Ten times diseases nearly ended the world. Also, don’t panic about the Coronavirus.

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First of all, please understand that there is a difference between panicking and acting responsibly. To panic means to have a sudden uncontrollable fear or anxiety, often causing wildly unthinking behaviour. You get it? Good.

So far, loadshedding has most definitely killed more people in South Africa that the Coronavirus. Because as of now, the Coronavirus has killed zero people and I can assure you there have been fatal motor accidents, shootings, robberies and crime related fatalities that can be connected to loadshedding. Not to mention failure of medical equipment reliant on electricity.

Through the ages there have been some tough times when it comes to communicable diseases. Here are ten of those times:

The Antonine Plague
This bad boy wiped out one-third of the Roman army. Back in AD165, Roman soldiers were unaware of the fact that they were carrying either smallpox or measles when they returned from their near-east missions. For those who are like “What the fuck is the Near East?” – it was roughly the area of the Ottoman Empire which encompasses Western Asia, Turkey, and Egypt. Over a period following more or less 15 years, outbreaks killed roughly 2000 people a day. This resulted in Rome’s inability to hold back tribes in the north. They should have coughed on them. Maybe they did, because a whopping total of 6.5 million people died.

The Plague of Justinian 
We can blame infected rats as it slipped into Constantinople from China in 541 AD killing. At its peak, it was killing up to 10k people per day! The plague fucked up Emperor Justinian’s tax-base, undermining his ability to fuck up the Vandals and the Goths. This in effect shattered any hopes and chances of uniting the Western and Eastern Roman Empires. Justinian himself was one of the lucky few who was infected and survived. When he eventually died he was 83 and it was probably of natural causes. That’s very impressive. It today’s terms, he would been like 203 years old. Justinian was one of the deadliest pandemics in history, resulting in the deaths of an estimated 25–50 million people during two centuries of recurrence, a death toll equivalent to 13–26% of the world’s population at the time of the first outbreak. Fokken yikes!

The Black Death was the biggest one
The bacterium Yersinia pestis (fuck, it sounds like a Greek pop star)  killed up to 60% of Europe’s population between 1348 and 1350, reducing the global number of people to 350 million! Ever wonder where the phrase “live for the moment” came from? It took roughly 150 years for the population to recover. Goeie fok!

London’s Great Plague killed 100,000 people between 1665-1666.
This was a viral hemorrhagic fever and the infections began on the docks in 1665 because it was imported on ships from Amsterdam transporting bales of cotton. It was spread by Stevedores who crowded in squalor on the docks. What made it worse was instructions to eradicate all the cats and dogs in the city because the the rat population skyrocketed. Rats carried the fleas that carried the disease. What saved them? The Great Fire which started at either the bakery or baker’s house of Thomas Farriner on Pudding Lane. It burnt down the disease ridden houses and buildings.  Yay fire!

The Great Plague of Marseilles in 1720 – 100,000 people dead! 
In 1720 a merchant ship named Grand-Saint-Antoin stopped in Cyprus which was ridden with plague before it embarked for Marseilles. Upon arrival it was put under quarantine. It was known that passengers on the ship perished, even the ship’s doctor! But money talks and powerful city merchants had influence and had the ships quarantine lifted. They wanted to get to all the shit they paid for which was on board. By the time the disease was under control, half of the fucking area’s people had died! Yay money!

Moscow’s plague and subsequent riot from 1771. Up to 200,000 people dead!
By late 1770, the bubonic plague had Moscow by the balls and by spring of the following year it was a full blown epidemic. So they tried to quarantine people which just angered them. Riots and the destruction of public property followed. The economy was like “I’m out!” and pulled the handbrake and this lead to food running out. Monumental fuck up of note! Soldiers finally had to restore order whilst at the same time distributing food. Yay soldiers!

The Third Cholera Pandemic
This one is an ugly fucker. It is a disease of the large intestine and transmitted through contaminated water. The Third Cholera Pandemic lasted from 1852 to 1859 as it swept through Asia, North America, and Africa hitting Russia particularly hard causing a million Russian deaths. The third cholera pandemic was the words by far. Oh and FYI, apparently the the seventh cholera pandemic is still going on..

The Russian flu pandemic of 1889-1890
This was a deadly influenza pandemic that killed about 1 million people worldwide. It was also dubbed “Asiatic flu” although it began in Russia. It spread rapidly through Europe made a draai in North America and finally reached Asia before tapering off. Ironically back in good old South Africa at the same time, a fuck load of railway lines opened for the first time. Yay modern travel!

The 1918 Spanish flu
You know how swine flu hit the world decade or so ago? Yeah… that’s now a new thing. The Spanish flu pandemic from 1918 was H1N1 and killed 75 million people and the majority of victims where young and healthy. Estimates actually had the number of dead of around 6% of the global population back then because cases were reported from the Pacific Islands to the Arctic. That’s basically everywhere. The disease did not originate in Spain – European nations just had the most accurate and uncensored reporting of the outbreak resulting in the belief that it started there. It returned again in 2009 and between 10% and 20% of those infected died from the H1N1 flu virus.

The Hong Kong Flu of 1968
Hey, this is our time! Let’s get yo the scary stuff. 1968 isn’t that long time ago and The Hong Kong flu epidemic shows how a modern crisis might hit the world. Bryan Adams could make a song a bout it. It was the Summer of ’68 when the first outbreak was reported in Hong Kong. By September, the flu reached India, Philippines, Australia and Europe. Troops returning from Vietnam brought it to California, just in time for Christmas. By January of ’69 it rolled into South America, Japan and Africa.  A million people died, but the virus only had a case-fatality ratio of only .5%. Does that sound scary and familiar? It does. And I repeat – don’t panic.

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) symptoms
Runny nose
Sore throat
Cough
Fever
Difficulty with breathing in severe cases.

Exhibiting these symptoms could still just mean that you just have normal run-of-the-mill flu. If you feel super kak, visit a doctor. If you feel fine, please read and share news about it responsibly. Follow these guys on twitter, as they share the legit news, officially and responsibly.

Here is a less scary top 10 of movies and TV series picks from the Plumlist. It means you can stay indoors and watch TV and not get infected:
10# The Test: A New Era for Australia’s Team
The eight-part docuseries will premiere on Prime Video around the world in more than 200 countries and territories, giving viewers a behind-the-scenes look at how one of the world’s best cricket teams fell from grace and was forced to reclaim their title and integrity.
On Amazon Prime
(read more)
 #9 The sexiest movies and series to stream
They say that chivalry is dead (and good riddance, frankly – we’re all capable of opening our own car doors, thank you very much) and old-fashioned romance might be going the same way. But it’s not all bad news – for all the cynics, singletons and red-blooded humans out there, Showmax brings the steamiest 18+ rated content you’ll find on any streaming platform.
On Showmax
(read more)
#8 Nine biographies and real-life dramas to stream
Crime, war, money, drugs, politics, the 70s, terrorist attacks, conspiracy theories and good old American patriotism: they’re all here. Sure, there are books to read about historical events, but Hollywood has made it so much easier to get some facts into your skull while eating popcorn. Here’s our pick of 9 real-life dramas to stream on Showmax.
 On Showmax
(read more)
 #7 Seventeen series for self-isolation
From drama series about the real-life spread of diseases, to workplace comedies that serve as nostalgic reminders of when we could actually all go to the same space together to do our jobs, to boxsets of series with enough episodes to keep you occupied for hours on end, to NSFW shows that are strictly for adults, to just downright excellent entertainment, here are our picks for these dark times.
On Amazon Prime, Showmax, Netflix, DStv Now
(read more)
 #6 What to expect in Westworld Season 3
Ahead of the release of Season 3 of Westworld early next week, HBO has asked nicely that those of us who have watched the first four episodes please not give away any spoilers. That’s no problem, because they are as topsy-turvy as the preceding 10 episodes of Season 2.
On Showmax
(read more)
 #5 Meet the cast of Still Breathing
The first thing people do in the face of a challenge is to stop breathing. And that feeling of sheer terror and panic doesn’t go away immediately. It lingers, like in M-Net’s brand-new drama Still Breathing, which is streaming on DStv Now – new episodes land every Thursday night.
On DStv Now 
(read more)
 4# Get the scoop on Press, the one-season TV wonder about the British news industry
The six-part series Press, now streaming only on Showmax, presents two British newspapers at opposite ends of the news spectrum, and pits them and their journalists against each other.
 On Showmax
(read more)
 #3 Murdoch Mysteries
Season 13 is a special instalment of the popular crime drama series because the show celebrates its 200th episode (episode 14) and there’s much fanfare with a number of returning faces like Lisa Norton, John Trench, Dmitry Chepoverstky and others reprising roles from previous seasons.
On DStv Now 
(read more)
 #2 Our pick of the funniest moments from S6 of Brooklyn Nine-Nine
Since its 2013 debut, Brooklyn Nine-Nine has racked up two Emmys, two Golden Globes, two Critics’ Choice Awards and a GLAAD Award for its depictions of LGBT characters and relationships. The Office and Parks and Recreation creator Michael Schur’s quirky series has been hailed as the most delightful crime comedy on TV, and a beacon of wholesome joy.
 On Showmax
(read more)
 #1 The excellent cast and spooky premise of Emergence will keep you guessing
Golden Globe nominee Allison Tolman (Fargo) stars as police chief Jo Evans, with BET Comedy Awards winner and Teen Choice nominee Donald Faison (Scrubs) as her ex-husband Alex in this sleeper hit of a sci-fi drama series.
On DStv Now
(read more)

Our randomized trailer pick of the week

Each week we take a number from 1 to 10 from our list of suggestions and put it through a randomizer to choose a trailer to show you. This week it landed on our number 7 spot, Seventeen series for self-isolation“, so we spin the wheel again and it lands on number 10 which is National Geographic’s The Hot Zone:

In 1989, Ebola landed on U.S. soil. After appearing in a research lab in D.C., a heroic U.S. Army scientist put her life on the line to prevent an outbreak. Inspired by true events and starring Julianna Margulies:

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griffinTen times diseases nearly ended the world. Also, don’t panic about the Coronavirus.

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