The Pandemic is Over, I’m Fine, and Other Lies from the Past Six Months

It’s been a long time since I updated this blog, and I want to make sure that my audience of no one is informed of my whereabouts – and mostly share this little time capsule for my own posterity.

After 20 years of living in the city, a few pandemic-related life changes led me to somewhat upend my life and move over the bridge to South Jersey. This has been surprising to no one more than me, as the idea of becoming a suburban dweller has always chilled me to my core. But the neighborhood we chose is lovely, very close to the city, and truly a breath of fresh air. While pestering locals to make me their friend, I mostly spend my time with deer and geese and those few humans who have become virally bound to me during the pandemic.

Speaking of the pandemic, while America has by all accounts denounced it as “over,” I still very much live in a heightened state of anxiety paralyzed by an entirely unmasked society that bilks at the Delta Variant and possible waning immunity. I track breakthrough cases and hospitalizations with a thoroughness that makes me both miserable and unbearable. I have also chosen this particular moment in time to wean off an eight-year Klonopin addiction. Again, why my friends are geese.

I’m also sitting unmasked in a coffee shop right now for the first time since March 2020. Because I tell myself that I have to while making my immunologist constantly test my antibodies and assure me that despite my toilet immune system I am a normal, healthy person (I’m not and he likes me less than the geese.) It’s also been a special treat for every parent in the country with a child under 12 as we lock them out of restaurants and sob in a crowded Walmart because they can’t be vaccinated for several more months. It’s a hell of a time to be alive! And, yet, I remain determined to stay that way, trying to convince myself that the person behind me who just sneezed won’t lead me to an early grave. Because if literally nobody else cares anymore, how can I?

Remember that scene in Creepshow 2 when dude gets to shore and yells “I Beat You!” at the lake blob and then it jumps out of the water to devour him? That’s America.

Anyway, America stays trying to be the worst despite the best efforts of a few. Voting rights are wildly under attack, two Democratic Senators have taken up the mantle of stalling democracy at all costs, and Republicans are actively trying to kill off their base by convincing them vaccines are made from aborted fetus and lattes. Climate change has recently roasted all the sea creatures in Canada to a boiling death and I’m supposed to tell you about some organic oatmeal in a compostable pack. But that’s not who I am anymore. While I’ll still buy my waste-reducing natural hand soaps and don’t use lipstick with lead in it, I know that personal responsibility is not the way home. Not in a country where thousands will die on ventilators to own the libs.

I’m going to stay hyperfocused on what I know works – voting. It’s why I am passionate about working in politics and made sure that the people I sold my house to were registered Democrats from a blue state (I’m not playing with swing state real estate). Yes, I lay my head in New Jersey, but my heart will always be in Pennsylvania in all its hyper-divided glory. So don’t be surprised when I’m still knocking on your door, mask on face, asking for your help to turn PA blue.

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