COVID-19 Read

Quarantine Breeds Creativity

Justin Laidlaw
Justin Laidlaw

Every day, my outlook on the situation evolves during this purgatory we find ourselves in. How could it not? I know we use the word “unprecedented” a lot these days in public discourse, but if there were ever a time where the situation met the definition, it’s now. This is not my definitive take on COVID-19, but it feels disingenuous to ask anyone to engage with my content before acknowledging the state of the things.

Like many Americans, I am currently (f)unemployed. But I’m good! Before you freak out, there are plenty of other people who need your charity more than I do. I am maintaining through a steady diet of listening to podcasts (like this one) and whole albums (like this one), watching movies (anything of these), home workouts, bike rides, and the occasional phone call with my 4-year-old nephew (this guy). There have been no cases reported in my immediate circle yet. As far as quarantine goes, life is good. At least, as good as it can be while we live out our lives in the Upside Down.

An idea I keep returning to is whether we will learn anything from all this. In a cosmic twist of fate, Mother Nature has forced our hand, causing us to take a hard pause and reflect on our personal lives, our communities, and our planet. People are saying “return to normal” like it was paradise. Based on what we know now about the impact on our health care system and the economy, among pretty much every other facet of American life, maybe we need a new “normal?”

During this indefinite amount of time, I will do my best to lend whatever creativity I have while trying not to be just another voice in an already crowded conversation, in the form of more writing, podcasts, and a few live streams (what do you say, Gabe?).

If you’re looking for answers, this is not the place. That should go without saying. I’m not a doctor. Though, I do live with one and maybe I can glean a few insights from her and report back. If you’re looking for a good conversation to keep your spirits high and your mind occupied, perhaps I can be of some assistance.

Like I said, this is not the end of the conversation about COVID-19 but it is not the only conversation, either. It might seem trivial to talk about TV we’re watching (as of today, I have not seen Tiger King) or books we’re reading, especially when millions of people’s lives have been upended. But life is always complicated, and yet, we can find solace in knowing that we have our relationships: with other people, with nature, and with ourselves. I am going to do my best not to squander this silver lining we’ve been handed, and I hope you will join me.

Stay safe, everyone. My line is always open. I’m starting to get used to this video chat phenomenon.

Cheers,

Justin