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A vacation from vaccination registration frustration

Jody Vance: There’s no shortage of things to be upset about. But registering so health officials know when, how, and where to get in touch with you about a life-saving vaccine shouldn’t be one of them.

If I had a dollar for every tweet, email, phone call expressing outrage over registration for COVID-19 vaccine in BC, I’d be rich.

The outrage, anger, and frustration out there is easily explained: we are exhausted. This nightmare is taking a massive toll, both physical and emotional.

Proof comes in the form of being mad about lining up to end it.

Vaccines are being administered as quickly as they arrive in BC. Not fast enough and the lack of supply is “confusing.”

Well…no. Not really. Let me try and help explain — with some age-based levity.

Those of a certain vintage…that group chasing their tail over whether to take the AstraZeneca vaccine or wait – yes, you. You might recall the term festival seating?

The registration process is an attempt to avoid the negatives of festival seating.

If you’re furrowing your brow, festival seating is (or was) when everyone received a ticket to the concert – but there were no assigned seats.

Festival seating saw the best seats go to the strongest, rudest, and most driven, because they would do whatever it took. It was great for the diehard fan, who would line up the longest, then rush the stage for that front row seat. For casual, smaller, fans with more demands on their time? Not so much.

In simple terms: this registration is designed to avoid the crush of every eligible “ticket holder” rushing the stage at our big vaccination concert at once.

No one wants that.

The Middle today is a reminder that there are smart people doing everything they can to distribute life-saving elixirs in such a way that it doesn’t matter who was there first. This is about who might die first.

There are many subjects to be outraged about. Here’s my list:

  • Scofflaws
  • Loopholers
  • Covidiots
  • Anti-maskers
  • Science deniers
  • Anti-vaxxers
  • Rioters

But to get mad at “hey, sign up here to receive a text or email when you’re up”…I don’t get it.

I do get angst. I am with you on frustration, but being mad at a registry is akin to being mad at vaccine selfies. Or cherry blossom pics. (Looking at you, Drex.)

Let’s think this through. The root issue here is supply. How might vaccines be rolled out when they have not yet arrived? Even Dr. Henry expressed some hesitancy on a reliable steady supply.

With that in mind, how about some federal Middle? (Can we all tag the PM on this?) Why doesn’t Canada shift vaccine from places where folks are not that into it for whatever reason, and redirect it to those lining up to line up?

I mean, nobody wants unused vaccine to expire…right?

I believe a great deal of outrage here can be attributed to getting swept up in national news rather than our British Columbian reality. It hits me too; it’s hard not to get caught up when the headlines read BC is one month behind Ontario, and Ontario is in crisis.

Managing our fears while realizing that we actually do have some control over what happens next is very important. More important, perhaps, than genome sequencing variants of concern?

There is a sentence I never thought I would type and yet here we are.

Sick of being in this together? That’s universal. Wanting to get the hell out means doing what works. Wash hands, stay home if sick, mask up in public places where you cannot keep your physical distance, essential travel only.

You’re sick of it. Me too. Everyone likely is.

Let’s let registration do its thing and get to the end, even if it means parking our rush the stage mentality, and finally get to the show.

Jody Vance is a born and raised Vancouverite who’s spent 30 years in both local and national media. The first woman in the history of Canadian TV to host her own sports show in primetime, since 2011 she’s been working in both TV and radio covering news and current affairs.