This post was written Friday, March 13th.
Today, where I live panic officially set in.
Public events cancelled in a swooping domino effect. People were shifty-eyed, edgy and prepping for an apocalypse. The grocery stores were packed. Long lines at the checkout. A line around the building at our local Costco. The shelves typically robust with a variety of paper products, any type of sanitation products and drinking water were completely bare. Large companies sending out mass communication letting us all know how they are taking care during this tenuous time. Even the Mouse Mecca is closing its doors because of this virus. Though, I cynically believe it may be due to a feared profit loss rather than genuine concern of potential spread.
The stock market is in the shitter and the economy is a spinning out mess. Many a travel plans cancelled. Self-quarantined and social distancing new buzz words.
To say I am concerned, as we all, are is redundant. However, what concerns me is not the actual virus. I mean it does but not to the degree that an economic meltdown freaks me out. What I am most fearful of is a full on pandemic of panic and Lord of the Flies type behavior. That is what kicks up my anxiety.
I don’t have any sage solution to viral control. Nor am I certain that anyone really does. Beyond what we already know: Wash your hands, stay home if you’re sick, don’t put your hands near or on your face or other orifices, practice good hygiene and overall good sense.
For now I am playing at normal life and routine. I feel that if we all abandon that and seclude away from our struggling local economy what will become of the vast majority of families living paycheck to paycheck? Those lacking the benefits or support to take a sick day in the first place. What will they do to survive and feed their families? We know we cannot rely on our government. Where are the plans for those people? Or perhaps our President will have a paper towel throwing sequel only this time it will be toilet paper at some location in middle America? What are we willing to do to see each other through this? Building toilet paper fortresses is not a viable option. Nor is selling disinfectant wipes for some insane price. I, for one am confident that a special place in hell exists for people who price gouge and make a profit in a time of crisis.
I’ve heard and read all descriptions of conspiracy theories and cover-ups, cat comic viral contagion curves and statistics, horror stories coming out of Italy. A cure found by doctors in Cuba? I don’t know where the truth lies in this muck of information and misinformation.
Oh yes and suddenly everyone else is “homeschooling” too. Not to be a bitch but when you have a teacher or professional teaching the classes for you and your children are learning remotely that is a bit more like homeschooling light. Unless you have poured your blood, sweat and tears into that lesson plan and curriculum. Until you have completely panicked and melted down over doing homeschooling right, and accepted questions, judgment and criticism from just about everyone who is not a homeschooler. Until someone has randomly felt the need to quiz your child because you are at the grocery store at midday. Nope, sorry, nah you’re just playing pretend at homeschooling.
I would be lying if I didn’t express that I am a bit puzzled and saddened by the collective parental confusion and stress I’ve heard with regards to spending “so much time with your child”.
Equally puzzling are the social media meme’s I have seen from homeschool sources who now deems us “the cool kids”. I am not homeschooling because I give a rat’s ass about being a cool kid. High school nonsense is long gone.
The song coming to my head and playing on repeat like background noise to this undoing of life as we know it is “Mad World” by Tears for Fears. That’s what I be singing out my window when we are all placed on lockdown.
Will we learn anything from all of this? This forced self-quarantine and closings. Will we realize that we really don’t enjoy being the harry carry? Will we consciously slow our lives down? Say no and cozy down more often. Not just because we are afraid of catching some horrible germ. Be happy being less stimulated? It’s a bizarre social experiment unfolding before our eyes.
What is your opinion on this virus- because everyone has one. How do you plan on managing?