Monday, April 27, 2020

Captian's Log

Captain's Log, Star Date: Day 41 Quarantine 2020: 

The troops are getting restless.

41 days into a Nation-wide shutdown and life on this ship is stable but teetering on danger. The crew of five is well fed, well clothed, clean, (depending upon the day) and rested. Provisions are abundant but restlessness is approaching like a meteor heading straight into our galaxy. Morale is stagnant.  The schedule is simple but constant; eat, clean, sleep, repeat. Weather conditions in this quadrant of the star galaxy have been brutal. The result has been increasing anxiety from barometric pressure on the body inducing a lack of vigor and vitality. Must keep the troops productive! This enemy is sneaky and lethal, but we can beat it.

Biggest concerns of the crew:

  • Lavatory paper: In the earlier days of quarantine, before toilet paper was a scant commodity in ship's canteen, fluffy 2-ply was the constant. Due to demand, 1-ply is sometimes all the ship's captain can secure, resulting in reported unwelcome "finger holes" when employing it's desired use. 
  • Mess Hall menus: While this ship boasts a Five Star chef, gratification for all it would seem, a daunting task. Chef's choices for daily menus are welcome and delectable, but there's always that ONE.  Yet4 out of 5 is still a great satisfaction ratio. Commissary Chef Candy offers her observations, "This isn't a restaurant, you know."
  • Refrigerator Duty: "Wasn't me," a constant theme when weekly clean out sessions produce some penicillin worthy mold in the back of the fridge. Crew are questioned regularly and held accountable for uneaten, poorly contained foods that have been left for dead. Fines have been known to be levied. 
  • Cocktail Hour: Which most day's turns into "Cocktails for Hours". The outcome of which can result in poor crew production on the morrow. Inebriated behaviors are tolerated for first time offenders only. 
  • Flatulence: What was once a intensely personal behavior has now become commonplace and public on this ship. Repeat offenders often refer to behavior as such, calling it lighthearted and funny. When confronted with the outlandish actions, certain crew members have resorted to the much more devious act of "crop-dusting". Fines may definitely need to be levied.
  • Privacy and Consideration for your Fellow Crew Mate: While in close quarters, the door closed to the bathroom would signal an occupant. A simple knock on the door would suffice, as opposed to the "busting in without knocking" tactic sometimes employed here. Also, a binge watch session does not give the viewer all day, common room TV rights. Each of the crews living quarters are fashioned with their own personal TV in which to binge watch, so common areas must be considerately utilized for the greater good of all on board. 
With the end of quarantine somewhat in sight, the Captain's job is to keep a tight ship! Steering the course and navigating the daily tasks can be daunting but we must not let boredom and negativity penetrate this spacecraft. It's all speed ahead for a safe landing in the coming weeks, but what that liberation looks like is yet another matter. We look forward to daily life being somewhat similar to the life we had before, although we know this won't be true for a time to come. Going out into the world again daily will be challenging and at times dangerous. But  face those challenges we must! We need to resume some sort of normal behavior soon, yet with guidelines for our safety and the safety of those around us. Safety first!

 And we must remember most of all, that injecting disinfectants is ill advised. No matter what the man with the orange face says.

Monday, April 13, 2020

Reinventing The Wheel

Lately I've been busy...

Like strange busy. While quarantining at home I thought I'd have all this time to do all the things I like to do, like read, blog, do laundry, etc. But I find that I don't have time because lately, I've been doing a lot of reinventing. Social distancing policies have forced me to reinvent how I do my business in the midst of a pandemic, but it's not just work. I find that I'm reinventing different things every day.

Text and FaceTime with my friends and loved ones are the new normal in touching base and letting people know you care thereby reinventing my social interaction. While It's easy to change from your day pajamas to your night pajamas, I choose not to, so I'm reinventing my daily look. I also haven't been loving the lunch that I used pack from home and more often than not and eat on the fly, so I've been reinventing cuisine around here daily. I've become the Rachel Ray in my house and the family dinners have been epic! I forgot how much I like to cook and that I'm good at it because I used to eat out almost Every. Single. Night. The refrigerator is jam-packed like never before, and I keep watch on the food and leftovers so that nothing goes to waste, ready to pounce when something has passed it prime. A TOTAL reinvention, since I used to be never home to notice.

Supermarket, pharmacy lists and filling on-line orders at my store have become spread sheet worthy tasks as necessities are rationed and carefully planned. Trips are shortened and far more productive and deliberate. When completed, I always to then return safely home and wash my hands thoroughly. No detours.

But this one's the shocker.
I've even reinvented my TV habits.
I have hardly watched Netflix, (except for Season 3 of Ozark-loved it!) or Bravo. CNN is my constant companion and its becoming the soundtrack to my quarantine days. Everything lately is a complete reinvention from whom I used to be.

And it's OK. Because although we've been forced to look at life differently in this historic moment in time, it's given me the opportunity to be more thoughtful, more aware and more careful about my choices. It's always been me-but the me who was on the fast track and probably a bit more quick and carefree doesn’t have the same options. It's not that I have really changed who I am, It's more like I've reinvented what and how I navigate through everyday life.

I'm still me. I’m still the same person I was before the pandemic. I just need to pivot and adapt to this strange thing that has hit us all, hard. So I count my blessings and forge ahead. I really don't need to reinvent the wheel.

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

What Would Carrie Do?

Let's take a different angle on all this Covid-19 perspective today. While watching my favorite go-to on TV, I decided to think about what this apocalyptic world would look like for the girls from Sex and the City. How would they handle this Social Distancing when their entire existence is centered around the city? And just like that, I had my blog post.

I'm going to start with Miranda.

She's the sometimes angry corporate lawyer who is a cynical spit fire with a soft side. Steve, her husband and Brady, her son complete her world. But what about Miranda pre-marriage? I wondered what would this NYC lock down look like for her?

Miranda, I think, would be spending her quarantine days at her well appointed dining room table covered with legal briefs, zoom conferencing with her partners and clients. She'd be calling Carrie, after a long day of work and possibly meeting her for a clandestine walk, six feet apart, down the deserted streets of New York. While all of her possible suitors would be contacting her for booty calls, something tells me that Miranda would cautiously selective, or practicing abstinence for the good of all.

Then there's Charlotte

She is the gorgeous WASP with the Cinderella complex. Charlotte did get her fairy tale ending when she fell in love with her divorce lawyer Harry and had two beautiful little girls; one adopted and one conceived after a struggle with infertility. But what would Charlotte be like pre-fairy tale? Charlotte never gave up on the prospect of true love so what would she do if her all important search was suddenly put on pause?

Charlotte, I think, would spend her days, since her gallery is closed, cleaning out her closet of her Lilly Pulitzer and matching headbands, organizing her designer purses, by color, and watching romantic old movies on TV. Charlotte would not be meeting up with the ladies for a 6 foot walk. No, Charlotte and her Rabbit would be spending quiet nights home  alone.

The one and only Samantha

She is a true original. Samantha the sex-obsessed, brash and straight forward successful PR agent, moved out to the West Coast with her love Smith. She then moved back to the city because she "loved herself more" and we could all use a little more of that in our lives. Samantha was never one to shy away from confrontation, so what would a little self-isolation do to Samantha's never satiated sex drive?

Samantha, I think, would not take this Covid-19 crisis lying down, or maybe she would? Literally. Samantha would be forced to keep her sex line up to a select few. Preferably the ones with a house in the Hamptons and the ones she deemed "clean", because there is no way Samantha would stop having sex. With the prospect of no premiers, restaurants and parties to dress fabulously for, Samantha would be breaking the rules and having safe sex parties in her fabulous apartment in the meat packing district. And that handsome stranger she met while picking up her takeout? Oh Samantha, she may not be able to abstain. " Honey, it's all about the phermones We are all just reacting to each other's smell."

And our girl Carrie

She is our protagonist. Her nervous and self-deprecating personality belies her true intelligence. She is the supremely insightful author of her newspaper column "Sex and The City", and fiercely loyal to her girlfriends.  Carrie finally got her man, and she and John Preston, aka "Big" made it legal. But pre-wedding days, I found myself wondering what a self-quarantine would look like for Carrie?

Since sex is her business, I think Carrie would be spending her days Face-timing her friends and sources looking for leads and delving into what happens when sex is not an option. Then she would be spinning the tale of what Sex in The City looks like without the prospect of sex and the city.

She would be publishing her column daily, and since she was still working, she would definitely be shopping online. A lot. Sales on couture and sales on shoes all with free shipping, Carrie might find herself in a financial frenzy. After long days of writing and scouring unique sex stories, she might possibly invite the girls over to defy the shelter-in-place order to eat take-out and drink cosmos around her circular coffee table at least six feet apart. As for sex, I'm quite confident that during this unusual time in the history of our world, Carrie would be comfortable being an observer, chronicling the trials and tribulations of being a single in the new social-distancing age.

One thing is for sure, with all this uncertainty out there today it's unnerving to have to consider whether having single sex today is safe. Better we tune into our girls from Sex and The City to contemplate the meaning of our sex lives in this new normal.

While the world we live in has changed dramatically, I couldn't help but wonder, "What would Carrie do?"

Friday, March 27, 2020

Dire Straights

Let's face it, things are becoming dire. 

During these desperate times its easy to fall into the black hole that is depression. The way I look at it we have a choice: fall into the black hole or step back and decide not to jump head first. How about we decide to take a deep breath and tap into all our strength and courage? Resiliency is needed, because we are all resilient and sometimes we surprise ourselves with what we are capable of. 

Me? The health and well being of my family is what keeps me going these days. That's what's important. So today, I'm going to tap into my resolve and enjoy the little things that make me happy. 

  • FaceTime chats with my friends and family make me happy. 
  • Group text messages with my entire extended family, sharing photos and checking in makes me happy. 
  • Family dinners, enjoyed together makes me happy. 
  • A cocktail after a stressful day makes me happy. Thank God for liquor.
  • The 2 shamrock plants that sit on my counter top that I bought for St. Patty's Day make me happy.  
  • A vigorous daily workout makes me happy. (but not while I am doing it)
  • All of those hilarious videos of "Corona Compilations" that talented, bored people are putting out make me happy. 
  • A hike in the woods and walking the dog make me happy.
  • Netflix makes me happy. 
  • The daily jokes my friend tells on Facebook makes me happy.
  • People that are home-making masks for the first responders who so desperately need them, even though some vigilantly say they they are not safe? Ask the professionals who sometimes have no other choice, their efforts make me happy. 
  • Even doing the laundry makes me happy and gives me a sense of purpose. 

We all need a sense of purpose. So hold on tight everyone! Stay home and stay healthy and pray for those who are the sickest and offer your support. It's all we can do. Be grateful if you are healthy and follow the guidelines to stay that way.
This too shall pass, God willing, and trust that the powers that be are trying to help us out of this mess the pandemic has created. 

It's a better choice than succumbing to dire straights.

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

What's For Dinner?

In this historic age of Covid-19 home quarantining, with restaurant and bars shuttered down for the near future, I like everyone else, have been cooking almost every meal at home.
You may be asking yourself why this is a big deal?
Because My Guy and I eat out nearly every single night.

I don't tell you this to brag or to sound pompous, I tell you this because since the kiddos left the nest, our lifestyle is such that we both work and enjoy a dinner out that has been prepared for us. No dishes and no clearing the table. Don't get me wrong, I love to cook and when I do, it's always a treat, but it's a rare occasion indeed.

But it wasn't always this way. Back in the day, when Frick and Frack were little, I used to make dinner every night. After the morning school rush, the kids safely tucked onto the school bus, I would call my friend and commence our usual conversation. "What are you making tonight?", and we bounced culinary ideas off each other and let the inspiration flow.

Back in those 'olden' days we didn't have the internet to look to for inspiration. No Pinterest, no food blogs, no wealth of recipes at our fingertips. Nope, we only had our good old recipe box filled with family recipes and cook books for guidance. So cook at home, I did and it's a pleasant but distant memory. I can't really remember any family favorites from back then, other than my home made spaghetti and meatballs and tacos, which are still in the rotation on those rare occasions that I do cook, but these days I am left to my devices. Literally, hello my trusty iPad.

And you know what?
I'm killing it!

Yup, so far, dare I jinx myself, I'm on a roll! Even My Guy, who is the PICKIEST eater in the world, a fact that has been well documented through the years here at The Daily Dandy, is loving everything I have cooked! And I've added caterer to my list of skills because I'm sending dinner over to my parents, who live next door, almost every night. But I think the silver lining in all of this madness that our life has become today is that we eat dinner together, at the set dinner table every night.

Fritters (my son's girlfriend who lives with us, and her name is an inside joke) and Frick set the table and we all clear the table and clean up, together. It's a silver more valuable than any sterling you can string on your neck or adorn on your fingers. It's the true familial bond that illustrates the age old adage 'Food is love".

Yes love. Its is what's for dinner....

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Selfie Free Zone

Being home ALL DAY LONG has both positives and negatives, as we are all discovering what our new normal looks like. I know this may come as a shock to some of you, so brace yourselves,... 
I haven't worn makeup in about 4 days. 

Normally I wear makeup every day, as it is my business, quite literally, but being at home has given me the freedom to go without makeup and it has been liberating!

Not wearing makeup is something that I am TEMPORARILY enjoying, but this can not be permanent. Not by a long shot. Although I have been sans makeup, I have been really upping my skin care game. I have been deep cleansing my skin, 2x, morning and night and applying face masks and eye gels daily.

This is a great opportunity to try out those skin care products you've been curious about.

  • Good time to do a mud/extracting masque. If you do break out, you can weather the decongestion in the privacy of your own home. 
  • Exfoliating masks, which clear the skins surface of dead skin, are good to do when you are not wearing makeup because it gives those all powerful skin serums and moisturizers the space to do their work without a layer of makeup to contend with. 

All great for the skin but as I said, this makeup ban is temporary. In order to maintain my sanity and sense of normalcy, I need to get up and shower and get dressed every day because looking good goes a long way to feeling good and right now we all need to feel good. 

So I'm going to take my own advice and go shower and put on makeup. 
I've got a very busy day ahead of me of  rigorous hand washing and looking out the window.

Sunday, March 22, 2020

Remember Me?

I've returned.

It would seem that I turn to writing when I don't know what to do with myself.  I put my words on paper and try to make sense of it all. And there's a lot going on that doesn't make sense these days. So, I decided to click onto my old friend Blogger and I signed into The Daily Dandy. It was that easy.

It feels good to be back. Me and the keyboard "having a conversation about nothing". But these days nothing seems... trivial. Life is changed drastically since 2016, the last time I logged into this place; my home for my words and my thoughts. But I guess that's the thing about going home, you somehow are comforted by the stability of what you know and it feeds your soul.

Comfort is something we all desperately need because right now. Life as we know it, knew it, and will live it is drastically different. That's the straight sh*t. No kidding.

Covid-19 has taken our world hostage, quite literally and we are left to wait, worry and wonder when and if we will make it out of this pandemic. We are all looking for answers and assurances that this too shall pass. But there are none.

As of today, I have been self quarantined at home for 7 days. Unprecedented. TV News media is my constant companion. My store is closed. No work, no business, no American dream or engine that drives our economy because "social distancing' must be our new normal. No restaurants, malls, boutiques, stores or coffee shops open. It's almost eerie.

I know I'm not alone. Mankind has been a great partner in all this, and we must stick together. Today, by the grace of God, I am healthy and my family is healthy. That is a blessing. So I'm going to focus on the blessings. The small things, the memories we have been making at the dinner table, and I'm going to do my part to slow the spread of this virus.

I'll come back here a lot, during this.
I'll talk about nothing and something and that something we are all talking about.
And together, we will connect without actually connecting.

It's good to be home again where I belong. In my own little universe