Even If

A park bench, which has been taped off so it cannot be used.

for the Weekly Prompts Weekend Challenge of 17 April 2021, outdoor seat.


I’m really sorry. Did I say something? I really don’t know what I did.

One day, it was sunny, we seemed to be fine. The next, you taped me up. You are distant. You stopped visiting me. What did I do?

I heard that you have a virus spreading among you. But did you really think I would help to spread it? Did you really have to fear me?

Even if you, infected, came and sat with me…

Even if you spread your virus onto me…

And that, when you left, even if somebody else had come to sit with me…

And even if they picked this virus up from me…

And even if, they then put it into their mouths…

And even if this all happened, before your virus had whithered and decayed…

And even then, did you think I had stopped loving you?


My featured image is a park bench, in London, in April 2020. There are lots of areas where we can say “we have learned more as the pandemic has gone on” but I’m afraid this was not one of them. Transmissibility was known, even before this time, and the probability of transmission via park benches was already known to be infinitely small.

I knew all that from information gleaned in the public domain, even at that time. Even a year ago. I knew that the odds were impossibly remote. There is no reason why other people could not know this, too. And yet ignorant local councils attempted to stop people using park benches.

Author: Mister Bump UK

Designed/developed large IT systems, interrupted by a stroke in 2016, aged 48. Now mix development of health-related software with voluntary work and writing. Married, with an estranged daughter.

11 thoughts on “Even If”

  1. There has been a lot of foolishness over the pandemic. One can understand the need for caution indoors, but taping off seats in the outdoors was taking it too far.
    Thanks for taking part in the challenge, Pete.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. There’s a bigger picture here of people attempting to power-grab. I think from the start, we needed to be clear about the health risks, and that was probably the first mistake, not to have that clarity.
      There was also a story early on about police in Norfolk patrolling supermarket aisles, to prevent people buying what they considered non-essential items. Again, a misunderstanding of the health risks leading to a power-grab by zome zealot.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. An example of the extreme becoming the norm. I will gladly push that tape aside and sit with you a while. Take the risk to get that lovely view and what would surely be a lively conversation. BTW, I really like your piece.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Funnily enough, when I saw some here, I removed it so I could sit down beside the river. We only need to look to places like China or Myanmar to see people dying, today, for liberties such as these,

      Liked by 1 person

    1. myths? 🤣
      I remember with AIDS, transmission mechanism did seem to be unknown for a while. But that was probably just as I was becoming aware of current affairs and just as AIDS was starting to appear.
      My mate at college got a dose of VD and had a lot of explaining to do to his gf!

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Although in this case, of course, there was no such ambiguity about transmissibility. Not if people had taken the trouble to find out. The label might have been new, but SARS was not. And their earlier battles with SARS left Asian countries far better-placed to deal with covid when it emerged.

          Liked by 1 person

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