Normalcy Achievement, Unlocked!


I am a creature of habit and routine. Many of my days are spent doing the same things as the day before, at the same general times, for the same general reasons. Some days vary slightly due to Premier League match times, school cancellations, appointments, or a dreaded trip away from home because plans were made for me.

Needless Example of My Morning Routine:

  • Out of bed
  • Shuffle to the bathroom
  • Scratch my ass
  • Fart (once or twice, they almost always sounds like someone doing one quick handclap)
  • Piss
  • Wash and dry my hands
  • Brush my teeth
  • Wash my face with ice-cold water
  • Dry my face
  • Stare deep into the mirror, wondering is all there is, who the fuck I am and why I am here
  • Put my contacts in; the right then left
  • Do another deep mirror stare as my eyes adjust to the contacts and realize that yes, this really is all there is
  • Head downstairs to do my dad/husband stuff

Nothing too out of the ordinary here. But if one thing is altered, it can throw off my whole day. No, unbelievably, I am not OCD, but I like my routines. In some ways, this is what made me kind of OK at getting fit and able to race my bike (poorly) in the past.

Yet Another Needless Example of My Racing Days Routine Circa 2008

  • Go to work
  • 10 AM healthy snack
  • 12 PM healthy lunch
  • 3 PM healthy snack
  • 4:50 sneak off to the men’s room to put on my bibs under my pants
  • 4:55 more sneaking as I leave 5 minutes early because I can beat a lot of traffic at that one shitty stop sign on my way to Boyce Park (or to a nearby road ride launching pad)
  • Ride
  • Go home
  • Shower
  • Play with B (obviously he was not 16 at that time)
  • Make and eat dinner
  • Fart
  • Go to bed (pre-bed routine left out due to morning routine similarities but in reverse. And at one part it may have involved me touching my manly bits)
  • Repeat the next day

Moss and little sprouts for the color win.

Again, nothing too out of the ordinary here. BUT if I were to be waylaid and not get out of the office until 5:05, there is a real good chance that I would say “Fuck it!” and not ride. In my mind everything would be thrown off, and the evening would be ruined. RUINED! And I would become a crank-puss.

Maybe I do have OCD??? Sigh… Just bury that shit deep, you got enough to worry about, dude!

That my friends is a No Virus Zone. I hope. (Pandemic Beard to Level 3.)

Not sure why I am sharing all this other than to completely over-fucking-explain that I like my routines. And to point out that these uncharted days of pandemic madness are really killing my vibe and throwing my habits off schedule.

You know that guy in your office that has endured weeks of quarantine, illness, and was “this close” to death after he returned from a failed business trip to Guangdong Province with a scorching case of COVID-19? Yeah, fuck that guy, my routine is off!

Not to be too dramatic, but in some ways, these days remind of the weeks after my mother died, or after 9/11 happened. Any sense of normalcy is craved. Even the most dreaded and mundane of daily routines is looked at with newfound joy. “Yep, I’ll unload the dishwasher, and I’ll do it like a fucking champ!!” “Clean up the dog shit in the yard? I’m on it!! Fuck yeah, let’s scoop some fucking poop, mother fucker!!”

So as I drove home from a short hike (started way beyond my standard hiking time, thanks COVID) on Wednesday Tuesday, I headed down a different route, so as to go to a different grocery store with a better beer selection 1. As I rolled through town, I passed one of the small student apartment complexes near campus. A group of students was gathered in the parking lot playing cornhole and beer pong, drinking from red party cups, clad in green, and wearing shirts adorned with clever puns like: “Molly me I’m Irish,” and “I’m not Irish, but my dick is. Wanna see it?” when it hit me—today is Saint Patrick’s Day and these kids (for better or worse) are doing completely normal ass college kid Saint Patrick’s Day shit.

Good or bad idea aside, I had a moment of pure joy seeing them binge drink, and make poor decisions under the warm sunshine of a crisp early spring afternoon. Normalcy Achievement, Unlocked! Just that brief moment of college kids doing college kids stuff made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

Upon entering Ric’s, I was brought back to reality by seeing large sections of shelves void of bread or any material that could possibly be used to clean your ass with 2.

After fist stopping to pick up some asparagus for some reason, I made my way to the beer aisle and saw that the Beer Fairy left some unsold, overpriced six-packs of Bell’s Hop Slam since my last visit. I once again became warm and fuzzy inside, and a tad semi-erect. Not as warm and fuzzy (or erect) as I would get after 3 Hop Slams, but it was still sweet.

I was a bit disappointed in knowing that Wifey and I would not be doing our normal Saint Patrick’s Day cosplay activities of getting drunk, binge eating tasteless boiled potatoes, having a loud domestic dispute, her rightfully apologizing to me for being “out of line,” then having super un-erotic missionary position makeup sex under the covers (Mike Pence style, except I’m with a woman), followed by her pretending like she’s pregnant with our 10th child that we can’t afford to feed.3

These are the early stages of COVID-19-’20 life. The days and weeks ahead will surely have more boredom and more interruptions in daily routines. Hopefully, that is a small price to pay for slowing down the spread of this virus and staying healthy. And hopefully, it will also have us all cherishing the mundane virus-free routines we take for granted and unlocking some more Normalcy Achievements. Even if that warm and fuzzy feeling eventually goes away with the news of the day.

NOTE: More photos from Thursday’s Wednesday’s Pandemic hike at Hall’s Lake Natural Area can be found on their own little page. That way you only have to look at the shit if you REALLY want to.

Note: This post has been edited to reflect that I am a moron and have no idea what day it is.


  1. I’m not sure why the beer sections aren’t entirely wiped out? Fuck toilet paper, I can go “shit to shower” if I need to. I need my IPA to survive day ____ of Being Not Really Quarantined, bored as fuck, and with no footy to watch.
  2. A whole lot of American’s are now rethinking why they are so anti-bidet. Why wipe when you can spray that shit right off you with a jet stream of water?? Some of you might hate the French, but I guarantee you they have toilet paper on the shelves and clean as a whistle bung holes right now.
  3. Holy shit, that’s a lot of stereotyping in one paragraph!! Well done, lad! Well done!

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