The lampoons of Number Five came rapidly rapidly on Thursday after the announcement, Dan, Jeroen and Martin Foley sporting muscle t-shirts and guns in a Fast Five movie poster, Melbourne Lockdown Number 5 lyrics to the tune of Lou Bega, the Shovel doing its usual funnies, a Chanel No.5 bottle ‘No. 5 LOCKDOWN MELBOURNE: EAU DE FARKED’.
And then we stopped and we fell silent because it hit us we are farked. And even the blue rain streaks falling from the clouds on the ABC 7pm News Weather Report froze life on hold.
And the skies opened and Melbourne wordlessly wept.
By Saturday trending on twitter was #GladysClusterFukup and #GladysMockDown and #Bunnings. By Sunday it was #tiktokguy and #boycottchannel7.
It’s really quiet out there down here. Are you all still there am I here?
Do you find it peculiar how each time is insipidly the same—You know the drill—and yet it feels ever so slightly different from the last? I mean we still feel sad frustrated lonely a bit joyless languishing and fuck-fuddled and all those things mashed and squished together but we can’t quite name the difference and we can’t quite put to words what this pulverisation is.
Life feels flat like a gluten-free pancake which is of course a heck of a lot flatter than the fluffy buttermilk traditional style one might whip up, that extent of flatness being so Lockdown 4.0. A flat fizzy drink which means the drink really cannot be called fizzy but just redundant sugar. It would be better to have bubbles rising down like a Willy Wonka invention than not rising at all or to sense the thrill of his Wondrous Boat Ride to feel alive.
There is less and less of me. Little pieces of vanishing body parts like Richard Flanagan’s Anna. Does anyone else have the feeling that if we go on like this we might simply evaporate away into fine particles to be sealed in time like a Melbourne Lockdown meme? At least we are comical in our memes so we will always have that.
Amanda Lohrey writes about building a stone labyrinth to make sense of loss and isolation and provide comfort in solitude and she won a pretty good award for that. Maybe we should all build labyrinths to repair the broken parts of ourselves.
Does anyone know where those little cute butcher boy bugs went that we used to poke as kids and make roll into little spherical shapes when they felt our touch and panicked and needed self-protection? Did we poke them out of existence? We have poked the Great Barrier Reef and poked and poked but it’s ok now because the Government is taking all the Ambassadors who want us to stop poking our great heritage site on a whopping big snorkelling trip and that will fix it. And there’s a new guy in a General’s military uniform on the TV now running the show because that will also fix it and is this for real Australia and are we actually still alive?
World Emoji Day 2021 should have made a butcher boy emoji that rolls into a ball when you poke it so everyone in Melbourne could use it and we wouldn’t need words at all but they did make one of a pregnant man so that’s moving with the times.
I was dealt a blow when I awoke on the first day to no milk for morning coffee. There is no showering and getting dressed until I’ve had the luscious ritual of morning coffee something I long for as I drift to sleep a whole night before. This was a major stuff up and I tweeted it. Could I dare I go to the shops in my checked flannel pyjamas? Author @spurremily replied It’s an emergency, there is no time for clothes and journalist @TamaraOudyn said purely Yes you can. Buoyed by these helpful friends I did. Teeth not brushed face not washed Ugg Boots on. My chest was nippy and nippily with no bra but liberated. A liberated chest. They thought I was looney in that shop. Am I? I made them take a photo. Maybe I’m mad maybe I’ve given up maybe nothing matters anymore so what’s the point of getting dressed?
Adam Grant writes about collective effervescence when joie de vivre spreads through a group but instead we find ourselves drawn into a dark cloud of pandemic nothingness. No I haven’t quite given up to those dark clouds they cannot swallow me up. I went to the shops in my pyjamas and Ugg Boots and no bra because I wanted to reclaim emotion. I wanted to feel.
I wanted to feel effervesced. And just for a fleeting moment I did. And my coffee has never tasted so much like butterscotch and chocolate like the description says and creamy. And it was a talking point for a brief time in the local hood united in my folly which was far better a shared discussion than any zoom webinar which I don’t do I can’t do anymore.
Effervesced. Effinvesced. Not effindressed.
The llamas on the mountain overpass in Col du Tourmalet in the fog were charming and powerful blocking le Tour. I’d like to be a llama resting on a mountain overpass heating my underside on the bitumen. Some warmth on our undersides would be nice right now.
My 10-year-old son gave me a look. What’s that look? It’s David’s look. Because you are acting like Moira Rose. Hoorah! Every day should be Moira Rose.
Can you find something Melbourne to make your bubbles rise up or rise down? Either way is ok not idiocy it’s ok because it’s effervescing. Put on a wig an outlandish costume your pyjamas in public dance in your Ugg Boots on the street. They wear them out to dinner in New York anyway. Take off your bra and flick it and put undies on your head!
And feel some small delight in the nonsensical. Feel a little moment of fizzy not flat not fizzled. Feel alive. We are still alive.
 The Melbourne nickname given to woodlice. Also known variously and quite ludicrously in parts of England and elsewhere as ‘cheesy bug’ (North West Kent), ‘cheesy papa’ (Essex), ‘chiggy pig’ (Devon), ‘chucky pig’ (Devon, Gloucestershire, Herefordshire), ‘chuggy peg’ (North Devon), ‘daddy grampher’ (North Somerset) ‘dandy postman’ (huh?) (Essex, East London), ‘granny grunter’ (WTF?) (Isle of Man), ‘menace’ (Plymouth, Devon), ‘monkey-peas’ (Kent), ‘monk’s louse’ (Norway), ‘boat-builder’ (how?) (Canada) and ‘piggy-wig’, ‘roly-poly’ and ‘potato bug’.