I’ve gone zooming mad
During this time of isolation where would we be without Zoom? Now I ask you. And where would blind and vision impaired people be without Vision Australia (VA) and Blind Citizens Australia (BCA) …. and Zoom. I feel so connected to this community that I could howl. There’s no need to ever feel alone because they provide so many opportunities to stay connected. And if that’s not enough, if your mental health is about to take a nosedive they’ve got that covered too.
Zoom Vision Impaired Style
The BCA Happy Hours and VA Check in and Chat sessions are now filling my social calendar. Prior to social isolating it had no entries. But now in these unprecedented times things have changed. From ten in the morning until eight at night from Monday to Saturday you can sign up for a one-hour course in pretty much anything that takes your fancy. Or perhaps you want to enrol in a course that goes for a bit longer. I enrolled in a cooking course today with Vision Australia. My personal favourite session is the BCA quiz. Every Saturday night I zoom in for the quiz at 8 pm along with others from all over the country. Even though I’ve never met any of the participants before I feel like they’re my new besties. I’ve never seen them before either and not likely too. Eyesight is not a requirement for having a jovial old time. A vision impaired Zoom session is different to your average Brady Bunch style where video is important so that everyone can check each other out. It’s audio only for the visually impaired for obvious reasons.
Brady Bunch Style
When a work meeting starts the first thing you hear after taking a deep breath and clicking open zoom.us is a bunch of anxious colleagues saying things like ‘Turn your video on’ we can’t see you’. I’m not sure why this is a requirement for a work meeting. Let’s face it. Looking at faces during lockdown is not a pretty sight. The hair standing on end after neglecting to have a shower for ten days; out of control facial hair -men and women; the grey stripes down the mid hair line … I’m not saying this is all about other people – it’s about me too. And the backgrounds? I think you’ve got to draw the line at hosting a work meeting lying back against your wrought iron white lace bedhead propped up with pillows wearing striped pyjamas. I’m beginning to get a slice of other people’s lives that I hadn’t bargained for.
Fast, Furious, Faceless Quiz
Up until last Saturday night the BCA quiz master had been asking questions from Trivial Pursuit. Just your normal thing – choose from a range of topics and then you’d be asked the most random questions ever. Last Saturday night’s questions were General Knowledge from the planet Mars instead of your Trivial Pursuit randoms. But still none of the questions applied to my general knowledge. The following are three sample questions.
- What are people with alektorophobia afraid of?
- Where should you look if you want to see an opisthenar?
- What does outer space smell like?
The highest score of the evening was three. Needless to say, I’ve never achieved bragging rights. And I won’t if the questions continue along the same vein. But I’ll still be zooming in for next Saturday’s session. This has been advertised as a games night so not sure what to expect other than it will be random. Can’t wait.
Samuel’s Virtual Birthday Party
Besides work and play, I, along with 16 others were invited to my brother’s Virtual Birthday Party. The guests were your above average mix of family and friends from all over Australia. The party was at the invitees’ own location sitting on their own couch with their BYO drinks and snacks, not forgetting the most important thing, device in hand. Some people really got into the swing of things and wore their party hats. A feature of this evening was also a quiz.
So I thought I’d organise my own Zoom family-get together last weekend. It was a low key affair, a practice run for something bigger. Not sure what yet. It went quite well even though the participant rate was low.
Anyway I’d better finish here. Soon time to zoom in for ‘There’s an App for everything’.