Underneath my yellow skin

My contrarian side coming out to play

In this time of enforced self-isolation, I feel a compulsion to leave the house. I’m not going to do it unless absolutely necessary, but it’s part of my, shall we say, oppositional personality. Tell me I can’t do something, and I’ll do the opposite. I’m the same in arguments. If someone gives me one side of a story, then I automatically see the other side (even i f I agree with the first side). There are few topics in which this does not hold true, but in general, I can think of a thousand reasons why someone might have done something.

Side Note: Advice columns are a great way to see the fallacy in people’s thinking. And reading comprehension. Recent relevant example. There have been a few letters about the covid-19, of course, and in each, the LW was asking about how to navigate living with a significant other and dealing with business-related issues such as trying to interview while your partner is taking a conference call in a 500-square foot apartment. The partner was specifically at home because of the covid-19, so it wasn’t a normal situation. Several of the first comments were, “Go to a nearby cafe/library/park.” I mean….Not to be rude, but that defeats the purpose. Which, thankfully, several other people pointed out. It happens regularly, and it’s pretty annoying. Or, people will go down one train of thought and no matter how much evidence to the contrary, refuse to give it up. I know it’s natural human nature, but it’s annoying as fuck.

Side Note II: I am extremely picky when it comes to consuming popular media. I have so many things that irritate me, it’s difficult for me to find something that doesn’t tick me off on some level. It’s the same as my sensitivity to, well, everything. It’s why I don’t watch many movies or television shows, and it’s why I fall off things hard after some time. Right now, I’m trying to find a Sekiro* playthrough, and I’ve watched the first five minutes of a dozen YouTubers/Twitchers. I’ve done this before with the same results. I watch five minutes, cringe, then shut it off. What are the things that turn me off? I’ll quickly list them.

  1. Sexism. Unfortunately, it’s still a man’s world, and it’s still rife with sexism.
  2. Teabagging. I think it’s stupid, and I hate the underlying gross humor.
  3. Screaming and shouting as theatrics. Not my style. At all.
  4. A grating voice. Ugh.
  5. Someone who talks all the time.
  6. Chicks who try to out-bro the dudes.
  7. Anyone who is too good.
  8. Someone who misses things by not paying attention/not reading.

Those are the main ones, but there are more. There is pacing and other things as well. The only one that I really enjoyed more than less was Lowko, I saw this moment on a reaction video (let it play out for a bit), and I laughed hard because it was my exact reaction to the same moment but with a lot less cursing. The elation of beating the boss followed by the slow, dawning realization that there’s a phase three. To be fair, he handled it with much more grace than I did, but man. That feeling of betrayal and horror as you’re like, “What the fuck do I even do now?” I have never gone so quickly from elation to anger in my gaming life. Anyway, I went back and watched his whole series, and I enjoyed it immensely. But, I haven’t been able to find another person that I can watch, sadly. I do like Nath from Playstation Access, but I’m not always enamored by the other person streaming with him. Also, he’s too good at the game.

Back to the main topic of this post, as it were. I’ve been having a hard time concentrating on going about my daily life. Before the panic set in, I was one of those people who thought the reaction was overblown. I remembered the same reaction to the swine flu and the bird flu, and neither of them were nearly as bad as it had been predicted. So, it was hard at the beginning of this pandemic not to feel as if it was the same thing all over again.

It’s still difficult, to be honest. It seems surreal because I’m already isolated for the most part. My daily life isn’t that different than it was before except that I am washing my hands so much the skin on them is starting to hurt no matter how much aloe I put on them afterwards. Also, I rubbed down my phone with rubbing alcohol for the first time, and I know I’ll be doing it more often. Other than that, though, my life is pretty much the same.

Side Note III: I started drinking coffee again. I gave it up for caffeinated-related reasons (though I was more intent on giving up pop than coffee, which I still eschew), and I didn’t really care much about it. Until a few days ago when I suddenly got an urge for it. I bought a tumeric/ginger blend (Starbucks, surprisingly), and it’s really tasty with cashew milk and a pinch of sugar. I’m keeping it to one cup a day (around six ounces), and I’m mostly doing ok with it. I’ve been having problems with exhaustion lately, and it’s helping a bit with that.

My normal routine is get up, feed Shadow, smoke half a cig, then my morning taiji routine. That takes about half an hour. Then, writing my blog post/posting fiction post which takes half an hour (for the latter) to two hours (for the former). Then a BOI:R break or go directly to working for my bro for a few hours. Then another gaming/surfing break. A pet my cat break. An eat breakfast break. Another quarter cig break. A do some stretches for my back/arms break. Then, I write my two-thousand words of fiction. Then, I game some more, read some, surf some, watch videos some until I sleep. My cat is probably on my legs at this point and has been for some time.

Oh, yeah. I eat at other points during the day, of course. I do stretches more as well. But that’s the basics of my day. I go grocery shopping every three days. I go to taiji once or twice a week when I can. My taiji teacher gives me a private lesson every other week. Now, I struggle to write the blog post because my mind is like, “Who the fuck cares?” One of my problems with anxiety is that it makes me feel like the thing I’m anxious about is the only thing in the world. Combine that with depression, and it’s a nasty combination.

But, back to my earlier point that this all seems so surreal. I understand the seriousness of it, but it’s hard to really incorporate into my thinking when I’m living my life pretty much as usual. It’s also weird as to how fast it’s changed. Five days ago, I went to Cubs and I was able to buy toilet paper, albeit the generic brand. But it was the soft version, which I need. The brand name toilet paper was gone, but there was plenty of off-brand left. Two days ago, there was none. No tissue, either. I found two boxes of tissues in my closet, and I feel like a god now. I just, but it soothed a bit of my anxiety about running out of toilet paper.

Being logical doesn’t help. I did buy the nine-pack which touts being equal to 36 rolls. I live alone, and I normally buy TP every few months or so. I can easily outlast a month, but just the thought of scarcity scrambles my brain. The other thing I need to find is rice. Which I just did. It’ll take a hot minute to get here, but it’s coming. I want Chinese food right now. I may order some from my local Vietnamese/Chinese place. There is only one dish on the menu that is safe on all FODMAP accounts, but I don’t care. I want noodles. Bad. I want them now.

Trying to keep myself sane in these insane times. It’s all any of us can do.



*Yes, I have a FromSoft problem. Don’t @ me.

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