Quarantine fatigue: staff picks for staying busy during lockdown

Tarren Harris, Marley Gardner, Sasha Albright, and Ian Feld

Despite the tough times, our staff has been keeping busy and has a few activities to offer anyone struggling with isolation-induced boredome.

From Tarren Harris: Many people think you need to be Vincent Van Gogh or William Henrits to color, but you can just be an ordinary, bored teen with nothing to do. In this period of social isolation and quarantine, things start to get boring and repetitive. So, I went to the store and bought adult coloring books, colored pencils and markers, then I put on my favorite playlist and started to color. Though this might seem childish, it’s soothing and it can help to free your mind. It helps to relieve stress or just have a break with all of the online assignments. Coloring is now a daily hobby in my schedule.  I recommend it to anyone who needs to relax or find a new way to stay busy.

From Marley Gardner: At the beginning of quarantine, I stumbled upon a meme showing the two choices of quarantine activities as, “shave head” or “bake banana bread.” After shaving my head, I realized that I had no choice but to bake banana bread. This has sent me spiraling into a black hole of baking. A new day, a new baked good— chewy chocolate chip cookies, crusty artisanal bread, gooey brown butter blondies, the list goes on. Some days it’s a several hour process of kneading and rising, other days it’s whipping up some dough in a few minutes to throw in the oven. Either way, baking (and of course eating) fresh baked goods is my favorite way to stay busy inside.

From Sasha Albright: Isolation has made times rough on the average person, but there are some interesting ways to stop that boredom. One thing that has helped me through this isolation is trying to do full discographies of musical artists. Every week starts by picking an artist, then diving right in and listening to every album, EP and single. This has given me the chance to discover new music and rediscover old music I may have forgotten about. Trapdoor Social has been my latest endeavor; I started listening to them one Monday and have gotten through their two albums and six singles, although I have yet to listen to their EP’s. While sitting in quarantine can be boring, listening to all that an artist has to offer can be a very engaging activity.

From Ian Feld: The Coronavirus shutdown sucks; there’s no debating that. Simple things we’ve all taken for granted are suddenly unavailable, and our instant gratification society is now painfully un-instant, where going to the grocery store is potentially hazardous, or seeing the people we care about is a challenge—if it’s even possible at all. Despite the general feelings of anxiety and dread that sit over seemingly every rational-thinking member of the populus, there are ways to stay busy. Biking has become one of my most frequent activities, and not just because it’s beneficial to physical and mental health while quarantined. It allows me to see my city in a more intimate light. Before quarantine, most of my interactions with St. Louis came from inside a car. I biked occasionally, but not as much, and usually in the same areas. Now, with nothing else to do, I find myself outside nearly every day, saddled up and ready to explore some new path or backroad with a friend or two. St. Louis County is large, and there’s tons of interesting areas to explore. Being bored at home isn’t the only option. If you’re feeling well, step outside and experience it on two wheels.