Our first Coronaversary, if you will

ersatz experience

coronaversaryA friend of mine asked me, and his other friends, to share their thoughts on the past COVID year. A Coronaversary, if you will. I gave him my off-the-top thoughts, but I decided I’d expand upon that.

First off, I am grateful that my daughter got to travel to the African American History Museum in DC in February 2020. Then the church play she was in, Once On This Island in early March, took place, by which point congregants were refraining from hugging in favor of waving.

And I’m glad I went to the Pine Hills library and picked up seven Marvel movies the afternoon before the lockdown, though I didn’t actually watch them until months later.

Vigil

My father-in-law, about 75 minutes away, was at home, dying from cancer. Just before March 15, one of my brothers-in-law moved in with his parents. We had regular Zoom meetings. (I use Zoom generically; it was a Google thing, I think.)

Early on, my FIL was chatty and engaging. Soon, though, he was fatigued and slept through much of the gatherings. It was supposed to be for 15 minutes a day, but it was always longer, often considerably so.

These went on until April 22, when my FIL died, then for a few days more. My BIL went back to his family. Someone thought it’d be a good idea to have weekly meetings.

These went on OK, for the most part, until George Floyd was murdered on Memorial Day. Then discussions about race, religion, and COVID shutdowns made things… uncomfortable. I alluded to this here. While I’m in regular contact with most of my in-laws, it’s not with one couple, and it ain’t my decision.

School

Starting in mid-March 2020, schools started the arduous task of migrating to remote learning. My wife moved her “office” from the dining room table to the guest room. As a retiree, I had to get used to my wife and daughter being home during the day; my daughter is STILL home. The governor canceled spring break, which was extremely disheartening. 

I’ve noted my loathing of ZOOM school, and my disdain for lost snow days, restated by The Atlantic here.

Fighting COVID

I was appalled by the mixed messaging coming from the White House press conferences. None more so than in early April, when the CDC recommended mask-wearing and 45 said, essentially, “I’m not going to that.” Governors, in TX and FL, among others, were congratulating themselves in May for their success in fighting the virus without closing down. I yelled at the TV, a lot.

The news is rehashing the past year, with projections that we could experience as many as 200,000 dead in the United States. We have 530,000 or so now. In retrospect…

Things I miss

I so want to go to the movies, seeing and hearing people in person reacting to the action on the screen. Virtually all of the films I’ve reviewed in 2021 I saw alone, on TV, or on the computer. [Sigh.]

One of these days, I’ll be overjoyed to sit in an indoor restaurant. Yes, I know I can in Texas right now. [Arrgh!]

More on ZOOM

Theater on ZOOM is not great. It’s a televised play, except it’s too stagey.

ZOOM negates being too busy to go to that second meeting of the evening. You can finish one gathering at 6:20, then go to the loo before meeting #2 at 6:30.

I sort of hate ZOOM. It’s an ersatz experience. I’m almost certainly depressed. I went to a therapist, but it failed because it was on ZOOM instead of in person.

Now, it’s not all bad. I see my sisters, in CA and NC all the time. Watching niece Rebecca Jade perform is a joy. And Bible study actually works well.

Spring is almost here, actual and metaphorically…

Jaquandor’s take.