DSTL Arts – a nonprofit arts mentorship organization that inspires, teaches, and hires emerging artists from underserved communities.
By Jeremy Arias
These past few days have felt like the script of a poorly written movie. Unfortunately, there’s a deadly virus spreading across the globe and the world’s leaders are the most incompetent, greedy, egocentric mobsters robbing us of our democracy and health.
Our best course of action according to doctors, the news, and everyone everywhere I go, is social distancing. While this might sound like government mandated depressive symptoms in an Orwellian novel, its long term effects may not be so different. We might have to sacrifice a piece of our mental wellness in the name of our physical well being.
As an introvert, a part of me likes the idea that I don’t need much of an excuse to stay at home, read a book, or even squeeze in some time for a video project and writing I’m working on ;) The world has told me that it’s the healthy thing to do. I could be a danger to others, and they can be a danger to me.
My college classes have been moved online, which means I don’t have to worry about waking up early for school, I can just stay up for the rest of the night and finish a month’s worth of work in a couple hours.
The market is no longer crowded, sure there might not be much on the shelves, but at least everyone’s butts will be clean when they finish all that hoarded food. The massive polluter known as the airline industry is rumored to go bankrupt after a few months of this behavior, and businesses are finally finding efficient ways to let their employees work from home.
People are demanding human rights as the virus highlights many of our systems flaws. As fear of the virus grows, so does the public’s concern with health, covering their cough, washing their hands, and spreading awareness instead of germs.
While it’s recommended to be socially isolated or self quarantined, it’s important to remember to engage in some social activity to maintain psychological wellness. There’s other ways to maintain a good social functioning, even if you’re getting tired of the people already at home.
Call or text a friend, this virus isn’t a downloadable one disguised as a cute dog video, so call a friend and see how they’re doing. Play with a pet, I read recently that dogs couldn’t contract the virus, so you’re safe to keep your four legged friend close as you stand guard against the virus. If people and animals are scarce, talk to plants!
Now is an especially great time to have a garden. As the market shelves were clearing, I was thinking about the lettuce and tomatoes I planted months ago. Having a source of food growing in your backyard is beneficial not only in times like these, but any time. Growing plants is another way of bringing life into the planet, and if you take care of your plants for long enough, they will take care of you.
It is psychologically satisfying to watch plants grow, and talking to your plants gives them air to breathe. Plants breathe in carbon dioxide, the stuff we breathe out, so as you talk to your plants, you give them a breath of air, and they listen to your vents.
Remember that while we may feel physically disconnected, we are all just the push of a button away from each other. It’s tests like these that make us stronger and more prepared for the future. We may be isolated, but this is a social isolation. Stay safe, stay connected, and stay healthy!
The content displayed here is submitted by various local authors, artists, and more, and is curated by the DSTL Arts Art Block Zine–Editorial Board. Works published here are done so with the permission of all artists involved. Artists hold all rights to their work, and none of it may be reproduced without their permission.