When I was a kid, getting a square on the screen meant you were a superstar celebrity on Hollywood Squares or a member of the perfect Brady Bunch family. Nowadays you don’t need a television series.  Since Covid 19, all you need is an email address for someone to send you the entry code to a zoom meeting for work.

At first it was kind of exciting to see myself stacked with a cast of celebrities that used to be regular co-workers. How did my lipstick look?  Was the camera catching the right angle?  Did I smile the entire hour leaning forward with captivated interest?  After a while I realized the audience had better things to notice than the way the lighting accentuated the bags under my eyes.  My Hollywood square began to feel like a cage at the shelter, and I began to feed myself snacks every fifteen minutes to stay engaged.

Have you gained the Covid 15 like 76% of Americans? Our bodies are living in just an online square and yet trying to accomplish so much, from educating children to shopping, to worship,  to selling a home, to going to funerals, to happy hours.

What do you do on zoom?  I have a friend who is so comfortable with zoom that he can drive the highways interviewing people or go to the bathroom with only his face on camera.  I’m not that gutsy, but it was fun buying  some trendy elastic waist jogger pants I call my zoom pants.

Zoom Pants Covid Purse and poem explore the joys and agonies of living online during this quarantine.

Zoom Pants 

May 2020

Long time ago

gut bacteria ate Big Macs

but now multi-taskarooni

is the trending casserole.

Even these skinny jeans can’t hold back

this recipe of boredom slathered in frenzy.

Teaching my daughter algebra two

and my son that culture

rhymes with vulture.

Yet I do sit ups and zoom.

I can shop on my phone

for hormone-free chicken

and some Halo Top Keto

Chocolate Cheesecake Ice Cream

while I sell this house

because interest rates are so low

and I will pay

the Organizing Angel to haul

all this stuff bought

at the Amazon mall.

I’ve been waiting for someone

to shut down this world

with a pandemic

so I can finally get skinny

on a walk to the cemetery.

Still I wake up and face is here

saying write this all in your food diary

so future generations will know

where did all the pretty women go?

By Heather Boersma