I Think that Glass Was Mine, Yeah, the Half-Full One

There are so many ways to see the negatives in the current world health situation.  I will not list them all here. We have TV and social media for that. Instead, I will risk being the Pollyanna at the Pandemic.  I think it’s okay, since I’m generally not the person to look on the bright side of things.  

Here are a few things, though, that have been positives for me in this terrible situation:

Thing one:  Social Distancing.  I was speaking with one of my brothers-in-law the other day (Don’t worry, this was a long distance interaction.  No germs were shared). He was talking about the awkwardness of social distancing when you see someone you know in public.  No hugs, no handshakes. “Do you fist bump with someone in their 70s?” I mentioned to him that this was actually right in my wheelhouse.  I have never been much of a hugger with acquaintances. Who am I kidding, with anyone. This may have to do with my Scandinavian roots. We are “reserved.” I have also never been adept at small talk.  This is definitely due to my tendency toward introversion. Seeing someone I know in the grocery store always brings anxiety. First, I am very good at remembering faces (I know that person), but not very good at remembering names (Is that Carl or Charles…I could just mumble, I guess).  Second, I never know what to say to people until about ten minutes AFTER an awkward conversation (“Yeah, I’m doing okay, but, you know, I’m struggling to tell the difference between cilantro and Italian parsley….God, why did I just say that?”). So, really, this social distancing thing is great.  I stay home, I avoid encounters with people outside my family, and I have zero instances where I have to ask myself, “Do I hug them tentatively, kiss their cheek clumsily, shake their hand limply, or wave awkwardly?” Now, I just perform my civic duty and avoid them altogether. I was made for this moment in history.

Thing two:  Cabin Fever.  My wife had foot surgery last week.  I took a day off from work, which is not a big deal to most people, but it is very challenging for me.  I am not a very good planner. I am very slow at writing plans for substitute teachers and even slower at getting all of the supplies laid out the afternoon before.  

Also, we decided to get a puppy.  

The puppy was supposed to come to us a week and a half BEFORE my wife’s surgery.  He got delayed. It wasn’t a TSA thing or a visa problem. In fact, it was a little surgical procedure of his own. He’s asked that I not share any details in mixed company, but hey, he doesn’t read very well yet  Anyway, his not-so-elective surgery required him to stay longer in Arkansas. This meant that he would arrive four days AFTER my wife’s surgery, which seemed like very unfortunate timing. Puppies have been known to need care from people who are reasonably mobile.  So, while I was of course concerned about the pandemic and the inconvenience of our school closing its doors, I did see the silver lining of staying home with my wife and then enjoying the puppy. Research shows that being home-bound with an unpredictable, comical, clumsy and furry creature is pretty effective at bringing down a cabin fever.

I could go on, but I have several reasons to stop, now.  First, some people may already be offended by my glib tone; second, Dr. Seuss only came up with two Things; and third, I really have to let the dog out. 

16 thoughts on “I Think that Glass Was Mine, Yeah, the Half-Full One

  1. You are a magical introvert writer who can weave humor in anywhere in a piece. The puppy not being delayed because of TSA or a visa problem…really, only you can weave that in seamlessly, appropriately – and then in the end, the Dr Seuss reference a quick, effective ending…yes, Peter, you are an amazing writer! Hope Nancy’s on the mend under your care!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Yes, it does seem that if something like this HAD to happen, the timing worked out pretty well for you and Nancy and Farley. I guess we just have to lean in and enjoy what we can while we are trying to stay away from everyone. I too have Scandinavian roots, but I love being around people. I am terrible at small talk, though. Is that a Swedish thing? Keep writing and making us smile. You are helping a lot of people get through these darker days.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Ah, very sweet story, and it’s great to have a half-full glass. I can relate to the introvert appreciating social distancing. We were at the store tonight and my husband started talking to some new people, I stayed put with my shopping cart, thinking I was choosing the better part by standing alone. Enjoy that puppy! It will definitely help with the cabin fever. Take care of you, your wife and new charge.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Truly, being home for your wife and your puppy are great things – and I think you are allowed to find silver linings in this cloud. Actually, I think we all kind of need to. Also, you’ve mentioned being an introvert before & it always surprises me. Your posts are so funny that I find it hard to imagine you that way!

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  5. I’m the same way with small talk and remembering names. There is a woman who recently started coming to our church and she always wants to chat, which I am quite happy about. She always addresses me by name and I don’t know how, months into this, I ask her to tell me her name again! So awkward.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. You have such a gift for humor and also in truth telling about our universal condition and your current situation. Staying home has been a challenge for us not so much about socializing but routine. On the weekends, we go places as a rule, out to eat and to museums. But here we are, wishing we had a puppy to keep things lively, up this old dog and her routine will have to suffice.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. As a fellow introvert, I can relate, and as of now, I am appreciating this time with my family. I also appreciate how your writing is so thoughtful yet often filled with humor.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. “Pollyanna at the Pandemic?” Brilliant! LOL. Only you could think of that! I found your “glib” tone welcome in the midst of everything and fully enjoyed your search for silver linings. I will admit that once we figure out this distance thing and my report cards are finished (almost there!), I’m looking forward to some unpinched time. Hope Nancy’s healing well and that Farley is all that you could hope for.

    Liked by 2 people

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