Into the Miniature Mouth of Madness


The world becomes Coronafied. People have it terribly bad out there and I am fortunate to be able to be locked away in a flat in Prague 6 with only occasional trips to a grocery store or a walk around the park. Still, while I get it that I have it much better than many others, I have certainly begun to descend into a mouth of miniature madness.

I have not worn pants in a month. Not even looked at them. I wonder on occasion how they’ll fit when I go to put them back on in late-May and have thus resolved to start a diet in late April. Maybe early May. Mid-May at the latest.

Going out means wiping things down, boiling a mask, hand sanitizing in a routine my hands haven’t seen since I was twelve, and dropping my clothes into a hamper at the door before I walk like a surgeon about to enter surgery until I can turn on my sink with my elbow. Therefore outside doesn’t occur that often. I spend an awful lot of time, though, staring through the window at the reckless maniacs below.

My people skills are depleting. Not only people skills, but what to do to go outside skills. A mailman rang the buzzer yesterday and I had to check three times that I was wearing pants. (spoiler alert: I wasn’t). I’m sure it’ll get better before June. In any event, I don’t think anyone else will forget to wear pants either.

I have full on conversations with my cat, who is becoming a real dick. She knows every step of my day, so the mystery is gone from our relationship and we both know it. It’s sad. We schedule the day with two meals. Breakfast-ish and dinner-ish. There’s something in between that sort of resembles lunch, but it’s not so much food as the time when I begin to wonder if it’s OK to start drinking. It usually is.

While I drink more days during the week now I find that I am rarely intoxicated. I mean, I can push through if I need to (heroically, I must add), but it usually doesn’t happen. I hope that ability comes back too. I have accepted a writing job for a series of coursebooks that are devouring all of my time. I am up at 6 am writing and at some point in the day I stop when my back hurts too much. So while people talk about Corona free time I squint and try to remember what it was like.

I guess this is going to be talked about one day. Everyone will have a “what were you doing during Corona” story. These will probably grow and become little myths. One day Max Brooks will write an oral history of it and I will read it. As long as there are zombies in it. The thing is, I don’t know if I’ll really remember what I spent the Corona time doing. I’ll remember work and not being outside and rather staring out the window at the Prague weather getting nicer. I’ll remember a ton of work and talking to my cat and the big day every week when we go out for groceries and then the twenty minutes after we get back when we clean ourselves and all of our things.

But I really hope I can get drunk after this whole thing.

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