Sunday, April 26, 2020

What Day Is It? What Day Is It?

Do you find yourself asking your significant other or yourself, “What day is it, what day is it?”  It is an interesting phenomenon that when we have no rhythm to our day, we become disoriented.  This morning I had a simple internet problem and couldn’t remember how to fix it until I stopped thinking about it.

We have been “sequestered”:  Standard dictionary example: “The jurors were sequestered under guard for the remainder of the trial.”  We are not under guard, but we have been sequestered by the governor acting as judge of our situation.  Intellectually I know it is for the best and I thank her for her good judgment, but who wants to be told you need to, nay you have to stay home?  We are not very good in this country about caring for “the greater good”.  It somehow goes against our idea of freedom.

I have heard from some in New York City that they can’t go out because there are so many people in the street. From others, I hear that they go out after dinner when, as David Remnick wrote in the New Yorker, “The streets of New York City are so desolate now that you half expect tumbleweed to blow along the pavement where cars and cabs once clustered.”

My wife and I are so lucky.  We live in a wonderful place, in a nice house on an arroyo (dry riverbed) where there are few people. (Every once in a while, you wave to someone also walking there).  I much rather be here than in a city where there is little chance of escape.  Can you imagine being in an apartment complex where you know someone has caught the Covid-19?

Still, I find it very trying as I have found many people do.  People need people.  Remember this song from the Broadway show, “Funny Girl”. 

It is perfectly natural to interact with the person you live with but sometimes you don’t want to be asked “what are you working on?”, “May I interrupt?” or “Where are you going?”  If she/he closes their door ...  What secrets are they keeping from me? Something you might never think normally but suddenly the door closed … oh, it is just because someone was listening to something at a high volume and did not wish to disturb … feel pretty foolish?  All because we are being asked to stay in place.

In our home, my wife and I have an office, our own space.  So why do I have an office in town, as well? … For several reasons.  Frankly, I need to get out of the house.  I need a routine and someplace to go to, as I have always done.  It used to be a gallery now it’s a small office. When my wife used to travel for work, and I was home alone I would go to a restaurant just to see other people.   My in-town office allows me to walk around and interact with people.  Down the corridor are the offices of a number of independent professionals. As most of us keep our doors open there is informal communication that has led to easy friendships. 

James J. Cramer, whose daily television shows cover the stock market, recently took a day off from the shows that he now does remotely.  The next morning, he said he would never do that again because he had received so many emails starting out, “Are you O.K.?”.  I have written just that to a lot of people, recently.  It is a genuinely nice thought, but I can understand getting tired of it when you here the same thing from hundreds of people.

I felt ridiculous finding myself crying at the drop of a hat but then I discovered I was not alone.  Other people are also having trouble keeping a sleep schedule or just not sleeping.  Many have become nervous wrecks and don’t know why.  Even my vitamin company sent me this when I ordered CBD!

Try as we may to reassure ourselves, we are not really O.K. This missive was written so that we can all realize that we are not alone.

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