Today is March 13, 2023. On March 13, 2020 we left the office in Waltham at 5:30pm and the Covid-19 pandemic lockdown started. I mean we all had our own individual experience as we did not have a functioning Federal government at the time, we just had a nazi cunt in the White House pretending to run a Federal government. We were all sort of left on our own while more civilized societies worked together. Yeah, I ‘member.
So Jen’s company sent everyone home after work on Wednesday and my company sent us home after work on Friday. The kids both came home around the same time. Bellana was on Spring Break and they just had everyone stay home. Harry was still in high school so his experience was more closely similar to mine. Just one day he was told to stay home and telecommute.
So that’s how it all started. Today? Today the pandemic is still a thing, but our society is more or less ignoring it. Very few of us are still wearing masks. Most of us in the Tech industry are still working from home for the most part, but we’re being pulled back into the office more and more often. My company has us coming in once a week. My fingers are crossed that at some point soon we’ll eliminate that requirement, but that hope is not based on any actual evidence. Jen’s company closed their buildings, but they are still pulling people in to temporary work sites now and then. I don’t know anyone who is still 100% working from home.
In my family, we’re all vaccinated up the wazoo, and every time a booster is made available we jump on it. It hasn’t stopped anyone from contracting Covid-19 but it has drastically reduced the severity for most of us. Jen and I haven’t caught it at all. Three years of precautions have been successful for us. Sure, we’ve over done it and we continue to over do it to some extent, but we’re still Covid-Free.
And that, folks is the long and the short of it. They told us to expect to be working from home for a couple of weeks and it’s turned into three years. It’s not even unusual anymore. It’s not even “the new normal” anymore. It’s just normal now. As Bruce Hornsby and the Range once said, that’s just the way it is.
Happy third quaren-versary, folks. Do something fun at home by yourself to celebrate.
Two years and seven months ago today, at 5:30pm, my personal Covid-19 pandemic lock down began. 3/13/20 was our last day in the office. We are not particularly locked down at this point, but we’re pretty much still isolated. We’re going to stores, I’m visiting Mom regularly (and need to visit Dad more often), we’re just spending as much time as we can afford to away from everyone. We’re wearing masks and being good, virus-conscious humans.
I am so friggin’ sick of it. I miss my friends, I miss playing in the band, I miss my family. Granted, my step kids are both in Vermont so I would be missing them even without our personal lock down, but you get the point. I want to travel, though we can’t afford it, I want to do things.
I want to go to hockey games again. The Bruins won their opening game last night. They beat The Capitals 5-2. I listened to as much as I could on the radio. Probably not as much as I would have liked, but a nice chunk. UMass Lowell is currently 2-1, with all three games being non-conference games. They play in Michigan tonight and tomorrow, two more non-conference games. The first Hockey East games are next week. I have been able to catch at least a little of each game on the radio. I’m not sure if they cover road games on WUML Lowell 91.5 FM, but I think we’ll find out tonight. As for the kids’ school, University of Vermont… 0-4 with all games being in conference. Yeah… pretty grim. I haven’t tried to find them on the radio. It might not be worth it.
In closing, I watched She-Hulk while doing my walkies. Teeny Tiny Spoilers Ahead. It was season one episode nine, the first season finale. I did not realize that I so desperately needed to hear something like five seconds worth of Richard and Linda Thompson music in the MCU. I did need it though. I really, completely needed it. The episode was great, but at the end when they snuck in a few seconds of I Want to See the Bright Lights Tonight just made my fucking week. Props to K.E.V.I.N. and the gang.
I haven’t written one of these in a while. Today is September 13, 2022. Exactly 2.5 years ago we worked in the office. It was a Friday. The following Monday was the first day the whole company worked from home. That makes today the 2.5 year anniversary of the symbolic end of the pre-pandemic era.
2.5 years. Two and a half trips around the sun. Given that we were expecting it to last a couple of weeks, I would say that our expectations were off by a smidgen. We still have not had a case of Covid-19 in the house. We are still also mostly locked down. Coincidence? I have to go in to the office tomorrow afternoon, and all day on Thursday. Thursday is going to include an event with a pretty huge number of people. I am going to mask up and try to stay away from people. Hopefully that will be enough.
Working from home was something that I was pretty unsure of pre-pandemic. I heard of companies that had their staff 100% remote and I thought that was something that wouldn’t work for me. I had a day or two at home at various times in the past, but full time at home? That wasn’t for me.
Now? Now it’s indispensable. Now it’s a requirement. I have to spend a day and a half in the office this week? Outrageous (not really, I’m just being dramatic)! Working without wearing a t-shirt and sneakers? Blasphemy!
Full time(ish) remote hasn’t been without it’s difficulties though. One of the arms on Jen’s super swanky office chair broke today and now we may have to get another one. I gave her my super swanky office chair (which used to be hers anyway) and I am in a less than super swanky chair that is still perfectly fine. The point is, a new chair is an expense that we wouldn’t have to worry about if we were working in our respective company’s offices. That and, you know, electricity and ISP bills and stuff.
Still… working from home is pretty freakin’ sweet and I want to do it for the rest of my career. One upside of the lockdown, I guess.
Now if we could just get rid of the damn virus. We’ll be getting the Omicron specific vaccine as soon as we can.
I found a news story that likely explains why that helicopter has been circling for a while now. Apparently there was a stabbing at the high school. The victim seems to be all right, or as all right as you can be given the circumstances. First responders are on the scene and the weapon has been recovered, and a juvenile is in custody. The article says the victim was not a student. Did a student stab a teacher? Holy shit!
Here’s hoping everyone is okay, and sorry for joking about Henry Hill.
Two years ago today I finished up my work day and put my work-issued desktop computer (it was a little tiny guy) into my backpack and drove home to begin the new experience known as the Covid-19 Lock Down.
Friday March 13, 2020. A day that (for me at least) will live in infamy.
Things are getting back to normal. Much too quickly for my taste, but they are. I’m taking Harry back to school today. Two years ago it would have been the other way around. We had people in the house this week. Two years ago that would have been unheard of. We went into two stores over the last week. Two years ago we were trying to find ways to stop needing to go into stores.
The Covid-19 numbers are still way too high for my taste but they seem to be coming down, or at least leveling off. The word on the street is there is a new strain of Omicron coming. Hopefully not.
I don’t want to have to keep doing this for another year, but when am I going to feel comfortable going back to pre-lock down lifestyle? I don’t know… maybe never. How bad does that suck?
I’m in the office today. I’m not terribly happy about it but I’ll live. The commute was better than most days pre-Covid, but given that I’ve only made this drive a few times over the last two years it was infuriating. I drove about 200 yards before I hit traffic. It was just a school bus, but it was still traffic. The highways were slow and annoying. Again, not quite pre-pandemic, but definitely bad enough to imply that the pandemic is over… even though it’s not.
There is no one sitting at any desk near me. I think the closest person is probably 30 yards away. Much more than six feet. I am plenty Covid/Omicron safe at my desk, but I will still need to go to the bathroom and the kitchen and such. I feel good about my elevator skills. I expertly avoided having anyone in the car with me as I went up to the third floor. My people avoidance skills are still very sharp in that respect.
My desk is still here. It’s nice and clean and all. My keyboard is shit compared to the one I use at home. My monitor is double shit compared to the one I use at home too. Oh well. It’s just going to average out to one day each week. I can survive that. Sure, I would prefer not to be here, after nearly two years of only working at home.
Funny, remember back in March of 2020 when all of my posts were how working at home was abnormal and how I had to get used to everything being different? Deja-Vu, right?
I missed an important anniversary yesterday. I was all focused on Covid itself and I missed an important date that is mainly important because of Covid.
Yesterday was the two year anniversary of the last time Lizardfish played together. It was Greg’s birthday party. We played a couple of sets and it went really well (except for the untimely death of a snare drum head, RIP). We took a couple of weeks off after the show, like we usually do, then Jen, Harry, and I went to Florida for a week, and by the time we got back Covid was a thing and the country was starting to shut down.
We haven’t played since.
Every time I start thinking I might be okay with trying to get together, something Covid related happens that screws it up. We were talking about maybe having a play in December. I wasn’t really good with that, but maybe early January? Nope. Omicron. Crud.
Maybe… things seem to be calming down around here. Maybe March? Ugh. I miss playing for real. I miss my band.
My personal Covid-aversary is March 13th. As I’ve written 1000000000000000 times before, Friday the 13th of March in 2020 was the day the company I work for told us not to come back to the office. That’s all well and good, but wasn’t it February 2020 when Covid starting taking over the news? Jen, Harry, and I went to Disney World at the end of the month and we were aware of Covid but it wasn’t really thought to be widespread in the US yet, if it was there at all. Jen remembers seeing people in the airport while we were traveling home who were wearing masks. That was the first we’d seen of any of that.
So the question then is, when do we declare that Covid in the US is two years old? I really don’t know. Is this the first month of year three or the 12th month of year two? Does it matter? No.
Today is also the day that the company I work for is implementing the return to the office plan again. The plan involves going into the office 20% of each pay period. In February that amounts to four days, or about once per week. We put this plan into place over the summer. It started in July, I think. It lasted about two months and then they closed the buildings again. It was supposed to come back on January 17th but Omicron. Technically it did come back on 1/17 but they told us they would give us until today if we were worried about the new variant. I absolutely took advantage of that. I haven’t decided what my in-the-office schedule will look like this month. I have a little bit of sick time on Thursday so that day’s out. I hear rumors about more snow on Friday, so that day’s out. I could go tomorrow but I don’t think I am mentally ready for that yet. We’ll see.
So Covid is still a thing and it’s been two years or so and there is no sign of things clearing up. Thanks to that Omicron putz it’s actually been worse for the last couple of months. So what does it all mean? I haven’t a clue, but I am really seriously sick of it all. Lock down continues to suck.