Wednesday, March 25 2020

wednesday, donald trump, finger paints, and sunsets




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Dear Journal,

Good morning, everyone! Hope you’re doing well today. A few days ago I stumbled onto this article. A professor from the University of Virginia is trying to get his students to keep daily journals of life during the coronavirus pandemic. I looked into him a bit. He makes the case that this is why the diary of Anne Frank was so moving. I’ve never read it myself, but he says because it’s written from the mundane perspective of a little girl, that makes it an even more valuable and useful perspective into the holocaust.

Over the past few days, I’ve been thinking about my role in the pandemic. Taking Dr. Braun’s advice to heart, I’m trying to focus on how our daily life has been impacted by the pandemic, and so far it’s been very personally therapeutic.

I think another small way I can serve my community of readers is by doing what I can to make each day feel different. I’ve heard lots of light hearted complaints from the people around me about how each weekday feels the same. One twitter meme quipped do we even use days of the week anymore, or do we just call every day “day”. It’s a minor gripe that’s easy to make light of, but I think there’s some genuine turmoil underneath. Days that feel the same are maddening, and I think over time, that would make me feel very sad and depressed.

I’m here to help. So if you’ll excuse me, I need to take a minute to occupy my new role as the official day of the week hype man:

Today is Wednesday. Wednesday is an exciting day because it’s half way through the work week. In my old life, I used to work from home on Wednesdays, and I would take Marissa and Rodney out to pizza for lunch. I would drink a beer with lunch, and after lunch, Marissa would nap on the couch, and I’d finish my work day in the living room while watching one of the following movies: Mad Max: Fury Road and Venom.

On Wednesday, I’d usually feel like cooking a big meal and making a big mess in my kitchen. Wednesday is a good day to fry fish or potatoes, because on Wednesday night I clean like nobody’s business. I empty out the fridge and completely wipe down all the shelves, and when I put everything back, I turn the labels so they’re facing out. “I like to advertise the food in our fridge,” I tell Marissa, and she laughs because that’s kind of a vapid reason to spend so much time on it.

Finally, after cleaning the kitchen like a mad man, I’d crash on the couch, and Marissa and I would watch something on TV. I might feel a little behind for the week, as Wednesday always tends to sneak up on me, but at least on some subconscious level I feel like all the penitent scrubbing and cleaning I’ve done in the kitchen has washed away the twinge of guilt I felt for not getting as much done on Monday and Tuesday as I should have.

Sip. Are you ready for a fast topic shift? It’s all related in my head - just part of me thinking about my small role as a Recker family record keeper during this troubling time in history.

I think Donald Trump is an idiot. He’s an evil idiot, and I think it was a bad idea to elect him as President. Maybe his poor response to the coronavirus will be the only thing remembered about his Presidency, but know that Donald Trump sucked before the coronavirus too. I’ll remember Donald Trump as the idiot that made fascism cool in America.

I think Donald Trump is evil, but it upsets me how he’s not very good at it. His father was evil much like the alien from Alien was evil - evil and an effective, monstrous predator. But Donald Trump makes me especially angry because he’s completely insulated from even the wrong side of history. Donald Trump is like a pimple on the ass cheek of the alien from Alien. If Donald Trump’s father is Will Smith, Donald Trump is Jaden Smith, and his presidency is Jaden Smith’s rap career.

Sip. That was liberating. If you’re close to me, you might now that my politics can get a little nuanced, but I feel a sense of duty to at least write down some of what I think. Today is just the basics: Donald Trump sucks. And now that I got that out of my system, let’s get this journal entry back on the rails.

I had a wonderful day yesterday. While I worked upstairs, Marissa painted with Rodney at the dining room table. About an hour later, I heard them giggling and thumping up the stairs, and barging into my room was Rodney - hands, arms, and face completely coated in green paint.

“Dada - I’m the green glob-lin,” said Rodney, flashing me a paint smeared smile.

“Dude, you look awesome right now,” I replied. Marissa handed me her phone, showing me a hilarious series of photos, telling the story of how an orderly and constructive home painting activity turned into finger painting with faces.

After Rodney’s bath, I took a break to make some lunch with Rodney. Together we cut into my leftover ciabatta bread and made some peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. My peanut butter and jelly sandwiches taste the best because I smear a little pad of butter underneath the jelly.

I worked through the afternoon, then wandered down into the basement to play video games with Rodney. During this pandemic, afternoon video games has kind of become our little routine. We played Skate, then a little of Need for Speed.

Rodney, Marissa, the dogs, and I jumped in the car and drove to Culver’s. We ordered some food, then found a quiet spot in the parking lot to eat. It felt so good to get out of the house together, and it’s funny how even though the sun was setting over the crummy, empty East Town Mall parking lot, it was still captivating. We marveled at it all the same, as if the sun were setting on the grand canyon.

I hope you all have a wonderful day today. Don’t let the virus get you down, and take a few moments today to write something down about your life. Happy Wednesday, friends, and I’ll see you tomorrow.