The Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic has now caused an increase in the death rate amongst vulnerable groups. Because Covid-19 took the world by surprise it is a reasonable proposition to argue that many of these Covid-19 related deaths could have been avoided if governments around the world had been adequately prepared. No matter the origins of the surprise, the number of avoidable deaths depends upon society’s preparedness for catastrophic events. This in turn depends upon governments and official agencies exercising imagination to think about and to plan for alternative futures and to invest the necessary resources to prepare for them. Unfortunately avoidable deaths come about because of a lack of imagination and an under investment of resources to deal with surprises when they happen. Around the world our leaders are playing roulette with citizen’s lives in the forlorn hope that surprises will not happen, but inevitably the do. Life is full of surprises and many of them are not pleasant.