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Trapped. My wife and I have been locked in our house since April. In case you haven’t heard there is a bug out there. A really nasty fellow that seems to be taking over the whole world. It sure has turned my life upside down as well as the lives of everyone I know making this post extremely difficult to write. Each time I sit down at my computer I try to avoid getting too serious, stay nonpolitical and find some humor even with very serious subject matter. 

While there is absolutely nothing funny about COVID, humor can be found in the things we find ourselves doing to avoid being victims of this pandemic. First I stated that I had been trapped in the house since April. That’s not quite true. There was a period in August when I spent some time in the hospital as a result of…you guessed it. COVID. While Jan was able to avoid incarceration in the “get well” place, I ended up with a much worse case and found myself in the ER. So no humor for me.

But, after six months of dealing with this nasty thing, I have found a place that makes me both laugh and horrified. The bathroom. To be more specific the bathroom mirror. First off I have what I now call COVID hair. It has been so long since I had my hair cut that I’m beginning to look like a dandelion that has gone to seed. And it’s not just me. I have a friend who has always had “military hair” and now looks like I did in San Francisco in the 1960s minus some  paisley bell-bottoms and a joint.

And then there is my face. In the old days, I would get up, head to the bathroom, and do whatever was unnecessary to look as good as this old body can. But these days we don’t go anywhere so looks have become less important. Staying away from mirrors as much as possible I now have to feel the stubble on my chin before doing anything about it. Five o’clock shadow is a thing of the past. These days it’s more like Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday shadow. Jan doesn’t seem to mind…I think. However, she did buy me a battery-operated combination eyebrow, mustache, and nose hair trimmer. Maybe she’s trying to tell me something.

Having both had the dreaded virus our doc says we should have some immunity at least for a while, adding that nobody really knows anything about the long-term effects of COVID. We do know Jan has never regained her sense of smell. The proof came when she made a pan of brownies and nothing. Not a whiff. Having known Jan for over 40 years I find that to be an impossibility unless something like COVID got her. A lady who can’t smell fresh, out of the oven, brownies is a sad thing indeed.

While I wasn’t laughing, anyone in the parking lot probably busted a gut. The day was extremely windy and, as I reached to take off my mask a gust grabbed it and sent it somewhere where it would never be found. Losing a mask is one thing but, like a lot of us seniors, I wear hearing aids and glasses. So that makes three things requiring attachment to my ears. When I felt for the hearing aid that had been attached to my right ear there was nothing there but ear. I panicked. Those things are expensive. After a crazed search of the parking lot, I finally gave up only to find the device had landed next to my car door. “Very funny COVID,” I thought to myself. “Keep me locked up indoors and if I do go out play tricks on me.” Great.

So, like so many others, here we sit trying to avoid another round of the dreaded disease. As I stated at the beginning, there is absolutely nothing humorous about it. But some of the things we have to do to avoid getting sick would be, in a non-COVID, world, very funny to watch. The “elbow bump” that replaced the handshake is a perfect example. To the uninformed, it must look like a couple of geese trying to bat their wings at each other. So all I can say or do is to keep Jan and me safe and healthy as well as those we come in contact with.  And look for some humor wherever I can find it.

5 Responses

  1. Ronnie Weir
    | Reply

    Tom, our hearts go out to you, Jan, and thousands of others who have contacted this horrific virus. Mirrors are deceiving little quirks…I avoid them as much as possible….they don’t reflect the true soul of one selves . I’ve been with hearing aids for about 10 years now, and I am retired from the Missouri School for the Deaf. So I, have complete understanding whenever that panic hits the top…and you may have misplaced, or lost one or both of them. Take extra precautions with those items, as well. Get well you two…it is essential to your family and friends. keep in touch, please. Much Love. Ronnie Weir & Jocelyn Weir

    • Tom Shipley
      | Reply

      Many thanks, Ronnie. We are mended but still in hiding. Sorry for the delay in getting back. Just now learning how to reply to messages on this site. Been too busy writing.

  2. pat
    | Reply

    Hey Trapped-good one 👍

  3. Ann E.
    | Reply

    ~ Thanks for the humor, I needed a laugh! ~ And, I thought you looked kinda cute with long hair.

    Do you know where you got the damn virus? Can you contact trace?

    I keep watching for signs … Fingers crossed … I haven’t been out & about since January,

    so, I have to be safe. ~ Test: which is worse? COVID or Trump ???? ~ Stay well! ~ ~ We need more songs~

  4. Rob Bowe
    | Reply

    I had the shit with wind, hearing aid gone, mask flying glasses half cocked ,down over my nose…was really down over not finding the hearing aid…found it when took the sweat shirt off in the hoodie…

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