15 april 2020

Can we just not talk about X?

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It has happened before, it is happening now, and it will happen again. After over-exposure from our social discourse and the media, we become totally fed up of talking about whatever is going on. Think back to the—comparatively tranquil—year 2016, when we all collectively said, “Can we just stop going on about Trump?” (the answer has since been revealed as, “no”). As the lockdowns continue, we are increasingly frustrated with the endless discussion of viruses and responses to them: we are collectively exhausted with these conversations.

I’ve been isolating with my housemates on the student campus Uilenstede. Many other friends live around the area, but we’ve been communicating through texts and video calls: it’s a little odd, but it is manageable. We haven’t started arguing with one another. Unlike a portion of my demographic, I have not felt the desire to shave my head. Though we work hard to stave off boredom, we are managing to do so.

Unlike a portion of my demographic, I have not felt the desire to shave my head

When boredom arrives, so does the fatigue. People come to feel that quarantine is too much for them, or they may convince themselves the situation is improving along with the weather. It is a very human response to a drawn out and stressful situation, a response that we will have to work on as we move through, and eventually past, these strange times. We must learn to focus our collective consciousness on things that matter and retain that focus till the job is done. It’s understandable to feel annoyed at the never-ending coronavirus discussions, but without them we could quickly slip into the headspace of summer, festivals, and holidays. We would find ourselves regressing, and we would lose the progress we have made so far in our quarantine.

Stay focussed, and we can all keep on top of things together. Keep busy indoors and try to be happy in the small things. Be kind and text older relatives, then be braver and call them. Online pub quizzes are all the rage, though the bar service is in your own hands. Painting passes the time but remember to wear old clothes. Guys, don’t feel obligated to go bald.

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