The Covidiaries Part 3
Written by Christiaan Troskie on Mar 31, 2020
I do enjoy punishing myself.
This blog just became kinkier.
The start of the working week is always about re-establishing your routine. This is the second morning, I have had to swap out my usual venture to gym with exercising at home. Strangely liberating I must say. I kept a semblance of decency by wearing shorts, all the better to stop bits from flopping around in full view of the birds at 6AM.
An odd mentality took over, the more I felt nobody was watching the more I felt like pushing myself to train harder. I wouldn’t say it is a remotely punishing routine – I am doing the best with what I have (order your Plank™ today!) – but because it is all so novel, so strange, I felt like moments of rest were somehow sacrilegious. The pair of breasts that was leading me through this mornings online exercise tutorial demanded nothing but my best.
It is a Tuesday. This the hallowed day I have earmarked as my “going to replenish supplies” day. Feeling that the best course of action was to arrive at the stores early, I was surprised to find myself milling around like a chump for an hour waiting for them to open at 9. Plenty of time to people watch.
Heavens, the tension of the shoppers.
Look, each to their own. If a person wants to wear a face mask, let them. Everyone is trying to cope as best they can with the knotted fear uncertainty ties in their colon. I think there is panic which causes damage to others and then that which only causes damage to yourself. Interfering with another’s sense of safety isn’t the nicest human act to do but I must confess, it is a difficult habit to break.
Weird huh? I have often wondered how much of our interactions with others boils down to nothing more than wanting feelings of control. Our internal opinions of ourselves often place us ahead of the man on the street. However, every man on the street has a higher opinion of themselves than they do those around them. Here I am, full of fear and uncertainty while buying spinach, knowing on a primal level that the world is going to change regardless of my actions. What do I do? I seek out empowerment like a drug. I want to emasculate things to feel better about myself even if only briefly. It doesn’t have to be overt, even an internal look at that fool will do. We all know in the abyssal realms of our psyche that tomorrow may find us as just another statistic. The lie that we tell ourselves that there is a guaranteed future is both transient and nothing more than a fiction. In the face of all that, of course we are making fun of each other. That moron is wearing a face mask, don’t they know they’re useless? That idiot with gloves just touched their face, do you think they are even aware? Washing my hands isn’t going to stop all of this, so why am I being sprayed at every store?
I am as guilty as the next and will do nothing to hide it.
The truth is, I have big aspirations for myself and am working hard to realize them. But I am being reminded constantly in these unstable times that all that work can become dust in a matter of moments. This is the fear we are all living with. It is at the forefront of our actions nowadays. In simpler times, it is an easy fear to ignore. The mortgage will be paid on time, the kids will go to school, in December we will go on holiday as a family. But now, we are being reminded of the long list of securities we took for granted in our lives. The issues us bored and comfortable selves have been engineering for entertainment in the recent past are being replaced with real, actual sources of fear. So, we tease each other and mock the fearful so as to better feel empowered in the face of our own, ice-ridden terror.
I am no nihilist. A terrible statement to make in light of the above. However, it is important to self-reflect if we are to find better and healthier ways of treating each other. Others are allowed to live their lives in fear. They will do things you will not understand out of that fear. That doesn’t excuse you from treating them with derision. If the navel gazing of the last few days has taught me anything, it is that the standard I am to live my life is not the same as everyone else’s. I don’t have to agree with my fellow man, I don’t even have to like or forgive him, but I must acknowledge that he is afraid.
We are demanding consideration from others at the moment without asking why it isn’t being given. People will snatch bags of lettuce despite the shelves being full. That kind of behavior is going to escalate as long as we are not seeking out our own motivations of fear.
There wouldn’t be any behavior to mock if we stopped being afraid I suspect.
This afternoon I will start writing my second novel. Nobody has picked up on the first but that is alright. If no one does, so be it. I wrote the damn thing and honestly that is enough of an achievement.
Tomorrow I will plant greens that will take a week to germinate. When I pick them, they will be sweet and just a little bitter.