Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Maude VS COVID, "online" school, working from home and the (literal) end of the world

I really don't have to say it, because we all know it, but I'm certain the end of the world is near.  There are signs literally everywhere.  And I'm not one of those super-religious and cray-cray freaks who stocks up on food in my bomb shelter or anything.  I'm just a girl who works at home in her sweatpants who notices things.

For example, just 2 or 3 weeks after the wrath of COVID (plague, anyone?) began to rain down on humanity, where I live there were a few earthquakes.  I mean even back then it seemed a little to coincidental but as they say hindsight is always 2020 so I can see clearly now...

We all got lost in the newness of working from home, our daily commute shortened to two minutes from the bedroom, including a stop for coffee.  The absolute bliss of being able to stay in our pajama pants until noon as long as we wore a neutral top that could be covered with a scarf for the occasional zoom call.  I kept earrings and lip gloss with an emergency hair kit close by so I could put lipstick on this pig at a moment's notice.

The wonderful experience of working from home while we let our kids (on "extended spring break") goof around on TV, cell phones and video games was all too short-lived as schools began to build their "temporary plan" of online school, which, I think we can all agree on now was a total joke.

And before you get all high and mighty like I'm bashing teachers and schools, I'm not.  My kids are just kind of dicks sometimes, and yes it wasn't an ideal situation for anyone but they also totally hosed the entire quarter with MISSING WORK in the end.  How do you ask?  I wish I knew.  

Endless hours to complete assignments after 15 minutes of (sometimes/mostly) pre-recorded instruction and they ended up with B's and C's?  Come ON, if ever there was a time to get straight A's people THIS WAS IT.

But back to the end of the world.  As soon as we all adjusted to not accomplishing anything of value at work (because I was constantly checking to see if the kids were watching YouTube or Tik Tok instead of their classes) and school (see previous reference) the next thing that happened was MURDER HORNETS.  Murder. Hornets.  

The name was enough to strike fear into the hearts and minds of children and adults alike.  Immediately images of a dying Macauley Culkin in that one movie we all saw but can't remember the name of that had that adorable little girl Anna Chlumsky in?  Remember?  Anyway, that whole image just made me sad.  But, murder hornets?  Need I say more?

Eventually "school" ended and I was free to work from home, in my yoga pants, without interruption except for if the kids were A) fighting, B) hungry or C) asked to mow the lawn.  We all settled into the sweet rhythm of the summer.  Slowly but surely we could emerge from our homes and begin to act like stuff was getting back to normal.

And then, snakes.  So this one sign of the end of times is probably just in my little corner of the world but holy shit-ballz I have never seen more snakes in all my life.  Pretty much every time I take my dog for a walk I see a snake.  My favorite kind is the dead kind which is about 50% of the time, the rest of the time my fat stupid dog (who I love almost as much as my children) thinks it is a play toy.  Twice now she's almost been bitten in her fat dog face. 

And I lived in this house/neighborhood all summer last year and I NEVER SAW A SINGLE SNAKE.  So, using that as evidence I'm back to my thinking that we're nearing the end of the world.  2019=no snakes; 2020=snakes...

I should also point out that while we weren't experiencing total famine, there were a LOT of people unable to access food during the massive layoffs and business closures, but even more broadly there were shortages of food and supplies for all of us: sugar, yeast, flour, canned beans and toilet paper.  Which, if you have teenagers in the house you can relate to why running out of TP is a very frightening thing.  

The one thing you COULD buy in abundance at the grocery store? Chickpeas in the can.  Apparently no one wanted to eat a shit pile of those with limited TP resources available.  I can understand completely and I might be the ONLY person making that correlation.  You're welcome.

The final straw that broke the camel's back in my thinking that we're truly in the end of times was the appearance of a salamander IN MY OFFICE, on the second floor of a really dry building.  I did not even know we had salamanders in Idaho let alone in Boise, which is one of the driest parts of the state!

I think what's bothering me the most is that I still have a lot to make up for from my twenties.  I mean, I've spent the better part of the last two decades TRYING to be a better person.  (uphill battle over here) I'm also disturbed in thinking that if the end of the world is really near, what's that going to look like?  

I'll tell you what it looks like in my house: my kids will be at home, watching videos of someone watching videos of someone playing video games or learning Tik Tok dance moves while I'm hunkered down in my office working in my pink bathrobe, at noon on a thursday, still nursing a now cold cup of coffee, with the best bed head you've ever seen because it's likely been three days since I last showered and a months since my last haircut, teeth un-brushed, holey and dirty underwear (sorry, Ma), with my fat lazy dog snoring right behind my chair so if I stand up to use the bathroom I can't miss her without stepping on her.

Yes, that's what the end of the world looks like in my house.  A total shit show.

I'm not really sure how I would have pictured it otherwise, I honestly never gave it a thought until now.  But I really did not envision the curtains closing on my own little sit-com stage at home.  As I sit here typing this I think I should make some personal resolutions to start showering more regularly, at least putting on some pants and maybe changing my underwear on a daily basis.


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