Uncertainties 2022

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I think I pretty much gave up on New Year’s resolutions. With the health crisis that doesn’t seem to be loosening its grip on reality, it’s turning every resolution into an uncertainty, lacking plausibility and purpose, or yet another broken promise.

But as a Libra, craving balance and thriving on order, I still feel the need to plan ahead and make arrangements wherever necessary. So that if the “resolution” does indeed not happen, I can say “Well, it’s not for a lack of trying. I did what I needed to do, and the Covid crisis stole it from under me as was par for the course for the past two years. Not my fault.”

In many instances in my life, even before the crisis hit, I tried my best to set my expectations low in order to avoid disappointment if things don’t pan out. My husband does that regularly and obsessively. Sometimes to a point where I get angry with him and just tell him to stop being so pessimistic all the time. But most of the time, it’s the right thing to do. And for the past two years, it’s the only thing to do.

So the “resolutions” I set for this year are called “New Year’s List of Things that Are Set to Blow Up in My Face 2022”. Here are the things that may or may not happen, in no particular order.

  1. See Lindemann live (he’s already landed so it’s becoming more possible)
  2. Sign up my daughter for 1st Grade (I’m required by law to do that so, again, even more possible)
  3. Participate in That Monthly Zine Project
  4. Participate in International Zine Month
  5. Participate in ZineWriMo
  6. Create an updated catalog for my Etsy shop
  7. Sign up for a drawing class
  8. Work with my kid on basic skills (tying a knot, reading a clock, riding a two-wheeler, etc.)
  9. In summer, spend a weekend in Tiberias and go to the Kinneret
  10. In summer, spend a weekend in Eilat and go on a camel ride

If the Green Pass will still be required for hotels, venues, schools, etc., I’m also planning on getting whatever vaccines whenever they become available for us – the fourth dose for me and my husband, the third for my daughter, flu shots, you name it. Under the circumstances, I noticed just how much better the quality of my life is since we all got the Green Pass. While everyone is in quarantine, we’re not because we have the Green Pass. We’re not required to have any tests, we’re not doomed to miss out on social events, we have no trouble getting into any venue; it’s simply wonderful and makes everything so much easier. So yes, vaccines are a must if I want to keep saying “I did everything I needed to do. Not my fault if it didn’t work out.”

What about you? What are the things that you hope to do in 2022 but have no idea if any of them are even remotely possible?

Peace, love and new tuque!

PS – I can’t believe I got through a whole post without swearing even once! LOL!

Dying of Exposure

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September 1. We’re back to regular programming. I’m back in the office after being away for a week an a half. My daughter started Kindergarten today after being out of a misgeret for that same week and a half.

I thought I’d be excited for it or a least somewhat happy. And I guess I sort of am…? So why do I feel like I’m about to cry? And if I do start weeping, will it be tears of pride and joy for my kid going off to big-kid preschool? Or will it be tears of utter terror of the health crisis still claiming everybody’s life and fear that my daughter might be exposed to it too? Yeah, I think that’s the one. Trying to keep a smile on my face in an attempt to project positivity so that my kid can pick up on it and start her new journey on the right foot, when deep down wishing I could hold on to her and keep her at home with me, where it’s safe and healthy, is absolutely exhausting. Pushing my fears down, sending her off to gan with confidence, and not feeling terrified out of my wits – that’s not me. That’s not my Libra. I’m losing my balance again. And the worst part is that I’m taking it out on the people closest to me. That’s still not me. I don’t like that person.

There are much less kids in her class now than there were last year. As a result, they don’t have enough kids signed up to the tzaharon (after-school program) so they are not opening that yet. Parents are upset because that means they’ll have to leave work early to pick up their kid. As for me, deep down I’m not extremely upset. All that means for me is more time with my kid and less time of her staying in a place where she might be exposed to Covid. The fact that there aren’t as many kids in her class is also a plus for my mental state – less chances of her contracting it. And I don’t need to leave work early because I work part-time anyway. I guess the only thing that upsets me is that I’ll have to cook lunch because it’s usually the tzaharon that serves that. But I don’t care anymore. I’ll cook lunch for the rest of my life if it means keeping her safe.

Another thing kicking my Libra’s ass is the uncertainty of the future and how things will turn out. Back in the non-Covid day, we woke up, had breakfast, got our kid ready, sent her to daycare or pre-pre-K, went off to our respective jobs and went about our respective lives. Perfectly routine, predictable and reliable. Now, however, we have no idea when the next quarantine will start, when the next lockdown will start, where the next virus/infection will come from. The regulations change as often as the virus mutates, which from what I understand is like a hundred times a day. How are you supposed to reclaim a routine when you don’t even know if you’ll be healthy enough to have one in the next week, day, minute?

And the holidays are coming up. Really? Happy new year? Do you have any idea how sarcastic that sounds? Shut the fuck up. Holidays should be cancelled.

I can’t believe we’re still here. We HAD it! We were going to be ok. Cases were down to less than a dozen a day. But people are selfish and stupid and think that rebelling against the system means infecting everyone around them. I wish they got it through their minds. Putting little children and immune-deficient people at risk of contracting a potentially deadly disease is NOT CALLED REVOLUTION. It’s called being a cruel and heartless dick. But no. They’re still selfish idiots and cases are up to 11K a day and still rising.

Fucking A. Yesterday, I planned to write a happy mommy post, summing up all the things that I did with my kid during our vacation. But then my subconscious state came to the forefront in full force and crushed me with the reality of the situation. We’re in deep shit and my kid is in danger.

And there is nothing anyone can do about it.

Peace, love and there’s no escape

Calling All Parents

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I’m trying very hard to not complain… With all the shit happening, it’s not easy. But I’m trying to focus on something else and – to use a tired old cliché – to make the best of a bad situation. Tired and old is what I am, so that’s that.

Back in January, Israel was going through one hell of a Covid wave. We called it Black January because many people died and that sucked. We were in lockdown but it was a joke. Everybody, except for people who actually listen to instructions (and there aren’t many of those) was outside, in parks, in shopping malls, in the market, going in herds to funerals (the Dossim mostly), to parties, to weddings, having a jolly old time. The schools were closed so of course I had to go on unpaid leave for the third time since the onset of the pandemic and stay at home with my kid. I told myself to stay positive, ignore the idiots, the Corona-deniers, the anti-vaxxers, the anti-mask people, the pitiful ignorant ones who think they’re immortal, and just focus on something else, as I’m trying to do now. In January, I focused on positive things. I took the opportunity of this lockdown to spend quality time with my child. Filled her days with fun activities and go with her flow, as much as a lockdown would allow. As a result, we had a wonderful lockdown. Our January 2021 was more fun for us than it was for most people. And all the while, we stayed safe, we stayed home, or played in the backyard.

As cases are rising, we are looking at a fourth lockdown and it’s very possible that studies may not start on September 1. It sucks because I find that every time I tell my daughter about something fun that will happen soon, she gets all excited about it and then Corona steals it right from under her.

Like in winter 2019, it was fucking cold and to try and cheer her up, I said “Just imagine how wonderful it’ll be in summer! It’ll be hot, so we’ll go to a hotel, maybe in Eilat or maybe in Tiberias, we’ll go to the beach, we’ll build sand castles…” Yeah right. Summer 2020 was cancelled.

Also, just recently, I bought tickets to a show by a performer that my daughter loves. The entire time, I got her hyped up about it and she was so excited to go see him live. But a closed crowded auditorium, packed with people who may not be wearing masks, is no place to be when Corona reigns supreme. I cancelled the tickets earlier this morning. I’m upset, my daughter is crushed. Corona’s mission: Accomplished.

And now, Kindergarten. My kid was looking forward to graduating from pre-K and starting actual big-kid Kindergarten ever since I signed her up to it in January. She did get accepted to the gan of our choice. She’s been asking me for a year already when she’ll go to Gan Einav and I keep telling her next year. A couple of months ago, “next year” turned to “in September”. And now, it turned to “I don’t know”. My daughter’s disappointed face haunts my days and nights.

I need to stop making promises that the pandemic ensures I can’t keep. All I do is get my daughter’s hopes up and then watch them come crashing down. But if it wasn’t for people being so fucking stupid and reckless and ignorant, all of these promises were totally plausible and totally keep-able. These are not big promises of something crazy like “Yeah, we’ll take a trip around the world and go on cross-Atlantic cruises and go sky-diving.” All I promised to my daughter is going to the beach, going to a show and going to Kindergarten. I basically promised her living our lives. And we can’t even do THAT?

I don’t even care that we can’t travel, that we can’t go to metal festivals, that we can’t celebrate birthdays and anniversaries like normal people, fuck all that. I just want my daughter to have a memorable childhood and do things that she is supposed to do as a kid. But the universe does not allow for that. So how can I not complain? How can I make the best of this terrible situation when anything I promise my daughter is doomed to be a broken promise?

This is not a rhetorical question. I’m totally asking you, the reader, if you’re a parent, what would you do? What DO you do with your kid during these times? How do you manage to make sure your kid is enjoying themselves safely? I need ideas of promises that the pandemic can never get in the way of my keeping them. Please and thank you!

Peace, love and uncancelled life

Monstrous

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You know that thing that the universe does sometimes when you got so many things to be happy about and to look forward to but you just can’t allow yourself to feel that overwhelming sense of happiness because something else is going on that is just total fucking shit?

Right. So that’s where I was at this past week.

There’s all this positive energy coming at me from all sides. There’s International Zine Month coming up and I’m super excited about that. There’s my kid’s photo album that I’m designing that is coming along nicely and I can’t wait to see what it will look like once it’s printed. Three kids from my daughter’s gan are having their birthday parties, one of them is today, and I love it when my daughter has such a good time with her friends at these parties. Also, my daughter’s graduation party is coming up tomorrow (she’s graduating from pre-K to kindergarten), and I had a lovely time yesterday making a cake with her for the event.

And yet, all this joy that I’m supposed to feel with all these things combined failed to overpower the pain and misery of seeing my daughter suffer through the worst skin issue that she’s ever had. And she already suffered through some pretty serious diaper rashes in her babyhood. Some were so bad, she couldn’t sit without screaming due to a burning bum. I don’t wish to get into the details of the skin issue she has, but it’s gotten so bad, we were this close to taking her to the ER. We were scrambling to try and find a dermatologist who would see her in a moment’s notice, but we failed with one option after another. I could just feel the stress and my arterial pressure reaching critical levels and my head was about to implode. But just yesterday, we found a dermatologist on call who told us what it was, what caused it and how to treat it.

So she’s on treatment now and doing slightly better. But the pain hasn’t left yet. She’s still screaming in the shower and still hates any soap or cream or piece of clothing touching the infected area on her skin. The gananot already told me several times that she has been crying in gan (she can still go to gan because it’s not contagious. Thank the Goddess for small favors). She distracts herself by playing nicely but then she remembers her skin condition and starts crying again and feels sorry for herself. She’s sad also because she’s not allowed in the sandbox. I told her to stay away from it, and she does.

I tried my best to make her happy and keep her distracted. Yesterday, I bought her a book that she likes. Earlier that day, after the dermatologist appointment, we took her to the toy store and let her pick what she wants. Then, in the evening, she and I made a cake for her graduation party, as I said earlier. I normally don’t let her have any sweets in the evening but this time, I let her have the spatula and the whisks of the manual mixer and lick off the cream.

Can I allow myself to feel happy for the other things? I just can’t because if I’m smiling when my kid is not, I feel guilty. And while I try to make her happy, I think it’s important to validate her. So when she does feel sad, I validate her feelings and it just makes her cry harder.

Being happy when another person is miserable is fucked up. I will never understand why a Brit Mila is considered a celebration. You’re torturing you week-old kid and you’re dancing? What kind of monster are you?!

Same goes for me. Your kid is on steroid treatment and screaming in the shower because her skin is on fire and you’re overwhelmed with joy because you’re going to make zines? What kind of mother are you?!

So instead of being happy, I tortured my own self by doing an insane amount of laundry. This was necessary anyway because my kid needed clean sheets to keep her skin from getting any more infected than it already was. In the past 36 hours, I did four loads and I’m still not done. This morning, I nearly broke the washing machine and nearly broke my arm in the process. There was a pillow and a rather heavy blanket in the machine and I had one hell of a time trying to pull them out of there and the drum nearly flipped over my arm. Had I let it go, it would have gone to hell for sure. It was fucking heavy shit and by the time I managed to get it out, my whole body was shaking and I was breathing hard like I had just run a marathon. Torture indeed.

And to top it off, I did no exercise this week. I missed my Monday workout due to cramps, my Wednesday workout due to laundry, and am set to miss my Friday workout (tomorrow) due to my kid’s grad party. But at least, this last one will not be torture and I really hope my daughter will feel much better by then and we can all go back to smiling without guilt.

Peace, love and things that nobody told you about motherhood

Facemask Addict

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It looks like face masks will be a thing of the past starting June 15.

For the past few weeks, we were allowed to walk outdoors without a mask, but still had to wear it indoors. I still wore it outdoors anyway. But in four days from now, we won’t have to wear them at all.

I don’t know what I’ll choose to do. There are some reasons why I want to keep a mask handy.

The first and most obvious reason is that, Corona or not, viruses still exist. And I find that the mask really does help in reducing the risk of contracting them. When they lifted the outdoors facemask law, many people got sick with whatever other virus was going around. My daughter caught it, too. But I didn’t, because I kept my mask on.

Second of all, even if there are no viruses going around, the mask can help a bit with the pollutants you’re inhaling throughout the day. From what I understand, people in China use the facemasks all year round because the air quality is so bad over there. Here in Israel, smog and sandstorms are a regular occurrence, and wearing a mask can definitely reduce your exposure to a bunch of shit, and prevent it from setting up camp in your airways.

Another reason is that although the mask can be uncomfortable sometimes, I LOVE keeping my face hidden. It’s not that I have an issue with how I look, but I love the mystery of it. I’m comfortable being in my own world. No one can read my expression. I can set my face however I feel, move my lips, let them smack or relax or pucker or part as they wish. I can mouth the lyrics to any song on my player and not feel self-conscious about it because no one can see it.

When I don’t wear my mask, I feel so weird and exposed. I guess I just got used to wearing it. That’s another reason. I can’t seem to be able to walk outside or talk to a person with a fully-exposed face. My fingers automatically move to the hem of my mask to pull it over my mouth and nose, and sometimes I forget it’s there.

I also love not having to remember to cover my mouth while yawning, or having to remember to cough and sneeze into my elbow. My mask got that covered. It’s wonderful!

I know that once June 15 comes around, everyone will be tossing their masks. And they might see me with the mask still firmly on my face and many of them being such I’m-a-typical-Israeli-and-all-up-in-everybody-else’s-business they’ll say something like “Don’t you read the news? You don’t have to wear that anymore!”

Would I feel weird being the only person on the streets or on the bus to wear a mask? Would I feel weirder NOT wearing it? I’m still a bit anthropophobic, and somehow, the mask provides me with a sense of safety, not just physically, but mentally as well. Giving it up won’t be easy, I’m sure.

Peace, love and wha-evah, I wear what I want!

From Badass to Fatass

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Things are getting slightly better since the last time I wrote here. My spirits are rising again and I started to see the sense in my everyday life and activities.

I started exercising again. That’s always a good thing. Especially since the whole Covid crisis taught me to sit on my ass and do nothing but gain weight. We all gained weight this past year and a half. I got used to being scary skinny my whole life, so when I started to see a little belly protruding from my midsection, it freaked me out.

“What is that? How did that get there?”

And at some point last week, I was lying on my side with my arm along my hips and I felt like a beached whale. Enormous and lazy.

Now, I know most of my friends would say something like “Dude, you need to get your vision checked because if you think you’ve gained weight, we’re all rolling mountains of fat.” And they might be right. I don’t really think I’m fat, and that belly might just be a leftover from my pregnancy four and a half years ago, and it might never go away again no matter how many crunches I do. But I still miss my old nonexistent belly with the washboard abs and the belly ring. My belly used to be my favorite part of my body. But then came the pregnancy to demolish it. My hip tattoo discolored and stretched out of shape. My belly ring came off as the bump grew. And though I bounced back within a few hours from the birth, I never regained the belly that constantly curved inward. So on I go with the crunches.

Another thing that I hope my regular workout can fix is my posture. My family always called me a “question mark” because of my awful posture. I tried to fix it several times with chiropractic treatments and exercises, and it worked for some time. But then, I broke my elbow and the whole upper part of my body suffered from it. And then, when my daughter was born came the posture decimation that is breastfeeding. So now, I decided to find a workout to strengthen my arms and shoulder muscles in hopes to correct my slouching. Since I have noodles where my arms should be, that’s a feat if there ever was one.

Back to the weight issue, junk food goes hand in hand with sitting on one’s ass as demonstrated by our regular evenings. After my daughter is off to bed, my husband and I like to watch TV. But we’re both old farts so our TV time turns into a constant fight against the dropping eyelids and the head that rolls off our shoulders. The only thing that keeps us alert is food. We grab a bag of chips or a bucket of ice cream and we’re set. But as I said, the lady in the mirror appears to be growing in size and I don’t like it one bit. So I decided to cut out junk food from my diet. I get my husband to prepare a plate of fresh fruits or veggies and grab that instead of cookies and cream for our TV snack.

Of course, that does not mean I will never eat ice cream again. If this is what I have to resort to, I do believe my life is over. But reducing my sugar and trans fat intake, even a little, is always a healthy choice. I’m not looking to lose more than one or two kilos, so I think I’m fine.

My mom told me to forget about sculpting my body and just exercise and eat healthy to stay healthy. And she’s absolutely right. But if I do manage to sculpt my body in the process, it will be an awesome added bonus.

Peace, love and glutes

The Worst C-Word of All

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I wrote the following entry earlier today. About half an hour later, the results came in, and I burst out crying. The update continues at the end of this post:

***

I wasn’t going to write about this but I don’t know what else I can do to get this shit out of me, so to speak.

So I’m just gonna go right out and say it. I might have the Big C. I went in for a routine mammography last week on Monday, that was May 3, and the doctor decided I need to have a biopsy. He saw something suspicious, I have yet to understand the word he used, something to do with calcium. I don’t know if he used the word “Calcium” because he didn’t want to say the other more frightening C-word. Right then and there, he administered the local anesthetic, and poked me a few hundred times with the biggest fucking needles known to humans. I felt nothing of course, aside from the fact that my entire body was shaking uncontrollably from the adrenaline.

They said I should get the results within 10 days, which according to my calculations is 4 days from now, but feels like a fucking eternity.

The prospect of my impending death is not lost on me. Like this shit goes through my mind non-stop, and the scenes are getting more and more grim and dark – me getting my results, me getting a bi-lateral mastectomy, me losing my hair, losing weight, losing any aspect of my femininity, losing my mind, me dying and leaving behind a four-year-old girl who will grow up without a mother and who will very likely not even remember her, and leaving behind a husband who will force himself to deal with it so he can take care of his daughter and may remarry as well, and leaving behind a mother and a father who will NEVER recover from losing their only child to this awful disease.

Another thing that really kills me is that everyone around me is celebrating one thing or another, birthdays mostly. Sometimes weddings. But there is also the endless stream of birth announcements from my cousins, which I could never stand, whether I have cancer or not. But now, with the maybe-end of my life, it’s impossible for me to hear about another birth. Like, these people are banging out baby after baby, while the only thing that is growing inside me is a fucking tumor… maybe.

I know nothing is certain until I get my results and my parents keep telling me to keep my spirits up and hope for the best. But high spirits and high hopes will help nothing if the results are positive. I’m 38. I knew that the day might come where I will have to deal with something like this but I never thought it will be so soon. I don’t want to die. I don’t want to leave my daughter. I want to see her grow up, and reach the many different milestones that are laid out on her way.

I keep going about my business – going to work, doing the laundry, eating, sleeping – and the whole time I’m wondering why do I even bother. None of it makes any sense. Compared with the enormity of this fear and darkness, nothing fucking matters. My heart is still beating. Why? Why is it beating? Where’s the sense in it?

Never in my life have I felt so desperate for the world to just explode. I have never felt so lost and so deep in this void of nothingness as I do now. My body betrayed me so many times already and I don’t know how much more of this I can take.

Four days. Four fucking days.

***

So finally, I didn’t have to go on waiting those four extra days. What I thought might be cancer and the end of my life as I know it became just a scare. The results were negative. Everything is ok. I’m healthy and don’t need to do anything else but go on living my life and go back for a mammography once a year as I have been doing up to now. I remember the Covid scare I have a few months back and had all these images of what my life would look like if I came out positive and it was torture. But nothing like this. I have never experienced such a scare (and subsequently, such a relief) in my life. Thinking “I might have cancer” is the worst feeling in the world and I don’t wish this on my worst enemy.

So I just thought about it. I’ve had three C-scares in my life, all of which came out negative: Hep C scare, Covid scare, and the biggest and mightiest scare of all, Cancer.

So while my cousins can go on celebrating their weddings and babies and whatever other bullshit, I’ll celebrate the mere fact that I’m still alive and well. And THAT is the biggest gift of all. Best Mother’s Day EVER!

I still can’t believe it. These last few days, every time I thought about something I needed to do or something that was planned for later on, I kept adding “if I’m still alive at that time”. But I’m ok. I’m healthy as can be and thank the Goddess for that.

Peace, love and negativity is definitely a blessing!

VaxZine!

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I finally got around to watching Moxie on Netflix on Friday. Once I heard about the movie, and then saw the preview, I was like “Well, DUUUUHHHH! I’m so totally glued-to-the-screen-and-burning-my-face-off watching this movie!” I mean, a movie about riot grrrl, feminism and ZINES? Not missing it for the world. (For the record, I’m seriously considering buying a copy of the book too!)

And yes, I did love the movie. I found myself saying “Fuck yes” on many occasions because I identified with it and remembered my own experiences throughout all the years since I was introduced to the movement, and even more since I got into zines. There were even some flyers and zines that I recognized, which made it even cooler. And the ongoing riffs of Bikini Kill in the background sent shivers down my spine without fail.

What I also loved about it is how they managed to introduce the riot grrrl movement as a more intersectional one than the original one from the 90s. I heard quite a bit of criticism of the original riot grrrl movement as not being inclusive enough – that African American or Latinx women or other women of color were not represented enough, that their experiences were not heard, and that the zines and the punk bands of the era were predominantly white. Now although the girl who started Moxie is white in the movie, she was motivated mostly by the experiences of her African American classmate and how she was picked on and assaulted by the lead jock of the school. When the Moxie group grew, it included also a Latinx girl, a few other African American girls, an Asian girl and even an Asian guy. There was a scene with a punk band made up of young Asian girls totally rocking Bikini Kill’s “Rebel Girl”. If I understood it correctly, they also had a non-binary person in there, the one who said that someone refused to address them by their new name.

I think they could have put a bit more emphasis on lesbians and trans women as well, and it would have been even cooler to throw in a Jewish girl and a Muslim one in there too, or at least a Middle Eastern girl. But the effort they made and the way they actually did manage to make the movie as inclusive as they did while the original movement was so limited is brilliant. I think it definitely represents the riot grrrl and zine movement as it is today, in the age of the internet and worldwide communication. The grrrl zine community started out small and limited probably because it was back in the late 80s and early 90s before the internet became an accessible tool to the masses around the world. But later on, the movement quickly became a global one. You can find zines in every country and in every language. The movement transcends all the differences and labels that set us apart – race, color, religion, nationality, culture, religiosity, gender, sexuality, class, age, etc. – and bring us together in the common cause of the revolution. The zine is such a multifaceted medium that can be used by anyone to speak their subjective truth, and as such, it must be inclusive. By their very nature, zines are inclusive.

So after watching this movie and having all these thoughts running through my mind, I miss making zines. It’s one of the biggest and most important things that the Covid crisis stole from me. Being so worried about contracting the virus and my daughter not being vaccinated, and a bunch of anti-vaxxers walking around, with no end in sight, I completely lost the will to create, and it absolutely kills me.

The blog is good some of the time. But the lack of scissors and glue and typewriter and ink smudges on my fingers is the thing that really gets me.

I’m sick of talking about Corona. I’m sick of complaining about people not getting vaccinated and being absolutely terrified of where the next mutation may come from. I want to write a zine about a concert that I went to, or how I enjoyed my night out with my husband. I want to write a zine about parenting and how I took my daughter to the gymboree, and the zoo, and the aquarium. I want to write a zine about how awesome my social life is and how much I enjoy the Jewish holidays with my family, as loud and as deafening as their singing can get. I want to write a zine about this awesome cool movie I saw and how I sometimes see myself as also taking part in a creation revolution when I have my friends over for an art morning or a crafternoon.

I miss my zinester life. What do you miss most about your pre-Covid life? What’s your excuse for not getting vaccinated and getting right back to that thing you miss the most?

Peace, love and let’s share some zine germs.

Pissover

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Next episode on the Holidays in a Pandemic series – Passover.

It’s so totally sad that even happy things are sad. In Purim, we sing “when [the month of] Adar starts, we have much happiness.” This year, we sang that without much conviction. In Passover, we sing “A lot of joy, a lot of joy, Spring is here, Passover is coming.” I fail to see how we’ll mean it this year. There are no other happy occasions – no parties, no concerts, no weddings – unless of course you really want to get Covid, then you go to the parties, concerts, and weddings of the idiots who have them.

Last Passover was during a lockdown but it wasn’t too bad. I was happy to not butcher my fucking eardrums with a bunch of loudass Moroccan family members at the Seder table and had a nice Zoom Seder with my parents instead.

This year, you would think the vaccine would have made things easier but it hasn’t. In fact, it’s gotten more complicated. During the Seder, we have to consider people who are vaccinated and those who aren’t. And those who aren’t vaccinated, is it because they can’t health-wise, or because they flat-out refuse to? And if they flat-out refuse to, can we convince them to destupidify themselves, or is it a lost cause? And if it’s a lost cause, should we decide to not invite them to the Seder while inviting all the others who are vaccinated, or will that be considered a slap in the face?

With such a difficult situation, the only answer to all these questions is I don’t fucking know.

However Passover turns out, I highly doubt I will join my side of the family for the Seder or the second holiday. Maybe just visit my parents, but that’s about it. I have two reasons for this:

  1. My mother-in-law is planning to host the Seder, and she checked with all the guests to make sure they got both doses of the vaccine. So she had the answer to the questions above, which simplified the whole deal. Everyone is fully-vaccinated. With my family, no one has taken the initiative to check vaccinations, and I know for a fact that there are some of them who don’t even want to get it. So joining a Seder table full of people who may not be immunized, and the masks will be off because everyone will be eating, doesn’t seem like the smart thing to do. My parents are vaccinated, so I feel safer with them and only them.
  2. I feel kinda bad because I haven’t seen my family in over a year and there have been some births this year, and I completely lost track of how many new family members I have, and how many kids each one of my cousins have. Basically, I don’t know my family anymore. This theory was proven without a doubt during the Yom Hatachposot of Purim when the Whatsapp of my family was flooded with pictures of kids in costumes. I found myself going “Who is this? And who is that? And is this someone from my family? And, so wait, whose kid is that?” I can just picture myself walking into the Seder house, full of complete strangers, forcing a smile and pretending to know who everyone is. How embarrassing.

One thing is for sure. I love that I’m totally owning the holiday bakes! I kicked ass with Hanukkah doughnuts. I kicked even more ass with Purim Hamantaschen. I am now planning an even bigger bake challenge with baking something decent on Passover. Two years ago, I tried a recipe of kosher for Passover chocolate chip cookies. They came out like rocks. Last year, I attempted a kosher for Passover banana cake. It came out fucking nasty. This year, I want to try baking those kosher for Passover buns that my mom usually makes. From what I understand, you can make them with a ready-made mix that you buy at the market. My mom told me she’ll get me a box of it once they start selling the kosher stuff. I hope my baking ownage streak will hold up and I’ll make some awesome buns for Passover.

Meanwhile, people still hope that by the time Passover comes around, we will have gone through the worst of it and the health crisis will begin to show the initial signs of a burnout. I’m not very optimistic. People who are not vaccinated are stupid, and people who are vaccinated are delusional (as proven by the huge parties that took place in Purim – being vaccinated does not make you invincible, dimwits!), outbreaks are coming in waves, we are still at over 4000 new cases a day, the vaxx operation is not going as fast as we hope, and the government is still full of shit and fresh out of viable solutions. The only positive aspect of this whole shitshow is that the number of critical cases are dropping. This is as a direct result of the vaccinations, and it shows that they’re working. So that’s fantastic!

Today, I’m going to take a chance and start taking busses again. Taxi rides are getting on my fucking nerves already. At least, bus drivers don’t argue with you over the price of the ride. Fucking asshole taxi drivers…

Also, I’m taking a chance and going to the post office. I’m just going in to check my PO box which I haven’t done in months, so I don’t have to wait in line for that. We’ll see if and when I manage to grow a pair of external ovaries and go to the actual office for errands. Won’t happen yet. My Etsy shop is still frozen and won’t open until I’m confident that we’re out of the woods.

Peace, love and more heads coming out of asses makes me happy.

Face Masks and Purim Masks

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Purim is coming up, and I’m trying to forget the world went to shit, and just have a happy holiday.

So for the event, my daughter is going as Gekko, and I’m going as a fully-vaccinated, double-face-mask-wearing, paranoid hermit who would rather stay home but has to go on with life to avoid going full-on batshit crazy.

Also, for the event, my daughter and I are gearing up for our first ever shot at making homemade Hamantaschen. I think this is the only thing that I’m really excited about on this holiday because it doesn’t involve any face masks or leaving the house. And seeing as my first shot at making sufganiyot for Hanukkah was a great success, who’s to say the Hamantaschen challenge wouldn’t be one too?

In other news, just in time for the holiday, I am set to receive a new smartphone. My husband ordered it for me because he knows way more about technology and stuff than I do so he knew just what to get. The one I currently have started acted funky. Apps were crashing, the space was running thin, photos and music were making the phone freak out so much I had to restart it every time I took a picture or tried to play a song. The music issue was the thing that really got me and I, in turn, freaked out as well. My husband finally said “You’ve had this phone for almost five years now, so of course it’s misbehaving.”

Right! I should have known that. Machines and tech stuff that they make nowadays are not like the ones they made back then. These old machines were made to work for decades, whereas the new ones are made for capitalist consumption purposes, made to break down within a year or two, just enough time to convince you that you can’t do without one, and you promptly go and buy another which will break again within a matter of months. And the cycle resumes.

So yes, new smartphone is necessary if I’m to keep on being a member of this world that went to shit.

It remains to be seen what kind of Passover we will have. Most of my family is vaccinated, so maybe we’ll have it together. Maybe we will still be too scared. I know I will definitely be. How is it that people are still planning holiday dinners when you don’t even know what will happen tomorrow? It’s amazing how uncertain the future has become.

Peace, love and super gekko muscles!