Households in Quarantine, Part II

by Megan Hildebrandt July 11, 2020

Households in Quarantine is an effort to collect, document, and share moments from our lives at home in quarantine. Anyone can submit a description of daily life in their household during COVID-19, and I will depict it in a drawing to add to the collection. The more the collection grows, the more accurate, diverse, and universal it will become.

It is my hope that individuals can recognize themselves in the drawing of others, and experience small moments of unity, humor, and solace in knowing that although physically separate, we are still a collective.

To see Part I, please go here.

I am relieved that Erin in Brooklyn is A-OK during quarantine. It has been challenging for them ever since Marina Abramovic stole Erin’s brilliant idea to turn a personal challenge into Performance Art. Seriously, Erin had a staring problem when I met them in 2002, WAY before Marina “had a staring problem” in 2010 at The Museum of Modern Art in New York*. But let’s leave the past in the past (by which I mean present).

Look at that bathtub though, really! And that nice medicinal cloud to really kush the COVID. My only concern is … I am not entirely sure Erin has left that bathtub in over a week. ERIN! YOUR BUTT IS BOUND TO GET PRUNEY BEFORE ITS TIME!

My neighbor and genius hairstylist Daniela is feeling a tad spread thin with her four kids all at home, all of the time. She is caught in a more-intense-than usual COVID cycle of cooking-cleaning-caring for all these small humans.

Plus she is the only living-saint-of-a-parent I know who is actually still enforcing screen-time limits for all of her kids. Saint Daniela, bless us all with your patience! Actually, Saint Daniela, what I really need is a miracle. I cut my hair on my own last month and … I’m praying someone sends help soon.

Calida and Shaye are just fine with shelter-in-place despite being together 24-7. These two have found that the best way to get out their feelings is to have a pillow fight every day at high noon. The knee pads, elbow pads, and swim goggles are probably for the best.

Calida screams, “THERE NEEDS TO BE A NEW WORD FOR THE RAGE YOU FEEL IN QUARANTINE.” QuaRAGE??? Sounds too much like “garage.” Which is right where the loser of today’s battle will land themselves — to clean that place until it shines like the top of the Chrysler Building.

Megan in Austin is living in an endless daily rhythm of Coffee-Walking-Cocktails- Walking-Crying-Sleeping during the COVID-19 quarantine. What time is it? Do we actually care anymore? CRY-O’CLOCK can technically be any hour (or every hour). I do think that Megan is walking an amazing amount. GET IT, GIRL! You are going to be the Serena Williams of walking by the end of shelter-in-place!

Mikolai and his siblings are watching way too much TV during quarantine. Oh! But now I remember: “way too much TV” only applies to the Before Times. The Before Times are gone, people. Better soak it up now, Mikolai and company. You are gonna run out of things to watch, because there won’t be any new content on Netflix or Hulu or Apple TV or even Google soon. Pace yourselves, friends.

Lindsey is getting really really really really really really really really really really good at playing Lion King with the kids while her husband works from home. Lindsey, who are you? Mufasa? Scar? Simba? Zazu? Timon? Pumba? That is some deep character work. I hope you are Simba. Jonathan Taylor Thomas** was always my favorite. He really went downhill post-Lion King.

Annie May never realized how much she touches her face. She has been trying to trick herself into touching her expanding pregnant belly every time she goes to touch her face. Yeah, that’s not working. My nose itches just typing these words. She is also secretly hoping Dr. Anthony Fauci delivers her baby because #celebritiesofcovid19.

As you can see, Jessica has priorities during Quarantine. Some supplies are allowed to dwindle, while others are not. Enough said.

Peter is so into Reddit and Tidying right now. He’s gotta make that breadwinner-of-a-wife feel like she is working in a pristine palace at all times. What is your favorite Reddit thread right now, Peter? Could it be ​The KonMari method? Spark joy, Peter!


*Complaint made to me directly by Erin Markey via text message on 6/30/20.


Megan Hildebrandt is a Public Voices Fellow with the OpEd Project. She is the Director of the First-Year Core Program and an Associate Professor of Practice in the Department of Art and Art History at UT Austin.

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