Sticking to Joy

by Chumani Chamberlain '21

Feeling down throughout quarantine? Are you looking for joy, but can’t seem to find it anywhere? This difficult time has presented our community with so much confusion and maybe a sense of pain and anger. However, some people are working tirelessly throughout quarantine to bring joy into their lives and also share it with the rest of us!

Let’s begin with John Krasinski. During this unprecedented time Krasinski has used his platform as  Jim Halpert and Jack Ryan to kickstart a new youtube channel, Some Good News. Krasinski’s humor and enthusiasm for spreading laughter and goodness around the world are demonstrated throughout his weekly episodes where he has brought special celebrity guests, highlighted great things going on throughout the world, and has taken time to thank the first responders on the front lines of the pandemic. CNN is also creating a new weekly newsletter The Good Stuff where “every Saturday, we'll bring you the big headlines that make you smile, plus stories of fascinating discoveries, everyday heroes, inspiring movements and great things happening right in your backyard.”

Our own Saints have also been working to access joy in their lives during stay-at-home orders. Junior Skye Schofield-Saba explained how “during quarantine, I have been trying to pass the time and not get bored (a daunting challenge, I know). Although I can’t meet my friends or go out to eat, quarantine has given me a lot of time to get back into the things that I never had the time to do before. I have started reading again. I just finished an 800-page book in two days and have read about five books since quarantine has started. I’m trying out digital art on Photoshop and, let me just say, Photoshop is very confusing and hard. However, I have done a couple of pieces that I am really proud of!”

Junior Caroline Grace Butler reflected on the time she has spent so far with her family, and how it has brought joy to her. “To keep our spirits up during this time, my family and I have been doing lots of puzzles and watching old movies. We are also keeping it somewhat routine with family dinners and walking our puppy together.”

Skye continued by describing her improved baking skills, “I have also been known to be a terrible, terrible baker. Now that I have the time though, I have been making cookies and for once in my life, they came out edible! I am determined to keep trying until I have mastered the perfect chocolate chip cookie.”

Junior Irvine Madenga stated how his family is giving him joy during the Pandemic. “Both of my sisters are completing their PhDs in other cities and my mother travels a lot for work, but we are all together now. This is the first time we have all been together for years, so this is a positive that has come from this.”

Humor showcased throughout various social media platforms has also brought joy to all of us stuck at home. In an article by the Los Angeles Times author Chris Erskine highlights various comedic moments taking place around the country. Such as a priest baptizing a baby with a Super Soaker in order to follow social distancing guidelines. Meanwhile, singer Chris Man created a parody video titled “Hello (From the Inside)”, a play on Adele’s hit song that has gained more than 60 million views. 

The Pandemic has also developed an unlikely comedy duo between the Cuomo brothers. CNN Anchor Chris Cuomo and Gov. Andrew Cuomo have used their platform as public figures to joke with each other. Even after Chris Cuomo’s COVID-19 diagnosis, the brothers have taken humorous shots at each other by stating how one brother is “Mom’s favorite,” and Chris Cuomo has taken his jokes as far as sharing an embarrassing photo of his brother. 

Fear not! Saturday Night Live is still present throughout the pandemic. The late-night comedy show is now producing their shows from the homes of the S.N.L cast. In the second at-home episode, Brad Pitt made an appearance as Dr. Fauci. In an interview with CNN, Dr. Fauci even stated how he would love for Brad Pitt to portray him. Other stars such as Miley Cyrus and Adam Sandler have been featured as well.

In a reflection of how joy can shine through during this unprecedented time, Skye stated “I think it’s what we make out of our time in quarantine that determines what we get out of coronavirus. I am in no way saying that this pandemic is a good thing. It’s a time where we learn our strengths and we connect with people around us. I have been spending hours on the phone, when before I used to shoot off a quick text. I want nothing more than for my life to go back to normal but, in some ways, I think COVID-19 reminded me how thankful I am that I have a wonderful community, amazing friends, and the time to be creative. I hope everyone else is coping the best they can as well.”

Caroline Grace also reflected: “One thing that we have realized, though, is that it is important for everyone to have their alone time in this period of nonstop togetherness. Overall, we are joking around a bunch, telling jokes, playing games, and trying to lean on each other for support. We are sticking to joy.”