I want to start out by reassuring you that this is a comedy article and, therefore, will not be a big old bummer. There are some obvious scary ways Coronavirus could change our society forever. But I'd like to focus on the weird and petty stuff that will hang around for years, even when things are back to something resembling normal. Stuff like...
"My happiness is to be near you. Incessantly I live over in my memory your caresses, your tears, your affectionate solicitude." That's a quote from the dictator Napoleon Bonaparte to his wife, Josephine. What I'm saying is that even Napoleon had more game than most single guys today.
Get ready to have to woo people! It's going to be like in high school, but instead of making your crush a mixtape, you're swapping Spotify playlists. Single people are going to have to get used to writing bawdy letters like famous fart enjoyer James Joyce. Hopefully, some historians won't dig through your text history someday and know all of the dirty, flirty things you described in powerfully vivid detail to Jennifer from Tinder. Writing is the new fucking people! I'm so sorry.
The good news is this is a skill that you can develop while in quarantine that will have totally have positive applications once it's over.
During the Cold War in the 1950s and '60s, fallout shelters became a hot commodity in newly built homes. Now we have panic rooms, earthquake-proof pods, and survive-a-storm shelters. There's got to be some quarantine amenities that will be built into new homes.
I'm not saying we're going to have fifty-pound drums of hand sanitizer buried in the ground like septic tanks, but I'm also not, not saying that. We might not even like to directly refer to them as quarantine amenities, but making your home more "self-sufficient" will definitely be a big deal. By self-sufficient, we mean, "apocalypse ready."
With upgrades like solar panels and extra-large pantry spaces for all of your hoarded jerky, maybe even more good old fashioned underground bunkers will suddenly come back in fashion. Tinfoil hat not included.
Or at least all of the medical drama's will. I'm not sure how they'll work a coronavirus episode into The Simpsons or whatever, but I'm sure they'll try, and I'm equally sure that it will be terrible.
It's weird how we want to consume media about the things that scare us, but we totally do. The popularity of the 2011 drama Contagion has increased by about 9000% since the pandemic started. Do people think that they'll find some secret code to surviving the virus in a movie about a similar outbreak? Or does watching Matt Damon go through what we're going through while also being hot just make us feel better? Maybe we enjoy the superiority of seeing Meredith Grey get a slight cough and wave it off as nothing while we sit at home eating popcorn and saying, "Oooo girl, you got no idea."
Whatever the reason is get ready to see coronavirus week hit primetime and also get ready to be weirdly excited about it. There's some kind of unexplainable catharsis in watching actors experience the same fears and troubles we did once there over.
Global disasters always have an effect on fashion. After World War I, skirts and haircuts got shorter. During World War II, pants became more widely accepted as casual wear for women. During the pandemic, very few people are choosing to get out of their pajamas.
With each global disaster, humanity has said fuck it, fewer layers, more comfort. After working from home for possibly many months putting on real pants might as well be climbing into an Iron Maiden. A suit? Don't even joke about that.
Not only are clothes going to get even more comfortable but now that we're all used to seeing facemasks in public you might start seeing them in daily life outside of the hospital and airport. Yes, the Mortal Kombat Ninja look is going to be walking the runway at Paris fashion week next year.
When I was fourteen, I had a friend who asked me to cut his hair. I was like, "What on earth makes you think I'm qualified to do that?" He said, "All girls can cut hair." It was the weirdest sexist thing anyone has ever said to me. I mean, would it be dope if women were born knowing how to cut hair in the same way that baby elephants just know how to walk, sure, but that's not possible.
I explained to him that people go to school for a full year to learn how to cut hair. It's so important to us that not just any idiot can cut hair that state governments license it. Apparently, he didn't believe me because a few days later another girl told me he had asked her to cut his hair and she was wondering if she could do it. I told her it seemed easy, and she should go for it. He called me astonished that she had done a terrible job and upset that he had to shave his head.
Do not try to cut your own hair in quarantine friends! It's harder than it looks! You can still take hot selfies just, I dunno, wear a hat. We're all going to look dumb AF in a couple of months, and that's fine.
While most of us are trapped inside feasting on those fancy Pepperidge Farm cookies that were all that was left in the snack aisle, apparently some people are using this pandemic to get swole? One of the few ways you can safely leave your home during a pandemic is to go for a run outside.
Once you start running, your brain produces some pretty great chemicals that tell you running is good for your body. After you're done feeling like you're going to die, you actually feel pretty great after a long run, and the hardest part of running is having the time and energy to get started.
The end of the pandemic will be the start of everyone running a 5K. Everyone you know will suddenly not shut up about running. I mean, I figured the apocalypse would involve a lot of running, but I hoped it would be from something rad like a big dinosaur.
Bidets have been in America for a while. You probably know a few people who have one and at least one unfortunate soul who's chosen to take on the personality of Bidet Guy. You know, Bidet Guy, the guy who will not stop talking about how clean his butthole is. If there isn't one in your current group of friends, there's about to be.
The toilet paper shortage is causing more than just the obvious issues. Cities are concerned that people flushing non-toilet paper items like paper towels could royally overload sewer systems. Bidets are the most obvious problem to the lack of TP issue, and Amazon is selling out of them like crazy.
Once the hoards lust for butt paper is satisfied, and we have a stable toilet paper supply line again, lots of people are still going to have bidets. We're going to discover that they're not as scary and European and as we initially thought and why uninstall one when the next toilet paper shortage could happen eventually. Guess what? We're all Bidet Guys now.
Everyone suddenly realized at the exact same moment that we are all babies who cannot feed or clothe ourselves, and honestly, that's not going to change. Still, capitalism is going to capitalism, and there are going to be plenty of companies that try and capitalize on our new desire for self-reliance.
What I'm trying to say is, Instagram has been advertising chicken coops to me. Indoor gardens, Indoor farms, and urban farming equipment are going to become all the rage. At least, it will be for about a year until we all wake up and realize that they aren't going to feed themselves on the amount of organic homegrown parsley they can produce in an 800-square-foot apartment during the next pandemic.
Still, the illusion of self-reliance is soothing. So, if you find yourself at Rural King stuffing your shopping cart with fifty live baby chickens, no one blames you.
Everyone has been talking about the potential for a quarantine baby boom, and I'm sure that's a distinct possibility. Still, when people got out of quarantine in China, the first thing they wanted to do was get divorced. Allegedly there were so many people going immediately from quarantine to their divorce lawyer that there was actually a shortage of appointments. That's right. We have a toilet paper shortage, China has a divorce shortage.
It's tough being locked inside with anyone for months, even someone you have loved and cherished since you were say, I don't know, nineteen years old, who may have for example had a job that required frequent travel and routine sixty to eighty-hour workweeks, and now he's home all the time, and you've suddenly realized that he doesn't know how to open a door. It's like every door he encounters, he rams his entire body into and then at the last possible seconds remembers to turn the and nob and somehow at the same time as he full-body slams the door he burst into the room, every single time he opens a door! It's like living with Kramer from Seinfeld.
Anyway, that's just a totally random example. What I'm trying to say is if there is something insignificant about your quarantine partner that annoys you get ready for it to be amped up by a hundred after a month inside. Once that's over, maybe you'll be prepared to spilt up over it.
I'm not big on sports, but I've heard recently that there aren't any now? There were so many sports like gosh ... seven? I'm going to say maybe eight going on at the same time? Now people are playing Tetris on ESPN.
E-Sports have been a thing since video gaming was invented. The earliest known gaming competition was at Stanford in 1972. There are plenty of organizations governing the play of E-sports, and they're hugely popular in other countries. If ever there was a time for E-sports to take over the U.S., it's now.
Want to watch something thrilling and competitive that requires massive amounts of skill, dexterity, practice, and strategy? Check out an Overwatch tournament. It's fun, and no one ever leaves the competition with permanent brain damage!