It’s Sunday, but that has become irrelevant. If I’m staying at my girlfriends, most days pass the same-Coffee, cuddles, sex, work, breakfast, run, shower, work, sex, lunch, work, yoga, stroll, wine, Netflix read.
Today, Rona, our pet fish of thee days, died. I wish her death were symbolic of Corona’s slow demise, but outside this dim-lit Bleeker street apartment, the Virus is not only destroying bodies but also minds. People are going crazy. The confinement, the surplus of fear-bait news, the deficiency of Corona-Coping info, the unemployment, the first of the month rent letters, the extension of social distancing until April 30th, the Instagram posts of body bags, and the speedy depreciation of 401k’s, is slowly killing us, an incubation greater than 14 days that will eventually paralyze us.
The spread of fear, unlike COVID, can be tracked. The pandemic lives in the palm of our hands-tweets, tags, stats, headlines at our fingertips. Put it down, turn it off, silence, mute, aeroplane mode, toss it out the window, lock it in the safe, lose it down the back of the sofa, throw it in the freezer. Reality is outside our windows, but we are too scared to experience it. We seek truth through news posted for clicks and shares. Social media is tapping into our fear response- flight, fright, or fight? But, when confined, there is only one reflex. Our globe is in fright, fear-induced catatonia far more dangerous for society than respiratory distress.
A door knob won’t kill you! Turn it.
A pavement won’t swallow you. Walk on it.
A tree won’t crush you. Sit under it.
A flower won’t choke you. Smell it.
A bird won’t shit on you. Actually, it may, but watch that pigeon fly between light posts wondering why no one is holding crumbs out for it anymore.
When you walk through the streets, avoid looking at the facemasks stretched over clenched jaws or the eyes darting, warning strangers not to break the 6ft policy. This is the fear that lives in your phone! When outside, you can escape it, quieten it.
Leave the phone and panic nestled beside pennies and popcorn kernels in the dark corners of your home.
Look at the squirrels chasing each other up the spine of cherry blossoms, their joy spilling pink petals into the air. Watch toddlers waddling towards French bulldogs, sticky hands reaching towards the groomed pup. Laugh at the owner who drags their dog away and the kid that keeps chasing, giggling, picking up too much speed for their stubs to carry them. The kid topples onto the pavement smiling, and the owner lets out a breath, happy the pint-size petri dish on legs didn’t infringe on their 6ft mote.
Sure, it is a time to be cautious, to keep your distance, wipe down surfaces, facetime with loved ones and stay informed, but it is not the time to fester in your homes waiting for the pandemic to break. It is spring, the world still has beauty in it, go find it.
Warning: Posted in Retrospect. Just like an Amazon package, arrived late.