Friday, November 20, 2020

Five on Friday: Alternate Greetings for 2020

It's happened to all of us: out on a quick errand or small, outdoor, socially-distanced get-together and we see someone we know from our old, pre-pandemic lives. Or is it them? It's hard to tell with the mask and fogged-up glasses . . . no, no, it's definitely them. Because here they're walking right towards you, smizing and saying, "How have you been?"

How to answer that question this year? Let's see . . . remote learning is soul draining, we're alternately filled with gratitude and completely sick of each other, we can't really complain but will anyway . . . ?

A few times I've simply smized right back at them and said, "That's a loaded question in 2020, isn't it?"

But I don't like it. I keep thinking there has to be something better to say. Over the past eight months, I've been delighted to see all of the adaptations people have come up with: drive-by birthdays, zoom holidays and, fine, even remote learning. We should be able to come up with some alternate greetings, too. Here are my suggestions:

1. Walk up to friend, smize and say, "Still standing?" Hopefully this become a trend with everyone understanding that as long as they are still metaphorically standing, they are to respond by breaking out in song.

 2.  Ask, "How many times have you cried this week?" This will serve as a true gauge to your friend's current mental state. I think crying up to 5-10 times a week (depending on that person's personal circumstances) is pretty acceptable for 2020. Anything over that may require some more questioning on your part to see how you can assist your friend.

3. For that corny-uncle-type: "Covid enough for ya?"  (Oh please don't actually ever say that. I already have regrets for even thinking of this one.)

4. Watched everything available on Netflix yet?

5. Or use this handy flowchart to decide on the ultimate alternate 2020 greeting:


(Click to enlarge)


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