Wednesday, March 18, 2020

The Dads Must Be Crazy Coronablog Day 2

With The Dads Must Be Crazy podcast going on temporary hiatus, we decided to keep a blog of how our days are going under this new, relative isolation from the rest of the world. This will not be posted every day, but often enough that our home-bound stories about parenting in this "new normal." We will probably post it 3 or 4 days a week. Stay tuned for updates on the podcast. In the meantime, you can check out old episodes at

Day 2

Rather than put everything down at the end of the day like I did yesterday, I’m going to periodically update what’s happening here. I’ll timestamp it, too.

8:15 a.m.
I’ve been up for about 2 hours. Brewed a pot of coffee and checked a couple different feeds. I see people are complaining about what to make of COVID-19, and whether calling it a name based on its origin stokes racism or xenophobia. At this point, what does it matter? The thing is here. The idea now is to eradicate it. Furthermore, lots of folks are trying to classify those who are ignoring this and those who are taking it seriously based on their generational ages and their political leanings. Guess what? Only Siths deal in absolutes. People of all walks of life are taking this seriously, and people of all walks of life are still keeping their heads in the proverbial sand.

Anyway, I saw my wife off to work about an hour ago. She’s one of the people on the front lines of this, as she sees sick people daily. I sincerely hope patients are more and more careful now that we’re all being forced to reevaluate what it means to be “sick” and what it means to be “SICK.”

I also know that today is St. Patrick’s Day, and I’ve got to get my round cut of corned beef (less fatty than a brisket) up in the slow cooker. So I’ll check back later today to confirm that my house smells amazing and that I’ve been productive. In a way, I was gifted 3 hours back today because that trip I mentioned needing to take on my Day 1 entry? It was cancelled over COVID-19 concerns. I fully support the cancellation, as the less person-to-person interaction right now, the better.

The call came right after I got out of the shower this morning. My job was considered non-essential and I would be off from work indefinitely. I knew it was probably likely, but I also thought they may have us stay open electronically. The change in employment will definitely put a crimp in the budget, although my check each month really isn’t very much in the overall budget. My job is more of a work of passion than a way to make serious money.

Meanwhile, the girls went to their respective schools to retrieve instruments and other items they’ll need to complete their homework. We’re in Day 2 and our schedule is all shot to heck. Thing #3 wanted nothing to do with any of the school work and wanted to hang out with friends instead. Of course, that put her into a tailspin and we faced a meltdown. I can’t entirely blame her. She has trouble adjusting outside of her expected norms. This situation has thrown any semblance of routine right out the window. She’s not taking it very well. We are going to need to try harder to build up structure and schedule to keep her (and us) sane. 

At this point I’m about sick of the news. I’ve watched the press conferences from the President, Governor Cuomo, and the Erie County officials as they’ve come out. Tomorrow, I think I’ll go with a news-free day and get some reading and writing done. Especially the reading. I have plenty of books to read, which is good since they closed the library. I’m seriously having an issue with the library being closed, and not just because I can’t get new books. Libraries are the one of the cornerstones of a free society. Plus books.

We’re going to have to continue to work on the schedule so that we don’t just veg out for the next month. We need to remain productive at the house. It’s still early, and we’re still adjusting. We better figure this out pretty darn quick before we get sucked into being total couch potatoes. I have plans for the rest of the week. Slow and steady, we will get things done.

This is getting a little less normal everyday. My wife went for her dental appointment and all went well. She then stopped by the pharmacy to pick up some personal hygiene products and encountered no trouble. She then stopped by the dollar store. People were leaving the store with mass amounts of toilet paper while laughing and joking with the clerk for letting them hoard toilet paper. What a bunch of equestrian poop. 

Anyway, the day started off with coffee and was not too bad overall. The kids got their school work this morning and we started them on task right away. One of my kids had a meltdown because they thought it was more work than they normally got at school. That situation was remedied with a quickness. With all well in the kingdom once again, I put on my teachers hat and got after it. I am a substitute teacher and also have experience as an instructor in the military so this was not as difficult as one might think. 

Each of my kids completed their assigned work for the day and then proceeded to relax. So far they don't seem to be too phased by the progressing situation that surrounds them outside of the house. 

The neighborhood is quiet and I have not seen many of my neighbors. For the ones I have seen, we have enthusiastically waved at each other as if almost to remind each other that we still need to have personal social interaction. It would appear the technology is no replacement for the presence of real conversation. This is something that has not been lost on me, but my children and the younger generation are starting to learn a hard lesson from what I can see and read on, wait for it, media. Hahahaha!

I was able to set up my total gym, my bowflex dumbbells, and some ab workout equipment in my basement. I have to have some physical activity. Working out and doing karate help keep me sane and level headed. 

Hopefully tomorrow will bring better news of our situation. 

10:11 p.m.
So, uh, yeah, that time stamping idea? Didn't work. I might try again down the road.

There was some more productivity today between my daughters and I. The older of the two got a tutorial in putting up a load of laundry and did a decent amount of classwork on the computer. She also read a book for a while, though she needed to be told. She's a good reader, however, and I believe she'll ultimately have a good time reading a number of the books we have here at home.

My youngest has no idea what is going on since, until I started subbing in the local schools a few months ago, she was simply used to me staying home and being around. She doesn't seem to understand that no school means she'll have to work on the computer, although she's excited about it. Today she did some workbook stuff and since I had an issue logging her onto the Medina kindergarten page, I signed her up for, and she loved it! 

The biggest issue both my daughters will face moving forward is that their picky eating habits will need to disappear. (But we still need goodies, and I promised to bake banana bread chocolate chip muffins on Wednesday. Perhaps a taste testing pic will be forthcoming?)

As I type this, I realize that not leaving the house at least appears to be an easier thing for me to do than my fellow writers on here. There's chaos, sure, but it's a chaos we seem to have embraced, so to speak. Amidst the chaos, my youngest and I began reading Charlotte's Web tonight via Facebook, and we now have to do the rest because someone somewhere in the 1000-person (and rapidly growing) group will now be looking forward to Chapter 2, 3, 4, and more as the days go by. What better way to read than to read a children's classic with your kids?