Quarantine Dairies: Day 61


Friday May 29th 2020 

Coronavirus Cases: 6, 031, 023 

Deaths: 366, 812 

Recovered: 2, 659, 270 

I worked all day. My throat was hurting a bit, but I took Tylenol. Of course, all I’m thinking is…is this is? The virus has finally caught up with me. We’ll see in the coming days I suppose. My coworkers want to go hang out in Charlotte to drink and smoke, but I turned them down. I can’t do the same things other youths do. I have a baby at home. My mom needs my help. I refuse to let her raise him alone. My dad doesn’t help, so I have to be the man in Lucas’s little life.  

I came home and my mother was in bed with the baby. She was frustrated because her bitch of a supervisor made her go to a meeting with human resources. My mom is the nicest person you’ll ever meet. OK that’s an exaggeration but she’s nicer than the average person. The fact that this woman snapped at my mother and had the gall to abuse her power to make my mother silence herself at a work she has been at for 16 years gives me the greatest anger I’ve felt in a while. This same supervisor refuses to wear a mask because it’s against her religious beliefs….no mask…at the Health Department. I’ll let you find what’s wrong there. This beast has set her anger on my mom. My mother said, “Maybe your sister is right and we are cursed.” If so, I’m going to make my mom wear that mal de ojo bracelet I found the other day to ward away bad energy.  

My sister has this idea that a lot of bad things happen to us because we’re unlucky. It’s true bad things happen to us dissproportionately, but we are still healthy so I thank God for that. I pray every night and before after meal. I’m confident in my relationship with God that He will protect us. Having a higer power to believe in is comforting. Speaking of comforting, George Floyd’s murder was arrested and charged with 3rd degree manslaughter. Riots have broken out in other cities like Atlanta. If that’s what it takes to make change, then I’m all for it. Also, Twitter has begun fact checking and censoring Trump’s tweets. About time. Also, that orange crayon wants to ban social media. We’ll see how that goes. I’m guessing the whole free speech thing will strike it down, but less and less makes sense in this country every day. I’m trying to convince my mother to move us back to Mexico or even Spain to join my sister. Hopefully before Lucas speaks so he can develop a cute Spanish lisp.  

Today’s Entertainment: 

Film – Ouija (I would never touch a Ouija board. I found one once in the toy aisle of Target in Texas. What kind of kid thinks summoning a demon is a fun way to pass a summer day?) 

Quarantine Diaries: Day 60

Thursday May 28th 2020 

Coronavirus Cases: 5, 900, 527 

Deaths: 361, 764 

Recovered: 2, 577, 181 

Today was boring and all I did was watch Insidious 2 and eat. I walked it off at the park. Around 6 miles, but the whole time I just felt a deep pit in my stomach thinking about the George Floyd scenario. Everyone online and on TV is talking about it, as they should be. People are trying to divert the attention from the police brutality to the looting happening in Minneapolis. They are saying, “Stealing plasma TVs will not bring George back.” Yeah, that’s the point. Someone is dead. Nothing else matters. People will react how they will. Some will take advantage of his death for their personal or political gain. I have so many thoughts I want to post, but words can be misconstrued. I’m just sad for his family. I want justice for him and the hundreds of other innocent black lives taken. They deserved better. They still deserve better.  

I fear for my nieces and nephew. I fear for my friends. For the families I serve ice cream cones or check Disney DVD’s out to. They shouldn’t be scared of the ones who are meant to protect them. I know most police are good, but America has a lot of deep-rooted issues we need to get to the bottom of.  Some people abuse their power. From local law enforcement to the White House. We can all agree that there’s work to be done and change to happen. We shouldn’t be fighting violence with violence, but posting #RIP on social media can only do so much. I post this here and not on social media because people don’t care what I have to say. I know because I don’t care about most people’s posts either. I’m a white Mexican who grew up in the mountains of North Carolina. How can I possibly help the Black Lives Matter movement? Progress seems unachievable at times, but the resilience of black Americans has always been evident. I still want to have hope that a voice will rise to unite all of America, but it’s like we’re 50 baby countries pretending to be one adult one. 

Today’s Entertainment: 

Film – Insidious: Chapter 2 (we found a “mal de ojo” bracelet in a pile of laundry yesterday. It’s basically a handmade bracelet with an eye in the center meant to ward off evil spirits and bad luck brought on by other people’s jealousy of you. Later in the day, I found a picture frame on the ground. It was my sister’s elementary school portrait and the glass was shattered. It makes me think the house is haunted now like the one in this movie, Also, there should be a Conjuring and Insidious crossover because both have James Wan and Patrick Wilson. They can just say that Josh is a lost nephew of Ed Warren. See? Continuity solved) 

Quarantine Diaries: Day 59

Wednesday May 27th 2020 

Coronavirus Cases: 5, 778, 551 

Deaths: 356, 722 

Recovered: 2, 490, 431 

Most of the chicken fingers refunded, but one is still pending. I’m watching you Zaxby’s app. I went to work for five hours on this dreary day with plans to go across the street to Great Clips after for a haircut with my girl Brenda from Wisconsin. There’s another Brenda there too and she’s a witch. Not the cool kind, just the mean kind. She tried to cut my ear off when I was a kid. I checked in online, with a wait of 140 minutes. After work I went in and check in in-person with a wait of 80 minutes. Masks were required to enter the salon. I entered and the lobby was empty apart from a single chair by the coatrack and a check-in table to the immediate left. A young girl sat there wearing her mask while “6 feet apart” and “no shampoo or rinse services provided at this time” signs hung from the fold out table. I gave her my name and she searched it on the iPad. She said she would call me when I was ready to be seen, but I’d have to wait in the parking lot. The lot was pretty empty considering the wait. I’m guessing most people did what I did and left during the wait. I pumped gas. It’s $1.75 a gallon at the moment. I then ordered chicken tender subs on sale from Publix. While those were made, I went to the dollar store and bought some candy, drinks, and Dove soap. I buy my soap there because I get a whole bar for a dollar. I love a good deal. I then went back across the street to Publix, which is a fancy white people grocery store. My sandwich wasn’t ready so I was just wandering around looking like I belonged. I peed, I looked at their sausages and cakes, and perused their assorted vegetables. I got a call, expecting it to be the stylist, but it was a Publix chef telling me they didn’t have wheat bread. I told them to give me whatever bread they had. Seconds later, the stylist called me.  

Stylist – “Is this Oscar? Are you in our parking lot?” 

Oscar – “Um. Yes”, I lied.  

Stylist – “Come on in.” 

I then told them they didn’t need to toast the sub, but the lady went on taking her time wrapping my sandwich. Of course, I ran into a family friend and her husband. How’s your family? Blah blah blah. I shook his hand, and she scolded him. I told them not to worry because I have hand sanitizer in my car. I then sprinted to my car and sped to Great Clips. When I walked in, they told me to sit in a little fold chair. I was called by this little old lady I’ve never seen there before. Her name was Clara, I think. She was nice but she mumbled a lot. I just nodded. She told me how she thought 9/11 was the end of the world and this feels just like that. She also said something derogatory about the Chinese, but I pretended not to hear. I then tipped her $5 which is big spending for me. The stylists and the clients all wore masks. She would just clip around the band or move it slightly while cutting around my ear. I poured hand sanitizer on my face and drove straight home for a shower. Better safe than sorry. I washed all the clothes I had on. I don’t know how many careless old people have gone into that salon since they’ve opened. 5 went in while I was in there.  

I only tell you about my dumb haircut because I want to show you every aspect of quarantine life, but there are greater things happening in the world. Recently, video of several police man kneeling on a black man’s neck came out. The man yelled that he couldn’t breathe. He was scared, but the police didn’t care. Pictures have surfaced of that cop with a “Make Whites Great Again” hat. George Floyd died. America has been desensitized to black men dying. It’s terrifying. They don’t even have to be doing anything. Some black men and women have been shot by police in their own homes. America’s poison hasn’t been diluted by the quarantine. Every week we hear about black people killed, Latinos detained, and Asians harassed. I’m angry. Riots have started in Minneapolis. They mayor is demanding the killer is arrested. So often in these cases, the cops are given paid leave as a slap on the writs. I hope the riots continue, if only to prove to the suits that we are tired as a nation. There is a race war simmering under this pandemic and it’s only getting worse. 

Today’s Entertainment: 

TV – Dead to Me (a comedy drama about suburban women who kill each other’s husbands but get through it with drugs and the power of friendship) 

Quarantine Diaries: Day 58

Tuesday May 26th 2020 

Coronavirus Cases: 5, 678, 242 

Deaths: 351, 638 

Recovered: 2, 426, 386 

*Disclaimer: I realize all of this is first world problems but this is my diary so let me vent. * 

My mom wanted me to order chicken fingers, so I ordered through the Zaxby’s app. The app glitched out and kept denying my order request, so I clicked “retry”. It kept failing. Finally, it went through. All good and well until my mother got into the long line and was told that no such order was placed. Still, my card had already been charged and I had a confirmation email. I then checked to make sure it was the right location. Indeed, it was. I checked my bank account and my card was charged not once, not twice, but 7 times for some chicken tenders! $16 each time so around $112! That’s so many chicken fingers! Apparently, the manager called corporate and the app was glitching statewide. My mom still had to pay out of her pocket so they better refund all of it. Now I sound like that lady who got mad at me with her card not going through when we first switched registers, but it’s annoying for all parties involved. Sometimes I hate technology. I was just praising these fast food apps days ago, and claiming Subway had the worst one because the customization never came out right. I guess Zaxby’s is now the worst one. Best is hands down Chick-Fil-A. They’ve got it down to a tee. Next Is Dominoes and Jimmy Johns. They’re pretty good too.  

I was going to go for a haircut, but the wait was still an hour at all times. One Great Clips in Missouri actually broke out with COVID cases after their reopening. I just want to shave my head at this point because my hair is greasy and oddly heavy. I went to the park with my friends. They were eating Chipotle. Barf. If I’m going to eat fake Mexican food, I will go with Taco Bell. At least the diarrhea is swift and painless. I caught up with a bunch of shows, but I’m going to work again tomorrow. I’m still really pissed about the Zaxby’s situation. I may never eat chicken fingers again. To top it all off, my dad made me do tech support to install yet another Wi-Fi extender that came in the mail because the company sent us the wrong version the first one. At least they sent us the newest one for free. Some companies care…about their reputation that is. Not about the customer. I read that only the ruthless and sociopathic CEO’s become successful because it takes a level of dehumanization to climb to the top of the business pyramid. Because of that, I want to be a writer. Instead of being mean to humans, they’re mean to fictional characters and that can’t hurt anyone except dedicated fans.  

Today’s Entertainment: 

TV – Rick and Morty, Vida, Stargirl, and The Durrells in Corfu 

Quarantine Diaries: Day 57

Monday May 25th 2020 

Coronavirus Cases: 5, 586, 715 

Deaths: 347, 852 

Recovered: 2, 365, 541 

Today was Memorial Day. No fireworks were heard. Only baby cries. No just Lucas’s either because the other three babies visited too. We watched Parasite and the full first season of Never Have I Ever. I’ve seen both already, but I loved them and I like watching anything with my cousin Flor because her reactions are like getting an extra cherry of entertainment on top of the cake being presented to me on the screen. The only thing is that she always predicts what’s going to happen before it does. I know that’s annoying, but it’s kind of funny when she does. It’s some kind of specific brujeria for sure.  

“He’s going to end up with her”  

“That ghost was a real person the whole time”  

“That woman is going to be poisoned by a peach”  

I do the same thing, but I don’t say it out loud. I’ve just learned the formulas of TV and film. She just gets visions, I guess. We ate pizza, wings, and pasta. The babies gave me hugs and kisses. The only low point was when Kat, my Afro-Latina niece, said: “My hair is ugly”. She has beautiful curls. Flor, Kat’s grandmother, said she spent all morning brushing out Kat’s curls with black girl products. Of course, we immediately dove in with the compliments. “I wish I had hair like yours!” “Your hair is beautiful, like Moana’s!” “You are basically a tiny baby model, what are you talking about?” We fell into her trap because she immediately said.  

“I know my hair is beautiful.”  

They learn quickly.  

Today’s Entertainment: 

TV and Film Encore – Parasite and Never Have I Ever 

Quarantine Diaries: Day 57

Sunday May 24th 2020 

Coronavirus Cases: 5, 497, 443 

Deaths: 346, 669 

Recovered: 2, 301, 957 

I walked a bit today, watched a movie, and then got to work. A storm came over the store for less than an hour before the sun took back over. Our tent almost flew away. Today, that one coworker who was mad at my laying down the law started. She was pretty good. Always good with customers. Nothing really interesting happened except this one guy tried parking at our window which is a walk up. I told him to park. He grumbled a bit while his dog jumped out onto the pavement. The dog was on a leash, but the man closed the door on his dog hitting her in the head. He then slowly pulled forward, not in a parking space might I add, and dragged his poor dog whose leash was stuck in the door with him from the outside of the car. Basically, that medieval torture where a horse dragged you. Poor dog. We gave her a little milk bone after she bit her owner’s hand. She must’ve been begging us for help.  

There were these three rich kids that parked in the handicap space and just ate their custard there. I know they were rich because the guy had an Apple Credit Card probably card an iCard or something stupid like that. My coworker says you have to apply for it and she didn’t apply even though her parents are somewhat well off. They just bought a house in this fancy estate or something. I don’t know I stop listening when people tell me directions. Do I look like a topographer? 

Today’s Entertainment:  

Film – The Lovebirds (Issa Rae and Kumail Nanjiani play a hot interracial couple who break up before falling into an active crime investigation. Normally I don’t care about crime movies, but it was a comedy and these actor/writers have proven themselves in my eyes) 

TV – The Durrells in Corfu (So now there’s teenage pregnancy? It wouldn’t be a family sitcom without one) 

Quarantine Diaries: Day 56

Saturday May 23rd 2020 

Coronavirus Cases: 5, 403, 979 

Deaths: 343, 975 

Recovered: 2, 247, 237 

My local haircut place finally opened today, but their wait was over three hours long. I decided to keep my mullet for a little bit longer. Instead we went to visit the babies. Kat told me “Chucky doesn’t want you here” in a really creepy voice, and then proceeded to hug me. I don’t know what to believe anymore. Celeste says Mias is spending more time with his father lately, and that’s great. Mias has these little bunny teeth growing out. I was freaked out staring at his head because his soft spot was pulsating rhythmically with his heart. It was real life body horror. Apparently babies just have a self-destruct button.  

We went to Walmart and of course no one wore masks there. This one Vietnam Vet and his wife had masks with the American flag. I respected him. That’s how you care for your country. I bought my acne meds and got out of there quick because I was already late to work. We had to pick up Lucas first because Mami Rosa was watching him while we went to the store. I think she gives him an old-fashioned Mexican spanking because he cries a lot at her house. When we got there, he was giggling and smiling like nothing happened.  

At work, we had some stinkers. This one lady complained about her banana being too frozen. It’s a frozen banana, ma’am. This deaf man wanted to order a cake, and my poor anxious coworker tried her darndest to communicate. That wasn’t the problem though. The problem were these millennials that insisted we just let the deaf guy in to look at the cakes. We have the store closed for a reason. The man got his cake and was extremely nice, but afterwards the millennials insisted we give them a free ice cream. Cool. I guess people can’t be nice without expecting a reward. Lastly, this one guy who is a regular came to get his normal whitser (like a blizzard from Dairy Queen) with pineapple, coconut, macadamia nuts, and banana with no nuts. It’s called a Hawaiin Luau. Most people can’t pronounce it. My coworker (a tall, handsome, white male) handed the order to him and their interaction went like this.  

Senior: So, when you guys going to open for dine-in? 

Jackon: We’re not sure.  

Senior: We just need to get rid of these Democrats and we’ll be fine.  

The guy then walked away. Jokes on him. There were nuts in there Afterall. He’s not allergic, just annoying. I’m glad it wasn’t me or my Asian coworker who talked to him, though he probably doesn’t know I’m Mexican from my appearance alone. I will happily speak Spanish to any customer that needs it though. I’m not ashamed.  

Today’s Entertianment:  

Hearing people pronounce Hawaiin Luau 

Quarantine Diaries: Day 55 or something

Friday May 22nd 2020 

Coronavirus Cases: 5, 303, 992 

Deaths: 340, 003 

Recovered: 2, 158, 562 

I woke up and started watching Charmed. The new one with the Latina witches even though two aren’t Latina. I had a bunch of time to kill after I ate so I went to change my coin collection at the bank only to discover they are only providing drive thru service. OK, no go there. Instead I went to the park. It felt so good. I missed the fresh air and the soft dirt post rainfall. Little droplets sprinkled off the trees, giving a refreshing mist. After about an hour it started raining harder, so I left for work. I showed up an hour early. I could’ve sworn it was time to go in. It’s like I’m living in some kind of time vortex where days or hours feel like they’ve past when in reality it’s been minutes. Sometimes it’s opposite. Time moves at double speed like how I listen to my podcasts.  

I wasted time by getting a large sweet tea and frape at McDonalds down the block. I freaking love when old Southern ladies at drive-thrus call me hon or sweetie. It’s so much nicer than when they’re being rude and asking to speak to my manager. Surprise! I am the manager. I can’t wait for that opportunity to come up. I’ll feel so powerful. Then I went to a coin changer at Ingles. This machine charges to count your change, but it’s better than nothing. I used to collect all my family’s coins in a big bag and go change it. That’s how I made my money. We didn’t get an allowance. We were expected to get good grades and help around the house. That’s how it should be honestly.  

I had around $50 in the end. I still had time to kill so I sat in my car for half an hour while a typhoon swirled above me. I was able to watch an episode of Bojack Horseman. Funny. Then I worked for 6 hours and here I am. The end. Also, apparently Lucas’s dad is in jail for beating up Lucas’s mom, but we think he was framed. 

Today’s Entertainment: 

TV: Charmed (the one with the Latina sisters who aren’t Latina) and Bojack Horseman (a drunk horse. Pure comedy gold) 

Quarantine Diaries: Day 54

Thursday May 21st 2020 

Coronavirus Cases: 5, 189, 177 

Deaths: 334, 072 

Recovered: 2, 078, 536 

Today was a new 1st. The Spain quarantine was been relaxing a bit. My sister and the other MadridiansMadriditesMadridlenos…people were allowed back onto the street, though masks are mandatory. Spain is still number four in amount of cases after USA, Russia, and Italy. Tomorrow begins Phase 2 of the reopening plan here in NC. Restaurants are now allowed open, but at 50% capacity. Whit’s is continuing with our walk-up window, because what’s the point of only letting 20 people in at a time. We only have 3 tables and a couple couches. They’d all be within 6 feet of each other. We’d for sure get arrested. It’s like the new roaring 20’s except instead of alcohol being prohibited it’s breathing close to other people. It’s funny because alcoholism and divorce rates have skyrocketed during quarantine. You know what else went up? The cases in Florida and Georgia because they reopened their normal events too early. Yikes.  

I got my sandwich. It was all I could think about since I woke up at 8. It was great, but I did have to share with Mami Rosa. She shows up after we’ve already ordered food and she just picks at ours despite saying she’s not hungry. Luckily, I thought at ahead and bought myself two sandwiches. One for now and one for later. I obviously wanted to share with her, and it’s a good thing I did. Otherwise, I would have forced myself to finish the whole sub. I hate wasting food. Is that some kind of eating disorder? I’m sure it is. “Put it in the fridge” I hear you say. It’s not the same.  

I went in for a couple hours to label some custard. I listened to one of Chelsea Handler’s audiobooks. I’ve listened to almost all of her books and she just keeps coming out with new ones. I will keep listening. In this book, she talked about being beaten up by some fat Mexican girls and one wannabee Mexican girl. I was LOLing in that store all alone while I organized those pints and quarts.  

Today’s Entertainment: 

TV – The Durrells in Corfu (we’re on season 3 now) and What We Do in the Shadows 

Film – The Host (a Korean horror movie by Oscar winner Bong Joon-ho about a monster attacking a riverside town) and Dawn of the Dead (a ragtag team of survivors have to live in a mall. My actual dream. I would ride my Heelys all down the halls. Heelys are these shoes that had little wheels in the heel. Everyone had them in the mid 2000’s. Mine were black. My cousin had pink ones. Another cousin had white ones. They were all the rage around the time of silly bands I think. Or maybe Heelys was first. Anyways, they were banned from wearing in our local Mall. That was when the Mall starting going downhill) 

Book – Are You There, Vodka? It’s Me, Chelsea (If you’re wondering about the clever title, it’s an excerpt from the chapter about her time in prison. What an emotional roller coaster. It made me wonder how I’d fair in jail. I think I would act crazy, so people wouldn’t mess with me. I wouldn’t shower and would pee on myself, much like Blanca in Orange is the New Black. She was feared AND respected) 

Quarantine Diaries: Day 53

Wednesday May 20th 2020 

Coronavirus Cases: 5, 058, 715 

Deaths: 328, 260 

Recovered: 2, 001, 553 

So, she was hired after all. I’m excited to have my friends working with me. The other friend’s surgery went well I hear. I went to sleep at 8 yesterday so I could wake up early to go in at 9. I like to have a couple hours to drink coffee and poop and whatnot even though work is only 15 minutes away. I caught up with my YouTube videos, mostly celebrity talk show interviews which are all conducted over Zoom now. I secretly think Zoom started this thing to get business drumming up. No one is talking about Skype or Oovoo or Facetime. Only Zoom. It has a better name, not gonna lie.  

I worked today. Ate some pizza. Came home. Watched Hostel. Then watched more TV. Am probably going to sleep before sunset the way I did yesterday. There’s something about doing that that rsets the internal clock. Humans are driven by the sun. Our brains are anyway. Productivity and our bodily reactivity changes. Life has been so monotonous lately that I look forward to my sleep. If only for an escape of the normal realm. Last night, I had a dream that I fought a demonic dragon in my neighbor’s house. It had a British accent. The demon not the house. The house was more Appalachian. I also look forward to my meals, but I’m trying not to overeat. Tomorrow’s lunch will mostly likely be another chicken tender sub. I’m so excited. Proabbly the most I’ve been all month.  

Today’s Entertainment: 

Film – Hostel (I’d always heard of this movie, and it’s what I associated the word hostel with. When my sister would tell us she’s staying at a hostel, all I thought of was this horror film. It really surprised me that Jay Hernandez was the star of this film, even though he starts out as the jerk that almost always gets murdered so the good-natured friend can grieve and then come out alive. Apart from that, a Mexican lead in an English language horror film is pretty rare. Lupita N’yongo comes to mind in Us and Little Monsters, a movie where a kindergarten teacher protects her students from zombies. Diego Luna in Flatliners where he had a ponytail. Sara Paxton in The Innkeepers. Many people don’t know she’s Mexican. Daniella Pineda in Mercy Black. That one kid from Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark who was called a wetback. Michael Pena has done a few alien movies too. Huh. I guess there are a few)