New podcast says ‘it’s a scary time, but it doesn’t have to be scary alone’

“Our Plague Year” discusses the difficulties of the current situation while also offering thoughtful advice.

Courtesy of Night Vale Presents

“Our Plague Year” discusses the difficulties of the current situation while also offering thoughtful advice.

Matthew Tamez, Managing Editor

In the past few weeks, many individuals have found their lives changed entirely by a pandemic sweeping the globe. People handle it in different ways, some finding themselves gripped with anxiety and fear at what the future may hold. Joseph Fink, the co-author of the podcast and book series “Welcome to Night Vale” and the author of “Alice isn’t Dead,” has started a new podcast called “Our Plague Year.”

“Our Plague Year” is different from the other podcasts under the “Night Vale Presents” banner. Instead of being a fictional serialized story, it is instead a stream of consciousness from Fink. Fink is joined by at least two other guests during each episode who talk about the experience of living during this time. Fink’s entire livelihood comes from book sales, podcast advertising and live shows across the country. He is just as anxious as anyone else about COVID-19and the effect it could have on the world after it is gone.

With many people isolating themselves in response to the outbreak, it’s helpful to hear a voice talking about their thoughts in the current moment. While Fink and his guests are certainly worried, they remain optimistic that things will return to a state of normalcy.

Fink and his guests talk about a myriad of things that can help ease anxiety, such as the continued need for human contact, even if we cannot actually go near each other. Things as simple as talking over the phone and hearing someone else’s voice and breathing pattern can fit the need for interaction. They also talk about how humor is used as a sort of defense mechanism and is in no way taking away from the severity of the situation.

Most importantly, however, is the talk about how one would be hard pressed to find a single person who is not affected by COVID-19. In this time, it is paramount that people maintain unity as a species. We must all remain together and connected with people within our own nation and overseas as well. Although the virus is changing the way we live our lives, it will eventually reach an end.

“Our Plague Year” finds a way to conceptualize the anxieties many individuals feel at this moment while also maintaining a hopeful outlook to the future. The podcast is currently updated once a week. At the moment, two episodes are available for listening.