The coronavirus pandemic has been nothing but a scourge upon us all, a detestable incursion we wish had never happened and hope will be gone ASAP.
Unfortunately, there's no turning back the clock, so we must soldier on, make the best of what we have. Maybe even use the virus to do some good.
Here are 5 customs coronavirus is likely to kill and we hope for good:
Birthday cakes are a strange tradition to begin with. Have you ever worked in an office where everyone shuts it down for the birthday cake ritual? There are cupcakes in the vending machine for $1, but the free 2-inch square of sugar and shortening has much greater allure.
If the cake itself is a strange tradition, burning candles are weirder. Here, little child, get up close to the fire. Then spew all over the top. And then it's time to eat?
For Lutherans and Episcopalians and Catholics and anything in between, church includes the taking of the body and blood of Christ — a wafer, bread and wine if you're lucky.
This requires rituals such as getting a wafer handed to you, drinking wine from a shared goblet, even having a priest jam the wafer onto your tongue. Most of these fall outside social distancing rules.
But the wafer and the wine are the highlight.
New tradition: Rum Chata coffee while watching services online in your PJs.
There are varying levels of sex. The most important kind, the essential kind, is for procreation, for the task of making babies. Upstanding citizens everywhere agree.
Beyond procreational sex lies a litany: afternoon sex, sex just for fun, makeup sex, mindless sex, revenge sex, and sex while watching TV. None follow social distancing rules, but each surely has its own set of justifications and quality of essential-ness TBD by the user.
Except pity sex. Urban Dictionary says that pity sex is when girls have sex with guys because they feel bad for them. Girls, guys, this never leads to anything good whether you're talking guilt or unrealistic expectations, and it's a social distancing nightmare.
There is almost nothing good about hugs. The word itself is awful. Hugs.
Hugs always seem to involve one perpetrator who thinks a hug is a good idea, inflicting said hug on someone who is less receptive.
Hugs are a fake friendly gesture with an underlying hint of passive aggressive intimidation. "You will like me."
Hugs are about me, not you.
Did you ever get a note from someone who signed it "hugs"? That person is not to be trusted.
Large format cocktails
Also called communal cocktails, also called shared cocktails, they are an oversized, multi-portion cocktail served in a big-ass vessel and designed to be shared with a group.
This germaphobe nightmare from the '80s was just beginning to resurface in the past year or two, sold as a yet another way to show you have friends and are living your good life.
They always require straws and beyond their eco-unfriendliness, is it humanly possible to successfully extract a sip via a straw without leaking even the tiniest bit of backwash into the drink? No.
If coronavirus accomplishes one good thing, it will be the quick and inevitable demise of this spit-fest disguised as a fun party trick.