Yesterday, the libraries closed for the foreseeable future. This is good for the librarians and staff, who are underpaid heroes at the best of times, and deserve to be able to socially distance with the rest of us, but it still made me sad. You can still check out ebooks, and you should, but it is, for me, a symbolic blow. Sometimes when I’m stressed out or sad I just go walk around our local branch, and peruse the fiction shelves while old men sit at the tables nearby, harrumphing and reading the newspaper. There are also a lot of people who go to the library because they don’t have anywhere else to go. This will become a bigger deal when the heat kicks in soon, and people need access to air conditioning.
Which isn’t a reason to keep the libraries open in a pandemic so much as it is an indictment of our whole society, but I digress.
I actually drew this weird goose cartoon a few weeks ago, and then couldn’t post it because I was out of town, and posted the comics I drew next instead. But this Sunday, when I usually draw a comic, I had to prep my taxes, so I was happy to have one in the bag. I suppose we could have taken an extension, but we already had an appointment with our accountant, and it seemed silly to delay it, though doing even the small and inconsequential work of totaling up my expenses and making sure we had the right forms felt totally incapacitating to me, and I’m extra glad it’s done.
Our lives haven’t actually changed that much, except that I now have low-level anxiety all the time about everyone’s job, and about the welfare of my favorite local restaurants and the indie movie theatre (you can donate to them! I did!) and bookstores, and etc. I’m worried that people are being racist to Asian Americans (please don’t, we are all in this together, it is an act of God if anything ever was), and I’m worried about the elections, and I keep convincing myself there will be something important I forgot at the grocery store, though we are FINE, we have plenty of food and even toilet paper, it’s FINE.
The other day I took a 20 minute nap spooning Paul, who would not normally allow such a thing for such a long time, but I guess he could tell that I needed it.
(For those of you who confuse my husband and dog, Paul is the dog. Dave, the husband, is required to spoon me.)
Anyway, I’m looking forward to making some enjoyable use of my time now that the taxes are done. I have downloaded a bunch of yoga sequences, and I have a bunch of dry beans to cook. The writer Yiyun Li is partnering with the journal A Public Space to get people to read War and Peace in a sort of mega book group, which they’re calling #tolstoytogether, and maybe I’ll do that. Maybe you’d like to? Maybe we can all talk about the movies we’re watching, and the birds we’ve seen on our walks. Maybe you can send me pictures of your babies and I’ll send you pictures of my dog.
Hugs to you all, friends. Hugs to your art, and your naps, and your sanity, and my sanity, and the sky, which is still beautiful.