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Just another Average Joe's COVID report

I'm lucky in a lot of ways. Even though on CERB I'm making less than 1/3 of my usual income, I'm managing to scrape by so far. Others aren't so lucky. My heart bleeds for you, and I'm looking for ways I can help the community at large in the meantime. By the end of summer I'm fucked because my savings will be gone, but for now: The gains: I now know who my true friends are. People who reached out to me and to whom I reached out. I've deepened friendships with those I care for, and rid myself of people who require more than they give. I hope in these times that "soul-sucking" people have been given the opportunity to realize that you need to meet people at least halfway. In these times of universal suffering, no one corners the market on "woe is me" worldviews. We're literally all in this together in everything we have lost so far. I've seen so much less of the usual Pain Olympics that attention-seekers usually engage in on social media. I hope we all continue to equalize, and give all we can to others without seizing attention for ourselves. The losses: fuck, I miss dating. I miss hugs. I miss brainless flirting in bars. I miss concerts. And I am still missing sitting in restaurants and bars even though a lot of them are open. But I'm committed to forgoing my own needs and desires for others in the interim. This is far from over, and I'll continue to forgo a lot of my own previously meaningful interactions in order to keep strangers safe until we have concrete answers. Conclusion: we are so lucky to live in a country that has taken care of much of it's citizens in such financial and educational ways. I'm tucking my belt and forgoing my normalcy for *you,* nameless neighbours. I love you all!

Relaxed

After being isolated at home for 2 months, I can see how my work routine was so stressful where I’d have to seek relaxation as a part time job. I’d go to the gym to blow off stream, get a massage because I was tense, get my nails done to reward myself for a bad week. Stay-at-home Me is now so much more relaxed, and I don’t feel the need for any of those things now. Bad for the economy, yes. But not needing to outsource my relaxation anymore is awesome.

Disparity

There's an older man who I've sort of known (but not well) for a number of years through a group we're involved in. Some months ago, some members of our group had an activity in his home. I have to admit that seeing what kind of home he lives in changed how I see him. I used to think we had more in common, but now it seems like we're so, so far apart in what our lives look like on a day-to-day basis. Sometimes I forget how different our lives and circumstances can be within what I've thought of as my community.

Marriagejuana?

No thanks! Don't even want to attempt it. Getting married would stink. I don't want to have a traditional relationship. Meeting "the one", marrying them, having children, and living happily ever after is a tiresome social construct.

Rage. Rage against the Machine?

Of all my confessional hopes and dreams, it is that there is a correction to concert prices, localized love ticket buyers not bots, and a return to concerts that have die hard fans that lined up for tickets are in the audience, not broke people who got fleeced into $200 face value tickets to bands they once saw for $30 at Plaza of Nations.

There's a limit

to my patience with selfish people. I'm walking down the sidewalk today and a group of three are walking toward me abreast of each other, leaving no room for me to pass. They picked the wrong day, my hockey training came in handy and a perfect, little shoulder check laid one of the culprits out flat. I know, shouldn't have done it but this makes up for the other hundred times I diverted out to the street and said nothing.

Rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic

I am the last member of a team of seven; the survivor of two rounds of layoffs blamed on covid-19 but really the result of horribly incompetent business decisions, bad management, and greedy owners. Work has devolved into an unstructured, reactionary panic of getting shit done regardless of whether said shit is the right shit and obsessing over meaningless details. The company will fold by October even if covid disappears tomorrow. Do I bail now with some possibility of getting paid out for my unused vacation time but find myself in an uncertain job market, or ride the flaming wreckage until the inevitable crash (or at least until the first bounced pay check)?

Is there going to be a "bright side" ??

Sometimes during the last few months people would tend to look only at the dark side of the situation but slowly people made the best of this quarantine by doing what they could with what they had, and made the most of it. At the same time, wildlife and mother nature responded and we had some good results. I know what I learned from this but has everyone really thought about what this could mean? What about a trend to keep safe indefinitely which means being cleaner, being responsible for one's health, spending more time with family and less time driving around, etc. There are public health benefits but also many others, it is a throwback to times past in many ways and it works well

I found her

I was having a very rough time after a breakup. My ex sent me pictures of myself taken many years ago, where I looked young and happy. He said he misses that girl. I said I miss her too. He said I should tell him when I find her. So after thinking about it I’ve realized a few things: firstly, I aged just like he did, and I’ve never made him feel badly about his own physical changes. Secondly, one of the reasons I stopped being happy was because I was in a relationship with someone who constantly criticized me, judged me, and made me feel that I was never good enough to please him. And finally, I realized that I’ve found that girl again and all it took was to lose him. Will I be telling him? Hell no.

Urban wildlife

One of the interesting things is that I did not leave Vancouver on good terms. I wanted to stay. I loved the city. I loved my neighbour hood of 10+ years. The place I worked at got bought out. The place I lived in did not desire me as they could only charge a small amount per year increase in rent. I was temporarily evicted when the bank made an error in 1 rent payment in 5 years. and so on... I still long for a return but what pushed me out is what will inevitably cause a longer hardship for Vancouverites than BCers as a whole.

I SAW YOU

Takeout Anh & Chi for park picnic

You were part of a trio about to enjoy takeout dinner and wine in a local park; all of you had...

EPITAPHS

New to the Georgia Straight. A space for sharing memories and remembering our loved ones.

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