While we wait for life to resume its course – busying ourselves with video conference dinners, living room workouts, and cringe-worthy Facebook posts from that guy we knew in high school – it’s easy to define an “average day.” COVID-19’s stay at home orders effectively guarantee monotony.
But there are some who can escape average, who don’t need another take-out dinner special, an interview with The Tiger King’s long-lost brother, or an early Amazon delivery to feel alive. These individuals are no more resistant to catching or carrying infectious diseases than anyone else, but they do quarantine in ways we can all aspire.
Here’s the difference. When we run out of eggs, we hop in our practical, perhaps even luxurious car for a run to the store, but when above-average citizens are low on essentials, they fire up a Ferrari-built engine and strap into an extravagant cabin. Our vehicle completes the trip reliably and comfortably, but it doesn’t do so with carbon fiber woven intricately around our seat or ribs of stitched leather coddling our forearms.
When we sprung for that turbocharged engine, it was to improve fuel economy and maneuver easier on the highway, but Maserati Quattroporte GTS owners didn’t spare a thought for efficiency when they chose a 523-horsepower twin-turbo V8. So while we motor home smoothly, a streak of Italian lightning blows by our door mirrors, leaving thunder in its wake. In the driveway, we collect groceries that haven’t budged an inch. The Maserati owner, meanwhile, sops up almond milk from the Quattroporte’s carpet while whistling a merry tune.
Sitting on the couch, boredom hits hard. We’ve re-watched The Office so many times we can quote entire scenes from memory. Out of sheer desperation, we pull the car key from our pocket to see if it has any cool features we’ve overlooked. Lock, unlock, trunk release. Sigh. The Maserati owner is on the same wavelength, but his key fob remote starts the Quattroporte GTS. V8 rumble pulses the wine in his glass.
Some mornings we feel trapped. It’s been weeks without seeing friends in person, going to a concert, or eating at a restaurant. We can’t stand to be in our home for another 24 hours straight. We grab some water and hit the road. Windows down, the fresh air and sun is restorative – just not quite as restorative as the Maserati owner’s experience. He blasts tunes through the Bowers & Wilkins sound system, downshifts via a steering wheel paddle, and presses his head deep into an embossed headrest with the force of acceleration.
Our circumstances are the same: we both worry about friends and loved ones, wonder how long public gatherings will be off limits, and try to remember how to properly shake hands. What separates our average lives is that when most of us need a change of pace, our options are limited, but the Maserati owner can always find a new way to enjoy his steed.