A Week in Quarantine (From Determination to Despair In Just 5 Days) – July 2020 Satire

quarantine satire

One night I had a dream. I’m lying in a hospital bed, the sheets damp and sticky against my skin, fluorescent lighting making me wince. A masked face looms close to mine, a cotton testing swab poised inches from my nose. It taunts me — “So, what have you done with your life?”

I wake up in a cold sweat, breathing hard. In front of me, Netflix asks concernedly, pityingly, “Are you still watching?”

Nope, not today. I admit, being in quarantine has provided me with the perfect blank-check excuse to slack off. But I realize, after three months of total lethargy, that this isn’t how I want my life to be defined. I decide it’s time to switch things up.


My alarm goes off at 5:45, blaring the dulcet tones of A$AP Rocky’s “PICK IT UP” into my ear. Rise and shine! I dig into an açai bowl underneath the altar that is my aesthetically-pleasing vision board. “If you can dream it, you can do it,” it says, in a crisp block font. That’s right! I think.

I spend my morning grinding it out on the StairClimber, only getting off when I’m sure I’m about to pass out from fatigue. Then I put together my calendar, taking care to color-code all the events I have to look forward to — conference calls, workout routines, Instagram Live concerts. 

This is going to be a good week, I tell myself. I can feel it.


My Zoom date goes pretty weirdly. I spent about a half-hour beforehand styling my backdrop: a still-life display of green grapes and Gala apples is sure to bring an air of exquisance into my living room. Meanwhile, the guy spends the entire time talking about a ‘Tiger King’ conspiracy, but the biggest red flag is what I’m pretty sure is a dead cat in the background. 

I guess quarantine hasn’t been good to all of us.

I also found out that making focaccia bread is a lot harder than I thought. No matter what I try, the thing refuses to rise. And I’m almost sure I did everything perfectly. When I run out of flour, I improvise by using dried beans and steel-cut oats that I run through the blender.

Meanwhile, according to my calculations, taking one of these vitamins will provide me with 625% of my recommended dose of Vitamin B. Perfect.


I think I’m about to choke on chia seeds.

I take a rare walk around the block, and the entire experience feels like I was on hard drugs. Did you know that trees rustle in the breeze? And that fresh air has a smell? It’s magical.

In other news, I decide today is the perfect day to work on improving my TikTok presence. But wait — how do these girls’ hips move that way? That doesn’t seem anatomically possible … I think I just dislocated something.

On another note: I swear, if my focaccia fails ONE MORE TIME, somebody is going to get hurt.


Sunlight filters through the curtains, and I slowly pick my head up from its resting place on the kitchen floor. It’s noon. I’ve missed six conference calls and 14 Instagram Lives, but I’m reassured by the fact that at least my TikTok got 12 likes.

I reach up to rub my eyes, and my hands come away stained black. Woah, what is this ink all over my face? I try to think back to what I was doing last night — taking an Intro to Calligraphy course? Writing Tumblr-worthy poetry on my typewriter? Perfecting the art of henna tattoos?

I think I’m losing it, but it’s nothing a kale smoothie and a Chloe Ting workout can’t fix, right?


What time is it? Is it dark outside, or is that my iron deficiency kicking in? And why am I having vague recollections of singing old Bridget Mendler songs on a House Party call?

I look around. Everything is a mess, from the half-empty coffee mugs on my desk to the dust-collecting remains of what I’m pretty sure used to be a hydroponic herb garden in the corner.

Must. Get. Up. 

Must. Be. Productive. What happened to dreaming? What happened to doing? It’s not too late!

But on the other hand, I’m really enjoying this 3-hour Netflix documentary on the guy who invented cheese-stuffed pizza crust.

I have to admit, things are looking pretty bleak. But hey, at least everything is still bright and sunny in my Animal Crossing kingdom.