When I first heard about the Corona Virus some time in January, I had no idea it would turn out to be so serious. The name itself threw me off, after all, it was literally named after the friendliest beer. I mean, when you picture yourself soaking in the sun on some pristine beach in the Carribbean, you see yourself drinking a Corona, not a Schlenkeria (or some other German beer with way too many consonants). A few months down the line and here I am, barricaded in my house with my family, and yet, despite the gravity of the situation, there are many things I’m very thankful for about this pandemic.
These days, I only venture out for groceries but when I’m there, if I feel a cough coming on, I panic and do everything to try to hold it in. And its not like holding in a fart, this is much tougher, especially as I’m allergic to dust and that’s pretty unavoidable. I’ve been in many awkward situations where my allergies get me death stares and eye ball judgement. Although it does wonders if you need to clear a path somewhere. Who needs to say ‘Excuse me’ when you can just cough. It’s almost like having a superpower.
I never thought I would see the day where coughing would raise more eyebrows and instill more fear than a weapon or good old fashioned indecent exposure. I think you could actually hold up a bank nowadays by just coughing your way to the safe and spitting sputum on the cashier clerks. I can see it now, a burglar enters a bank where everyone is wearing face masks, removes his and yells “All your money or I’ll sneeze!”
The social distancing aspect if by far the greatest bonus. For years and years I have been searching for an excuse to avoid some people like the plague, and lo and behold, the universe sends me an actual plague! There are a certain number of mouth-breathing, incessant talking, sewage breath folks that I’m delighted to never have to hug or mingle with again. It’s wonderful; now when I see these folks, I do my special “Corona Dance”; I throw my hands up in the air like I’m under arrest and I wiggle my ass backwards until said person blends into the horizon, singing “Sorry, have to be careful, I have asthma” as I disappear into the distance, forever.
As Covid-19 began to really impact healthcare infrastructures and societies started shutting down, the gravity of this apocalypse hurtled at me with full force. In particular, the closing of schools was a shock to the system. I believe my exact words to my husband were “Shoot me in the ass because I’m sure that will hurt less”. Gone were the days of having my morning coffee after dropping my toddler at nursery by lazing on the couch and fantasizing about my pulitzer award. Now it was back to chug your coffee cold while you distract young demon with the theory of relativity, or a balloon.
But as the first week passed, we both settled into the new reality and I am really loving the extra bonding time. Now we play, laugh and cry together and every day is a new opportunity to try and find new fun activities we can do at home and alone. Seriously, if anyone ever wanted to train their young ones to be successful serial killers, you won’t get another opportunity like this.
There are many benefits to flattening the curve, and I’m not just referring to my shape. The planet is getting a much needed break from some fleas, families all over the globe are discovering that maybe they should have opted for condoms, and introvert alcoholics are finally venerated with a lifestyle most will condone. So take comfort and know that it’s ok; we’re all in this, alone.