There is an easy listening pop radio station in Albuquerque that began playing Christmas songs when the world shut down in March and they are still playing them, though now in late November it almost makes sense. Their logic was that Christmas songs make (some) people happy, so why not play them as everything we knew was changing and crumbling around us? While some may have found it comforting, I thought it was eery and creepy to come across Jingle Bells in June. Just more proof that nothing was ok. But, as the year of years continues on with one jaw dropping event after another, I can now appreciate that radio station’s logic, though I doubt this is what they meant- Make it weird! Because it is!
I was recently working on one of the few movies that has managed to get up and going here during Covid. Our costume shop was set up in an old theater, one in which I have seen numerous concerts and plays and that was operational until a couple of years ago. As I pushed racks of clothing through doors covered by weeds and over cardboard covered carpet in a lobby where theater goers used to sip water or wine during intermission, I thought about how quickly things can change. Outside the grounds are covered with abandoned sculptures, remnants of the art school it once was.
As Covid continues to surge in New Mexico, our Governor orders another lockdown similar to the one last spring. Just in time for Thanksgiving. Don’t travel, whatever you do. Don’t gather, please. Stay home. Wash your hands. Again. Ok. I concentrate on next year and the year after that and let this one be what it will be. Weird. Chicken instead of turkey.
During the G-20 Summit, going on now, our President joins for a few minutes but opts out of the Covid talks, preferring instead to golf, attempt to overthrow our democracy, and tweet. Again.
Covid piñatas are the hot ticket in Albuquerque. Hand made. Order in advance. Two week wait.
Nothing about this year is normal, whatever normal is. The good thing about that is I have never felt more flexible. I used to really really really want things to be the way I wanted them to be: they way they had always been and were “supposed” to be. That doesn’t leave much room for adventure and inevitable change. A woman on TV says she’ll be damned if Covid keeps her from cooking for the 20 she always cooks for. Such rigidity looks painful to me now and I feel sorry for her. It’s not that I don’t want to be with my family this Thanksgiving or that I don’t want the world to reopen so that some semblance of life as we know it can continue. But, because it can’t right now, I am going to make the best of it and I am definitely going to make it weird. Because it is.
There is a light at the end of the tunnel. Hold on to that light. We’ll get there.