In a time when the only morally responsible action is to stay in one’s home, it can be difficult to establish a sense of normalcy. Such was the case for Lily Tran until she discovered she could still partake in the social patterns of everyday life just by canceling Zoom calls with friends.
“The first time my friends and I made a Zoom date, I was worried it might feel kind of weird,” says Tran. “But when I later canceled that Zoom date because I was watching a movie and feeling generally no desire to engage in conversation, it was like I was right back in my normal life.”
Though Tran’s ability to make these unusual circumstances livable is inspiring, her path to the routine had its share of obstacles.
“Of course, the greatest pleasure of plan cancelation is not having to leave your house, so I did fear that would be negated by not having to leave my house anyway,” Tran explains. “But I was happily surprised to discover that just not doing something you said you were going to do is still pretty great.”
Despite Tran’s admirable pursuit of maintaining the vital if sometimes underappreciated joys of antisocial life, she is not without critics.
“I really think Lily needs to just video chat with us, even if she doesn’t want to in the moment,” says a close friend, Charisma Wells. “It only feels like work when you’re putting it off. She would have fun!”
But Tran is always ready with an answer to shield herself from these attacks.
“Don’t get me wrong,” Tran says. “I love my friends. They’re my favorite people in the world. But if I can opt to read about celebrity feuds, expand my taste in porn, and lay on my floor to see what my room looks like from down there, that’s pretty obviously the choice I need to make.”
At press time, Tran was Googling soup recipes that she can bail on making later.