Transcript – July First Week: COVID in 2022

1:00:38 pm – Matthew Fox:
Hello everyone. This is Matthew Fox. The community champion here. Judge Academy. Welcome to first week today, we’re talking about covid and organized play. And so I want to give people a chance to kind of settle themselves in and get be a part of this conversation. What a great things about these first weeks is that is a chance for us to kind of share some information and ideas with you, but much more importantly for for this to be interactive. So myself and Eric, we have a lot to talk about but I really want to encourage folks as we go along. If you have questions, if you have comments, you want to share things like that. Please go right ahead. I’ve got the chat window open and so I’ll be able to keep an eye on that and we’ll definitely try to integrate that in. So let me just kind of welcome everyone. Again, this is Judge Academy first week. I’m Matthew Fox and the Community champion I haven’t gotta do a bunch of these recently, but I’m really glad to be back for this one. My schedule just was a little all over the place last month. We tried to have Eric on to talk about this. A couple of technical snafuos happened, but Eric, I’m so glad you could be back with us. Um, I’ll let you guys start Eric. Say hello and introduce yourself.

1:01:38 pm – Erik Aliff:
Hi everybody. It’s good to be a part of this today. For those of you don’t know, Is Eric Ayliff, I think I’m technically still a judge at some point was a judge for multiple years. I’m currently currently working as a charge nurse at the University of Virginia Hospital in Charlottesville Virginia, where I work on what is known as our Special Pathogens Unit colloquially known as the Covid Unit.

1:02:04 pm – Matthew Fox:
Yeah. Well I’m so glad you could be here. And as you said First Rodgers, thank you for that work. You’re doing. I can’t imagine what it’s like, I know it is so important has been for the last couple years. And that’s the topic we’re talking about today. We’re talking today about covid and organized play. Um, you know, obviously, we all know that magic, pretty much paper magic shut down entirely for a number of years. We have in this this year, things have started to come back again, some areas of the country are doing some areas, the world are doing events again, some are doing events with certain precautions. Some aren’t Some areas are doing judge conferences. Again some aren’t and I think people have a lot of questions about what’s because certainly, yes. Can people you get 10 opinions about, you know, is the pandemic over? Is it not etc? Etc etc. And that’s not the kind of thing. We’re gonna be able to answer a tweet and Eric, I think we really wanted to have you on today because especially what I know from talking to you is, you’re not just gonna come and tell us, like, Here’s the answers, Five minutes later we’re done. You’re gonna help people better understand what’s happening and help them make their own decisions.

1:03:10 pm – Erik Aliff:
Absolutely, and what you touched on right there. Where you talk to every individual person. Every individual person is also dealing with their own set of individual constraints, their own individual set of hopes, their own individual set of beliefs that are guiding so much of this. And and I can absolutely say that. I hope we’re able to address some questions but I acknowledge right off the bat like you said, They’re going to be questions that were not able to answer even in this entire interview but my hope is that we can set up some good guidelines that we can. Hopefully touch on some broad strokes that allow people to make wise decisions and decisions that will help them not just in the short term but in the long term as well.

1:03:56 pm – Matthew Fox:
I think it’s such good way to put it and I think. Yeah. All right. Our job here. I often say that Judge Academy. I kind of have fun because I’m the person who doesn’t want to teach you. Right. Answers. You know, like Daniel is gonna tell you that like this is how layers work, this is how combat works. Judah’s gonna give a little more room on some things logistics, but he asked him, Is there one right way to get make a tape loop. He will be very clear this one right way to make a tape loop. Most of the community questions. You know, what’s the best way to run a conference? Well that’s gonna be different

1:04:25 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:04:26 pm – Matthew Fox:
different parts of the world. That’s that’s me different. Depending on the kind of person you are. And I think this is a situation where, like I said, we can’t pot, we at Church Academy and it’s just not our role to tell everyone. Here’s what you should do, but also it’s gonna be different. As you said not only in different parts of the country parts of the world but also for everyone’s individual situation.

1:04:45 pm – Erik Aliff:
Absolutely.

1:04:46 pm – Matthew Fox:
So let me just start by kind of doing an overview and I mean people have been writing books on this. I’m not gonna actually say everything but if you could summarize it a

1:04:53 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:04:54 pm – Matthew Fox:
summarize it a couple of minutes, what is the current state of covid right now is the pandemic over, is it still just as bad as it was? Where are we in this covid situation?

1:05:04 pm – Erik Aliff:
So there’s a couple of questions that play there and and again I can speak largely from the experience. I have when I go to work and also the experience I have of interacting with medical professionals across the field. There’s kind of two prongs that I’ll address. One is the pandemic over. My short answer would be no in in the sense that there are still a large number of people that are contracting, whatever. The new variant is and some of the old variants, you’re still seeing that. I can say. When I was at work yesterday, we had a full house of people who were experiencing a variety of symptoms. Now, having said that Is the pandemic in the same place that it was a year ago? No, we have better tools in place. And the variance that we are experiencing tend to be variants and I’m going to do what sounds like hedging at times, but they’re variants that tend towards more. Mild symptoms in the population at large. How having said that though that can still have vastly detrimental effects to people who are healthy and young, but can definitely have even more detrimental. Impacts to people who might be immunocompromised, who might be around people who are immunocompromised, or might have other things that lend them towards having more devastating symptoms. So in some ways it’s better but that

1:06:30 pm – Matthew Fox:
Mm-hmm.

1:06:33 pm – Erik Aliff:
doesn’t mean gone.

1:06:35 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right? And what is in terms of kind of like the vaccines and stuff. I’ve obviously been a big thing. A lot of people had a chance to get

1:06:42 pm – Erik Aliff:
Sure.

1:06:42 pm – Matthew Fox:
vaccinated, not everyone’s had the chance and some people are choosing not to, of course, what do vaccinated. chance and some people are choosing some people are choosing not to, of course, what do

1:06:46 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:06:47 pm – Matthew Fox:
I think that’s one of the. The first questions always comes up is, you know, at events? Like Do we ask people who vaccinated to be asked people to wear masks before we even get to? The should?

1:06:58 pm – Erik Aliff:
Sure.

1:06:58 pm – Matthew Fox:
Let’s just get deal those facts. Again, What does what is what what does being vaccinated do in terms of changing where you are on those kind of scales.

1:07:06 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah, absolutely. The best way that I can just scribe of vaccination is a vaccination, is putting your body Yeah. The best way that I can just scribe of vaccination is a vaccination, is putting your body Yeah. Absolutely. of vaccination is a vaccination, is of vaccination is a vaccination, is putting your body Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. The best way that I can just scribe of vaccination is a vaccination, is Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. of vaccination is a vaccination, is putting your body in a better chance to succeed. It’s not eliminating the possibility that you will contract something. It even with It even with Yeah, absolutely. The best way that I can just scribe of vaccination is a vaccination, is putting your body in a better chance to succeed. It’s not eliminating the possibility that you will contract something. It even with the majority Yeah. The best way that I can just scribe The best way that I can just scribe of vaccination is a vaccination, is putting your body in a better chance to succeed. that you will contract something. that you will contract something. Yeah. Absolutely. of vaccination is a vaccination, is of vaccination is a vaccination, is putting your body in a better chance to succeed. It’s not eliminating the possibility that you will contract something. It even with the majority, I’ll speak from an American perspective Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. of vaccination is a vaccination, is of vaccination is a vaccination, is putting your body in a better chance It’s not eliminating the possibility that you will contract something. It even with the majority, I’ll speak from an American perspective, from an American perspective Yeah, absolutely. The best way that I can just scribe of vaccination is a vaccination, is putting your body in a better chance to succeed. It’s not eliminating the possibility that you will contract something. It even with the majority, I’ll speak from an American perspective, but the majority of the vaccinations that Yeah. The best way that I can just scribe putting your body in a better chance putting your body in a better chance It’s not eliminating the possibility that you will contract something. It even with the majority, I’ll speak from an American perspective, but the majority of the vaccinations that many of us received as infants in small children. Some of them, we may not even remember having gotten, but we know that we got them. Those vaccinations don’t eliminate, they just make it much less likely, or if you do get sick with one of those illnesses, we’ll use covid. Then it limits the likelihood. That you would experience the most devastating form of it because You’re giving your body advance information on how to more specifically and devastatingly fight against it. It’s if I can use a really bad illustration, it’s allowing you to play a pre sideboarded game.

1:08:04 pm – Matthew Fox:
Hmm. Okay. I actually quite like, I like like that respective. Yeah. especially because I think As magic players. I think that is a helpful view. one thing that can be sometimes frustrating about this conversation and you see this from all sides, Although I’ll say more from maybe some sides than others. Um thank you my own views out of it it but is that

1:08:24 pm – Erik Aliff:
It’s okay.

1:08:27 pm – Matthew Fox:
People want to speak in absolutes, you know? And I I’m a big believer that only a

1:08:29 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:08:31 pm – Matthew Fox:
sith speaks an absolutes. What we want Kenobi being a Sith in that moment I suppose.

1:08:35 pm – Erik Aliff:
Mmm.

1:08:36 pm – Matthew Fox:
Um, But I think so people want to either say Oh if you have vaccines you’re totally safe or Oh, you could get sick with a vaccine. You could do nothing and

1:08:45 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:08:45 pm – Matthew Fox:
And like as magic players. We’re all about ratios. We’re all about. Well, And it sounds like as magic players, we’re all about ratios. We’re all about. Well, I want to move it from if I start with And it sounds like as magic players, we’re all about ratios. We’re all about, Well, I want to move it from if I start with a two lander. I’m, you know, 20% likely to do this, but I start with a freelander, I’m 45 50% likely to, to get to where I need

1:08:57 pm – Erik Aliff:
Sure.

1:08:59 pm – Matthew Fox:
to go. I’m making these numbers up.

1:08:59 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah, yes.

1:09:00 pm – Matthew Fox:
I’m not good at magic, that’s why I do community stuff. But avoid being like it, like is that kind of helpful way to think about it, that this is much more about moving the percentages and moving the ratios, then it is about absolutes, safety or not, safety, things like that.

1:09:14 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah. I sound hesitant, it is just Yeah, and that’s where a lot of my if I sound hesitant, it is just simply an acknowledgment, that every body functions a little bit differently. What is an unacceptable risk for one person? May not be an unacceptable risk for another person. Both from their own view of risk and as well all the factors that play into how risky the behavior is. And so, absolutely, When I look at vaccines, it is not the question of. Well I’m never going to get covid. It’s the question of am, I putting myself in a a better situate? A better chance to successfully fight it off with minimal symptoms? And am I giving myself a better chance to not pass it on to other people? The best way I can describe it from

1:09:59 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:10:00 pm – Erik Aliff:
my perspective in the medical field is to say. The goal of the vaccination, is to keep people out of the hospital and that it’s working tremendously on.

1:10:07 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:10:10 pm – Erik Aliff:
Whenever I look at a patient’s chart, Whenever I look at a patient’s chart, are they vaccinated? Did they get boosted and by enlarge the people that I am caring for are people who either didn’t get vaccinated or didn’t get boosted now, that’s Now, that’s not on. Whenever I look at a patient’s chart, we have a little flag that tells us Are they vaccinated? Did they get boosted and by enlarge the people that I am caring for are people who either didn’t get vaccinated or didn’t get boosted. Now, that’s not a moral judgment on the why the why certainly goes down many different paths. But absolutely getting vaccinated is a way to minimize your chance of ending up in my workplace and I don’t want you in my workplace.

1:10:38 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right. I like you know, as a judge. I remember you know you’re very big about you know welcome you want everyone to feel welcome as a nurse I

1:10:46 pm – Erik Aliff:
Oh yeah, yeah.

1:10:47 pm – Matthew Fox:
like it. It’s a very different perspective there.

1:10:49 pm – Erik Aliff:
You’re Look, you’re welcome to visit the hospital. I just don’t want you as my patient.

1:10:53 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right? I want to quickly interrupt, by the way, and say to those.

1:10:56 pm – Erik Aliff:
Sure.

1:10:56 pm – Matthew Fox:
I know we got a good number of people watching, please feel free to ask questions. Make comments we may try to get into them right away or hold them towards the end but we want this to be interactive so please, please do that. And I want to harp on what you said there, too. Because I think the I remember I I got covid the beginning of this year and I happily did not need to go to the hospital. It was a bad cold. It was maybe the worst cold I’ve had, but it passed pretty quickly. But one of the thoughts that was occurring to me was not only I mean I I don’t want to get have very deleterious health effects. I don’t want to go to the hospital because that’s not a very pleasant experience, no offense to all those who try to make it the best they can.

1:11:31 pm – Erik Aliff:
No.

1:11:34 pm – Matthew Fox:
Um what also because part of my thought was like, You know, I know folks like you are limited in your resources and that if I’m taking up a bed that’s one less bed that, that is available for someone else. Is, is that part of the thinking is

1:11:44 pm – Erik Aliff:
Absolutely.

1:11:45 pm – Matthew Fox:
well behind this, not just it’s you don’t want people going to hospital because bad for them but that the the fewer people who do the more care, you can give to nothing easy, some like that. But is there some truth to that kind of thinking

1:11:57 pm – Erik Aliff:
I I think the easiest comparison I can make and, and I’ve you and I have worked several events together. And the comparison, I’ll make that a lot of magic judges will relate to is tablespace, right? You could have 10,000 players, walk into your event. Does that mean that you can provide a good play experience for 10,000 players? Not if you didn’t plan for that.

1:12:21 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:12:22 pm – Erik Aliff:
So for me, it’s not tablespace, it’s bed allocation. It’s how many beds do I have

1:12:27 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:12:28 pm – Erik Aliff:
available? And so when looking at it, my And so when looking at it, my behind available? available? And so when looking at it, my perspective on this, the rationale behind get vaccinated makes safe decisions. available? perspective on this, the rationale perspective on this, the rationale decisions. Decisions That the strain point for many hospitals, for many communities is bed space. comparison would be judge space on an be judge space on an event or medical There comes a point where there is bed space. And then also, the comparison would be judge space on an event or medical staff. There comes a point where there is an

1:12:51 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:12:52 pm – Erik Aliff:
insufficient medical staff to insufficient medical staff to provide the level of care that we would want to. And so that I think is what guides my desire to encourage people to not necessarily stay home or go to an event. But to make a thoughtful decision about it, whatever the decision is that you make, have you actually considered your course.

1:13:12 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right, I’m glad you you bring that up because I think you know, there are lots of pieces of media out there. We can hear a medical professional, talk about vaccination, and and covid. And I’m very glad Eric. You can do that for us, but you’re also a magic judge and we want to make this little more specialized. I think as magic judges were people. We have to make these decisions about, you know, when we go to grocery stores and movie theaters and stuff, but our focus today is really about magic events and and so talk about a look I think

1:13:39 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:13:41 pm – Matthew Fox:
I think I think for many I think for many people, the issue really comes down to this question of contagion. Both of, Am I at risk of getting something animate risk of, if I have something giving it to other people

1:13:52 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:13:53 pm – Matthew Fox:
talk to us about what’s happening at large events. And how that like what why these are concerns at magic events? Maybe, let’s do kind of a couple of levels. Let’s start it like your local store, 30, or 40 people and an F&m

1:14:06 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yep. Yep.

1:14:07 pm – Matthew Fox:
What’s happening there in terms of possible, contagion risks and things

1:14:10 pm – Erik Aliff:
so you you addressed it from the,

1:14:10 pm – Matthew Fox:
like that.

1:14:13 pm – Erik Aliff:
kind of simplify as getting covid or spreading covid, right?

1:14:17 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:14:17 pm – Erik Aliff:
And and so if we’re talking at a local store or we’re talking at a large event, the things that you want to ask is How many people, how long is the contact? And how’s the ventilation? Right.

1:14:33 pm – Matthew Fox:
Mmm.

1:14:33 pm – Erik Aliff:
And And so And so ventilation, or the spacing of an event can play a large impact of it. I remember many of the event like and I feel like I’m gonna sound like old men. Yeah, old man yelling from porch. But like I remember many of the events that I judged at where we were cramming, as many people in as we could, because that was the limiter, right? And so now, I think we need to be much more aware of that the local store that I go to. I’m really thankful that they have done a lot to spread tablespace. So that’s one of the things I would be looking at as a judge. And if, if a tournament organizer is talking to me as a judge and saying, Okay, what can we do spacing tape

1:15:11 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:15:12 pm – Erik Aliff:
spacing tables, masking and checking vaccinations. Those are like boom, boom! Those are three things that we can immediately off the bat do to help mitigate risk.

1:15:22 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right and talk to us about spacing. I mean, not, I don’t think there’s a magic number where it’s like covid can travel 82 inches, but not 83. But

1:15:30 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah, yes.

1:15:32 pm – Matthew Fox:
what are you know, Exhals is for me as a disabled judge anyone’s worked an event at me, you know, very quickly if there’s enough room for my

1:15:40 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yes, yes.

1:15:40 pm – Matthew Fox:
wheelchair to get down the aisles or not, because I’ll be very loud about

1:15:43 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yes.

1:15:43 pm – Matthew Fox:
it. So I love spacing for my own reasons but what is like, what to you? What when you think, okay? I want things based about how much space you looking for it if you’re

1:15:52 pm – Erik Aliff:
I mean, the number that you hear a

1:15:52 pm – Matthew Fox:
comfortable.

1:15:53 pm – Erik Aliff:
lot is the six feet. And and I think that in the ideal world, five to six feet is what I would love to see. Because what that does is that limits the number of people that you are staying in a very clear respiratory range, right?

1:16:12 pm – Matthew Fox:
Okay.

1:16:12 pm – Erik Aliff:
Where you have Where you have droplets where I can’t see it right now but the small droplets that are coming out of our mouth even as we’re talking to each other, those are the droplets that can be passing along a virus that you’re carrying. So being able to space that out and being able to make sure that you have fewer number of people that both limits your chance of getting it and also the chance of facilitating the spread of it. And I’m not just thinking of like the

1:16:36 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:16:39 pm – Erik Aliff:
tablespace. I’m also thinking going over to The dealer booths or going over to Artist Alley any of those areas, whatever we can do to try to space things out and encourage a flow that better allows for space. That’s that’s huge.

1:16:57 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right. I can see that. I don’t want to get in the larger things that happen at um, conferences and stuff like that. Oh, also, interesting. Apparently there’s some restrictions on who can chat and who can’t, so I was wondering why we haven’t heard many comments. But yeah, hopefully we’ll get that fixed ASAP. So we’re looking to that coach quick thing to the chat. Judge Topher says It’s Eric. Eric is great. Yep. I’m really glad Eric will be here. I quick story. I need to always tell when the first times I led an event. It was a side event in Seg thing. Eric was on my team, I had no idea who Eric was, apparently, Eric was newly kind of back L3. And did I learned so much? But also like the fact that I didn’t know you were now three, till the end was such a positive thing as well because it wasn’t the like, Hey kid, you know, you don’t know what you’re doing. So very glad Eric here we also have Judge Fobos. Sorry Phobos. Yes. Says I’m a judge from Mexico and I want to make more events here. Don’t know how to start We’re talking today about how we can help keep those events safe. But if you email me later, Matthew at Georgia Academy, calm, I’ll be really happy to talk to you about how to get some judge events and things like that. Going So okay, so so space and we wanted to comment, I’ll give you in a second. Um, spacing is obviously really important. That’s definitely a good one to talk about.

1:18:13 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:18:13 pm – Matthew Fox:
about, um, again, at this. So, how much is it about timing? You know, because my sense is what you want to say, like an extended amount of time, why is it that, like You know, if I pass someone for two seconds, we’re both breathing. But if I’m sitting next to someone for 45 minutes, that’s a much bigger

1:18:34 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yep. Yep. It’s it’s really, you’re absolutely right.

1:18:38 pm – Matthew Fox:
deal.

1:18:38 pm – Erik Aliff:
It’s playing the odds where, like It’s playing the odds where like the

1:18:39 pm – Matthew Fox:
Is it? Just because it’s kind of a math game

1:18:41 pm – Erik Aliff:
the odds if you and I were to just

1:18:43 pm – Matthew Fox:
of if every second there’s a point

1:18:44 pm – Erik Aliff:
pass one another on the street. So whether it’s the actually I should

1:18:48 pm – Matthew Fox:
one percent chance that the

1:18:48 pm – Erik Aliff:
should clarify outdoor or indoor outdoor passing on the street.

1:18:51 pm – Matthew Fox:
percentage is that up or

1:18:52 pm – Erik Aliff:
The The the air that is already there and the flow of air means it is Likelihood that any respiratory illness that I have I could pass on to you as we pass by on the street.

1:19:05 pm – Matthew Fox:
Okay.

1:19:06 pm – Erik Aliff:
Even indoors, you know, walking down a hallway or walking in a convention center or your friendly local game store passing by one. Another is still very low. What we, what we would tend towards would be anything beyond about like 15 minutes of under six feet contact then you’ve really started to share the air as it were and that’s where I

1:19:32 pm – Matthew Fox:
Hmm.

1:19:33 pm – Erik Aliff:
look at. are we looking at 50 minutes looking at 50 minutes look at. are we looking at 50 minutes bare minimum look at Well in a magic event What are we looking at 50 minutes bare minimum across from a person? So minimizing the number of people that you come into come into contact with that helps, mitigate what I’m with that helps, mitigate what I’m Most people have heard of the term of Most people have heard of the term of minimum that you’re going to be that you’re going to be across from a So minimizing the number of people So minimizing the number of people with that helps, mitigate what I’m with that helps, mitigate what I’m pretty sure. like a super spreader. like a super spreader.

1:19:54 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:19:54 pm – Erik Aliff:
Or at least that would be my

1:19:54 pm – Matthew Fox:
Okay.

1:19:55 pm – Erik Aliff:
encouragement in that way indoors when you don’t have as much good air flow that can also you end up with air. That’s kind of holding in place. That’s where you can end up with greater likelihood of passing things along as opposed to outdoor airflow.

1:20:10 pm – Matthew Fox:
And that’s where the outdoor airflow or good circulation ventilations.

1:20:12 pm – Erik Aliff:
Exactly, exactly.

1:20:12 pm – Matthew Fox:
You said really matters that there’s

1:20:14 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:20:14 pm – Matthew Fox:
a joke to be made here about how you play a very fast deck, then maybe you have a better chance, but my favorite

1:20:18 pm – Erik Aliff:
Oh yeah. Yeah absolutely.

1:20:19 pm – Matthew Fox:
fast act is in fact, so maybe just we’ll stay away from the whole line

1:20:22 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:20:22 pm – Matthew Fox:
whole line of comedy thinking.

1:20:23 pm – Erik Aliff:
It’s okay.

1:20:26 pm – Matthew Fox:
And I think it’s also helpful because one thing I will sometimes here again from those who are kind of taking a extreme extra, absolute is, kind of perspective is, well, it doesn’t matter how far you’re spaced apart, you’re still gonna like past next to someone, like waiting for the bathroom for 10 seconds. So, therefore, it doesn’t matter what you’re saying is like it is all manager degree. There’s a chance there but the the risk is much higher with that prolonged contact. That’s the real problem.

1:20:48 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah. Well and this I will step on to my old soapbox which is judges, love corner cases and I would rather not

1:20:57 pm – Matthew Fox:
That’s so true.

1:20:58 pm – Erik Aliff:
care like corner cases. Sure, Great Jonah. Can live with his corner cases and But what I want to do is focus on I’m good with that. mitigating at the highest level possible. Make sure that you cover the biggest risks, the biggest risk is not you and I walking past one another to the bathroom. That’s a very minor risk.

1:21:17 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:21:19 pm – Erik Aliff:
The big risk is not you and I walking by each other, on our way, to get a signature from an artist. It’s when we sit down, and we have to play a 50 minute match of magic. That’s where you’re risk is. And it’s Even greater risk. If both of us are unmasked and it’s an even greater greater greater risk. If we are not vaccinated,

1:21:35 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right. Is that why also? And again I think that and we’ll talk about masking in a second but the like I’m keeping a mask on but I’m taking it off for a second to take a quick sip of my drink or stuff like that again. It’s not the that doesn’t eradicate all the benefit of the masks. It takes it down if you go on, but that’s why again it’s it’s the numbers game.

1:21:54 pm – Erik Aliff:
It absolutely is. And and that’s where and again, magic, magic players magic judges. And this isn’t just magic, This has been the world at large, you know, you sit there. And you’re like, so if I take my mass down, are you saying What if it’s 15 seconds or 30 seconds? And to me, it kind of goes back to something that again magic judges should be very familiar with which is pace of play. It’s not necessarily a chess clock. But it is something where it’s like, you know, when someone’s slow play. You know, when someone is being unwise with how often or how long they are, removing their masks or, does that make sense?

1:22:31 pm – Matthew Fox:
I think it does. I think it definitely does. Yeah, I think and I, I will say when I first started to think about going back into judging one of my concerns

1:22:42 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah. Oh yeah.

1:22:47 pm – Matthew Fox:
was that I’d spend all my time telling people to put their masks,

1:22:54 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:22:55 pm – Matthew Fox:
you hear these, you know, stories from people who work at stores and

1:22:59 pm – Erik Aliff:
Sure.

1:23:00 pm – Matthew Fox:
stuff like that and how they would get harassed. And I would say I’ve been so glad that into recently, all the events, I’ve gone to at least that hasn’t been a problem. Now, all the events have gone to

1:23:21 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:23:24 pm – Matthew Fox:
required vaccination, or proof of testing. Which, and we’re gonna get into that a second that may have also somewhat limited the population, but I think it has worked

1:24:02 pm – Erik Aliff:
so, given what we talked about with the particles, the small respiratory particles I’ll start with this. Any mask is better than no mask. Now, having said that, there are tears to masks where a mask may be more effective of in the short and the long term, having a mask, both limits, the amount of the one thing a mass does more, is it limits? What you are projecting to someone else. Okay, so this is a kindness that you are showing to someone else. This is respect that you are showing to someone else. I would recommend for those who are

1:24:40 pm – Matthew Fox:
Couple of quick things with the chat, a couple people have really picking

1:24:41 pm – Erik Aliff:
going to be, whether you’re at

1:24:41 pm – Matthew Fox:
up on that accessibility point Marknut said, talking about accessibility, I judge an events once had a cast on one ankle, almost

1:24:43 pm – Erik Aliff:
Your local F&m or a larger

1:24:43 pm – Matthew Fox:
wasn’t able to attend let alone judge and how cram this place was. Yeah, I think it mobility. Disabilities can sneak up pretty fast. The warp ninjas also pointing out that their store started spacing for covid and it’s realized it’s

1:24:48 pm – Erik Aliff:
More confident, like, more of like a

1:24:48 pm – Matthew Fox:
for everyone. Um, I’ve been in a lot of small stores. I get it. You want to get as many people in there’s possible.

1:24:50 pm – Erik Aliff:
want to say GP, but I don’t think

1:24:50 pm – Matthew Fox:
Space is expensive. You always have the most space but just you know,

1:24:51 pm – Erik Aliff:
those are the thing anymore. So, whatever command fest. That’s still a thing. I think with when you go to something like that, I would recommend wearing either a K and 95 or an N95

1:24:59 pm – Matthew Fox:
Larger players players with disabilities. Just moving around. More space is better. You get space to put your tokens and all this kind of stuff and I like having more space. Okay, so so those are kind of some of the things.

1:25:01 pm – Erik Aliff:
because those better control

1:25:01 pm – Matthew Fox:
So at a things. So at a local store, it sounds like they’re they’re definitely some risks. But with you talked about how Spacing can help. We’ve talked about vaccinations a bit. Let’s talk about masking.

1:25:04 pm – Erik Aliff:
particles going out and coming back

1:25:04 pm – Matthew Fox:
What is it that wearing a mask does and doesn’t do?

1:25:06 pm – Erik Aliff:
in. They’re more of a bear to wear over a long period.

1:25:09 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:25:10 pm – Erik Aliff:
I understand that I have to wear them sometimes for hours, at a time. But having said that they are the best option. If you’re going to be in an environment, like a large conference, or an environment where you anticipate being in there for hours at a time, those are simply going to

1:25:28 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:25:29 pm – Erik Aliff:
limit the likelihood that you either spread something or that you are able to contract something.

1:25:35 pm – Matthew Fox:
Okay, so yeah. So those Matt and are those masks fairly easy to acquire? Do you have to spend a lot of money to get them?

1:25:42 pm – Erik Aliff:
I, since it’s part of my job, I’m not actually great on the finances side of it. I know that two years ago, it was much harder to acquire your kn95s, or n95s now much easier in terms of supply chain to be able to get access to them.

1:26:00 pm – Matthew Fox:
Hmm.

1:26:01 pm – Erik Aliff:
I would recommend if you’re going to go to a large event, getting access to a KN or an N95, having like one for each day is definitely where I would recommend just because you are more likely to be able to protect yourself.

1:26:17 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right. Isaac King is pointing out that you can often get them for about a dollar each online. And that, at least his experience

1:26:24 pm – Erik Aliff:
You go.

1:26:25 pm – Matthew Fox:
that the the n95s are more comfortable than surgical masks. Surgical masks are, they’ll probably what most people are wearing and it’d be great if we’re moving that direction. What talk to us about?

1:26:32 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:26:33 pm – Matthew Fox:
What what is the effectiveness of a surgical mask? It’s less effective than a 95.

1:26:37 pm – Erik Aliff:
Sure.

1:26:37 pm – Matthew Fox:
Do you think it’s useless for people to be wearing is there’s still some real value to it? What’s

1:26:41 pm – Erik Aliff:
There is absolutely real value to it. Both because we talked about like the six feet. What it’s doing is it’s the easiest way to describe it is, think about what it does to your voice. Every one of us had to learn how to speak. Uh, more loudly basically, to be able to be heard over the mask. What’s the same thing for any particles that are going through, when you have a mask, it’s trapping those particles and it’s causing them to fall more quickly. So, that way you’re ending up, basically, you’re limiting the range of any particles that you might spread. So even a surgical mask,

1:27:16 pm – Matthew Fox:
Hmm.

1:27:18 pm – Erik Aliff:
wearing it correctly, which is to say over the nose. All of that is going to help mitigate like that’s the word I would use over and over again. Is mitigation, we’re not eliminating, but we’re trying to find as many

1:27:31 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:27:31 pm – Erik Aliff:
ways. to mitigate and mitigate to safe reasonable levels of risk.

1:27:37 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right. Yeah, I can understand that a lot. I think that’s such a good way of framing it and I I also really appreciate part of how you also framed it is that and for me again, as the community person, this is what I really care about. I think it’s something people have really struggled with is, there’s this idea of I wear a mask to protect you. You wear a mask to protect me. Um, cuz I think that I think people

1:27:59 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yep.

1:28:00 pm – Matthew Fox:
want the idea of what can I do to protect myself and you do what you do. There’s this sort of share idea like shared communal responsibility for

1:28:08 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yes.

1:28:08 pm – Matthew Fox:
safety. That’s really hard for some people to kind of wrap their head around, but talk more about that about like what,

1:28:13 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:28:13 pm – Matthew Fox:
how is it that all these things are in some ways about protecting other people as much as ourselves?

1:28:17 pm – Erik Aliff:
Absolutely. And and I think that’s a really tough thing because it’s, it’s asking in essence. I’m asking you not just to take action to protect yourself, but I’m asking you to help me. And and that’s tough. When you don’t know everybody. Like I you and I trust each other because we have experienced together, we’ve had conversations together.

1:28:34 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:28:36 pm – Erik Aliff:
We’ve seen that we have a similar way of thinking and so we support each other. But when you walk into a convention spacing, I don’t know. The thousands of people here that’s where as a community, we are asking on a much larger level for that and and it is tough but it’s also one of those those things where I know your your realms both tended to be in the community and it’s this is a way that judges show leadership to say we are and it is tough but it’s also one of those things where I know your your realms both tended to be in the community and it’s this is a way that judges show leadership to say we are

1:29:03 pm – Matthew Fox:
Mmm.

1:29:03 pm – Erik Aliff:
setting. The example, we are modeling, the behavior that we would like to see our community show at large.

1:29:09 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:29:10 pm – Erik Aliff:
And that’s something that I I think about this. So, Often when I go home, you know, I might have to stop and pick up groceries on the way home. I’m a little more aware of wearing a mask when I go into a store when I’m wearing scrubs. When people know, Oh, that person works at a hospital right instantaneously. Whether they know me or have met me,

1:29:31 pm – Matthew Fox:
Mmm.

1:29:31 pm – Erik Aliff:
they’re looking I, they’re looking a little more and it’s the same way. When every one of us put on a judge shirt, they’re looking. They know. Okay. What is this person represent? And so, that’s a big thing that I look at in what I’m encouraging Each of us to do is to say, this is a little way of showing leadership. Fostering the community, we want to build

1:29:52 pm – Matthew Fox:
Yeah, I think that’s really true and it’s funny I hadn’t even thought about it until you put it. Those terms as judges, I think one thing we talk about a lot, is that part of our job is to create a safe space? You know.

1:30:01 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yes.

1:30:02 pm – Matthew Fox:
This needs where people know they’re not going to be harassed, whether they’re not gonna be insulted or they’re not gonna be judged for any part of who they are or how they express themselves.

1:30:10 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:30:10 pm – Matthew Fox:
Um, you might get judge for, you know, making the wrong pick and you draft, but that’s another story. Um, but I like to say, Yeah, that as judges if our job is to help create the safe space, then that’s one way we’re doing it, you know? And the Bible putting on the mask by being vaccinated all these kind of things.

1:30:25 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah, and I’ll also add again. My experience comes from a lot of prepandemic judging but like every one of us who have judged for long enough are familiar with con Crud. We’re all familiar with being out

1:30:36 pm – Matthew Fox:
Mmm.

1:30:38 pm – Erik Aliff:
there and so I will increase, I will say taking these extra measures is partially because when you go work a three day event, when you are working a 12-hour shift and then you’re trying to run home and get, well, not even run home, run to your hotel room, get some food and go to sleep and be back. The next day, you are straining your body on it in the best of scenarios, right? So, that would be my encouragement to

1:31:03 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:31:05 pm – Erik Aliff:
use to say, like, Look before this pandemic started, every one of us we’re familiar with the fact that we put ourselves at risk to get just generically sick. I don’t feel like I should have to convince you pretty hard that. Like, your body is being strained. This is why I would encourage all of these safety measures as well, is because we are inherently putting our bodies into Additional strain that might make it more susceptible to getting sick in the first place.

1:31:29 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right. Yeah, I think something like, I think sometimes people think Conrad, it’s just because we’re all close together and spreading, viruses, that’s part of it. But also, Yeah, all of our immune systems are weakened. And if your immune systems weakened, anything then that’s to covid, as well.

1:31:42 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:31:44 pm – Matthew Fox:
As your picture what you said about, the kind of, you know, it’s one thing when you know each other because I think that’s why I wanted to start with the local store. But now move on to the larger convention type things because I do

1:31:52 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:31:53 pm – Matthew Fox:
think like the local store that I sometimes play at. I know most of the play email, you hope you get new players from time to time but I know most of the players

1:31:59 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:32:01 pm – Matthew Fox:
and we’ve been talking over the last couple years about how we feel about things. I have a pretty good sense of what that how most people that community feel. And I, I know enough about the decisions that those folks are making about vaccination and masking stuff like that, then I feel relatively safe in that situation and I think I hope for many people, it can be

1:32:17 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:32:19 pm – Matthew Fox:
similar. And again, those could be different, decisions will take more into that in a bit, but at a convention, like you said, You’re around, maybe five or six hundred people, maybe 1500 people. You haven’t met talk to us about what’s going on there in terms. I think that’s where I think most people’s big concerns are either in terms of either safe to go to them. Or do I want people making these restrictions or they people having too many restrictions what’s going on at convention in terms of magic spread covid spread

1:32:47 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah, well we hope we spread magic but when looking at a bigger event, this kind of goes back to what I talked earlier, which is like I don’t believe it is possible to completely remove risk. I think that going to an event of

1:33:02 pm – Matthew Fox:
Mmm.

1:33:05 pm – Erik Aliff:
significant size, inherently has risk. And, and I say that not to discourage or not to fear monger, but to rather help people be honest with themselves. Every person has to make the choice. Okay. Where is my acceptable level of risk? If it exceeds that risk, say this event isn’t for me. And that’s that’s a tough thing to say because

1:33:30 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:33:30 pm – Erik Aliff:
Because feeling like Feeling like, Oh, all my friends are there or these people. I haven’t seen in a couple of years. I really want to get to see them that’s tough and and I, there’s nothing I can do to make that difficulty go away. But when looking at big events like this, I think it becomes even more important from a toe perspective. To say, Okay, what’s the ground rules that we’re setting? And, and that’s something where you as a judge. It’s really important before you even make the choice to apply for that event. Know what it is. You’re getting into Know where? Your risk parameters are and go from there.

1:34:10 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:34:11 pm – Erik Aliff:
And I wouldn’t just say no yours know the risk of the people within your

1:34:17 pm – Matthew Fox:
Mmm.

1:34:17 pm – Erik Aliff:
close circle, right? The people that you share a house with the people that you are likely to spend extended periods of time with within the next like, week or two.

1:34:30 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:34:30 pm – Erik Aliff:
Following an event like that. Following an event like that, be thoughtful about that. Where don’t don’t go? Oh no, I was at this event and now I’m planning to go see this friend of mine in another state. Talk with that person.

1:34:48 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:34:49 pm – Erik Aliff:
Make sure Make sure that we’re having clear communication about all people involved in those processes to make

1:34:49 pm – Matthew Fox:
I think that’s such an important

1:34:50 pm – Erik Aliff:
sure that we are not exposing people unnecessarily.

1:34:50 pm – Matthew Fox:
point because again, it goes to this idea of the communal responsibility question because I think it’s easy to think. Well, you know, if, If based on certain age, demographics, or health demographics, I’m mostly fine. So an event that’s mostly people like me, that’ll be fine. But yeah, how many people work with a grandpa live with a grandparent or do any kind of elder care or have a

1:35:12 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:35:12 pm – Matthew Fox:
partner with respiratory issues which you know that that’s me for like I I’m health, I don’t say healthy enough. It’s not a scale but like I was always in a position where I didn’t want to get covid, but I wasn’t that nervous about it. My partner has very bad asthma so it’s much more concerned about, you know, bringing something home to them.

1:35:29 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yes.

1:35:30 pm – Matthew Fox:
and I think one of the things that people are really wrestling with is, Yeah, it’s important to think about that both for the people, you know? But then I also extrapolate to the strangers, we’re going to be there that they’re gonna have those same considerations and how does that play into things?

1:35:43 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah, and and I will also encourage in the same way that that To make a space safe. We have to be intentional and we we have to be very Almost loud about it to say, like, we’re making this space safe. The same thing is true.

1:35:59 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:36:01 pm – Erik Aliff:
to making a space medically safe. And sometimes also being able to look around and make sure that people are safe, keeping in mind that that people who might have like an autoimmune disorder or people who

1:36:19 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:36:20 pm – Erik Aliff:
might have long-term illnesses. Those don’t always present themselves in ways that are obvious, you know, you can walk up to, and look at a person like that person looks healthy. And that person says, Oh, but I have a B and C that you wouldn’t have known unless you spent a long amount

1:36:51 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:36:52 pm – Erik Aliff:
of time with me. So I think that’s where we have to be really careful about making assumptions about and it may have to cause people to have really honest, sometimes uncomfortable conversations

1:37:06 pm – Matthew Fox:
Oh yeah.

1:37:09 pm – Erik Aliff:
people that they care about.

1:37:21 pm – Matthew Fox:
Hmm. Right. And you can search an important we’re thinking about it and it’s actually I appreciate the way that you’re

1:37:38 pm – Erik Aliff:
and, and again, it may result in

1:37:38 pm – Matthew Fox:
talking about it from a perspective

1:37:38 pm – Erik Aliff:
having to say Oh I that’s not for me right now. Maybe at a later point it will be for

1:37:40 pm – Matthew Fox:
of that there doesn’t have to be

1:37:40 pm – Erik Aliff:
me and that’s you again every day we look for more ways of

1:37:41 pm – Matthew Fox:
judgment in those conversations once

1:37:41 pm – Erik Aliff:
making communities safe within the last few weeks. Vaccines are now available for people under five.

1:37:43 pm – Matthew Fox:
Once we accept that different people

1:37:43 pm – Erik Aliff:
I’m as someone who has a daughter who is under five.

1:37:44 pm – Matthew Fox:
can make different risks

1:37:44 pm – Erik Aliff:
I’m thrilled Right. But as those changes happen, that then changes the numbers, right? As

1:37:45 pm – Matthew Fox:
We have cousins who live in the same city as us, who had a young child and we used to get together in pretty

1:37:50 pm – Erik Aliff:
I am speaking as from just a general standpoint I anticipate there will likely be another booster.

1:37:51 pm – Matthew Fox:
often, we didn’t see them much during

1:37:51 pm – Erik Aliff:
This fall So once you get a new booster that might change your math, right? So you have to keep almost running the numbers as you go through this to

1:37:53 pm – Matthew Fox:
We didn’t see them much during

1:37:53 pm – Erik Aliff:
to figure out what is the right and

1:37:53 pm – Matthew Fox:
pandemic and partly is because

1:37:53 pm – Erik Aliff:
safe thing for me. Oh, Yeah.

1:37:54 pm – Matthew Fox:
know my partner and I were being very

1:37:54 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:37:56 pm – Matthew Fox:
very safe but we we were going to the But we, we were going to the grocery store from time to time very safe. But we we were going to the grocery store from time to time instead of just ordering everything in and and from their perspective that made us people that they didn’t feel safe being around. No judgment there on one side or the other. The other thing I think that is so helpful what you’re saying? And we’re talking about individual decision making but I want to get to something you looted to, which is the tournament organization making and what we as judges can do to influence that. But just also this individual side. And I want to be very clear. I’m not saying this to minimize the risk that that or say like you shouldn’t care about risk. I think though when people say Oh I don’t want to think about risk in the decisions, I make the reality is we are making those decisions all the time. And we are doing things that are risky all the time.

1:38:36 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yes, yes.

1:38:39 pm – Matthew Fox:
Here in Minnesota where I live for about six months of the year. If I decide to go to a public event, yes, there may be a chance to get covid. But frankly the most dangerous to my health thing is that I’m choosing to drive in the snow which can often be somewhat dangerous and

1:38:55 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yes.

1:38:57 pm – Matthew Fox:
I think people kind of just figure, those kind of risks are factored in and they don’t consider it. But it’s, it’s important to think about all those things. And as you said to kind of Because I think on the one hand, I think it’s very important to say we all make those risks. but the other side of it, I think that I always get into this side is it’s easier than say, let’s have the Wild West, no restrictions everyone, make whatever choices they want to make, and the doors are open for

1:39:20 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:39:21 pm – Matthew Fox:
who are acceptable to risk and if you’re not you just go ahead and stay home.

1:39:25 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:39:27 pm – Matthew Fox:
Uh, you know, so we should actually get into. Let’s so let’s talk more about the torment, organizer side of things in terms of

1:39:32 pm – Erik Aliff:
Absolutely.

1:39:34 pm – Matthew Fox:
Because I think there’s something we said for. We can’t provide a This is an odd analogy but I think there’s a lot of similarities to me between like, when I was a kid, I was taught what a safe sex.

1:39:45 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yes.

1:39:46 pm – Matthew Fox:
The later people started using the terms safer sex, you know, realizing

1:39:48 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yes.

1:39:50 pm – Matthew Fox:
there’s no such thing as a hundred percent safety. But hard, as an absence isn’t gonna make sense either for most people.

1:39:55 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:39:55 pm – Matthew Fox:
So, let’s mitigate risks as you said.

1:39:57 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yes.

1:39:58 pm – Matthew Fox:
We all can make our own decisions. But there are things that torment organizers can do to mitigate risks that we, as judges can do, talk more about that side of things.

1:40:05 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah. Absolutely. And and I love how you’re putting this because like Without without getting into, like, the philosophy behind like choices behind a community coming together, whether it’s a government, a local government, the national government. That’s actually the best. I think a government is a good

Transcript

1:41:18 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:41:19 pm – Erik Aliff:
And you know, you can go beyond that and you can try like I mean I remember this was something I talked about. Gosh this was on a a judge Academy thing a couple of years ago that I did and talking about I think someone was asking about, like, wearing gloves to me wearing gloves goes into a level of safety that I don’t find particularly useful. Largely because unless you are softly caressing, the face of your opponent every round, I don’t find that to be terribly effective. Like you’re like, Oh I’m cutting the

1:41:53 pm – Matthew Fox:
which,

1:41:54 pm – Erik Aliff:
Like you’re like, Oh I’m cutting the deck of my opponent, Great covid, doesn’t do well, yes it can survive on on like non-living surfaces, it doesn’t do as well. There. so and on top of that like once your

1:42:04 pm – Matthew Fox:
Mmm.

1:42:07 pm – Erik Aliff:
your gloves, get dirty, the appropriate appropriate thing to do. I cannot tell you, I think I probably your gloves, get dirty, the appropriate thing to do. I cannot tell you. I think I probably go through over 50 pairs of gloves in a given day.

1:42:17 pm – Matthew Fox:
Wow.

1:42:17 pm – Erik Aliff:
because every time I walk in a room, I put gloves on and when I walk back out of that room, I take those gloves off. Why even if the gloves don’t look, visibly soiled, they’re soiled. And I don’t want to spread from

1:42:31 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:42:31 pm – Erik Aliff:
person to person. So if if you want to bring a pair of gloves and be like, well I’m gonna keep myself safe. What you actually need to do is bring a box of gloves and to me that’s where you get into this. You’re getting to kind of the absurd that I hate using that word absurd.

1:42:44 pm – Matthew Fox:
Yeah.

1:42:45 pm – Erik Aliff:
but like you’re getting into levels of risk mitigation that I don’t think are super beneficial

1:42:52 pm – Matthew Fox:
Mm-hmm.

1:42:52 pm – Erik Aliff:
Where I’m looking for a tournament organizer is for them to hit the broadest swaths.

1:42:57 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right. I like that too because I know some of the terms that get thrown around, sometimes are security theater and like this as me isn’t helping something. But on the flip side I do think like the term security theater is A A useful caution in terms of you know, one of the scariest things about this, for a lot of people has been the lack of control and I do think like, kind of psychologically it’s easy to fall into like well if I put this pair of gloves on, I am now safe you know, because I don’t without thinking about it more and think that’s that’s kind of what

1:43:26 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:43:26 pm – Matthew Fox:
we’re trying to encourage people is to think this isn’t about throwing out all the safety standards, but

1:43:28 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:43:31 pm – Matthew Fox:
isn’t about magic solutions. It’s about.

1:43:33 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:43:34 pm – Matthew Fox:
What can really find that balance of as you said mitigate the risk as much as possible.

1:43:39 pm – Erik Aliff:
And and like this this goes I guess I could have talked more about this flick with the the local game store stuff as well but like a thing that we can encourage and this is both local and large. Scale is thinking about what are our cleaning measures looking like you know that doesn’t mean we need to like bleach every table in between rounds but what are we doing to keep the space clean?

1:44:01 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:44:02 pm – Erik Aliff:
And and those are questions. I noticarily that it has to be an obvious answer. But just even presenting the question being thoughtful about, it can help us better mitigate risk.

1:44:13 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right? And I would also just say if you think it’s not a torment, organizer’s job to provide any kind of safety in their space, You know, no one, I can only speak for this country, but I think this is true in many countries in the world. You can’t open a game store. Unless you have, you know, fire exits.

1:44:29 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yep.

1:44:29 pm – Matthew Fox:
That are designated should be and a fire extinguishing

1:44:30 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yep.

1:44:31 pm – Matthew Fox:
system and stuff like that. Does it mean they will never be a

1:44:33 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:44:34 pm – Matthew Fox:
fire in the space? No, but there’s certain standards. The the space provider is meant to follow about how to provide to an acceptable level of risk. The safety. I think this is just, this is just

1:44:45 pm – Erik Aliff:
and I,

1:44:46 pm – Matthew Fox:
one more part of that.

1:44:47 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah, and I think about that, like, with a lot of large tournaments where they have to keep like an EMT on site. Do I think I’m going to need an EMT or an AED like an AED device Yeah. with a lot of large tournaments where they have to keep like an EMT on site. Do I think I’m going to need an EMT or an AED like an AED device

1:44:58 pm – Matthew Fox:
Mmm.

1:44:58 pm – Erik Aliff:
God? I hope not but I sure am.

1:44:59 pm – Matthew Fox:
Yeah.

1:45:01 pm – Erik Aliff:
Glad there. If I need them.

1:45:05 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:45:05 pm – Erik Aliff:
And so that’s how I want to think about risk, is both, what is the cost, and that’s not just a money cost, that’s a mental load cost, right? That’s, that’s an emotional load. All of those things, I need to weigh those things out. And ask what allows me to get my tournament to as safe a place as possible that still is as welcoming as possible to the largest number of people.

1:45:30 pm – Matthew Fox:
So to make sure I understand and kind of I want to start wrapping up a little bit so we can have some time

1:45:34 pm – Erik Aliff:
Right.

1:45:34 pm – Matthew Fox:
for other questions or kind of final things. But it sounds like, You know, again we’re not we’re not gonna be telling tios what to do. Exactly.

1:45:41 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:45:41 pm – Matthew Fox:
But from your perspective at least if you’re, if you’re looking at an event to decide is this one, you’d feel comfortable at or you’d feel comfortable. A lot of people going to, you’re looking for vaccinate for requirement of vaccinations requirement of

1:45:51 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yes.

1:45:52 pm – Matthew Fox:
masking and spacing is that accurate?

1:45:54 pm – Erik Aliff:
and and I would also add like I My ideal is vaccination but I also

1:45:58 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:45:58 pm – Erik Aliff:
acknowledge that there are some people for whom a vaccination, may not be a safe option themselves, so vaccination, or proof of negative covid, test.

1:46:06 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:46:06 pm – Erik Aliff:
Usually, I think within, like 72 hours is kind of an accepted industry beyond our industry but acceptable industry-wide standard is vaccination within the last 72 hours.

1:46:17 pm – Matthew Fox:
It and just on that again here, because I think some people would then say, Oh, but what if they caught it in the last 72 hours? Is this again, it’s the idea of the mitigation that like, Yes, is it, is this an ironclad wall? That nothing’s gonna slip through? No. But I’ll release gonna catch the majority of things that could be

1:46:32 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:46:33 pm – Matthew Fox:
dangerous this way.

1:46:33 pm – Erik Aliff:
yeah, and also add if if that’s a

1:46:34 pm – Matthew Fox:
Yes.

1:46:36 pm – Erik Aliff:
And also add if if that’s a question that is giving you pause, then I think it’s time for some self reflection on. Is this a good event for me? If this is causing me enough

1:46:43 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:46:45 pm – Erik Aliff:
consternation or uncertainty, maybe I need to reflect on whether this event is a good choice for me to make for my own personal safety, or my own personal bubble that I’m a part of

1:46:57 pm – Matthew Fox:
Yeah.

1:46:57 pm – Erik Aliff:
Um yeah, that’s we have to evaluate.

1:47:01 pm – Matthew Fox:
And like you said that that like the way I feel, I think it is entirely possible that I could say, I want to torn eyes her to do these things. And then still say, Now I feel like that toonizer is doing their due diligence and their duty to make a safer event.

1:47:18 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yep.

1:47:18 pm – Matthew Fox:
I personally don’t feel comfortable going to that event in my case, I think generally I would, but again like if I had plans to go see my friends, whether young kid that would probably be. Yeah I still don’t feel good.

1:47:29 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:47:30 pm – Matthew Fox:
Because I think that that’s the thing, is, again, we’re separate The two different conversations are Do. You personally feel like you can take this level of risk and what’s the level of risk? We’re asking tios and asking judges. Because I think that’s the other

1:47:41 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:47:42 pm – Matthew Fox:
thing is not. Most of us aren’t tios, but we, as judges have a lot of power. You know, Tios can’t do things if we

1:47:46 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:47:47 pm – Matthew Fox:
don’t don’t judge their events or I mean, that sounds drastic. I’m not calling from Boycott like

1:47:53 pm – Erik Aliff:
No, I know what you mean.

1:47:54 pm – Matthew Fox:
that.

1:47:54 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:47:54 pm – Matthew Fox:
Yeah, but Yeah but also Teo’s listen to us about what is safer.

1:47:56 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yes.

1:47:57 pm – Matthew Fox:
What is not And we as you know we And we as you know we as And we as you know we as judges are often the people who are You know, we’re not the ones enforcing. Well, we’re often. We often are the ones who are checking the vaccinations status and

1:48:07 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:48:08 pm – Matthew Fox:
stuff. But also we are the ones saying, Hey, please put your mask back on things like that.

1:48:15 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:48:16 pm – Matthew Fox:
Good.

1:48:17 pm – Erik Aliff:
oh, no, and I was gonna say along with that is if you are uncertain of where a to stands on it, Don’t wait until the day before the event to find that out if possible like that to me that’s that’s on us each individually as judges to say, Okay I need to make this decision as early and I need to get as much information as possible and on the flip side for tios that may be involved in this conversation. That may mean having to have more thoughtful conversations within your own staff early in an event life cycle to say. Okay what is it that we’re going to

1:48:54 pm – Matthew Fox:
Yep.

1:48:55 pm – Erik Aliff:
do? To communicate this clearly. And and yeah, that combination of intentionality and risk. Mitigation, it’s maybe conversations. People haven’t been very used to having we’re getting more used to it, but being intentional,

1:49:13 pm – Matthew Fox:
And I think the other part of that is like, again, I’m always encouraging

1:49:17 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:49:18 pm – Matthew Fox:
people, like you’ve got problems with something, speak up about it, talk to people, I do the want us to be careful and here this I know is the problem specifically, the United States.

1:49:35 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yes.

1:49:35 pm – Matthew Fox:
I hope most of the rest of the world. This isn’t a problem because I have some judgment about it.

1:49:41 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yes.

1:49:42 pm – Matthew Fox:
But, you know, I we always want to say like the tio should at a bare minimum, be meeting the requirements that the locality that they’re in, you know?

1:49:54 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:49:55 pm – Matthew Fox:
And so if you’re, if you’re city requires vaccinations for events like that as a Geo, you have to follow

1:50:01 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:50:02 pm – Matthew Fox:
that.

1:50:11 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yes. Yeah.

1:50:27 pm – Matthew Fox:
We now have areas at least in this country, I think maybe another parts of the world, but especially in the United States where it’s the opposite we’re actually you are forbidden like we had some events in Texas for example, where it is against the law now to acquire vaccinations for

1:50:31 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yes.

1:50:31 pm – Matthew Fox:
things like that. So, And I think that puts Tios in a different question. We’re now it is no longer. I’m not mad at the toe because I understand the TIO has to face these legal restrictions. Now, you may want to say Toto? Okay, then please don’t hold events in areas that have these restrictions. But it also know, sometimes these events are planned months or years in advance and then exchange and all this is just to say, like, I don’t

1:50:37 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:50:38 pm – Matthew Fox:
want angry mobs, going out from this thing to like, you know,

1:50:40 pm – Erik Aliff:
Absolutely.

1:50:45 pm – Matthew Fox:
When you have it here, when you have a tournament that has standards or rules that you don’t feel comfortable with. Start the conversation by finding out Why is that? Because it may be the toe is just as frustrated with you about it, or maybe the Tio is is perfectly fine with it and and then that should be a different way you’re approaching it. So we got about 10 minutes left, I want again, we’ve got some great questions and comments from the chat that we’ve been going through. Thank you again, for that, please. If there’s more from the chat go ahead and throw them up now. But Eric, we’re gonna last things you wanted to touch on. We haven’t really gotten into this conversation yet.

1:50:56 pm – Erik Aliff:
No, you’ve been tremendously thorough and I appreciate that. I really go back to in all of this, the acknowledgment that this is a process. What what works today? What is safe today may change and and

1:51:10 pm – Matthew Fox:
Right.

1:51:10 pm – Erik Aliff:
that has that has been one of the biggest learning experiences for me in the last two plus years has been What we knew two and a half years ago, is so different, from what we know now, and, and I will encourage each person as they have to assess their own individual situation. To always keep The sense cliche, but to keep a learner’s mindset to keep being

1:51:35 pm – Matthew Fox:
Yeah.

1:51:36 pm – Erik Aliff:
willing to learn. And when you see people who are Not thinking the same way as you are about this, to try to understand why and I know, I know, I am asking the world by asking that with some people I get that, but in these situations, I think that’s the best thing we can do. My personal experience has been that sometimes, one of the, the hardest things for people with dealing with covid, restrictions is to remember that every person is dealing with grief and trauma, right? Now, the last two and a half years have left, no one unscathed, when it comes to grief and trauma related to all of this. So keep that in your own personal

1:52:16 pm – Matthew Fox:
Mmm.

1:52:17 pm – Erik Aliff:
mind. If you ask yourself, Why am I feeling so uncertain about going to this event? One of those answers might just be dealing with grief and trauma related to all of this. And so being able to assess that of yourself assess that of your local community and your broader community, I think is one of the biggest kindnesses I can encourage people to show to themselves. The end of the people that they’re around.

1:52:42 pm – Matthew Fox:
Yeah, I think that’s really helpful because especially because that grief and trauma can come from every different direction. You know, like I, I definitely have

1:52:47 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yes.

1:52:48 pm – Matthew Fox:
my own perspectives on The things I think people should be doing to be safe and and I mean I

1:52:54 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:52:55 pm – Matthew Fox:
can’t be someone judgmental about the folks who just don’t want to take any of these restrictions. I also can understand that living on

1:53:00 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:53:01 pm – Matthew Fox:
these restrictions for years has been incredibly hurtful for people. It’s been very traumatic. There have been a lot of ways which people have been the message of. Please put a mask on can sometimes be delivered ways that it’s not the most helpful.

1:53:14 pm – Erik Aliff:
Oh my goodness.

1:53:15 pm – Matthew Fox:
Um, and so yeah. So I get like, I think that I think that there’s there’s a lot of freight nerves and a lot of trauma on every side of this and we could, you know, having that compassion of listening to people, I think is going to be just essential as we But that that’s why I think it’s to me. There’s kind of, we’re talking about this on the three levels, you know, what is your left?

1:53:31 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah, yes.

1:53:32 pm – Matthew Fox:
and personal choice as an individual? What is it as a judge and what does it as determine organizers and the participants in these tournaments?

1:53:42 pm – Erik Aliff:
Absolutely.

1:53:43 pm – Matthew Fox:
You know.

1:53:43 pm – Erik Aliff:
Yeah.

1:53:44 pm – Matthew Fox:
Well great. Well great. Um So I think it’s probably a good place to wrap up Eric. Thank you so much for being a part of this.

1:53:50 pm – Erik Aliff:
Absolutely.

1:53:50 pm – Matthew Fox:
You know, I want to thank you for for all you’re doing both as a nurse and also as a judge to all of our listeners thank you. So I’m a podcaster. Sorry to all of our participants thank you so much to people who are watching this video later. Of course, if you have questions, feel free to send them in to us at questions at Judge Academy.com. You got questions, specific to the community stuff. I do, you always find me Matthew at Georgia Academy calm. I also want to give a special shout out to Jeff Foster. While EDB who’s our normal Producer for these things, they are currently in mid-travel as they move from a move across country. Jeff has been very kind to step in. I give all their wonderful technical expertise. So if this looks like a halfway decent production, thank Jeff for that. Thank you to everybody. Judd Academy, hopes make these and just everyone else have a great day.