that surrounds the bad stuff. Of course viruses are not alive so they are not really killed; they are disassembled into harmless bits. Soap does this even better than alcohol, so clean your surfaces with soapy water (except for the electrical ones or screens, right?).
Sharing instruments is a bad idea right now. So is trying out new ones (or used ones) for the time being. If you get strings in plastic packages online it’s a good idea to clean the outside of each pack with soapy water, then rinse and dry. It sounds overboard but after seeing people working with fast food sneezing on it, I have to think that hygiene is not uppermost at places that don’t deal directly with the public and don’t think about passing on viruses just by shipping stuff. This is a special problem now that we have fast delivery with little time for the virus to just “die off”.
Just please be careful. No one is immune from this disease, there is no cure (yet), and you can have it and pass it one before you have any symptoms. I don’t want any of you to die, or even get sick, from COVID-19. And if you are in a group with a low infection rate that doesn’t mean that you cannot contract it, get sick, and die. Statistics deal with large numbers of people. YOU are 100% of you.
And if you get bored in self-isolation, or if you just like humour, Zach Weinersmith of Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal comics (SMBC) has made virtually ALL of his e-books available FOR FREE at https://www.smbc-comics.com/covid
Thank you Zach Weinersmith for your generosity at a critical time. Laughter really helps.