My dad likes to say that “there’s more than corn in Indiana.” Turns out, he’s right. There IS more than corn in Indiana! Now, us Indiana residents can proudly claim possession of the infamous Coronavirus!! 

In all likelihood, the Coronavirus will eventually reach Goshen College. It’s highly contagious, and you can carry the virus for up to two weeks without showing symptoms, which means that you can be spreading it without even knowing it. Super fun. 

According to The New York Times, over 1,080 people have been diagnosed with the Coronavirus in 40 states, and at least 31 people have died. Italy, the holy land of pizza (and also Pisa) has a death toll of 827 as of Wednesday evening. Normally, being the person I am, (highly anxious) I would be in a panic right now, crying and stocking up on nonperishable food. But, thanks to a very helpful conversation with my therapist and some light (jk, heavy googling, I learned that A) almost no young people have died, and that B) men are dying at a slightly higher rate. As a person who is both young AND a woman, I am relatively safe. Phew! Another day, another near death experience avoided. 

That doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t be taking precautions though, especially as an institution that has hundreds of students living and attending classes together in close proximity. 

While it doesn’t seem like much is being done in this spot in Indiana where the leafy maple grows, one building on this campus really took charge on the issue over the weekend, single handedly protecting us all from the Coronavirus.

The Harold and Wilma Good Library really has tried its best to prove itself to be the best and safest place on campus.

You didn’t even need to enter the Library to see what I mean. Sitting outside the doors, on an inviting little table sat a bottle of hand sanitizer, a box of tissues, and a sign that said “sanitize hands here!” How convenient!! Thanks librarians! You really do rock my world. 

And upon entering the library, there was another such sanitary station, right next to the coffee. What else could you need? Coffee, hand sanitizer, and tissues. All the essentials honestly. 

On Sunday afternoon I was doing homework in the library, with freshly sanitized hands, feeling pretty good about myself, when my friend Gretta (no I am not talking about myself in the third person, I am referring to Gretta Rempel, trendsetter and skincare queen) told me that apparently the hand sanitizer at the library isn’t even effective? Apparently hand sanitizer needs to be 60% alcohol to make any difference, and the stuff they are giving us at the library is completely non-alcoholic!!

Listen, I know that this is a dry campus, but what the actual heck? You’re telling me that our ONLY DEFENSES against the Coronavirus are INEFFECTIVE? 

I was pretty upset about the situation, and considered just pouring vodka in all of the hand sanitizers myself (mom if you’re reading this it’s a JOKE.) But then I noticed something alarming. Out of nowhere, all of the sanitation stations had disappeared! What could have happened? 

I spoke to Fritz Hartman, director of the library about the situation. Well actually, he spoke to me, while I was snooping around trying to figure out where the sanitizer had gone. 

“Oh are you looking for the sanitizer? Turns out it was fake news!! It was ineffective!! We had to take down all of our stations. So sad, right?”

Yes Fritz, it is sad. Now we don’t even have the ILLUSION of safety. It doesn’t feel good to be lied to, but sometimes…. well sometimes it does, you know? It can be comforting to feel the reassuring squirt of non-alcoholic gel, even when in reality it’s only setting us up for our inevitable doom.

Maybe the library will soon provide new, highly alcoholic sanitizer. But until then, the only thing we can do is go to the bathroom and lather up. Soap is our only savior now. So stay safe out there people. And if you need me, I’ll be in the basement of the library surrounded by canned goods and protective face masks.