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March 18, 2020 in Daily, Rant
Photo of a child's mixed-media collage with toilet paper rolls in the background.

My inbox is full of public coronavirus updates from every company I’ve ever looked at online. These updates talk about store closures or limited hours or extra sanitation practices. Others are pointless. Why is my webhost or my Internet or my phone company telling me about their COVID-19 regulations? I literally have no physical contact with them. Not every company needs a damn coronavirus update, dammit!

Anyway, here’s mine:

Rebecca’s Coronavirus Update!

I mentioned my trepidation about returning to work a while back. In light of the news and my diabeetus putting me into a more vulnerable position, I have decided to postpone my return to work. This is both good and bad. Good because I don’t have to go back to work. Bad because I won’t be making an income.

The Canadian government just announced a benefit for those who must stay home to take care of children. Applications open in April. I’m hoping for the best because things are scary.

Panic and Freak Out

I understand that my chances of catching this illness and dying are low. That said, I worry about my Boomer parents. I worry about my own condition. My husband’s still working. His job isn’t so much a concern at this point. Most days he’s crammed in an office and then he grabs some groceries and comes home.

I think we have enough toilet paper. I was worried that we wouldn’t but my sister managed to buy a pack and split it between my family and my parents and herself. She even drove around and tried to pass some off to pedestrians crossing the street.

Let’s all let’s just be kind and do what we need to.

The math is literally on the damn package

I’ve only gone outside once or twice since the panic stage really hit. And it’s weird, right?

I had to get some buns last weekend. I went to see the empty toilet paper aisle. People walked down pretending like they didn’t need toilet paper, or maybe just to gawk at the sight of an aisle completely void of toilet paper. Nobody acknowledged it. We all just walked. Pretended like it wasn’t a sight to behold. The checkout clerk just kept on saying how busy everything was. Busy! So busy!

Nobody can mention the reason why.

We’re in a stare of emergency. It’s smart. The precautions will lower the curve. But the phrase STATE OF EMERGENCY, while necessary, does not incite calm. Things are getting tense beyond the walls of my house. Every day I pass an article that grinds my gears a little.

That Kelowna couple that bought out the entire stock of meat at Save on Foods? That enraged me. The panic buying is asinine. But hey, it’s sparking some short story ideas, so there’s that?

I’m serious. If you all want some coronavirus Costco pandemic erotica, let me know.

Quarantine: Day 3948

Being a hermit on maternity leave has taken me here. I write. I blog. Packages arrive on my doorstep and I’ve got Netflix playing all day long. Today my computer died and all my uh, stored Disney movies are gone. Now I’m considering getting Disney +. I can’t survive this without Frozen II, which, hell yes, I agree is better than Frozen.

My son’s growing more teeth and he’s fussy.

My daughter has taken to collage art and I’m out of glue.

All the rest of the curling championships were cancelled and I forgot to cancel my TSN subscription so, now I’m paying another $25 for a month of NOTHING.

And therein lies the problem with social distancing. Isolation. It surmounts. It builds. I’ve taken a liking to weekends because it’s often the only time when I go out and get stuff done. Now that’s gone. My favourite stores have shuttered their doors. Church is cancelled (and it takes a LOT to cancel church). The playgrounds are a cesspool of germs I don’t want.

Perhaps this weekend it will be warm enough to wash the car. Something to look forward to, right?

Fear the Future

Last week my daughter told me that everything on the news was about the virus. She knows its name. CORONAVIRUS.

I told her the truth. I told her why I’m not comfortable taking the bus and why we can’t go to the park. For a 5 year-old she is very understanding. When she’s older she’ll remember this, and her and her friends will think back and laugh be be like, “REMEMBER THE CORONAVIRUS? REMEMBER WE COULDN’T GO ANYWHERE? REMEMBER THERE WAS NO TOILET PAPER?”

At least, I hope for that.

As a mother, I do worry. What diseases does the future hold? What other epidemics will we face? Are we just going to keep sharing memes about it? I think about taking to the streets in outrage, but you know, we can’t gather in groups of more than 50 people, so yeah. We can’t even protest, dammit.

What kind of world are my kids going to grow up in? Sometimes I get really caught up thinking of this. I think about what my parents must have thought when Columbine happened or 9/11 happened or that whole anthrax scare happened. And hey, I grew up into a world of major economic downturn and impending climate change. What the fuck is gonna happen to my kids?

The spiral starts and it’s not until I engage in memes that I force myself to laugh.

Let’s just stay calm.

Or try to. We’re all in the same boat here. Do your best to help your fellow seniors or other people who might need an extra hand. Don’t panic buy. There are enough groceries and supplies for everyone.

In the words of the great Red Green:

What’s Your Coronavirus Update?

How are you doing? What’s your grocery store like? Any crazy stories? Any good stories? I’m considering posting a free story for everyone to read during this coronavirus quarantine season, so we shall see.

I’m not joking about the grocery store erotica. Express interest below.

Like this post? With your support, I will have the opportunity to write more fiction, plus more creative blogs like this one. Support my work on Patreon and get yourself some nifty perks.

Rebecca is a neo-noir author from Kamloops, British Columbia. Her first collection of gritty short fiction, Vile Men was published by Dark House Press in 2015. She also writes about her writer lifestyle on her blog at

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  • Emily Slaney March 19, 2020 at 2:03 am

    It’s scary here too. My husband, my son and myself and are all classed as vulnerable. Schools close on Friday except for the children of key workers and vulnerable children. Exams have been cancelled – there is talk of using predicted grades instead but when your home schooling what do they do then? Panic buying is insane – you’d think after weeks of empty shelves people would have enough by now 😞. It’s very stressful and not at all good for mental health.
    A panic buying story might be fun 😁

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