Brevity is the Soul of Apathetically #3: This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things

There is a certain ennui to blogging when the whole world is facing the same crisis. What, exactly, does one contribute to the vagaries of being cooped up in exactly the same way as everyone else over and above what others have already written? In times like these, I’m acutely glad that I never tried to write a “slice of life” blog. Generating content for the next eight weeks would be rough

My Partner “helpfully” notes that we are technically not cooped up in exactly the same way as everyone else. We still don’t call it a shelter-in-place because that would be the thing that panics people! We are still free to move about the vast expanse of utterly nothing that is open, provided that we stay six feet apart at all times!

Have some random snippets of life from our not-a-shelter-in-place.

(Note to the universe 9th Circle of Hell: a bit of “my life is too mundane during the extremes of this crisis to know what to write about this week” is not an invitation to “helpfully” generate some additional content!)

Our On Demand menu shows CATS is available to buy, meaning it will presumably also soon be available to rent 

Partner: “Not now…but soon!! Soon we will experience the full glory that is The CATS!!”

Lavender: “Okay, I now know self-isolation has truly broken the back of this ‘great’ nation when even you are reduced to counting down the days until we can rent CATS.


Upon learning that San Francisco has declared an official shelter-in-place

Partner: “That’s good. By the time they finish their two months, there will still be a chance that they’ll have things under control enough to not create a secondary infection peak when they all gather together again in evacuation shelters when the state next catches on fire.”

Lavender: “All it takes to be an optimist in Apocalypse World is to still be able to envision a scenario in which two disasters occur, but they don’t overlap?”

Partner: “Well, three. Three disasters. The next Depression will still be around then.”


Lavender: “They cut the number of trains because everyone is ‘staying home.’ Except we’re not shelter-in-place, so all those regional commuters who’d been carefully spacing themselves out on trains had to pile on top of each other today. [Essential worker friend who has to report to work] sent pics.”

Partner: “That ‘tracks’…”


Therapist at my first virtual session: “I thought of you immediately when it only took a global pandemic to finally be able to offer you telehealth.”

Also Therapist at my first virtual session: “I know you are already on to planning for the next disaster. But, I think you should slow down and practice a little self-care. For example, spend some time with your 2018 self and let her enjoy an  ‘I told you so’ over how unprepared [outpatient facility where I previously had in-person therapy] was for this crisis given we didn’t have a plan for telehealth back when you first suggested it.”


Lavender: “Facebook is giving me nasty grams that [host] still posted the recurring event invite for our group of ten to board game night with its default physical location. Should I un-RSVP so Facebook’s algorithm doesn’t peg me as the type to defy social distancing? Or maybe ask [host] to actually change the location to virtual?”

Partner: “Are you seriously starting a rejection spiral over what our corporate overlord’s privacy-invading algorithm thinks of you?”

Lavender: “No…well…yes…”

Partner: “Do you want me to finally create a Facebook page and RSVP for us so that I will be the one to look like the bad person? Because that’s less embarrassing than asking [host] to change the listed location to virtual and thereby admitting you feel ashamed that Facebook is shaming you?”

Lavender: “No…well…yes…”


Lavender: “Where’s the cat food? Shouldn’t it be in our Amazon locker by now?”

Partner: “Management sent an email they are doing straight to our door deliveries now instead of the mailroom. Right on the day I got notice from Amazon it had arrived. I’m guessing it ended up in their office. I’ll probably go down tomorrow.”

Lavender: “In an attempt to keep us safer from isolated package lockers we could have gone at midnight to wipe down and retrieve alone, they created a need for us to go be around additional people we ordinarily wouldn’t?”

Partner: “Yup.”

Lavender: “This is why we can’t have nice things.”

Two days later, our complex daily digest announces that “effective immediately all common areas and amenities” are closed to resident use

Lavender: “Does that include the laundry?”

Partner: “Nobody knows. They will probably have to issue a clarification later.”

Lavender: “Taking a page from the federal government in how to manage crisis communications, I see…”

Partner: “This is why we can’t have nice things.”


A commercial for extols the virtues of vacationing in Sonoma in the days of quarantine

Lavender: “Remember when people could go outside and wineries made actual wine instead of hand sanitizer? Ad buys have not aged well this past week…”

A commercial for Fidelity Wealth Management retirement planning comes on immediately afterwards

Partner: “Nope, they haven’t. Remember when people had wealth to manage?”

Lavender: “You do realize we’re Millennials?”

Partner: “Oh, right. Never mind then.”


Watching Disney animal companions sing songs about the main characters

Lavender: “What do you think Trauma Kitty would sing about if she could?”

Partner: “I think she’d look around at the people she has spent the majority of her life indoors with even before quarantine and just let out a high, clear forlorn air-quotes meow…”

Need a recap of anything I’m talking about in any post? Check out my Glossary of Terms


5 thoughts on “Brevity is the Soul of Apathetically #3: This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things

  1. This was cool… I love how you use humour. Thanks for writing it out and for the smiles…

    I didn’t really understand where you are staying, either way, take care of yourself.

    Love, light and glitter

    Liked by 2 people

    1. We’re in a one-bedroom apartment in a regional-rail-connected city in the Northeast US. I do “everything but” anonymity, so I don’t use exact keywords that would make it even easier for people from the most less-than-pleasant eras of my life to figure out who I am IRL just to be safe. I’m probably being paranoid, but, eh, past trauma will do that to a person. We’ve been in the region for a few years now, but we lived on the opposite side of the country for more years than we’ve lived here. We’ve been through enough wildfires there to be able to talk about the “state catching on fire” like locals. (If I’m honest, we’re probably still more plugged into the West Coast than the East Coast in many ways. It gets harder to make close friends in a new city when you aren’t in your twenties anymore!) Our complex is quite proud of how transit-friendly it is, with onsite Amazon Prime drop boxes, transit times posted around the building, etc. The more expensive apartments have washers and dryers in them, but they are out of our price range. So, I’m really hoping that “all amenities” only means “don’t wash your pet in our dedicated room for pet grooming” and “don’t use the onsite gym” not “don’t use the laundry!” We shall see! I unsubscribed from the complex newsletter because I cannot be trusted to let email pile up in my inbox for my own sanity. Thus, I am dependent upon my Partner to let me know once clarification is sent out to residents about the status of the laundry room for us less-swanky tenants who don’t have our own in-unit facilities!

      Liked by 2 people

  2. I do the same re paranoia. I’d share so much more if I wasn’t scared of people knowing who I was. If I ever shift my blog to only positive and password protect any other posts maybe I’d post more. Including pictures.
    I hope you get to know the people there more. I think it’s nature. Some people find it easy to make friends and others don’t.

    I really hope you get to use the laundry!!!! It would be chaos if not…

    Is that the only additional amenities the apartment that is more expensive comes with? Do you pay your electricity bills etc or them? Just curious…

    Love, light, and glitter

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I just wanted to say I can be paranoid too though I do a good job of hiding it… Sometimes I want to hide my blog completely once again because I feel I’ve given out too much info…

    I love your humour, and I’m also thinking about you and other friends in other states in the USA. ❤


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