I am, like many others right now, stuck at home, “sheltering in place” in order to do my part to help contain the contagion. But it is important for me, I think, to be responsible about my use of this time as an opportunity to demonstrate my general psychological, moral, and spiritual superiority over other people.
I suppose many will take to despair and/or various ways of killing time to dispel boredom. Yes, I know you people. You’ll binge on Netflix or Prime, get lost in meaningless black holes on YouTube and pinterest, pig out on hoarded Doritos, not bother showering for days or weeks, play video games, read paperback novels, pour glass after glass over the rocks out of that 5-liter jug of Captain Morgan you picked up just in case (yeah, the one you’ve got hidden behind that stockpile of toilet paper), sleep a lot, obsess over social media, get into arguments over conspiracy theories on Facebook, engage in various tawdry self-abuses over prurient imagery gleaned from the darker corners of the interwebs.
Instead, I’m doing to do the following:
- I will be up at dawn or before. I will log my wake-up times on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
- I will spend an hour every morning doing mindful yoga in order to prepare my body and spirit for a productive day of work and reflection.
- After yoga, I will dedicate at least 3.5 hours to spiritual study, meditation, and reflection, followed by an hour or two of mindful journaling. I will then edit the reflections from my journals and publish them via a new daily blog and podcast. I know others will benefit from my daily spiritual insights, and I hope to inspire others, who haven’t even changed out of their pajamas by 2pm, to consider a more productive life.
- I will then prepare a healthful meal from my well-stocked, organically-sourced pantry, supplemented by produce and herbs from the recently-begun raised garden I’ve created on my patio.
- I will then utilize the afternoon for work, telecommuting of course, based on a to-do list that I will have made for myself the previous afternoon. I will work according to a strict pomodoro-technique-based flow, and record the day’s accomplishments on my public Trello board for all to see. While this is happening, I will make sure that my children follow a strictly-regimented course of home-study, including a comprehensive survey of the cultural, biological, and spiritual effects of the pandemic itself. They will blog their daily findings, to be published later in a peer-reviewed journal.
- I will then spend 30 minutes creating a precise plan and schedule for the next day.
- After work, I will do a 40-minute run or other aerobic workout.
- Post-workout, I will dedicate an hour to personal cleanliness and hygeine: showering, shaving, exfoliating, removing unwanted body hair, trimming eyebrows, and overall creating an impeccable appearance, all while praying fervently for the Almighty to assist me in remaining pure in both body and spirit. I will instagram photos of my perfectly-coiffed self and family after we have all dressed for dinner in appropriate formal clothing.
- The cleanliness routine will be followed by dinner, once again from my organic pantry and garden.
- After dinner, the family will embark upon an hour of basic home maintenance, each doing assigned household chores that have been clearly marked on a whiteboard in the kitchen. This will include setting aside necessary items for the next day’s menu and activities.
- The evening will be spent with family, as we engage in fun, community-oriented activities, such as knitting respirator covers for emergency workers, cultivating our organic garden, reading aloud to shut-in seniors over the phone or internet, all while listening to audiobooks of the works of Marcus Aurelius, Augustine of Hippo, Boethius, and other edifying philosophical works (in Latin or other original languages, of course).
- Finally, the family will participate in a mindful pre-bed routine in which all screens are shut off and all engage in quiet scripture-reading and evening prayer by the light of our hand-dipped candles.
I am confident that my new routine–and, more importantly, the publications, blogs, social media postings, and other supplementary resources that will result therefrom–will be an opportunity to cultivate, and, more importantly, communicate to the world, and allow others to benefit from my superiority.
I wish you a hearty and heartfelt, “you’re welcome.”