The recently reported and growing epidemic known as COVID-19 sounds terrifying. We still know so little about the disease, such as how it’s transmitted, whether it’s airborne, how deadly it is, and the short- and long-term health effects of what seems like no normal cold virus. For now, because so much about the virus is uncertain and local universities are shutting down in-person activities, we’re taking the unprecedented step of halting in-person research. Thus, the progress we’ve made on the total synthesis of clavatadine C, D, and E will have to wait for a while. We hope to resume research in a month or so depending on how long the pandemic lasts. There’s talk about developing a vaccine, but that could take years. Are we in for a long, dark period of our lives, or will this all blow over in short order? Who knows?
Earlier, I posted that I’d been accepted to give an oral presentation at the 2020 Spring ACS meeting, but the ACS just made the (literally) unprecedented step of cancelling the meeting entirely with just one week remaining until it was scheduled to begin. I checked, and this is the first time the ACS has ever cancelled their national meeting. ACS meetings endured through World War I, World War II, but could not survive COVID-19. I’m sure I was not alone with the burden of having to cancel all air travel, hotel accommodations, and the like, but boy is this frustrating. It sounds like they’re also going to cancel the 2020 BCCE meeting to which I had submitted two abstracts. When will this end?!
For those in situations such as this, where we’ve had abstracts accepted but through no fault of our own the organizers decided to cancel the meeting, what do we do? Do we leave the items on our CV with a note that the conference was terminated? I think that sounds the most fair and is what I’ll do. But what do you think?