#WFH Diaries: Aaron Feiger of Oracle
As the Covid-19 pandemic continues to disrupt life across the globe, we're checking in with creative people working from home, to see how they're coping. Here's an update from Aaron Feiger at Oracle.
Give us a one-line bio of yourself.
Where are you living right now, and who's with you?
I'm currently living in Seattle with my wife, 5-year-old daughter, 2-year-old son, and 115-pound Landseer (similar to a Newfoundland).
What's your work situation like at the moment?
I'm currently working out of my vintage 1955 Santa Fe trailer parked in front of my home, equipped with a WiFi extender and external laptop battery. It's nothing glamorous, but it's a good escape from the insanity inside my home and it makes for a solid Zoom background.
Describe your socializing strategy.
Like a lot of folks, we're Zooming with friends and family as much as we can. It's funny—our relationships with friends in other cities seem to have strengthened since we've all been quarantined. We aren't waiting to get together physically to stay in touch, and I anticipate this trend will continue to stick once we're on the other side of this mess.
How are you dealing with childcare?
When we started having kids, we shifted our lifestyle and moved to the Pacific Northwest so my wife could stay home during their formative years. When I head out to my trailer for work, she's able to tackle parenting duties, which I'm incredibly grateful for. Throughout the day they make visits, which is a nice distraction.
What are you reading?
I just finished Creativity, Inc., all about Pixar's trails and tribulations. Disney+ is a regular fixture at our house these days, so getting a behind-the-scenes look at what went into some of those productions was really enlightening. It's also a great book for any leader of a creative department, chock-full of wisdom.
What are you watching?
My wife and I just binged our way through all five seasons of Schitt's Creek—David has become our new fashion icon as of late. I just started a four-part documentary series about John John Florence's sailing adventures that a friend of mine directed. It definitely has me jonesing for adventure. Aside from that, I'm really excited by all the new streams that seem to be hitting social media channels on a daily basis, from Ben Gibbard's two-week livestream to the #TogetherAtHome concert series.
What are you listening to?
KEXP has become a staple in our home. That station is a cultural fixture in Seattle and it's just nice to hear real humans coming through the airwaves. It's a good reminder that there's still life out there.
How are you staying fit?
My dog is a good excuse to get out for walks, and I try to go for a three-mile run every other day. It's helping, but my clothes still feel like they're shrinking by the week.
Have you taken up a hobby?
I also run a small hard-cider company, so I've continued to hone my skills on that front, working on everything from recipes, to label design, to content creation for social. I'm also making small improvements to my trailer, getting her ready to hit the road as the Pacific Northwest camping season is on the horizon.
Any tips for getting necessities?
Before this pandemic we used to shop just about every day or two. For safety and convenience, we've had to shift our shopping habits so we're only shopping once or twice a week, which means planning has become incredibly important. We've become much more conscious of how much we waste and even started subscribing to an imperfect-produce delivery, where we get a variety of imperfect food that would otherwise be thrown out.
An awkward moment since all this started.
Grooming! I haven't had a haircut in weeks and every day I look more and more disheveled. My hats are all at their last notch, sized as big as they can get. I keep looking for a Flowbee on Amazon, but they're still unavailable. Barbers are going to be absolutely swamped once they can open up shop again.
Best work email you got since all this started.
A few weeks ago I heard that a campaign I led for Deschutes Brewery won at the Seattle Addys, which was awesome. The next week I heard the event was canceled, but that we won gold and best in show. It felt like a punch to the gut that you were still sort of proud of. Lots of mixed emotions.
What's your theory on how this is going to play out?
This whole thing is incredibly awful, but I do think there's a silver lining to it. With the world on pause, I think our priorities are being brought more and more into focus and I hope that sticks. I also think the way streaming technology is currently being used to foster community when we can't get together in person is going to continue to open up new avenues. From education to entertainment to #WFH. I anticipate life won't go back to being the normal we knew before the pandemic, but I can't help but feel excited for the new "normal" that's to come.