I keep seeing Facebook posts and blogs by people on how to survive self isolation. Super great in theory but as a person who lives alone, has no fam and doesn't have pets to piss off I can't relate. However, as someone with a massive movie collection and art supplies for days, I can offer some activities that you don't require another human being for! I'm like the Queen of Self Isolation: I was a loner as a kid, I spent a chunk of my 20's hiding in my room because I was sociophobic and the last few years have been much the same thanks to chronic pain life and people refusing to visit because "You live so far away, come to me". Insert loud groaning here. Fine by me though, I'll be like that idiot in Zombieland whose the last one standing because he has no mates and never left his apartment.
OPTION 1: AUTUMN CLEAN.
Well it's not Spring but if we're lucky we'll be allowed to resume normal activities by Spring and who wants to stay home and clean then? Not me..I can't say I've been bored enough to do this yet but maybe in a couple weeks. Given how the shops are lacking cleaning supplies I can only assume most of you are already doing this. If you need to declutter I highly recommend watching one episode of Marie Kondo. You only need one, last year I watched one episode of Marie Kondo and next thing I had 4 large boxes and two bags of clothes ready for Good Sammy's. Don't feel the need to thank your clothing though. That's weird. I still look like a hoarder but I'm a hoarder surrounded by things that spark joy. Except my desk. My current goal is to find it because it's hiding. It's the first thing you see when I open my front door and it's just a mountain of half-done projects without a home or anywhere for me to complete them. It's an epic eye sore. Yesterday I scored a desk chair for $2 thanks to Facebook. I can't find my desk yet but I can now sit on a chair and spin for hours. Baby steps.
OPTION 2: READ A BOOK
The best part about reading, assuming you can concentrate long enough to do so, is that this activity doesn't require another human being at all. If you're like me and struggle to concentrate on reading you get the added joy of reading the same page (or chapter) at least 5 times before it finally sinks in. Those six months of self isolation will fly by but you may have only read one book!
Three books I couldn't put down though: Horns by Joe Hill, Stardust by Neil Gaiman and I Am Not A Serial Killer by Dan Wells. Fantastic reads that are better than the movies, but that said only I Am Not A Serial Killer is bloody terrible. The other two are at least watchable even if elements annoy me.
If picture books are more your thing I understand. I've got a stash here I need to catch up on! I still haven't read the latest edition of The Umbrella Academy (I'm still salty over the show), I never read the Killjoys comic that came out and that's being rereleased, I think I only read one section of iZombie and I have Hack/Slash sitting here. My psychologist has told me I need structure in my week (because that's so easy with this condition when you don't know how you'll be on any given day or week). Think I'll tell her I'm setting aside an hour a day to reading comics.
OPTION 3: "MAKE ART NOT KIDS"
A friend of mine posted this on instagram and I lol'd pretty hard! It also included a list of obvious things that aren't cancelled that we can still do. I'm not going to list them all because personally "singing: not cancelled" doesn't need to be encouraged in my neighbourhood. My neighbour sings in her backyard (to clarify her backyard is like 2x2 metres and right next to the fence which is only 2-3 metres from my front door) and sounds like a dying cat and I don't see why I should have to suffer. Just sing in the shower like a normal person.
BUT ARTS. It doesn't matter if you lack artistic skill of any kind, none of us had any when we first started, but the good news is you've got a solid 6 months to get good at something. If crafts are more your thing Riot Art & Craft currently has a 50% off sale until April 1st and they have a lot of kits of all kinds of things that's sure to grab your interest. If you miss the sale no big deal, join their VIP club because there's always awesome sales happening!
For those who want to try sculpture here's an easy recipe for Play Dough.
1 cup of plain flour
1/2 cup of salt
1 cup of water
1 teaspoon of oil
2 teaspoons of Cream of Tartar
Food colouring of your choice
Few drops of disinfectant
Blend all of the ingredients in a saucepan over low heat 3-5 minutes until the mixture congeals.
That's it. You're welcome.
Myself, I have no idea where I'm going to begin because I have zero inspiration right now but I did tell a friend I may just paint my descent into madness. Watch this space. Like I'm only one week into No Concerts And Chill and I painted the entrance wall blue.
OPTION 4: LISTEN TO SOME MUSIC
Just because you're stuck at home is no excuse to not find some new music to listen too on Spotify and it doesn't cost anything. My neighbours all own one CD, one neighbour likes to torture us regularly with Jamiroquai so I like to try and educate them with literally anything else. I just wish I could make mine sound as loud! There's a few good songs out this month though starting with German's sexiest man Dero Goi (from Oomph!) who has a new band called Die Kreatur with a song of the same name that came out in the last couple of days. I'm also hanging to hear the new album from The Birthday Massacre out on the 27th. While I'm here, because Eurovision isn't happening this year (not that I've ever watched it but this year I would have) I'm going to pretend Little Big won with their Eurovision submission 'UNO'.
OPTION 5: NETFLIX AND KILL
I got rid of Netflix to try and save $10 a month as part of my "I need to save for Pain Management" scheme but with the stimulus package coming through I guess I could get it again. I mean, I leech my mate's STAN account but there's only so many hours I can watch The Golden Girls and I'm not ready to commit to another TV show just yet. I need some more options for movies. Tubitv and Amazon Prime are 99% garbage. Disney+ won't load shows, or will restart shows you're half way through watching or it buffers like it's 1997 so I'm not wasting money on them until they get their shit together. I haven't tried Apple TV yet. Another option is to watch all of your DVD's unless you're one of these weirdo's who doesn't own any. Awkward. You know how girls stand in front of their wardrobe saying they have nothing to wear? That's me with my DVD collection. I have a better horror collection than Blockbuster had and I can still struggle to find something to watch. Maybe I should watch something other than horror? LOL as if. But while talking about movies maybe I can suggest some great self isolation flicks to watch..
Top 15 Isolation Movies
15. The People Under The Stairs 
This Wes Craven classic is about a family who are self isolated from the rest of the suburb. They don't really go out and nobody gets inside, short of breaking in which one kid does and the households secrets are quickly exposed. For those of you who've never done the isolation thing before this is your future. *insert picture of boys here*
14. April Fools Day 
Muffy St John invites her college mates back to a little island to stay at her family home. Then people start disappearing. There's no cops and no way off the island.
13. Crimson Peak 
You should know, I like Tom Hiddleston. I just like Tom's from England really. Not so much that Hardy guy but he was cool in Venom. This Tom makes a pretty blonde girl fall in love with him, marries her and lures her away to a decrepit mansion in the middle of nowhere with his sister. Speaking of, you should probably add The Woman In Black to your list too if you like Victorian era scary mansion movies.
12. The Cabin In The Woods 
Out of all the cabin movies this is the one where everyone is REALLY stuck there with no escape. I could include Cabin Fever but their self isolation on holiday got them a nasty infection. They would have been better off back in the city. I should probably rewatch it because I don't even remember why they didn't just get back in their car and drive to a hospital. Actually every cabin movie is a good ad for not going into the country. For this one, Five college kids go to a cabin and of course touch EVERYTHING they shouldn't and unleash some demonic activity. Unknown to them a corporation is behind it all and it's all pretty funny really. I've also got just one word for this movie: Merman.
11. The Belko Experiment 
Imagine if your isolation meant you were stuck at work with your work mates? Now imagine you're told you have to kill each other..if you want some more office building style movies you can add Mayhem  and Bloodsucking Bastards to the list.
10. High-Rise 
Set in 1975, we see Tom Hiddleston (told you I like Tom) move into the latest social experiment - an apartment block with levels dedicated to certain social classes. The lower levels are for the lower class/family types, middle class and then the filthy rich are at the very top. The block even has a swimming pool and it's own shopping centre. Things go downhill fast (the film start to finish covers 3 months) with power outages, restrictions, the shops aren't being restocked and all out war breaks out between all of the social classes. Depravity ensues. Tom does his best to self isolate. Might be handy for some tips.
9. The Purge 
If you live under a rock and haven't seen any of the 4 movies or the tv series (there's been 2 seasons) then here's a quick explanation - Purge Night is on March 21st and everyone in the USA gets 12 hours to commit crimes without any repercussions. Most kill off the poor and homeless for not contributing to society, one of the sequels has some teen girls purging because she got caught trying to steal a chocolate bar. Those who don't want to purge, barricade themselves indoors and hope to keep everything and everyone out. The first film is about one family locked inside their house and the shit that goes down during those 12 hours. While watching it the other night I sat here thinking how if Purge Night was a real thing, people would just be going around shooting up their neighbours to steal their toilet paper.
8. REC 
If you're anti subtitles because I know some people are illiterate or can't multi task, there's an average American remake called QUARANTINE. If you want to stick to the original source then track down REC! JB HiFi sell the films in a boxset. Film 1 is about an apartment block on lock down with a virus. The virus obviously gets out because there's 3 sequels. The 3rd one is about a wedding - and we all know to avoid gatherings of more than 100 people.
7. Disturbia 
Shia LeBeouf plays a teen who is sentenced with house arrest and spends his time spying on his neighbours and becomes convinced one guy is a serial killer. I can relate to this movie.
6. Psycho 
You can't go past a classic like loner Norman Bates. Poor boy is stuck at home with his lunatic mother running a vacant motel. All he wants is a friend. I personally like to watch this on Mother's Day which is coming up soon.
5. Cube 
I haven't watched this in years but it's about six people waking up in a cube and if the idea of being trapped in a small space doesn't sound hellish enough they have to be super brainy at math to try and get out of there without being killed. They just go from one cube to the next, to the next..
4. 10 Cloverfield Lane 
Girl has car accident and wakes up locked in a room of a bunker of some random old dude who also has another random guy held hostage. He's supposedly saving them for the apocalypse that's outside in the real world but is he really? If you've seen Cloverfield then you know the gist of what's happening outdoors. Personally, I'd rather take on the real world than his creepy bunker.
3. Gravity 
Sandra Bullock plays an astronaut stuck in space alone. So while you're stuck in your house and able to do get groceries still just remember it could be worse. Watching this was anxiety inducing. I didn't realise I was claustrophobic until I got stuck in a lift one day. Despite the fact she's in outer space which goes on for infinity, it still felt claustrophobic to me.
2. 30 Days Of Night 
A small town in Alaska is preparing for its '30 days of night' where they get a whole month of darkness - honestly this is my top 3 holiday destinations list. I HATE the sun. So do vampires. Movie starts out on the very last day of sunlight which is their last chance to leave by plane if they want too and that night the vampires arrive. Buffet time!
1. The Shining 
Honestly this is the ultimate self isolation film. Jack wants some peace and quiet to work on his new book and takes a job in a massive hotel with his wife and kid where they'll be completely alone. Allegedly. I'm glad I live alone because I can't handle most people for a couple hours let alone being stuck at home with them for days, weeks, months... This movie is absolutely brilliant though, the score is haunting and Jack Nicholson is one creepy fucking dude. He is the King of the Resting Bitch Face. He's also funny, but my sense of humour isn't like regular people's (Adam Sandler is awful guys) so you might disagree. I love this movie so much my website bio used to be two paragraphs of "all work and no play makes Kim a dull girl" and nobody ever questioned it. The sequel Doctor Sleep is a great follow up too with Ewan McGregor playing Danny "REDRUM" Torrance. One scene involves my favourite child actor, Jacob Tremblay. He's only 13 but he's such an incredible actor I can't wait to see what he does as an adult (seriously check out "Wonder" on STAN and "Room" on Netflix!) but his scene in Doctor Sleep is so brutal that I came close to crying. I don't cry in movies unless a dog died or there's someone dying of cancer. The only downside to this movie was the guy they brought in to play Jack. He looked the part but he just didn't have the voice/attitude needed. He was the Walmart version of Jack Nicholson. A shame really because the actress they got to play Wendy was spot on. So out of all of these films, if you do decide on a marathon definitely watch these two!
OPTION 6: PUZZLES
Be like Tom Holland (oh look another Tom!) and buy some jigsaw puzzles. It's the closest thing to a board game you can play solo but don't let that deter you from upending the table in gamer rage when you can't work out where that one piece is meant to go. I could suggest online gaming but our internet probably won't last long with everyone home and that's when the real apocalypse will hit Australia.
OPTION 7: GARDENING
I don't have a garden but I have a balcony with random succulents. There's heaps of sellers on Facebook selling succulents for $2-3. Go buy an Aloe Vera. Plant it in your garden. At the end of the quarantine go count how many you have (or do it monthly). Seriously, Aloe Vera is like the Gremlins of the plant world. Turn your back and they multiple! Some use Aloe Vera to make hand sanitizer and lotion. I don't, I just get some kick from being assaulted by plants because I dared to move a pot. If you've got some old garden gnomes lying around they're probably pretty faded and you can give them a makeover with your painting skills you've acquired from earlier.
OPTION 8: TINDER
I hate Tinder. I'm only suggesting this as a last ditch effort to stop yourself turning into Jack Torrance because let's be honest - nobody knows how to be social on Facebook. I have better chat sessions on instagram of all places. Anyways, my cousin told me to download Tinder 5 years ago when I had my knee surgery and I haven't met one single person on it. If you've seen the profiles men have on there you'll understand why. Dodgy AF. There's men with photos blurrier than Bigfoot, men using stock photos thinking we wont question it, then there's the men holding fish/holding guns/flipping the camera off..and then there's the gym junkies and guys showing off all the places they travelled as if that makes them interesting. All that tells me is you hate fun (aka carbs) and you have money. I too could travel if I had some cash laying around. Then just as you think MAYBE you found someone normal it turns out they're racist. SO...what I'm saying is, use Tinder to be a jerk. We can't go out anywhere to meet people anyway and hooking up with a stranger probably isn't the safest idea right now so if you feel the need for some human interaction this works and you don't have to worry about the consequences. My favourite thing to do is to make accounts of horror characters and then I tell my psychologist about how psychotic men are that they'll superlike a clown (like really, will you have sex with literally anything?) while disregarding the fact I made the clown account in the first place.
Well that's it! I hope that's given all you anti social peeps some ideas on what to do over the coming months. If nothing else I gave you something to watch for about 30 hours give or take. Enjoy!