Dispatches from a Pandemic: the physicalities of remembering // history is a place

Content Notice: HIV/AIDS, COVID-19, mentions of drugs and alcohol

Another thing inspired by the current pandemic. One of my professors (a historian, naturally) is encouraging us all to write and record our feelings on this. As if I need encouragement!

Anyway, this one is in response to watching the documentary We Were Here and recognizing a lot of the locations mentioned in it. Two people can exist in the same place but in completely different worlds if they live at different times. This is about worlds of plague, worlds of health, worlds of turmoil, worlds of peace.

(And public transit. It’s also about public transit.)

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Dispatches from a Pandemic: On Being Socially Distant Even Before This All

Content Notice: (internalized) ableism and anti-LGBTQ+ bigotry, suicide/self-harm, cure/shiny Aspie autism politics, drug use, smoking, drinking, COVID-19, sex/relationships, (reclaimed and unreclaimed) slurs.

I wrote a thing. I haven’t written here in almost a year but I needed to write this, right now. There’s a lot of discourse from disabled people who were homebound/socially isolated before COVID-19 stay-at-home orders around abled people complaining about being stuck at home. I have thoughts. I have a lot of thoughts about this. Being at home, with my family, is not good in a lot of ways for me. I’m safe and secure, don’t worry, but I miss a lot of the things I had. But a lot of the things other people had and complain about missing are things I never had.

I hope you like it.

EDIT at 2119 hours on 11 April 2020: About an hour after posting this, I learned that Mel Baggs, whose work I cited in this post, died today. I am heartbroken. Mel was an unyielding, blunt, incredibly advocate for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Hir video In My Language was the first piece of by-and-for autistic people media I ever consumed. I owe so much to Mel’s advocacy. We all do. Rest in power, Mel. We will carry your work forward.

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Save/Safe Student Newsrooms

April 25th is Save Student Newsrooms day. In the words of the movement’s own website, Save Student newsrooms is “[a] campaign to educate people about the challenges facing student-run newsrooms,” especially challenges around funding and editorial independence.

The first time I heard about Save Student Newsrooms, it was in a spoken announcement from one of the managing editors of the paper I work at, urging all of us to write an editorial about it. I did not hear the announcement correctly. I heard that it was a movement around “safe student newsrooms” and, in my infinite wisdom and auditory processing issues, almost wrote an editorial about it. I didn’t end up writing the editorial because I learned that it was “Save Student Newsrooms,” but I kept thinking about the issue.

It’s the end of April again. This is that editorial.


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