I met with my editor for my upcoming book American Madness (out in August) the other day. Among other things, we discussed in-store appearances to promote it. Oh yay, that’s the fun part! After years of quiet, careful work, I get to see your beautiful faces and tell you all about it.
But wait a minute now– as my editor pointed out, we don’t really know where in the world things will be with this coronavirus pandemic. Everything is getting canceled– South by Southwest, Coachella, live studio audiences for TV shows, classes, political rallies, and the entire NBA season. Will we all be locked down in quarantine? Will I be giving a book presentation to a group of people in hazmat suits?
Everyone is suddenly an expert, and the prognosis ranges from apocalyptic plague to just a case of the sniffles. As you can guess, one of my keen interests in all this is the viral spreading of conspiracy theories, which are flying like a sneeze in a hurricane.
Just a rundown– QAnon believes this is either a plot by the Deep State to discredit Trump or, alternately, a cover story initiated by Trump and company to act as cover for them taking out the Deep State as in yeah sure, that evil pedophile Democrat died of coronavirus, wink wink. Meanwhile, Anti-vaxxers are pinning this on go-to conspiracy villain Bill Gates. They say he cooked this up in a lab and the virus is a “false flag” so we all are forced to get mandatory vaccines that contain a brainwashing drugs or microchips. Others say the CIA cooked the virus up as a bio-weapon against China, while British conspiracists say it was invented to stop Brexit. Internet rumor says gargling bleach or ripping lines of cocaine can stop the virus and scammers are trying to cash in with snakeoil products. We are really living in a Rennaissance period of conspiracy theory.
While scrolling through articles on the coronavirus, I was amused to see everyone’s favorite parodist musician “Weird Al” Yankovic get pulled into the discussion. Al’s fans were rallying him to do a parody of The Knack’s 1979 hit “My Sharona” (if you’re a true fan, you know he already has– his early hit “My Bologna.”)
Al responded on Twitter: “Yeah, no, sorry. Not going to do ‘My Corona.'”
I get it. Al’s family-friendly style isn’t suited for making joke songs about a disease that’s quarantined entire countries and has already killed a couple thousand (and counting) people around the world. I don’t want to make light of that either, and I feel really badly for the many small business owners and people in the entertainment industry who struggle to make ends meet to begin with and are now facing financial disaster.
Instead, I’m focusing my parody hit single, “My Corona,” on the conspiracists and con men spreading misinformation for monetary or political gain. I constructed it based on articles I’ve read in the last week or so– click the highlighted lyrics to see the sources. (And if any musicians want to record this, let me know– you might have extra time now that you’re on lockdown.)
“Coronavirus is creating a fake-news nightmarescape”
and check out the kinky gas mask on Matt Gaetz
but now he’s quarantined for my, my, my, aye-aye, whoa!
Cough a little closer, huh, a-will ya, huh?
try not to lose your lunch, Corona!
when you hear Trump say “derp dee duh”
he says it’s based on his “hunch,” Corona!
Please don’t drink bleach or use cocaine as your treatment plan
and be sure to spend 20 seconds when you wash your h-h-h-hands Corona! Woo! M-m-m-my Corona!
The #TrumpConspiracyCounter has mutated into its own separate post, published the same day as this column. This week we talk about “Nero Trump” and his signaling to QAnon. To read it, scroll down or click here: https://teakrulos.com/2020/03/12/trumpconspiracycounter-march-11/
My upcoming book American Madness features a journey through conspiracy culture. It’s out August 25, 2020 from Feral House. To pre-order: CLICK HERE
“Having just returned from the grocery store during an official pandemic, I’m reminded to highly recommend Apocalypse Any Day Now, from Tea Krulos, who went way down the doomsday prepper rabbit hole. Fun and unfortunately highly relevant. Do it.” — Brent Gohde, Cedar Block/ Science Strikes Back