My daughter just got caught trying to tie one of our cats to the toilet roll dispenser.

My husband is talking to her now.

“Never once did you think to yourself,” he’s saying, in an appropriately stern tone, “‘Maybe this is not a good idea?’”

So yeah. We’re there now — day “oh seriously who even knows” of this mess and I have to admit, I’ve had more than my fair share of failing to recognize “maybe this is not a good idea.”

Let’s take just this weekend. I’m an occasional social drinker at best, but on Friday night, during a much-needed Zoom with some girlfriends, I enjoyed a few too many White Claws — let’s say maybe a “paw’s worth” of Claws. At some point during the evening, I found myself clothed in a muumuu while demonstrating my new rowing machine to the raucous cheers of my girlfriends. It was very likely the closest I’ll ever feel to qualifying for the Olympics. Plus, I was comfortable, and had pockets.

The next day, though… most certainly not epic. Those drinks may have only 100 calories, but they’re carbonated, and I can tell you that two days later, my stomach still isn’t the same.

I’m blaming the ‘Rona.

And then, of course, there’s sleep. I mean, who needs it really? Why spend time slumbering, rejuvenating your body and mind for the day ahead when you can be up at 2 a.m. watching young, intellectually challenged “hotties” in bathing suits on a beach resort try to restrain themselves from “hooking up” so they can win $100,000?

Up until ‘Rona, I had never watched more than one episode of anything in the genre of reality TV and I was very content with that particular life decision. Apparently, however, if you confine me to my house for a ridiculous period of time, all bets are off. Netflix’s new reality TV show “Too Hot To Handle” is most certainly one of the worst shows that has ever taken up pixel space on anyone’s screen. I devoured every episode.

Other recent questionable moments have included spending the first week of “lockdown” eating nothing but Thin Mints out of the freezer and, more recently, completely losing it on my family for eating the rest of the chocolate chips in the pantry (DON’T MESS WITH A GIRL’S BAKING SUPPLIES RIGHT NOW!)

In this, my first day of writing for this “Corona Diaries” series, I debated about starting with something useful or positive — maybe sharing some of my favorite recipes for using the

chocolate chips my family can’t seem to keep their greedy, grubby hands off of DESPITE the fact we have a WHOLE BIN of candy on the top shelf. (Deeeeeep breaths). And maybe I’ll end up doing that, but right now the message I feel like throwing out into the universe is IT’S OK TO BE OFF RIGHT NOW. The whole world is off right now.

Please don’t tie any member of your family, furry or not, to anything — but other than that, cut yourself some slack. We’re all doing our best to keep it together, but sometimes we won’t, and that’s ok too.

We’re not attending a global self-help retreat, we’re living through a pandemic that has killed over 200,000 people and nobody knows when it will end. Sure, some people will use this time to “Marie Kondo” their whole existence while training for a marathon and making all their food from scratch — nobody I know, but, statistically, I’m sure somebody — and that’s great for them, but there’s no prize for “Who Accomplished Most During Coronavirus.” Not that I’ve heard of, anyhow — although $100,000 would definitely make me rethink the way I spend my days.

I can assure you that even if you spend these months staring straight ahead, drooling while shoveling Cheetos into your face, not developing a single new skill, losing a single pound, or perfecting a single recipe, the second this thing ends the people in your life will still be ridiculously excited to see your face and throw their arms around you.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ve been hearing good things about this show called “Love Island.”

See you tomorrow.





The Corona Diaries is a joint project of the Renaissance Publishing Staff. Each week during the series, a different member of our staff will share their day-to-day experiences with working from home, social distancing and the other ups and downs of living through the pandemic.