It’s Sunday. My kids and I watched Sixty Minutes with my mom eating Wegman’s General Tso’s chicken and noodles in her apartment just below mine in the house we share in Brooklyn, NY. A segment called 90+ followed several 90+ year olds around for 6 years to find out how they got so to be so old and intact. Answers unclear, something about resilience, but no clue how to break that down into a gene, pill, superfood or set of behaviors for us to duplicate. To determine the quality of their minds, they were asked questions like the date and current President. I tried in that moment to really recall what day it was, I know it’s a Sunday in November after the election but what date exactly? Why would I care. And I’d love to forget the current President’s name but he/they/I won’t let me. Those elderly folk all around 100 years old now, seemed in good spirits. They all had routines sometimes involving chair exercises and driving convertibles. They didn’t seem to get too worked up. They seemed to appreciate just being alive. Their hair and clothing looked considered. Most had smiles that were worn into their faces.
It’s day two off of social media and of course I’m spinning in a no-man’s land of pandemic isolation, depression and fixation on things that seem to always be the least important thing for me to be worried about. (I suspect these fixations represent areas that require the most time because of just how banal they are. Men, men from the past who have clearly made their feelings for me known partly through the complete lack of any attempt to be clear about it.) A conversation with my sister pre-empted this Twitter purge. Something needs to change, something that I can control, and I haven’t yet gathered the courage to shave my head. So social media fast will have to do. Seems harmless and some people say it’s temporarily life-changing, so what the hell.
Can I share the day two nagging feeling in the back of my head that keeps asking me how anyone will know if I write something here if I don’t post about it? If I don’t go on Instagram and get the odd DM from nice lady friends, who will know I’m even alive besides my mom, kids, dog, baby daddy, and long-distance boyfriend. I’ve slowly isolated myself from almost everyone else. No school pod to speak of here. Oh I forgot, my contractor will be the first to find me dead. He needs my checks. I’m getting house work done, which I know makes me fortunate, especially now. That I have a home and income to fix it.
It’s an addiction that reminds me of the addiction I have to between 1–5 cigarettes per week. Minimal considering but an addiction nonetheless. The signature way I do addiction. Normal. Not too much.
Earlier today I read the newspaper (NYT) at the dining table for a few minutes before *life* to see bits of what was happening in the world. I usually get the hot takes from my favorite Twitter thinkers, and honestly I haven’t missed the newspaper much. But this is what I am doing today because Day Two. I found myself in the Surreal Estate section. A fashion designer who usually hosts dinner parties a few times a week at her home in Tribeca has to repurpose her 65-person capacity dining table part of which descends from the ceiling to meet its counterpart rising from the beneath the floor. It now hosts their 5 family members. These are the stories some think we need to know about. I want to know which stories people believe others should read because I really read the news to read parts of us.
I’m writing as my kids scream at each other, right now it’s post-bath, post-grocery shopping, post park-friend playdate, post-dishwashing, post feeding, and whatever else having children entails. Pandemic hasn’t changed those things, they just extend them for you, stretch them out to all hours of the day, every day. Because these kids don’t go anywhere. So I’ve decided I’ll write a little something when nothing seems convenient. On my messy bed, clean laundry still in the basket, kids beds have no sheets on them, dishes in sink, kids not in bed and it’s after 9 pm. But I’ll write a little something. Maybe this is the gift of no social media? Maybe it’s a manic depressive going through a up swing. Perhaps it’s just me trying to connect with you somehow when we can’t really touch otherwise. This is my post. Hi.