The Obedient Meek

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I’d like to talk about this illustration:

At this moment, I am sitting in front of the Whole Foods in Los Altos on Tuesday afternoon. This morning, I drove my wife and daughter to San Francisco International Airport for a week-long trip to Korea. (I would remind you that a vitally important experiment is happening before our eyes, to see if the Knight Travel Effect pertains to family members or merely to your humble but long-suffering host).

Now, this family has engaged in a tremendous amount of travel, well into the six figures of expenses to points all over the world. Getting into Korea was a particular challenge, because they have an enormous stick up their ass about Covid. The amount of testing, gymnastics, and paperwork one has to go through is truly absurd. And, like you, I’m really, really, REALLY sick of dealing with The Powers That Be with respect to their Covid policies. I used to think the anti-maskers and anti-vaxxers were idiotic, Trump-loving, shit-headed morons, but, yeah, I’m starting to get it.

But the picture above compelled me to write this post. You see, one of the umpteen tasks one has to do for the great privilege of visiting a place as boring as Seoul is to get a QR-Code, which is obtained by way of a website they cobbled together in which you have to provide you are triple-vaxxed, give them your Passport information, and prove you had a negative test result within the past few hours (and I would add they test you AGAIN once you get there, AND put you into quarantine until that result comes back).

As one begins the seven steps of getting the QR Code, page one includes the aforementioned illustration. Now, I realize this drawing is meant to represent a typical family, and that it is supposed to make you feel at ease that the good people who built the website are going to get you through this process. But when I look at this drawing, which is supposed to represent the user (AKA Tim Knight), what I see is………

  • A terrified, quivering group;
  • A helpless mother;
  • A cautious, timorous father;
  • A family that is at the mercy of the Authorities who will deign to offer them admission or not

As one goes through the website, the insipid illustrations continue, like this gem……….

……….suggesting the absolute delight of proceeding through this bureaucratic rat’s maze and offering whatever bona fides are required to get to your goddamned destination.

As the Shield & Sword of my family, I escorted them to the check-in counter to make goddamned sure everything was in order and they weren’t going to get any additional shit from the bureaucratic microbes populating the facility. Happily, my prep work stood them in good stead, and they were on their way.

All of which reminds me of this bit from Slope’s Patron Saint, which you are required to watch in its entirety:

As Saint George tells us (and good GOD he would be amazed at the times we live in today): “It’s just one more way of reducing your liberty and reminding you they can fuck with you any time they want.”