Day 4

Friday seems like a month ago. Between the news, chores, and the unusually chilly and rainy weather, the weekend was an amorphous blob of uncertainty. The dudes got some good Warhammer-model painting in, though.

For the king!

Today was the first official day of keeping LAUSD kids home. I told mine he could sleep in until 8, and then he had to do his schoolwork before everything else. So far only a couple of his teachers have posted assignments.

The school district announced that, alas, the health department has put the kibosh on the resource-center idea that was publicized over the weekend. Instead, the centers will be for meal pickup for a couple of hours a day. I’m worried about the kids who are going to be alone for the duration of the shutdown. If only this were a country rife with billionaires who could come to the aid of humanity during a crisis without missing any of the money it would cost.

Early this afternoon I read about the sheltering in place that goes into effect tonight in six counties in Northern California. Reader, I panic-shopped! Just kidding; the parking lot at my local grocery store was a madhouse. But I got into the car, propelled by some weird, insistent drive to buy food for my family just in case. I’ve been judging panic-shoppers so hard! Why are they doing that? Why can’t they be reasonable? Why can’t they just stay home so I can buy what we nee — oh.

I’m learning a lot about myself.

Social media has been a huge source of comfort, and not just stress. The relationships I’ve built with people over the last 12 years provide humor, information, kindness, and a window into what others are doing and feeling. I used to talk a lot about how I missed what Twitter was like in its early days, when it was primarily smart, kind people having interesting and fun conversations. Since all of <gestures broadly to planet Earth> happened, I’m seeing a return to that environment, at least in my circles.

That said, one of my aims with this blog is to compile a few different kinds of online resources. I’ve got some big deadlines going on right now, so I haven’t had time yet, but if there’s anything you think belongs on the list, email me. And if you’d rather get these posts in your inbox, sign up here.

It’s only Monday.

We’re all going to need each other more than we can imagine.

Day 2


It’s Saturday, and it’s also Day 2. I kept my kid home from school yesterday, because after a week spent campaigning in various ways for LAUSD to close its schools, I had a feeling they’d have a special announcement to make. That, and it was raining, which mean my kid would be sitting in a gym with a few hundred other kids for an hour in a building that until recently had never had soap available in the boys’ locker room bathroom. Funny: every election cycle that it’s been on the ballot, we’ve voted for more funds to be channeled to LAUSD and the returns we’re seeing on the user end are fairly absymal. We’ll be voting differently next time.

In terms of food and cleaning supplies (I’m tired of the topic of TP so am just not going to say anything else about it), we’re fine. We’re lucky, and we have it better than most, relatively speaking. I’m not worried about us. I’m worried about the people who can’t buy the supplies they need, who can’t stay home, who interact with the public all day long. Whose employers have more money than God and yet aren’t offering paid leave but instead are encouraging them to share their banked sick leave with co-workers who need it (that’d be Amazon). I worry about people with new babies. I’m baffled and irritated and worried about the conversations I’m seeing online about older people not taking the situation seriously. (For a generation that prides itself on being anti-establishment and not doing what The Man tells it to do, there’s a whole of “They aren’t actually TELLING us we can’t go anywhere,” being used as an argument against temporarily suspending normal activity. I…don’t get it.)

For the last 2.5 years I’ve worked from home, so my day-to-day isn’t going to look drastically different. I’m not having to learn new ways to communicate with my team, or needing to talk my boss into letting us work remotely. The main things that will be different:

  • Not taking/picking up my kid from school
  • Not going to Mass on Sunday morning, followed by breakfast and conversation, with dear friends
  • Not being alone at any point during the week
  • Not seeing friends IRL

I mean, these are temporary inconveniences. They’re not problems, and I know how lucky I am.

We’re all scared. We’re all doing our best.

The small, kind things people are doing, whether online or in person, have really surprised me. Either I’m a lot more cynical than I thought (!), or people are really making an effort to be kinder with one another than they ever have been before. It does my heart good. I’ll be posting links to some of those things here in future posts.

Be well, my friends. Breathe. May love and peace and wisdom be your companions. Feel free to email me: emmaATalvarezgibson.com