#WFH Diaries: Natalie Warther of 72andSunny Los Angeles
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to wreak havoc across the world, we're checking in with folks in the creative industry to see how they're doing. Here's an update from Natalie Warther, senior writer at 72andSunny Los Angeles.
Give us a one-sentence bio of yourself.
I'm a senior writer at 72andSunny Los Angeles and a graduate student at Bennington College, where I'm working towards an MFA in poetry and fiction.
Where are you living right now, and who's with you?
I live in a one-bedroom apartment in Santa Monica. It's me and my plants!
What's your work situation like at the moment?
I'm grateful to be employed and busy, working away from my couch to help our brands navigate how, if, and when they should join the COVID conversation.
Describe your socializing strategy.
I'm lucky to be very close with my neighbors, who check on me often. My sister lives down the street, and every day before dinner we take a distant walk. It's the most we've consistently seen each other since we last lived in the same house 15 years ago, and I'm thankful for that.
How are you dealing with childcare, if applicable?
The plants don't require much. Just daily words of affirmation and the occasional trip outside to look at the sun together.
What are you reading?
I'm currently reading L.A. Woman by Eve Babitz and Ham on Rye by Charles Bukowski, which also takes place in Los Angeles. I'm homesick for the city I live in.
What are you watching?
I started a Vince Vaughn marathon club with friends, the theory being that it is scientifically impossible to feel bad after a VV movie. His performance is literally exactly the same in every movie, and in this global time of uncertainty, that is something you can absolutely depend on.
What are you listening to?
Currently, Death Cab for Cutie! I've been avoiding anything too recent; it's eerie to me that a few weeks ago we were all jamming to "Yummy" and going about our lives. Early 2000s music feels far enough in the past that it doesn't make me miss life before COVID. Plus, they just don't make sadboy music like they used to.
How are you staying fit?
I've been starting and ending each day with a walk or run. I smile at people from afar and take pictures of the flowers I find.
Have you taken up a hobby?
Do baths count as a hobby?
Any tips for getting necessities?
Farmers markets are still a go, and since they are open air, they're lower risk! +1 for supporting local farmers. Just wear gloves and keep a safe distance.
An awkward moment since all this started.
I personally find the humans shuffling to avoid each other on the sidewalks hilariously awkward. I get it, but ... are you gonna cross the street? Or should I? Do you have it? Do I have it? Should we do the polka as we pass?
Best work email you got since all this started.
Our office sent around a "memories" thread, and everyone sent their most embarrassing childhood photos. So many tilted fedoras and regrettable haircuts.
An aha! moment since all this started.
This time of solitude reminds me a lot of my life as a teenager in Pennsylvania. I couldn't see my friends, I couldn't leave the house, and if I wanted to be entertained, I had to get creative. It was a quiet time, but it was also really magical. I've been trying to think more like the 14-year-old girl that spent every night writing and drawing in her bedroom.
What's your theory on how this is going to play out?
I think we're going to be here for a while. I think isolation will get harder. I think we will eventually have to make our own decisions about how to prioritize the safety of our communities, but also our own mental health. I think we will have to learn to have compassion for other people's decisions even when they look different than our own. I think we are relearning how to be good neighbors. Most of all, I think when this is all over we will hug like we have never hugged before. I think we will fall back in love with each other. I think it will change us for good.