It could understandably irk any author to hear that their work is being used to compare to a current pandemic, but Stephen King has apparently flipped the script just enough as Kevin Burwick of MovieWeb writes when it comes to his own stand on the coronavirus. Like so many the famed horror author was initially dismissive of the disease and its effects, as he went on to say that it was survivable just like so many others. But after the CDC had their say it would appear that King, like many others, has seen the error of such thinking and has recognized just how serious the matter really is. While he’s not panicking he certainly doesn’t want people freaking out about his book, The Stand, as they try to compare COVID-19 to Project Blue, or Captain Trips as it was eventually named in the book. He has released a passage from his book that explains how the coronavirus does actually spread, and while it’s useful it’s also another way to scare people despite being absolutely truthful:
“Joe-Bob felt fine. Dying was the last thing on his mind. Nevertheless, he was already a sick man. He had gotten more than gas at Bill Hanscombe’s Texaco. And he gave Harry Trent more than a speeding summons. Harry, a gregarious man who liked his job, passed the sickness to more than 40 people during that day and the next. How many those 40 passed it to is impossible to say – you might as well ask how many angels can dance on the head of a pin. If you were to make a conservative estimate of five a piece, you’d have 200. Using the same conservative formula, one could say those 200 went on to infect a thousand, the thousand five-thousand, the five-thousand twenty-five-thousand. Under the California desert and subsidized by the tax payers’ money, someone had finally invented a chain letter that really worked.”
The point here is that it doesn’t take mass gatherings to pass this virus along. It can be passed from one person to the next, in which case it might be passed in an exponential manner as one person passes it to another, then two more people pass it to two more, and then four more, and so on and so forth until the infection has begun to spread in a manner that is difficult if not impossible to check or even comprehend. Of course if the coronavirus was anywhere near as potent as Project Blue the world would have been on lock down some time ago since the effects and the mortality rate of King’s super-bug was great enough to kill off 99 percent of the world’s population, leaving only the unlucky few behind to see to the disposal of the dead and to somehow get the world started again. Some folks have already stated that viruses are the world’s defense mechanism when humanity gets too out of control, and are its way of thinning the population, as morbid as this might sound. But folks, if we were dealing with a strain of the flu as seen in The Stand, not even being healthy and having no underlying health issues would save a lot of us, since Project Blue took the healthy and the sick, the young and the old, and it didn’t discriminate save for blind, random luck that might have been turned into purpose by some higher being that we don’t get to understand.
A lot of people are still willing to stand by books such as The Stand and other pandemic stories as reasons why they’re still worried and can’t appear to find the silver lining that is bound to be there if we look hard enough. The coronavirus is survivable as it’s been seen, not just by those that aren’t in the major risk ages, but by those that are able to find medical attention and those that are able to keep themselves healthy and quarantined from others. Spreading the virus is one reason why it’s so dangerous, and people not willing to listen are why some states have found themselves on lock down. In The Stand there was no lock down attempt until it was too late, so the cries that our government has done nothing, that there was no plan for this, are accurate enough in some ways, but at the very least the disease is not wiping out a large percentage of those it affects. Sadly many people will not be around to see the end of this disease as thousands have succumbed to it over the past two months, but thankfully many upon many more have recovered, a fact that should be able to grant some measure of hope to those that need it. The end times aren’t here yet, as this disease will eventually pass, hopefully leaving people a little wiser.