Life

Diary of a demented home worker: Nothing for it now, but to hold tough

May 4th, 2020 7:05 AM

By Emma Connolly

This far into the pandemic I can safely say that Zoom is not for me. Yes, I know I’m in the minority. Staying in Debbie Downer mode, Sean O’Rourke’s retirement and After Life have made this week an emotional one.

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DIARY OF A DEMENTED HOME WORKER: Week seven and I’m on the wagon, I’m zoning out of Zoom, and I’m dreading the departure of Sean O’Rourke

• Straight up, I’m low on lols this week and am running out of steam. Of course I need to cop on and snap out of it as the real heroes here are our older folk who are taking lockdown restrictions on the chin, doing a brilliant job and not complaining one jot. That’s why I want to give a big shout out to some strong women in my life -  my mum, my aunty Mary and mother-in -law Sheila who are making the rest of us look like right old whingers. Time to pull ourselves together and get on with it.

• I have to admit I’m not suffering as much as some of you are, as I actually quite like staying home. You might call me an oddball, I’d  prefer to say I’m an introvert. An odd one. For example, when someone cancels on me, it’s like a gift from heaven and I get quite uneasy when I have to go anywhere after 7pm.  Like why would you want to do that? Admittedly, it does not make for ‘edge of seat’ stuff in the office on Monday morning (sorry next-desker Niall), but on the plus side, it does make lockdown lots easier.

• Now, I haven’t made any secret about the fact that I’ve enjoyed the ‘odd’ glass of wine during these trying days. I assumed we ‘were all in it together.’  It turns out, though, that most people called time on the nightly tipple weeks ago while I’ve been living like a clichéd middle-aged super soak. Cheers for telling me, lads. Anyway, I’ve gone cold turkey so I’d like to take this opportunity to apologise to anyone who had to deal with me this week as I’ve been more unpleasant than usual. I’m herbal tea all the way now though, you Mother Pukka’s!

• It occurred to me randomly that parents (like me) of only children should qualify for some kind of special Covid-19 payment as a sweetener for all the solid play time we’re putting in these days. Although perhaps it’s the kids who deserve the payment? The four- year-old left me in no doubt of her feelings this week when she said: ‘Go and deal with some other kid.’ I’m already fearful of the teenage years.

• In the meantime, though, I can still get away with a lot. She’s quite the fan of Spiderman so was super excited when it was the Big, Big Movie on RTÉ last week. At the first ad break, she asked me: ‘Is it over?’ Lads, how could I miss a golden chance like that? ‘Yes, teeth time!’ I told her, to which she replied ‘That was very interesting.’ Sure, bless. But I mean I’m climbing the walls myself, I don’t need to watch someone else doing it.

• Instead of doing something meaningful with my bonus time that evening, I started  After Life on Netflix. I don’t even like the characters that much but it made me weep. But that could have been because for some reason my husband, who was on a Zoom call several rooms away, felt the need to talk so loudly, I’m sure they heard him in the after life. I barged in to tell him to pipe down, and he told me later that everyone saw me. I was wearing really bad pyjamas and looking properly demented. He could just be pretending but if not ... awks.

• Speaking of Zoom, I still haven’t used it for non-work purposes. (I refer you to my second point). And even for work, I find it excruciatingly painful. Here’s how it typically goes for me: try unsuccessfully to contribute something meaningful on several occasions but get talked over, so jump in very loudly with what I think is a good idea, no one can hear me, have to repeat the idea only to realise that it’s actually rubbish, suffer awkward silence, resist temptation to turn camera off and go on Instagram. Instead nod along at regular intervals until meeting ends. Then go on Instagram.

• I’m still not over the news that Sean O’Rourke is retiring. Perhaps if we started a petition or something he might give us another few weeks? He is such a comforting and informed voice on the national airwaves these strange days. I wonder who’ll get his slot? Maybe Ronan Collins should be extended to three hours? Maybe we should start a petition for that as well?

• And the kids won’t get to Irish college this year? That’s an awful shame isn’t it? I mean if I had to suffer three long weeks of torture in the Gaeltacht fadó fadó, I think it’s only fair they all do too, don’t you?

• This week I’ve also been making photo books from the 23 million photos on my phone. What it put in super sharp focus for me was that I did not look anywhere near as bad I thought I did even a few short years ago. So, basically, if you think you look bad now, the harsh truth is that you’ll look even worse next year (maybe even next week given current circumstances) so don’t waste any precious time worrying about it. But do wear sunscreen. Baz was definitely on to something there.

• The knitting is going great, thanks for asking; and yes, the car is back from the garage.

• I’m nearly out of a relaxing body oil I treated myself to at the start of the pandemic, but what do we think? Do I need to restock? What’s really going to happen on the 5th? I find  myself wondering a lot what my dad would make of this and I reckon he’d say: ‘Hold real tough and drive on for another week.’

•In the meantime it’s time for a strong herbal and some Tadhg Fleming on Instagram. Now he is someone I’d  consider meeting after 7pm. All the lols.

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