One year ago, I hurried out of my office on a Thursday afternoon figuring it might be a few weeks before I returned. I snagged a computer monitor to use at home with my laptop and told my plants to think like a cactus. Those plants, I assume, are fully dead at this point, and I haven’t worn mascara or a bra in quite some time. I haven’t seen my parents, who live a plane ride away, since Thanksgiving 2019.
And, of course, I’m one of the absurdly lucky ones. Any of us with the temerity to whine about Zoom fatigue should take several seats. Millions have died, hundreds of thousands of American lives have been lost, and families have been brought to their knees as jobs and ways of life evaporated. Marginalized communities have, unsurprisingly, been hit hardest.
To call it a rough year is almost insultingly understated. It’s been devastating. With a full year of pandemic life behind us, our writers took stock of where we are. Elizabeth Van Winkle looks at what’s at stake when queer spaces close. Joss Barton’s lyrical essay floats us through her year. Patrick Collins gets to know Deon Johnson, Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Missouri — and found out how the first Black, gay, married-with-kids, immigrant bishop of the diocese has tended to his flock in a time of crisis. I had the absolute pleasure of talking to Joey Beaver about his joyful green oasis, as well as NYC-based St. Louis native Eric Williams about the gay ass revelations his podcast is bringing him.
Spring always feels freighted with hope for me, and maybe this year more than ever.