Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Things to do when the world seems especially scary

Hide from the world. Opportunely be sick through the apocalypse, so you are behind on the horrifying news, and have less energy to care about impending doom. Take your time getting better, watch lots of Gilmore Girls and Elementary and Jane the Virgin.

Spend time with friends. Argue and try to make sense of the world that has stopped making sense. Or just breathe in each other's company. Do something together and be glad that you have this. That you are not alone.

Have sex. Masturbate. Revel in your imperfect body. Derive pleasure that is forbidden to those incapable of understanding consent or love.

Read. Read think pieces, read how things went wrong, read how bad they are going to get. Face your fears. Hold them in your hand and look at them. But also read the funny stuff. The jokes that maybe aren't so funny, the ones that make light of serious business. The enemy is too scary to laugh at, but we can still laugh at ourselves.

Build solidarity. Learn about how it's affecting others, even if due to a combination of laziness, illness, and selfishness, you do this mostly by reading online. Shake off your usual curmudgeonliness to ask your household help if she has enough money and food to get by. Give her the one Rs 100 note you had (with a 500 and the promise of more soon as you can get some) and rummage through your packed food to find stuff she can use. At the ATM, after you and your partner finally get some cash, offer some to a woman standing in line with you whose card didn't work. She refuses, and you continue to worry about her. You feel guilty again for your luck and privilege.

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