So I’m thinking a lot about work these days. About what is essential and what is unnecessary, and how this pandemic has illuminated nothing so much as the absurdity of our economy, where the ones who do what most needs doing are the ones whose value is least acknowledged, least rewarded.

Most anonymous. Most invisible.

And I’m not the first to say so, far from it, nor the first to note that the ones calling for us to get ourselves back to work are the ones least essential of all. I would say that the current occupant of the oval office at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue is perhaps the least essential person who has ever settled his arse behind that Resolute desk.


My antidote to the daily news is homeopathic: I’m spending my nights re-reading Derrick Jensen’s The Culture of Make Believe. Because if I’m going to dance with darkness, I’m going to turn that music up loud.

What’s on your nightstand right now? What feels essential to you?

2 thoughts on “Essentials

    1. It is absurd, this economy, as these weeks of stay-at-home have made clear to anyone paying attention. And I do perceive a bubbling up of a certain sort of unrest, not the kind that waves a flag and carries a gun, but the sort that notices people helping each other through this, and asks why we can’t just cooperate rather than compete over every little crumb? I want to gather my people and say — quietly, because the walls have ears — “Let’s not go back. Let’s do something different instead.” And of course it’s too late. And of course we’re too few to make a difference, and if we’re at all successful we’ll be crushed by the mythmakers. But I want it, all the same.

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