Adapting to the new norm

“Mummy my tooth is wriggly,” said one of my young cousins during a family zoom call.

“Keep wriggling said his mother and then we can put it under your pillow for the tooth fairy.

“Will she be wearing a mask,” he replied.

How quickly we adapt especially children. There is a school of thought that thinks mask wearing will frighten children, but I have found quite the opposite. They have already accepted it as their new norm. And in some cases, have reminded their parents to put on their mask.

In China it has long been the norm to wear masks to prevent transmitting or catching respiratory illness. Everyone there knows that masks protect children from virus and also high pollution. So, the argument that it will frighten kids and give them PTSS is not ringing true with me – in most cases. I have even seen some really fab children’s masks with pictures of their favourite animal or book character decorating the mask.


The issue is not the children but the adults. I am a great believer that if we incorporate this into our daily lives it will become our norm too. Yes, it is a sad fact that we are now in this position but there are far worse things in the world. As human beings we adapt it is how we have survived – so far.

I remember years ago interviewing at the BBC this wonderful Jewish musician and it was her job to play to the camp victims that were being marched into the gas chambers. Before she came in, I was anxious about what to say to this woman. I wondered how anyone could survive such traumas.

We spent the first 10 minutes just laughing about trivia stuff and I thought “How can this woman laugh again after what she has been through.”

And I am paraphrasing the next bit as it is over 30 years ago and obviously with my memory, I cannot remember her exact words. She explained that most us (camp survivors) realise that we have been scarred for life and that if we dig too deep, we just might open up a can of worms. So, we seal off that part of our emotions and memories and get on with the rest of our life. It might not be the healthiest solution, but it is my way of coping and I want to now live my life. If I don’t then the Nazis will have won, and all those years of suffering will be for nothing. I might have just as well been gassed myself.

I know it’s a bit of leap and there is no real comparison, but I think we can all adapt  and wear masks – so mask refuseniks stop behaving like selfish morons.

cartoon mask


So, I have just had the third roofer arrive to quote on my misfortune. Don’t you hate it when they tut and give a sharp intake of breath with the words “who put this on”. Does it matter who put it on. It’s there and you are here to fix it. If they are British, then they blame the polish builders and if they are Polish, they blame the British builders.

Yes, I know I have buddleia growing out my chimney, no I didn’t put it there – that was the job of a pigeon! What do they think, I climbed onto my roof and planted it? And yes, I have leaks why else would I be calling you in. I think I am getting the teeniest bit agitated. Today’s  builder said it would cost around £10,000 as the roofer who put it on 20 years didn’t use the correct material and all the tiles have to be taken off and re-laid with the proper material underneath.  Frightfully uninteresting for anyone who doesn’t have a roof issue. 

I will get one more quote and instruct them  there is to be no ‘tutting’ or I might just end whacking them. Bad enough that I have to shell out thousands of pounds so just keep your mouth shut and get on with the job.

And because I suppose we have nothing better to do during lockdown  and some people miss going into the office a new website  The Sound of Colleagues has half a million people tuning in to listen to recordings of water-cooler chatter, keyboards clicking and printers whirring. The site was created as a joke in April but has since taken off in earnest.

“Let’s be careful out there”

Baldness, Coronavirus and Dishy Trudeau

Sorry boys but your inheritance has decreased – again. With the latest downpour came the realisation that we probably need a new roof. All this patching up just isn’t working. My next house is going to be a German flat pack, lots of wood and windows and a lifetime guarantee – well at least till the end of my life. Perhaps a nice piece of land somewhere near the sea inside a small town would be very nice. And the flat packs can be built from start to finish in a few weeks. Turn of the century Edwardian houses might be lovely but they just eat money.

Feeling very pleased with myself – roof aside. As I started the day with Pilates and have already cleaned the house, walked the dog and it is only midday. Clearly an improvement on the past week when getting out of bed before 10 am was an achievement. I mean really you wake up and then remember what is happening and there is just this what the fuck moment and you sink back into bed cause why not.  But in light of my new regime I am going to over come the ‘what the fuck’ and get to it.

 Today I read that Britain’s Coronavirus alert level has reduced from four to three meaning the danger of infections is believed to have lowered. Is it just me or do you think it is a coincidence that they have released this information just when Boris has commissioned a review into the two-metre social distancing rule? The Government is widely expected to relax the rule by July 4, when pubs and restaurants could reopen. Don’t get me wrong I can understand why government is bowing to pressure from business – I have one son who works in live music industry and another one who is a chef – both of these industries have been decimated. But it does get me to wonder just how much we are really being told about the situation. I suspect we will never know the true story about this virus. Just as we will  never know the true story  about anything. I think we are given about as much information as it is thought we can cope with. Quite frankly I don’t think I really want to know the true story about anything – it might just tip me over the top.

And while we are on the subject of COVID –  Groan – I know not that again. No wait!  I have some good news for men who aren’t suffering from baldness. Those that are can skip the next paragraph.

Apparently, it is not only BAME and old people and sick people and perhaps newborn babies, and anybody with an immune deficiency that are most at risk from COVID19 they have now found a new group — bald men. A study involving 122 men hospitalised with the disease in Madrid found that 79% had ‘male pattern baldness” much higher than the expected proportion for their age. Scientists think the link could shed some light on why men are worse affected by COVID19 than women. I wonder what the next thing to emerge will be. My luck it will be women who dye their hair.

It is not something that is likely to affect the dishy Canadian PM Justin Trudeau. Not being able to visit a barber his lush glossy hair has grown into a wonderful mane and apparently viewed by thousands of fawning admirers on twitter. It does help to have a bit of eye candy as a leader in the middle of a pandemic. 

And for my North American followers Happy Juneteenth. The day that commemorates June 19 1865 when news of the emancipation reached people in the deepest parts of the former Confederacy in Galveston, Texas. This was two and a half years after Abraham Lincoln’s Proclamation in 1863 to abolish slavery which had little impact on Texas as there was no one there to enforce the abolition and Texan’s were certainly not going to do it themselves. How pissed must those slaves have been   —  on top of already being pissed because of their subjugation — when they found out that they had been freed two and half years earlier, but nobody had told them. Humanity has a lot to answer for. 

“The ultimate tragedy is not the oppression and cruelty by the bad people but the silence over that by the good people”Martin Luther King, Jr.


“Let’s be careful out there”