Surviving Corona with a Sharp Knife, Fake Juice, Good Books and John Lennon

Darling, a friend called in despair. At the start of corona she had bought a dozen re-hydration drinks and they were now all expired. She needed to dump the contents to recycle the bottles but she couldn’t unscrew the tops.

“They are made of plastic, right?” I asked.


“Ok, put them all in the sink and stab them.”


“Put them in your sink and stab them repeatedly with a sharp knife repeatedly while thinking of someone or a situation you don’t like. Just do it.”

She did – got the contents out and lo and behold the tops twisted off easily. “How does that work?”

“Physics and psychology – when something doesn’t work, the feelings just cascade into thinking of ALL the things that are out of sync now and you feel helpless and lose your ability to open bottles. This is well documented in Scientific America and Lancet.”

Another example – I was video chatting with a friend and noticed a glass with something a shade of blue not found in nature.

She said, “Oh that is Blue Curaçao, I…”

I said, “THAT, my dear, is Hawaiian Punch Berry Blue Typhoon.”

“Well I just like the color, I don’t drink it.”

“You most certainly do drink it. You are a grown woman drinking Hawaiian Punch in the middle of a pandemic and that is an excellent idea. Good thinking!”

Another friend was driving home from grocery shopping, saw a McDonald’s, went in the drive-through and got Chicken McNuggets for the first time in her life. She had never had, never wanted, never thought about a chicken nugget previously- but quarantine brain wants what it wants and I grant absolution to all such examples.

Hoarding dish soap? Reveling in your collection of 12 essential-oil hand-sanitizing sprays? Deciding that a daily large glass of cranberry juice will save you? Using Wind in the Willows illustrations as your screen saver? Putting pumpkin spice on toast, tuna, tiramisu, pasta, pineapple and profiteroles? Decorating with teddy bears?

Darling, if you wearing a mask in public and not insulting, throttling, burying alive or siccing honey badgers on another person – why then, have at it. One friend who was a careful composter has given up and now simply flings (non-meat) food scrapes into the woodlands near her house. “I just can’t chop stuff up, aerate and water the compost pile any more. I know I should, but I can’t.”

Put on Jimmy Cliff or the Neville Brothers and dive into Art of War or something similar such as Home Comforts, Clean Your Clutter, The Decoration of Houses, or anything about Feng Shui – get onto Goodreads and find some other universe to inhabit for a few hours.

Chant Lush’s mantra: soap, hope and little ways to cope or Whatever gets you through the night – it’s alright, it’s alright (John Lennon)