It’s been over a year since everything changed with the pandemic. It’s been almost four months now since I left my job. I used to be the only thing in Tater town that wasn’t normal now nothing was normal. We are still not quite to normal yet but I am getting a small taste of normal.
Saturday I went to the library to pick up a hold. Usually, I don’t see anyone when I do this. It is contactless pickup from the lobby. Most days I run in, grab my item and leave. I might knock on the door and wave. It depends on who I see. This time, one of my former co-workers was outside on break so I talked to them for a few minutes. When I went to pick up my hold, another former coworker was getting ready to put the holds out and had to go get mine for me so I got to chat with them for a bit. I texted one other person who was at work that I was there so they took their break and came outside to say hello. It was the first time I’ve talked to any of them since December.
Sunday morning I went to actual church for the first time since March of 2020. I got up early and went to the outdoor sunrise service where I could stand far away from everyone else but still experience the service.
I did talk to one person after the service. I had not seen them since the last time I attended church.
Last night both kids came home for dinner.
Today my wife has to go in to the office because she needs something there to do her work. It’s still not quite normal. She won’t leave for the office until mid-morning and I still will have nowhere I need to be, It is still closer to normal than I’ve had lately.
Things could be happening soon that will get us closer to normal. Things I won’t talk about until after the fact because my anxiety and pessimism won’t believe in good things until they actually happen.
It will be nice when we go back to me being the only abnormal thing around here.
If you are like me, you are very tired of living in unprecedented times and would like a little bit of normal in your life. It was an odd Labor Day weekend with a late Kentucky Derby. My daughter is back at school. but still taking online classes. My job is still very different than it was before. It’s all very stressful and depressing. Luckily, I’ve had something recently that feels somewhat normal: fantasy football.
I sent out the email recently about getting our league set up for the new season. At the last minute, two people decided that they did not want to play this year. One cited “the state of professional sports” I’m not sure why the are out. I just know that I need this to feel like something is normal. We scrambled and found two new people to join, so the league will continue.
This means that I have spent the weekend transferring teams to the new players and getting things ready for our draft tonight. Part of that is the usual harassing of the slow people who have not told me who their keeper players are yet. There has also been a string of text messages from people regarding the league and other random things. The draft is tonight, so I will spend time today making sure everything is set up for that to happen and then at 9 I will be online drafting a team and chatting with the other players.
The NFL season starts Thursday night. I’m really looking forward to watching football again. I’m looking forward to looking at the stats to see how my fantasy tam is doing. I’m looking forward to a Sunday afternoon watching my Ravens play. I’m looking forward to something that is somewhat normal. I need it.
I hate the phrase “the new normal” I see it everywhere. Everyone talks about the new normal in regards to everything. The new normal when it comes to business openings. The new normal when it comes to travel. The new normal at amusement parks. The new normal in everyday life.
I get that right now there is a new way of life. I get that right now businesses are opening at lower capacity and many have requirements that you wear a mask. I get that social gatherings are limited. Weddings and funerals are delayed or done with very few people. I’m not arguing that we aren’t living in different times.
I hate the phrase because in most cases it is used in a way that makes it seem like the writer thinks this will be the new normal forever. It implies that we will never fully go back to the way life was before the pandemic. We will forever live in a world of social distancing, masks, and lockdown. We will all telework forever. Kids will never go back to school. College campuses will be empty. This is not normal and I refuse to believe that it is the new normal forever.
We have a temporary normal. We don’t have a new normal. The virus will eventually subside and/or we will have treatment and/or a vaccine. People will go back to normal pre-pandemic life. There might be some changes. More people might telework going forward. Hopefully we will be better prepared for another pandemic. Some people might change how often they use mass transit. People might flee the city and move to less densely populated areas. There will be some new normals. but where we are now isn’t it.