I smell bad. When my family, like many around the world, began self-isolating during the spread of the COVID-19 virus, I didn’t consider how it would affect my hygiene.
I haven’t changed out of my pajamas for so long I forgot what color underwear I’m wearing. It’s gotten to the point I’m afraid to check. Socks, too. I’m actively avoiding looking down.
Weeks ago, before the call to hide from reality, my wife decided it would be wise to stock up on food and household items in case we were locked inside our home for an undetermined amount of time.
Hmm. Writing that made me realize three things:
1) She’s smarter than I am.
2) I shouldn’t have admitted we stocked up. Now I’m worried about people looting our house for paper towels and dental floss. That’s a thing, right?
3) I must have subconsciously realized I wouldn’t shower during self-isolation because when she asked if anyone needed deodorant I said “no” without checking.
By the way, I’ve mostly stopped using it. Our house smells like a dead cat we’re all too lazy to look for.
Lazy is a key word during America’s lockdown. Nothing seems to make an easily bored family lazier than being told we should stay home. It’s given us permission to indulge in some of the Seven Deadly Sins, like Gluttony and Sloth, and maybe even Lust if an unnatural desire for strawberry cheesecake ice cream counts as lust.
All this simply means I'm saddened by the fact that someday I'll again have to wear pants and go outside.
Human self-isolation is affecting more than just our bathing and clothing habits. Air pollution over major cities across the world has decreased drastically (air pollution in New York City has dropped 50 percent due to COVID-19 precautions). And the once-murky waters of the Venice canals are now clear (and strangely devoid of beer cans and rusty shopping carts to show how un-American Italy is).
The plague is also putting French prostitutes out of business, according to the international news agency Agence France-Presse. So, there’s that.
In an effort to prove America’s the best country on Earth, we’ve recently surpassed Italy and China for the most confirmed cases of COVID-19. This is mostly due to the strictly American belief that we can defeat the virus by punching it.
The United States now has a population of 330 million mostly non-showering, non-working citizens, a virus that’s killing us and ruining our economy, and a federal government trying to jump-start that economy by giving away trillions of dollars it doesn’t have.
Sounds like a party to me.
It’s scary outside. I’m glad we’re trapped inside our home watching Netflix, eating junk food, and stinking up the joint. We’ll come out when all this is over, or we run out of ice cream, or French prostitutes go back to work (a traditional sign of spring), or I need more deodorant.
I was kidding with that last one.
Jason Offutt’s newest book, “Chasing American Monsters: 251 Creatures, Cryptids, and Hairy Beasts,” is available at jasonoffutt.com.