• The last memoirs of the only remaining sane person in an insane family

    For about a month now, or a few weeks, or days—time has become meaningless in a vast vapid variety of virus fears—my mom has been certain that the coronavirus is coming to end all life on earth.

    No, really

    At some point, my mother became obsessed with tracking the progress of the coronavirus and how it’s impacting China, and how it could affect Americans. Namely me, her, and my dad. She bought masks, canned food items, and took on the mentality of someone preparing for the end of days. Nothing else could be the topic of discussion in the home. Wanna talk about sports? No, no, we’ll get derailed on how the NBA not cancelling every basketball game for the next 6 months will kill millions. Wanna talk about a new video game? It sure better not come from Asia, otherwise the amazon-shipped game box is goING TO INFECT US ALL QUICK THROW IT OUTSIDE NOW!!!

    For my birthday, I bought a little box of cute charmander plushies from Japan. I chose the snail shipping method, and it got delayed on top of things, turning a January delivery into a mid February delivery.

    I unfortunately, was not the one to answer the door when the package did arrive.

    My mom, however, did. And noticed the Japan air mail sticker, determining that this box was actual verified coronavirus material and was a ticking time bomb. After a lot of arguing to NOT throw my birthday present into the trash bin, she allowed it to “decontaminate” in the garage. For 29 days. A single day earlier and the box would definitely seriously release the virus into the air and kill me within a week. For reals.

    Every day since the first wind of coronavirus being a thing made it’s way into the news circuit, my mom won’t stop talking about it. Every day. Every moment. YouTube videos playing Chinese videos with translations and live coverage, news from every region in the world reporting on it.

    After a month it’s enough to drive you mad

    Eventually, she made my father quit his job, because him going to work could lead to him bringing the virus home. Even though we live in Houston where no virus outbreak has happened.

    So my dad played nice cuz he’s a good guy. He said he’d take a month off work to make my mom happy. So for about four days he stayed at home, sitting around, enjoying life. Except not. If my dad so much as sneezed for allergies or cleared his throat, he’d get a full on doctor quiz from my mom. “Oh no you’re sick. You’ve got it. Go in your room. Take your temperature. GO”

    Clearly normal living arrangements

    Of course my dad was not okay with constantly being hounded and listening to constant coronavirus on TV.

    Which lead to him breaking out of his own home.

    Today, he decided to go to work. To get out of the house, away from corona. Where the only corona he’d hear about would be the beer on tap in the bar.

    But my mom did NOT want him leaving and intermingling with people who might be sick. So like any sane person, she blocked the door and held onto his arm for dear life to prevent him from leaving. Dad eventually gave up on trying to get out...

    ...through the door at least. He told my mom that she won, he’d stay home. He just wanted to go lay down in his room. So he does.

    Until we hear the noises of someone punching out the screen that covers the bedroom window, only to watch my dad haul himself out the window and take off running down the street saying he’s finally free.

    I don’t know if he’s coming back. I don’t think I would. Not with the 24/7 panic induced mania my mom has over the coronavirus.

    Go, dad. Find your freedom. Be free.
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