Service of Fraternity Behavior During a Pandemic: The Winner Loses

July 13th, 2020

Categories: Children, Death, Games, Illness, Pandemic, Youth

Some adults never grow up. That can be good if they keep the enthusiasm of discovery and optimism of youth and discard the foolhardy aspects.

When I first heard about covid parties I thought “fraternity behavior.”  The winner of a Covid-19 party is the first person to become infected by the virus after one sick person joins a room full of healthy ones. The “honor” often comes with cash if each guest puts money in a pot for the prize.

The tragedy is that a 30 year old died of coronavirus contracted at such a party. “‘He didn’t really believe, he thought the disease was a hoax. He thought he was young and he was invincible and wouldn’t get affected by the disease,’ [Dr. Jane] Appleby told KSAT.” Dr. Appleby is chief medical officer at Methodist Hospital in San Antonio.

The concept of such a party is nothing new–just the winner who loses part is. In my 20s I was invited to parties that took place on winter Fridays after work where each couple put money in a pot to cover the cost of a weekend for two on a tropical island–flight and hotel paid for by the money collected. Couples with kids made arrangements for their care should they win. There was a drawing early enough in the evening for the winners to get to the airport with a small satchel filled with summer clothes that they’d brought with them. The losers stayed to enjoy the rest of the party.

How can the message about the dangers of a pandemic get so lost and misunderstood? Did covid party goers not notice sheltering at home that must have happened for some reason? Or how it has impacted their lives and the economy? I’ve witnessed apathy about politics with acquaintances throughout my life but ignoring or dismissing this virus as no biggie would be like going on a tap water diet before Flint Michigan addressed the poison coming out of its faucets.

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2 Responses to “Service of Fraternity Behavior During a Pandemic: The Winner Loses”

  1. Lucrezia Said:

    Mother Nature may have been overly harsh, but it might have been what was needed to throw the fear of God in these adult juveniles. It might take more unnecessary deaths and horrid headlines to convince those millions, not at the party, that this virus means business. Let’s face it, the US is far more backward than it thinks, and it’s been showing for several years, now.

    Hopefully said virus may still be stopped, and those who persist calling it a hoax, be charged with murder, because that’s what it is. A vaccine may eventually be found, but how to instill brains when that particular cavity is empty?

  2. Jeanne Byington Said:


    You’ve identified a culprit: those in positions of respect–be they in media or politics or behind a pulpit–who have poo-pooed the pandemic. They gave some who couldn’t think for themselves or didn’t listen or read enough to figure out who might be the reliable specialists to follow a false pass to play with danger.

    And some are risk-takers who like to live on the edge. Problem is, in the case of this virus, they might drag so many others down with them.

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