The Quarantimes Week 7: The Reckoning

April 30th, 2020

I just hit my wall. 

This morning, as I scrambled to get the girls’ All School Gathering set up on YouTube, simultaneously trying desperately to send ONE picture to the music teacher so he could share it with the class, the frustration bubbled over.

It dawned on me that our one link with the outside world and other humans is the internet, and ours barely works. We live in the middle of nowhere. The one internet company here doesn’t provide faster infrastructure. So we’re resigned to 1990s-era internet speed, and I swear it’s getting worse by the day.

The email wouldn’t send, so I had to soothe my daughter after I gave her the news that we couldn’t share her picture of a rock this week.

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I did finally get the video to stream, but in fits and starts, and we could barely hear it. The girls quickly lost any interest they might have had. As I fussed with the bluetooth speaker trying to rig it to a new device on the fly, they were already off playing with something real and right in front of them — something they could touch.

I’ve long been a remote worker and am entirely comfortable with technology. I work with tech clients all over the world, in fact, and I’ve known Zoom since it was a baby. I have an iPhone 11, and I know how to use it.

In theory, I am both comfortable and adept with tech. But this is ridiculous. I am so tired of the technology. I’m tired of trying to force my wild and free 5-year-olds to watch their teachers and other kids in tiny boxes on a screen. I am tired of bribing them to essentially watch tv.

In the midst of my melancholic meltdown I checked my email (touche) and found out that the Green River Festival has been cancelled. Scheduled for July, I had high hopes it would still happen. It’s a spread-out, outdoor festival we go to every year, and one of the great highlights of our summer, where we catch up with all our friends over the course of a sunny weekend in a field. 

It’s starting to seem real and endless. When will we ever see other people again?

By the way, I wrote this entire thing while on hold with Consolidated Communications. Done writing; I give up. 

Now where my carbs at.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

What I’m reading:

Elon Musk has always been crazy, but even he seems like he’s rounded a bend lately.

Apt reading I am working my way through at the moment: Rebecca Solnit: On Letting Go of Certainty in a Story That Never Ends (Thanks Caylie)

Why the Coronavirus Is So Confusing in The Atlantic. This was a really good, thoughtful read that I made sure to save for the end of my day after I had finished all my work, so that I could really focus on it. I keep my coronavirus reading to a reasonable level. But The Atlantic is always a preferred source. 

It’s funny because I saw some commenter make fun of a friend for posting an Atlantic story the other day, as if it’s not a reputable news source. That puzzled me, because The Atlantic has been around since the 1800s and has frequently been nominated for journalism awards. However, I suspect this commenter would probably scoff at the New York Times, too. 

Anyway, this article is very grounding and myth-dispelling, despite that its nature is to acknowledge confusion. I highly recommend it if you’re an enneagram 6 or anxious person like myself who must have a regular dose of facts in order to stay calm.

What I’m watching: 

A little bit of Schitt’s Creek. It’s light and fluffy, but Catherine O’Hara is definitely a comedic genius. 

What I’m working on:

Speaking of technology, I spend most of my workday writing about remote technology platforms and ways of working in this new order.

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