1917: A new strain of the flu begins spreading among French troops in WWI, and killing them.
1918: US troops returning from Europe bring the virus with them. The first cases in the US occur at Ft Riley, KS. It spread quickly from there. Schools, churches, and theaters closed. People began wearing masks—in some places wearing them became law. The baseball season was ended in September, a month early. They did play the World Series—the last one the Red Sox would win until 2004. The worst months were Sep-Dec; thousands upon thousands died. The college football season was ended after only 5 games that year. After December, the pandemic appeared to abate. The Spanish flu virus was not gone, but people acted like it was.
March, 1919: The nightmare came true—the pandemic came back with a vengeance. As part of it, the Stanley Cup got cancelled with no winner and the two teams at two wins apiece (and one tie). Why? The Montreal Canadiens were in Seattle to play the Metropolitans. On game day all but 4 of the Canadiens were ill. Defenseman Joe Hall (elected to the hockey HoF in 1961) died within 4 days. It remains the only Stanley Cup ever cancelled after it had started.
The Spanish flu pandemic killed more Americans than WWI and WWII combined.
There are yahoos where I live chafing against wearing masks and social distancing. One particular idiot is driving around my town with slogans painted on his car proclaiming the pandemic a fake news conspiracy.
Stand strong And protect yourselves. Please.
4 thoughts on “The Nightmare Scenario When Sports Return”
In case you didn’t see the featured photo—it’s from 1918, note the masks:
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We have “fake news” morons here too. Very little growth and development above the brainstem for these, I suspect.
Incidentally, there’s an emerging theory that in fact the 1918 flu first spread to humans in Kansas, not Europe, and American troops dispatched to Europe took it with them. There’s a new, very extensive book on the 1918 pandemic that covers that and some other possibilities: Martina E. Fischer, 1918 FLU Pandemic: The Spanish Flu and the Deadly Wave of the Great Influenza 1918 – 1920. I recently ordered a copy – it just came out – and I’m waiting to dig into it.
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Have you ever noticed that the staunchest conspiracy theorists – those who go on and on about JFK and such – are also less honest in their daily life? It’s as if how many lies they tell increases their level of disbelief of others.
I prefer to keep my lies focused on myself, not let them out. Like for myself, I believe less is more attractive in terms of hairline. The opposite, of course, is true of waistline.
So maybe you don’t mind the barber shops being shutdown so much/