<rant> These are not "strange times", these are just times as they are now. Do you think our times look strange to people 50, 100 years ago? What is normal but what you experience for a certain period? To determine that period as "normal" and everything outside of that as "strange" is mental conservatism and timidity. Get with the times or get left behind. </rant>
Singapore gets a 4 week extension to our lockdown, making it a total of 8 weeks. Heaven or hell, depending on who you ask. We identified 4 types of people whom the lockdown reveals. But before that, we're announcing the Work From Home care package, because we care. Buy 6 packs and get the 7th free, so you can last weeks without stepping out the front door, should it come to that. Don't play play.
If you're non-essential, chances are that the lockdown has given you lots of Free Time. We believe that what you do with it determines what you'll be and your station for the rest of your life, because what is life but a neat package of time just for you.
Consumer/Creator, Introvert/Extrovert Matrix, or which of the four Hobbits are you? If you've never read or watched the Lord of the Rings (extended edition only), then drop everything and watch all 3 now. It's only 11.4 hours so you can get through everything in 2 days, shoo!
- Samwise Gamgee, Introvert Consumer: Poor Sam. Before the journey, he'd never really done much except tend the Baggins' garden; he didn't even have enough courage to ask Rosie out. One can imagine that if he were in the modern day and age, he'd spend his time just running through the gamut of the half-dozen or so apps and websites hundreds of times. Not having a day job to occupy himself now, he's forced to face his life of mediocrity, while crying "Bored!" - not because of a lack of things to do, but for a lack of imagination. He needs a right kick in the bum (or hauling through the window in the case of Gandalf) to get out of his comfort zone and make something of his life.
- Frodo Baggins, Introvert Creator: This lockdown wouldn't have gotten Frodo down much, if at all! He'd have been perfectly happy at home in Bag End, learning Elvish, cooking, and generally improving himself. He'd come out well rested, well fed, and well read; having made progress on lots of his interests and hobbies, perhaps making blog posts and videos on them to share with his friends. He knows what he likes and where he wants to go in life, and this respite gave him lots of opportunity to make headway.
- Peregrin Took, Extrovert Consumer: Fool of a Took! Pippin would be driven absolutely mad by the lockdown, with no helmets to nudge down wells or even a Palantir to peer into other peoples' houses. Although the Palantirs that we have today are vastly more advanced, I'm sure Pippin prefers a more personal touch. If, like Pippin, you live to be around other people, we'd say it's a great time now to look inward and really get to know yourself and what you want in life, because we're sure that once the lockdown lifts you'll be far too busy to have a chance like this again. If you have any personal demons, now's the time to confront and exorcise them instead of living with them like so many people do their entire lives, and get the peace and clarity of mind you sorely need. Also think of what you can offer the world, because a person's legacy is determined by what he gives, rather than what he takes.
- Meriadoc Brandybuck, Extrovert Creator: Merry's bummed about not being able to see his friends, but as the smartest Hobbit he's also wise enough to take this as downtime from external socialising to explore the world as it is now, reorient himself and predict how the world will turn out. The moves he makes now will determine his fortune in the brave new world, which is coming a lot sooner than most people think. Coronavirus heralds the biggest disruption in industries since electric light. The world is your oyster, you just have to figure out your way to crack it.
Our dream is of a world where universal basic income means no one ever has to work for a living, and has the means and freedom to pursue their passions and live the life that they design. We've getting a small taste of that now. It's lovely for those who were prepared, jarring otherwise; just like bitter medicine, it's a good wake up call that your life is riding by fast, and the best time to grab it by the horns is yesterday. The next best time is now.
We're kicking off our "Living the Lembas Life" series, featuring people who are doing what they love, in hope of inspiring and enabling you to follow your own path. If you know anyone who's doing what they love, please give us a shout at firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll get in touch!
Be well and stay safe!