Stop Telling Me To Make The Most Of Self-Isolation! I’m Going To Drink And Netflix Binge And Love It
As my WhatsApp uni group chat pinged up at the weekend, I looked down at it in despair.
'Free book downloads until May girlies,' the message read.
Now don't get me wrong, I love a good novel to get my teeth into when I'm on my morning commute (back when coronavirus didn't exist), but this free book link was directing me to an academic library of texts.
Some of the titles included Probability and Distributions and The Prehistory of Cognitive Science. Hardly light reading.
I replied with my thanks, whilst thinking to myself 'why the hell would I want to spend my locked down weekend reading this heavy-going material?' No thank you - don't you know I'm part way through Tiger King on Netflix?
The coronavirus lockdown has brought out the best and worst in people. Some who can't work any longer are wonderfully volunteering for the NHS, others are sitting at home whingeing about how unfair it all is and are sneaking out to see their friends despite the pleas of 'stay home'.
Then you've got those who have pledged to further themselves and make good use of their free time.
Finally reading War and Peace to better their literary minds or practising their bread baking skills. Actually getting around to digging up the weeds and planting seeds in their gardens.
And of course, you've also got the few that want to read the aforementioned academic non-fiction books and use their time to give them the power of knowledge.
I however, fall into none of those categories.
I am in the category of 'but I just want to sit and watch Netflix in my pants, eat the pizza I bought from Tesco earlier, drink copious amounts of Rioja (because, #lockdown) and just be'. It sounds a niche category, but I'm pretty sure it's quite a populated one.
Sometimes I tire of sitting and head out for a run to use up my quota of one outing per day, because exercise is what I enjoy doing in my regular life. But my initial promise of two workouts a day has fallen more than short - sometimes I don't even make one.
And don't get me wrong, when quarantine began I had more than just intentions of going jogging and doing Joe Wicks' workouts. I'll learn to draw I told myself, digging out a helpful book I was gifted a few Christmases ago.
More Like ThisMore Like This
Perhaps I'll pick Spanish back up on that app DuoLingo, or read some literary classics I'd pondered, as Boris Johnson instructed us to socially distance.
However, what I've learnt so far over two weekends in, is that I don't really want to draw, or learn Spanish or read a book. I just want to finish my working from home shift at 5.30pm on a weekday, tuck into the fajitas I've been planning since I woke and sit down - because my day revolves around meal times now.
I want to watch as Ross realises Rachel got off the plane in the Friends re-run I've seen 50 times before with a brownie in hand. No, not one I baked myself, soz.
At the weekend, I want to enjoy my bout of daily air and later, pour myself a healthy measure of gin for my elderflower tonic and get steadily pi**ed as I re-watch Game of Thrones for the third time. I'll do so in my jogging bottoms with a face mask on too, because #isolation.
And when I get restless, I like to think up ridiculous games to play with my fiancé. Yes, we did create a bowling alley on our landing last night and no we don't have kids in the house.
So each time I flick through my Instagram and Facebook feed, my heart sinks a little. Should I be focusing on using this time to make myself a better person like all these people are claiming to do on my feed?
I laud them if they really want to complete their challenge of reading 100 books during lockdown or they come out the other side of this crisis a yoga goddess whose learnt to headstand and succeed with smiles on their faces.
But while their tiresome self improvement posts did initially start making me feel bad, igniting thoughts of 'oops, forgot to dig out A Thousand Splendid Suns' again and 'oops those weeds are still covering the garden,' now, you know what? I just don't give AF.
If bowling a bean bag ball at six very carefully placed water bottles on my landing brings me an hour of laughter and joy with my BF then so be it.
If getting lost down a rabbit hole with my best mate on WhatsApp about whether Tiger King's Carole Baskin did or didn't kill her husband brings me some escapism then that's OK.
If I want to now suddenly eat daily biscuits with my cup of tea and have a buttery chunk of bread with my soup (which FYI I never did in the office) and drink a couple of extra vinos midweek then I will. And if I want to use isolation as my excuse to do that then, cool.
If my 58-year-old mum and I are getting some serious lolz out of playing the virtual version of Cards Against Humanity then sure, why not?
None of those things are particularly broadening my mind, nor are they cultured. None are making me much improved as a human, but they are bringing me happiness in a time of resounding fear and worry.
I'm fine with others bettering themselves - you go for it guys - just don't preach to me about it.
I don't want to come out of isolation having read War and Peace and speaking three languages. I'm just fine eating crisps and dip and watching re-runs of Friends thank you.
Because if you can't Netflix, wine and chill when the government demands you stay home, then when the hell can you?
Featured Image Credit: Lauren Bell
Chosen for YouChosen for You
Most Read StoriesMost Read