Have You Heard: The “I’m Sorry, What?” Edition

I don’t know what to say to y’all right now except I’m so, so sorry we’re all locked inside or working in an essential position, our hobbies and socializing on hold. I could say I relate, but I’m disabled and generally unable to do any of that. What I do have, though, is all of you, my dear readers! Consider this my love letter to each and every one of you—pretend it’s soaked in the finest perfumes and I dotted every “i” with a heart. Anyways…

Have you heard conspiracy theorists have started to blame 5G for COVID-19? Yep, it’s true. The radiation, somewhere between a TV two rooms away and a Tamagotchi, is doing something to our DNA, or mutating cells into some kind of Teenage Mutant Ninja Pathogen. The only solution is to tear down 5G masts, set them on fire and draw a binding circle around them in salt. This hasn’t been a problem locally, and although here in Portland we’re used to seeing strange people holding torches, it’s something to be aware of as you gaze out your window at the fresh air and empty streets, birds tweeting and flaming cell towers lighting up the sky.

Did you know Lownsdale Square in Downtown Portland used to be men-only, largely due to the various vices that occurred within its grassy confines? It’s true! Fighting, gambling and unspeakable sex acts dotted the park throughout its early years. This created a conundrum for the town fathers; how do we protect women and girls from these men who clearly do not want to know them carnally, but are probably doing things in the bathroom that might offend sensibilities? The answer was clear—they declared the park off-limits to women. Chapman Square to the south of Lownsdale became women-only at the same time, and this arrangement lasted until the latter half of the 20th century.

Has anyone notified you of the fact that staying inside has done wonders to flatten the curve? It’s true! Consider that when you’re contemplating going about your business as usual prior to the end of our stay at home order here in Oregon: staying home saves lives.

Hey, are you hungry? Then check out the Portland State Food Pantry. For the duration of this pandemic, it will be doing by-appointment sessions, allowing you to drop in at a selected time to get food and various health supplies provided by the Student Health and Counseling Center. The PSU Food Pantry is presently located in the Fifth Avenue Cinema, so be sure to check it out if you’re having trouble getting groceries.

Last and least, if you are so bored right now, consider donating some online time to a variety of worthy causes. First stop is the Smithsonian’s Digital Volunteers program. There are two components to this program, the first being a transcription effort at the Smithsonian Transcription Center. The second is a Wikipedia editing program. Catchafire is a website dedicated to matching professionals with nonprofits, from programming to project management. Finally, local governments are having a helluva time updating unemployment systems because the systems are in an ancient programming code called COBOL. If for some reason you have this skill, consider helping out—people need these programs to work, and your effort will contribute to the financial security of thousands.