Monday, June 01, 2020

Daryl/Magda: This Goddamn Week

If you're reading this sometime in the future, not really remembering what 2020 was like, here's a reminder:  There's been a pandemic that has shut down and disrupted every facet of our lives, not nearly enough was done to mitigate it, and just as America in general was starting to "open up" too early, video a couple of black men being killed by white people ostensibly enforcing the law was everywhere you went on the internet and the protests became riots, in large part because of police overreaction and, from what I can see, because of people going out of their way to stir shit up because they know that any trouble will come back on black protesters.  It's been fucking insane.

I'd like to tell you that I've been using the fact that I look like a pretty well-preserved white woman to make a difference, putting myself between cops and protesters when I know shit is about to go down, but I haven't, and I hope like hell that it means I haven't lost touch with who I really am.  It's doubly concerning because I've been calling "Junah" and Jenn (and her ersatz family) to make sure that they're staying safe and feeling kind of proud that the conversations with the former feel really authentic.  He's not an older lady playing at being a young black man, or incensed that he's now more of a potential target in a way that he doesn't "deserve" because of how he started out.  He's not totally familiar with the nuances, but he gets it.

And maybe it's a measure of how much I've become this white woman that I'm more scared of the virus right now.  Between people not traveling and the airlines and airport doing what they can to enforce six-foot spaces, it could be a lot worse, but I do get people every day who are mad that I'm wearing a mask and cough or breathe heavy at you when they want to make some sort of point.  I've had several co-workers and friends come down with it - including one person I don't know very well who has died - and have had that swab stuck up my nose a couple of times.  Going out into a crowd, all that stuff going on...  I get that for some people like J.T., who have mostly been staying in for the past couple of months, this seems like not just a welcome but a righteous opportunity to hit the streets, but I can't help but think of the virus as the most dangerous part.

And to twist the knife just a little more...  Pete had found someone I could become.  36, African-American, female, she'd fallen into a good thing over the winter and was willing to say goodbye to her old life.  I haven't talked about it - or anything - on here because I didn't want to jinx it, but it was a chance to become a little more myself, maybe even start a family, except that the Inn being closed messed all that up and a part of me looks at the news and is glad that I don't have that to worry about.

Sorry for dumping all this, but if this blog isn't for the times when we don't know who we are, then what is it for?


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