Daisy L Phillips
Tuesdays are for Pizza: On Quarantine's Tiny Rituals
On Tuesday afternoon, my mom asked my dad and I if we liked the idea of barbecuing burgers for dinner. "But, it's pizza day" is all I could say. My mother realized her blasphemous suggestion and we did, in fact, dine on local pizza that night.
It was the fourth pizza day since I got into town from NYC over a month ago now - what started as a way to support local restaurants has become my only metric by which I can measure time in quarantine. As the days blend together, on Tuesdays we eat pizza.
My senior year of college, an old roommate came into town and, as we were catching up, I made a passing comment about how on Wednesdays, the only day I didn't need to be up excruciatingly early for class, I would walk up Lexington Ave rather than 2nd and grab two cupcakes to eat in the Opera class I was auditing. She said that this little anecdote encompassed something she had liked in me - my appreciation for self ritual. I'd never really seen it in myself until then, because it felt like my life was always in a state of flux (working new shows with different hours all the time, class schedules that changed every semester, etc), but I'd ignored the fact that the real constant was being able to find little pockets in my weekly routine that never found their way into my (very structured) planner - cupcakes on Wednesday mornings, bath time on Monday nights when I was the only roommate without a 7:30-10:01 PM class, naps in the library between three-hour classes on Thursday afternoons... take-out pizza for dinner on Tuesdays to support a local business.
As life inside has become the norm, I am starting to see in myself what my once-roommate already did. These little pockets of happiness - these "self rituals", as my roommate called them, have been a saving grace in this seemingly endless sea of lost days. If not for these tiny glimmers of routine in a moment in which I have nothing but time, and yet productivity feels impossible, I can only imagine how lost I would feel if I had not established this habit of materializing routines out of spare moments.
As a student and as someone who works in the arts - a profession that is always in a state of flux - I have always searched for the little moments where I could breathe - reset. These were the moments I could thrive in, where I could introspect. Now, that habit of finding moments has helped me establish a semblance of routine where I know there is none. Have you established any of these little self rituals since all of this started? I'd love to hear about them ❤️