Gee I hate to harp on the coronavirus, but it’s proving to be a tad difficult to avoid.

Sir and I over the years have become quite the hermits, preferring our own home to anything on the outside. Oh we’ll go to the odd restaurant, have a tickle at the casino now and again, and of course go visit Boston Lil from time to time, but on the whole, we’d rather be home.

Until now.

With the self-imposed “social distancing” going on, and with everything involving the opposite (social closeness?) postponed or canceled, it’s making me feel like I’m sitting outside the principal’s office waiting for the Sword of Damocles to drop onto my head, and to be told in deep and meaningful judgmental tones that I’m on detention for the rest of my life. I’m expecting the virus to leap off an innocent-looking surface in my own house, grab me by the ears and roar “mwaaa-haaa-haaa – gotcha.”

It’s all very odd, and an extremely strange feeling. Sir, whose devotion to his TV is second only to his devotion to me, was reduced to watching toy car racing on the box this weekend for heaven’s sake. No golf, no basketball, no nothin’ in the sporting department. I expect tiddlywink championships and darts tournaments to be delayed next.

Oh, and speaking of delaying things – can I point out just a small grammatical matter which seems so often to be ignored. If you cancel something, it’s off. Forever. Never to be seen again. Sayonara, adios, bye-bye. If you postpone something on the other hand, it’s been put on the back burner to be brought back to life at another time.

Going to the grocery store on Monday, which I felt was a very responsible socially distancing thing to do, was like being in the store the day before Thanksgiving. Why aren’t all these people at work? When you get in line at the checkout, now 6 deep in every slot, it’s just a tiny bit tricky to keep a six-foot barrier of open space between you and the person obviously nefariously hiding the virus beneath her coat behind you.

I’ve washed my hands so thoroughly and so often, I fear I’ve now washed every bit of natural oil out of them and I will end up at the doctor with a very nasty case of lizard-skin. I’ve come in contact with so much Lysol and 60% alcohol I’m becoming positively desiccated, and possibly a tad tipsy at the same time.

Not that I’ve tried to sip on rubbing alcohol, but I figured with vodka and cognac clocking in at 40% alcohol content each, that would seem to be a much nicer way to go. At least you’d go out in a warm and fuzzy blur, even if you’re 20% short.

This won’t last forever, dear reader – I’m pretty confident of that. So enjoy your exile while you can. Take up a hobby. Do some reading. Explore the world through the internet. Sleep in. Take naps.

We’ll be back to normal before you know it. Chin up! Hands washed – it’s all tickety boo.

Annie Dear lives in Lee’s Summit. Email her at