Hello from my claustrophobic, dark bedroom here on the UWS of Manhattan during the COVID-19 lockdown!
I normally enjoy the cave-like atmosphere of our room; owing to a lack of decorative taste or initiative on my end, as well as my propensity for hoarding garbage, it keeps me on my toes knowing I might trip over the shell of a desiccated waterbug or slip on a used makeup wipe on my way to bed. Just kidding; it’s not that bad. It would be if I lived alone, but my husband won’t let me sink to that level of filth anymore, which I guess is a good thing. Whatever.
These days, though, all I can picture all around my house are the germs – Rona germs, ones that could kill me and Ben. That’s right, I’m talking about (what the fuck else), COVID-19, everyone’s favorite unexpected way that humanity ends.
Did I think a mere month ago that now I would spend my days fashioning face coverings out of my collection of thick winter scarves, that I would become so proficient at making my own Clorox wipes by saturating paper towels (sweet, impossible-to-find paper towels) with 90% isopropyl alcohol to wipe down every surface in my house fifteen times a day? No, no I didn’t. I also didn’t anticipate having to do laundry in our bathtub, which I have learned is a terribly labor-intensive task. I was reminded while wringing out my husband’s fifteenth identical black Polo shirt of the legendary story of when Lyndon B. Johnson brought electricity to rural Texas to save the backs of the stooped old women who had spent their lives drawing water from wells to their physical detriment. Given that my core strength is most currently comparable to a baby’s who is first learning to roll over, this very well may happen to me over the course of the next few months, or however long this lockdown will last.
Ben just left for our dog, Jack’s, afternoon walk, which is another arduous and torturous affair these days. Legally, we have to cover our faces, which would be fine if we had masks, but we don’t, so we have to use scarves, which I hate. Then, our neighborhood is full of absolute morons who don’t seem to grasp the severity of this threat and are out and about, gallivanting around without masks or gloves and enjoying Springtime during a plague. Yeah, I get it, you need to “take your exercise.” Do laps around your apartments like the rest of us, you fools. Each time Ben and Jack come home, it’s a 20 minute process to clean them both off – Jack’s paws and mouth all need to be scrubbed with soap and water for 30 seconds each, and he reacts like he’s being waterboarded (which, to be fair, he kind of is). Then everything needs to be wiped down with the rubbing alcohol, including the soap dispenser, faucet, front door lock and handle, baby gate at entrance of kitchen, entire kitchen counter, floor of front hall and the little step that opens our kitchen garbage. In between, there are approximately 15 hand-washings that I perform with such vigor that I might as well be scrubbing in for open-heart surgery. It is just exhausting, and emotionally draining, and I’ve really had enough already.
So I’ve started this new blog to record my thoughts and make sure that I bear witness to how fuckin’ crazy this whole global pandemic is. Stay tuned for daily (or multiple daily) updates – and be well.
Your favorite NY Nut, Caroline