Mira Variations

I went in to the office, my first time in central London since the reintroduction of measures in response to the Omicron variant.

Although TfL officially never stopped requiring masking, observance had fallen to well below 50% – however today we were back up to at least 75% on both buses and trains. I was able to get a good view of westbound platform of the District Line at Victoria. There were also people at the turnstiles challenging unmasked travellers, although the one man I saw get this response was still able to carry on through.

I think there may have been a new anti-lockdown message from the “White Rose” people stuck on the door of the bus, but it flickered past too quickly to see it. Nobody official seems bothered about removing those messages, and at one point in the summer I was recognising the same 249 because every time it pulled up I was getting the same eyeful about false media and the rise of fascism. The White Rose messaging is present all over London and I’ve seen it up in the Midlands as well so I assume it has national impact. I saw some anti-lockdown people campaigning in Upper Norwood a few weeks ago. I wonder if we’re due for another one of their jamborees in Trafalgar Square.

This was a sad sight, I hope it gets claimed soon:

“Omicron Variant” is such a clumsy and portentous name, like a bad Robert Ludlum thriller posthumously created from a page of scribbled notes. A much better alternative would be “Mira Variant”, a play on the simpler name for Omicron Ceti, the variable star that defined a resemblance class. There is the tantalising possibility that it is recorded in the astronomical records of several different cultures.

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