As the world seeks distraction from itself, Instagram battles have rushed in to fill the void. These are not their stories.
With millions of people ensconced in their homes for the foreseeable future, the pull of an easy distraction could not be greater. It is a thirst social media is perfectly poised to quench, as evidenced by the recent spate of music challenges on Instagram between legendary producers Swizz Beatz and Timbaland, each trading song after song for an audience of thousands watching through their phones. Naturally, the internet immediately began ruminating on other possible matchups, and to that end I present my slate of contenders, along with predictions.
Netflix vs. Reading
Netflix presents itself as an endless rabbit hole of distracting possibilities, but we all know the deal: Having access to 1,000 bad movies is like having access to no movies. At the same time, the average American only reads four books per year. If you didn’t stock up before quarantine and ebooks aren’t an option, you’re going to be watching a lot of bad TV for the next month.
Prediction: Netflix in a landslide.
Board Games vs. Puzzles
You probably already have a board game in your home. That said, you may not be quarantined with any players. By contrast, a puzzle has a ton of flexibility: It shuts down all the overactive parts of your brain; you can do it alone; they take days to complete; and you can buy four puzzles for what a single video game costs.
Prediction: Puzzles.Signing up for the Alive newsletter vs. Not signing up for the Alive newsletter. Prediction: Signing up for the Alive newsletter, because you don't want to miss a single Scott Woods column.
Cooking vs. Snacking
Cooking is always a good idea. There’s nothing like a good home-cooked meal. However, the operative word here is “good”, so if your culinary chops were weak before quarantine, that hasn’t changed. My suggestion is that you snack while you learn how to cook.
“Tiger King” vs. “The Lion King”
“Tiger King” might not have taken off like it did without a worldwide pandemic keeping us all glued to our televisions. And honestly, “The Lion King” jumped the shark with that “live-action” joint.
Prediction: “Tiger King,” because Americans are gluttons for punishment and suckers for trash.
Sleep vs. Suspended Animation
Prediction: Sleep. It’s cheaper.
“Ain’t No Sunshine” vs. “Lean On Me”
Music icon Bill Withers passed away last week, leaving behind a catalog of songs that have become emotional anthems. Long day? Bill got you. Heartbroken? Bill got you. Trapped indoors during a plague? Bill got you.
Prediction: There are only winners where Bill Withers songs are concerned.
Stimulus Check vs. Paycheck
There isn’t anyone who wouldn’t mind an extra $1,200 (or close enough) even when times aren’t bad, let alone when they are. But the cost of the stimulus check is too high: At the end of the day, most of us would rather be working. Especially since $1,200 will quickly become insufficient as we keep pushing back the Get Out of the House Free goalposts.
Not Changing Clothes vs. Laundry
I’m not the best person to ask about this matchup. I’ve never been into fashion on any level. Left to my own devices, I’d just as soon go biblical if I’m only going to be on my couch for the next four weeks.
Prediction: Not changing clothes by a stringy, filthy hair.