It’s Friday, and I’m in a mood to take the piss out of a few people. Your humble humorist held his tongue far too long as everyone turned into miserable assholes in a global pandemic. Now I’m going to have a laugh at the expense of a few guilty parties and I hope you’ll join me.
The wishful among us thought this virus would unite humanity as one [Ed. Note: Just @ me next time, coward], make us all realize we were #InThisTogether, and see us emerge as a better species. The pragmatists watched as people reverted to comical stereotypes of their former selves.
Let us now examine a few of these individuals. I name no one specifically, but you’ve certainly seen one or two of these archetypes in your life. Please join me as we collectively point our fingers and laugh at the people you’ll encounter in a pandemic. If any of my words strike a nerve or cause offense, please feel free to click on the pink box to your right.
THE QUARANTINE KAREN
Before I describe the Quarantine Karen, I’d like to address the subsection of easily offended white women who seem to think “Karen” is a slur on par with the N-word. Stop. You’re wrong.
The Quarantine Karen is the person who politely informs you the mask you’re wearing doesn’t have an N95 filter while standing six feet away from you. It’s hard to gauge the Quarantine Karen’s motivations as one really can’t read facial expressions from behind a mask and eye shields. Quarantine Karen refuses to step foot in the door of your office unless you take her temperature and is the first to call the manager when her contactless delivery instructions aren’t followed to the letter.
Quarantine Karens remain in communication with their Quarantine Karen friends by Facetime, text, or from behind their plastic face shields. In fact, the only people Quarantine Karen has contact with besides other Quarantine Karens are law enforcement, when the Quarantine Karen suspects a nonessential business is operating or a group of eleven people in one place.
If you see a Quarantine Karen eyeing you, the best defense is a simple one. Just tell the Quarantine Karen to mind her fucking business. If that doesn’t work, start yelling something about how she touched you in your “no-no place.” That should send Quarantine Karen on her way.
THE VIRUS BRO
Virus bros are essentially the male version of the Quarantine Karen. Virus bros take pictures of people not properly #socialdistancing and post them to social media so people know where large groups of offenders congregate. They never miss a White House press briefing and are quick to embrace or denounce the latest impossible to pronounce “miracle drug” depending on their political views.
Virus bros scoff at people who think spikes in suicide rates are related to lockdowns, despite suicide traditionally increasing during periods of mass unemployment. The bros are the first to parrot something about how people complaining about masks are the same people who wouldn’t bat an eye if a business had a “No shirt, no shoes, no service” sign.
A darker, more malicious version of the Virus Bro thinks if you attend a lockdown protest you should be forced to sign a waiver for treatment of COVID-19. They tell people who think it’s okay to take the risk of getting a haircut they’ll see them at their funeral.
I’d figure out some way to insult virus bros, but the sad truth is we should pity them. They’re basically unkempt, unshorn, unemployed sad sacks who spew meaningless platitudes on social media until the next episode of their favorite TV series airs. Without a meaningful income, they take to Twitch streams and wait on their next stimulus check.
THE CHICKEN LITTLE
We’ve all run into a Chicken Little. They’re the people running around screaming about how millions are going to die from COVID-19, despite as of this writing the current death toll worldwide is roughly 265,000. Chicken Littles are just sure this is the one event that will kill off society as we know it completely.
Chicken Littles shriek in horror when they see people moving around outside. They can’t fathom why you’re not afraid of people being next to you, and look at everyone who coughs as if they’re a member of the Taliban.
There’s really no helping or hope for the Chicken Little, because the more you try to convince them everything’s going to be okay in the end they piss themselves and ask in fearful tones “But what about the murder hornets?”
THE SOCIAL MEDIA EPIDEMIOLOGIST
The SME is the person who pathologically shares every meme they can find about COVID-19 and the ways you need to convert your personal behavior to “flatten the curve.” With fingers continually jamming the “share” and “retweet” buttons, SMEs are here to tell you why public urination is a great instructional tool on the effectiveness of wearing masks. I know it sounds nutty, but the SME thinks it’s a great idea, so they share away.
A Social Media Epidemiologist’s brain lacks any capacity for self-awareness or rational thought. Their cognitive abilities are maxed out from sharing memes and discovering the next big hashtag that avoids any negative effects on Facebook or Twitter.
THE PARENTAL LIFE COACH
The Parental Life Coach is a parent. These parents are afraid for the lives and safety of their children. They start their invasion into your life by asking you to not shame them for being afraid for their children’s lives and safeties.
Once you agree in good faith, the PLC then asks you if you have children. If you answer in the affirmative, PLCs ask you why you’re not more afraid for the lives and safety of your kids. No answer will suffice the PLC other than “Yes, this is terrifying, I hope they find a vaccine soon. But not one with Thymerisol or some other autism-inducing chemical.”
PLC’s are ready to shame you for taking your kids to the store or park with you, even if you don’t have another parent or family member to watch your kids. They question why you’ve not purchased pediatric face coverings for your children and why you’re not wearing a face mask around your children non-stop.
The best defense against the PLC is to deny you have children. Just smile, tell them it’s okay to act like a scaredy-cat and move on. Don’t let them know stress has negative effects on the immune system. They’re a lost cause.
THE CONSPIRACY THEORIST
Did you know the lockdown protests aren’t comprised of people who’ve had it with being forced to stay indoors? Yeah, they’re actually funded by either the Koch brothers, the DeVos family, or the CIA, depending on the area. Also COVID-19 was secretly developed by mistake as a bioweapon in a Wuhan lab. And Dr. Fauci has blood on his hands because he covered up the real threats of COVID-19 to get more grant money for his own pet projects. The Conspiracy Theorist knows there’s a shadow cabal out there always ready to keep the little guy down, and they want you to open your eyes and wake up, dammit!
The Conspiracy Theorist is nuttier than the InfoWars guy. Every time Hobby Lobby figures out a way to declare themselves an essential business, the Conspiracy Theorist clears out their supply of red yarn and thumbtacks. Conspiracy Theorists keep their eyes on all the ways the Deep State and Antifa war with one another in the shadows, because someone’s got to.
You can help the Conspiracy Theorist out by introducing them to Hanlon’s Razor. It’s a useful tool against the Conspiracy Theorist’s wildest fabrications.
THE CHEERFUL EMPATH
Just when you’re ready to be good and grumpy at someone, along comes the Cheerful Empath to remind you that times are hard, everyone’s on edge, and the world will be much better if you just smile and act a little nicer to everyone.
Cheerful empaths are the curmudgeon’s arch-nemesis. When curmudgeons are ready to yell for kids to get off the lawn, odds are a cheerful empath will be waiting to tell the curmudgeon the kids are just passing through and to take a deep breath.
Everything’s sunshine and rainbows for the cheerful empath. That’s probably because they’re on drugs. Seriously, I don’t know how anyone can be that happy and starry-eyed without some serious chemical mood enhancers.
That’s all for this week. Have a better one, toast your sane companions, and put “not being one of those people” on your action item list for next week.