This past year has rooted millions of us in our homes and our routines. I know every square foot of this place so well, it’s like being a child again.
Here’s an illustration of the groove I have worn. Months ago I bought a bright light to keep my study cheery, which sits on the piano three feet to my right. To turn it on, I just need to touch it. But my arm isn’t three feet long. So to turn on the light I get up from my desk, right?
Wrong. Years ago, for a big birthday, my father gave me a foot-long Georgian silver meat skewer to use as a letter opener. Somewhere along the way this pandemic year, I discovered that if you touch the light with the skewer, it switches on as easily as if you’d touched it with your hand. (My father loved silver, and showed me how it conducts heat and electricity even better than copper.) Two feet (arm) plus one foot (skewer) spans the gap. I don’t get out of my chair.
[27 March 2021]