In Consideration of Turning 43

Hello, old friend.

No, really. It’s been a really, really long time since I’ve written anything substantive here. So long, in fact, that even doing a “catch up” seems ridiculous.

Everything seems ridiculous right now. It’s like we’re living in an alternate reality, or some slow-moving dystopian epic… like a thorough and detailed character study on society slowly losing its mind collectively. If I’m being honest, it’s felt like this for the last three years, like pieces of our national identity and cultural pride as Americans has been chipped away one dusty, jagged fragment at a time. That feeling has only intensified as COVID-19 has screamed through our cities, our infrastructure and political system ill equipped to respond.

Tomorrow is my birthday, and I normally take this time to reflect back on the last year and think about how things have changed and where I’m going, and that seems like an impossibility this year. It’s hard to think back without wishing things different than this moment in time and hard to look forward without cringing about what’s coming, knowing that it’s going to get worse before it gets better. It seems like it’s only safe to communicate in joking-not-joking memes, or this all becomes too horrifyingly real.

This time last year I was worrying about my fiancé getting his visa. Now I worry about whether I brought him to a country incapable of seeing to his health if he catches COVID-19.

This time last year, I was worrying about whether I’d be able to start taking a salary from my startup. Now I worry about continuing to make payroll.

This time last year, I didn’t even know I was going to have Bell’s Palsy. Now my right eye waters, and I wonder if catching the virus would bring it back.

This time last year, I was worrying about what seemed really important at the time. Now I worry about friends who are ill, family members getting ill, and people I know dying.

So, I guess on the occasion of my 43rd birthday, there isn’t much to say except I hope we’ll all have another year to worry about this alternate reality we find ourselves in, and that the fight for the soul of this country is won.

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