Virtual Reality

(Before we begin this week’s trip into lunacy, I was thrilled when I found out yesterday that one of my pieces of short fiction would be appearing today in The Ekphrastic Review. Click here to read it!)

So this week, I’ve been busy researching other jurisdictions as part of my job, and I have to tell you, there is a HUGE uptick in sites devoted to armadillos. I was on one website that had an environmental slant, and it was literally cartoon armadillos everywhere and all I could think was “Who in their f*cking mind is going ALL IN on the armadillos? Are they like the next (and at this point, I asked Ken for something that was really popular and isn’t anymore so that I could include a clever analogy, and he said, “Pet rocks” and I said, “Something more recent—duh” and he said, “The bucket challenge?” and I was just about to ask for a divorce when he said…) “The woman yelling at the cat meme?” so I guess I don’t have to look for another husband yet. At any rate, I learned more about armadillos than I ever thought I would need to know and apparently they’re very cool, eat a lot of larvae and are also a good indicator of how well the environment is doing. But then I was like, “What do armadillos really look like?” so I googled some images of them while I was about to start a virtual Zoom meeting. Did you know that they’re actually very cute in a weird and sassy way? And at the same time, I was desperate to do what everyone else I know has been doing, and that’s to have a virtual background on my Zoom screen, and I finally figured out how to do it, but as the meeting started, I didn’t have anything except the picture of the armadillo that I’d just googled, so I USED THAT.

Me: Good morning everyone!
Team: Good morn–
Me: I finally figured out how to use the virtual background!
Colleague 1: Very nice. C’est un peu distracting.
Me: Look! If I reach around like this, I can pet it!
Colleague 2: It kind of looks like it’s sitting on your shoulder…

But later, I had to have a meeting with our Chief Operating Officer, and as much as I love armadillos, I realized that I should probably have a virtual background that was more normal like everyone else who had tropical beaches or snowy forests. Unfortunately, my default was a gallery of Baby Yoda cookies from when I was doing a Zoom with my family. While it looked quite adorable and yummy, that was no good either. So I quickly found a picture of the garden house that Ken built for us, and then everyone was like “Wow—it looks so cute!” so I guess I don’t have to look for another job yet.

On Wednesday, Ken and I decided that it was important for us to get some fresh air at the end of every day, and because we live in a small town, we don’t have our own mail box—we have to go uptown to a bank of community mailboxes. It was a lovely day, and as Ken opened our mailbox, I looked up at the sky, smiled and said, “I feel like things are going to be OK” and then Ken pulled out the only piece of mail that we had, and it was a letter from the Purple Shield insurance company offering us a FREE WILL-PLANNING KIT and I was like “Sigh. Never mind.” And I don’t know if I’m more concerned about a company taking advantage of a pretty dire situation or the fact that now I have to think about things like “How To Ensure Your Wishes Are Honoured” because the other day, Ken and I went for a drive and we went past a cemetery with a mausoleum and I said, “Ooh, that’s what I want!” and Ken laughed and said, “I’m cremating you, sucker.” OK, Ken didn’t actually say it like that, but every time I say I want my casket to be interred in a mausoleum, he snickers derisively and I JUST KNOW that my last wishes will NOT be honoured. But I warned him that no matter what, I would haunt him and his new, younger wife by dipping their toothbrushes in the toilet and not telling them.

On Wednesday, Ken said to me, “Hey, where’s that wig you have?” I found it for him and he put it on for his team meeting. I was a little perturbed because the first time I wore that wig, he said, “I don’t like you with bangs” as if it was my permanent hair and I had just given myself an ill-advised trim. But I could hear his team laughing hysterically at the sight of him in my wig, and now I’m determined to wear it next week, and also buy a bunch of even nicer wigs, because if we have to work from home forever, who’s going to know whether or not my hair grew, or changed colour or whatnot? And then I don’t have to wash and style my hair every morning for the camera—I can just throw on a wig. This is the one I really want:

But I’m also willing to settle for something less glamorous if Prime can deliver it in 24 hours.

 Lastly, I went back through my notes and pictures to see what I had considered writing about this week and I found this:

Why do I have a picture of this?! I don’t remember taking a picture of this and I have no idea what it means. I am NOT from Chicago and I don’t know anyone who is. I have NEVER called anyone except Ken “Bitch” and only in that fun, drag queen-ish kind of way. Are there armadillos in Chicago? Because it seems like something an armadillo would say. 



60 thoughts on “Virtual Reality

  1. Every time I hear or see the word “armadillo” I think of a really lame Marvel Comics supervillain Mark Gruenwald created in the 80s when he was on this “create a new archenemy for Captain America every three plots” phase. He came up with some really dumb ones.

    That said, I just googled “Armadillo from Marvel Comics” and he actually looks kinda cool in a weird and sassy way.

    Maybe I shouldn’t be so hard on Mark. He did, after all, create the “Death-Throws.” Who doesn’t love a juggling supervillain team?

    Imagine that want ad: “Supervillains needed for cool new team. Must be able to juggle.”

    Surprisingly, I’ve never asked Mrs C if I could borrow a wig. Even more surprisingly, Mrs C has asked ME if she could borrow mine. Life is strange. Go Bears.

    Liked by 6 people

  2. Ha! I love how your virtual meeting go, they make mine seem so blah. And that Ken actually wore a wig to one of his? Seriously? Lol

    Living in Texas, I’ve NEVER seen an armadillo. I do mean never, but online they look cute, sassy and somewhat badassy if you ask me. I think they’d have a cute attitude like if they got bored with the conversation they’d just roll up in a ball and roll away.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Bryntin says:

    I always wondered what a dillo was, and why you’d want to arm one.
    There was a popular song once, the lyric goes ‘Show me the way to arm a dillo’
    What’s that all about?

    Liked by 5 people

  4. Lol, you always make me smile, please, please, please can we see a photograph of you with your wig. I won’t snigger honest, 😏 I enjoyed your story too. Maybe with this enforced isolation everyone will slow down and notice what a beautiful world we live in.

    Liked by 4 people

  5. You do realize that armadillos are one of the only animals that naturally carry leprosy. So, if you’re searching for a new look for your VR meetings, a raging skin disease would certainly cause a stir.

    Liked by 4 people

  6. Dear, Madam. Re your Amazon order, some crazy blogger has caused a run on armadillo orders so unfortunately we cannot supply your original request for a pink fairy armadillo but we do have screaming hairy armadillos available and, if you can provide proof of age, we can ship you a greater naked-tailed armadillo. Please advise your preference. (Please note that due to unprecedented demand the price has increased and they will now cost you an arm and a legadillo.)

    Liked by 4 people

  7. My granddaughters have various hairstyles, one uses wigs for curly long black hair, because she’s black of course, and two have really short hair, one growing it out again. So there’s a lot of hair pics coming and going!😄

    Sent from my iPad


    Liked by 3 people

  8. Since Anonymole helpfully shared that armadillos carry leprosy I’ll add that they also do structural damage to houses by tunneling under them.
    In spite of all that I do think they’re cute, sassy little critters and while I go off to read The Ekphrastic Review I hope you’ll go to YouTube and look up “True Facts About The Armadillo”.
    Also if my last wishes were honoured I think Armadillogeddon wouldn’t be a bad way to go.
    Finally there appears to be a ghost in your computer. And it’s from Chicago. Don’t put ketchup on hot dogs around it.

    Liked by 3 people

  9. Another great post, as always! I can always count on you for a good laugh. And, frankly (may I call you Frank?), I could use a good laugh. We’ll keep each other strong through laughter. And wigs.

    I, too, am from Texas (as one of your commenters said above) and I have never seen a live armadillo, though I have seen plenty of dead ones. They are usually laying on their backs on the side of the road clutching a beer bottle. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen an armadillo that was not only dead, but also holding a beer bottle. I guess they didn’t listen their their grampas saying, “Fool! That alcohol’s gonna git ya kilt!”

    One more armadillo note. If you could really use a good belly laugh, watch the Friends episode where Ross (everyone’s least-favorite Friend) dressed up in an armadillo costume and makes an appearance to his young son as the “Hanukkah Armadillo”. I nearly split a side during that scene.

    Stay safe … and keep the laffs coming!

    Liked by 2 people

  10. I can’t remember if I mentioned that my daughter and the grandbabies have relocated across the country, but they have. Last night while we were fb video messaging, she told me that next we should try zoom. I’m looking forward to investigating it, but may end up asking for some tips. 🙂 Going to read your piece now. As always, thank you for sharing your humor with the world.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Now that school is cancelled and I am forced to spend a chunk of my day with two teenage girls (sympathy cards are welcomed. PM for address) It has occurred to me that there are huge similarities between armadillos and teenage boys.

    Did I tell you I am spending a ridiculous amount of time with my teenage daughters?
    Did I tell you I am spending a ridiculous amount of time listening to their conversations?
    Did I tell you I’m starting to repeat the same words over and over….

    Please send help.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. I’m from Chicago — sort of. My father was at the tail end of a yearlong work assignment there when I was born, though we moved back to the Bronx for good when I was six weeks old (where I then lived for the next quarter century). Despite this, my friends delight in assuring me that I’m not a “true” New Yorker, merely a relocated Midwesterner; this has been their immovable position for decades. A few disagree, however, telling me in no uncertain terms I am a Californian. So, depending on whom you ask, I am either a Southern Californian (a place I hate) or a Midwesterner (a place I don’t remember), but unequivocally not a New Yorker (the only place I consider home). Man, how I’d like to pelt all my friends with a Pet Rock…

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks for the reference to Californians, which made me just watch all the SNL Californian sketches–so funny! I’m just sad that not one person has mentioned the meme at the end of the post, which I made myself and thought was hysterical…


  13. Armadillos are sooo prehistoric and cute. I read your piece and your words brought such strong images into my imagination that I think, like this should be a mystery novel or something. “Who Killed Icarus?”

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Ha! I just saw your comment about an Armadillo peep show on Chris’ blog and now I know why. The Armadillo is my spirit animal. Growing up in Texas I was around them a lot. A new car in Texas has not been “christened” until it runs over an Armadillo, which says a lot about my spirit. The Cajun band Atchafalaya recording a parody of Amadeus in the 80’s called Watch Out Armadillos. Link is below if you care to listen.

    Liked by 1 person

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