Saturday, January 16, 2021

notes & things | 01/16/2021

Though today I woke up to dreary gray, last night as I was leaving the library at 5pm ,there was a sliver of twilight in the sky that signals, even though it is cold and snowed on an off in wet drippy flakes all day long, we are on the steady climb out from the deep well of  the solstice.  This morning I dreamed about taking a trip and missing my train and being caught up in the middle of a street riot all at once.  Also buying stale peach rings (which I don't even really like) in a gift shop and trying to mail out packages in the middle of civil unrest.  Various exes, my sister, and yes, even my mother populate these dreams or drift in an out, but they get weird this time of year. I am usually less anxious in January than I am in December, but the world is not helping me out this year in any way as there is much to be anxious about. 

I have these moments throughout the day that feel normal, but then am taken aback by absurdity of doing things like planning committee meetings and doing faculty presentations while the equivalent, I read in an article the other day, of several 747 jets of people are dying every day. Not in crashes, but in hospital beds in every corner of the country (let alone what is happening in the world outside the US.) Also, you know, the attempted overthrowing of the government and a sullen mad man at the helm for at least a few more days. I'm tired.  Tired of doing covid math and doomscrolling and tired of planning for worse case scenarios in every breath and just tired. 

It's not good for my health (mental or physical) and also for my creativity.  I read a lot, but sadly it's not fun stiff like poetry and novels and just endless NYT, CNN, and Atlantic Monthly articles on the putsch (a word I previously would not have had occasion to know), on hospitalization numbers, on the new strain concerns, on which mask is better, on mental health crises that will flourish in lockdown (which will, of course, never end, because people refuse to do it the right way or at all.)  I am okay with taking a step down, a step back from ordinary life to fight the virus and have been all along (I say this know that it's harder for extroverts I suppose.) but the thing that makes me feel angry and crazy is watching everyone ruining our chances of even making a dent in infections long enough to get the vaccines happening enough.  Becuase you're a selfish fuck,  because you can't stay away from restaurants and bars, or stop jetting off on vacations or throwing parties.  As all the memes say, it's like I'm a member of the worst group project ever with no end in sight.  

And really, my own sacrifices are small, but wear on me more as time goes on The things I miss mostly  inconsequential little things--wearing lipstick, thrifting, museum trips, going on movie dates slightly high. (or even sitting in a movie theatre alone where I can mix my junior mints in my popcorn like the freak I am.)  Or maybe more just being able to be freely and obliviously  in the world without listening for someone coughing or making sure they are not too close or don't have a mask on.  It eats up mental energy I used to use for daydreaming and project planning.  Why am I so tired all day when I've barely done much at all?

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