At the beginning of the pandemic, many were quick to point out that Shakespeare wrote something or another during a plague lockdown, which should provide all the inspiration everyone else needs to put aside health concerns, fear for the safety of loved ones, economic insecurity, and the loss of childcare in order to write a play about bad fathers. And all of you who didn’t finish and sell your magnum opus like Shakespeare because you were too worried about living or whatever should feel like even bigger chumps because Cazzie David and her publicist have managed to sell more essays in one week than most of us will in a lifetime.
In the past two days David, daughter of Larry David, has managed to place essays in both Elle magazine and The Cut in order to promote a collection of still more essays called No One Asked for This. We certainly did not, though receive them we did.
In spite of the fact that the pandemic has left 247,000 dead with some experts predicting that number could double, Cazzie David’s first drollery asserts the nervy counterpoint that she, a living person with a wealthy father, has quite enjoyed it. In the essay, “A Love Letter to Quarantine From Cazzie David,” the author argues that as the covid rages, quarantine means David has had to go to fewer parties and dinners than she normally would, which helps with her anxiety and sense of guilt over not liking parties and dinner that much. In the final paragraph, David also points out, still using the conceit that she is literally writing a letter to her beloved, an anthropomorphized quarantine, that covid fixed the environment and solved racism:
“Despite millions flouting you, you managed to do some great things that we never could have predicted. Without frivolous daily distractions, we were forced to see the truth, look social injustice in the eye. You helped shift people’s perspective. You reduced carbon emissions, keeping cars from polluting our streets and bringing airline emissions as low as they may ever be in our lifetime. You forced everyone in this world of ultra-globalization to live locally. You single-handedly brought people to their senses, conserving and rationing what they had and learning to be self-sufficient in ways society told them they didn’t have to be. You emptied out hundreds of coffee shops in gentrified neighborhoods. How much plastic did you save? My hero.”
Perhaps invigorated by the shameless solitude of her covidian quarantine, the second essay, “Too Full to Fuck” parses the fraught conundrum of skipping dessert in order to make room inside one’s body for another person’s penis. As I was too full from the first essay to make space in my consciousness for the second, I can offer no guesses as to where a person might harbor another person’s penis that would require partial or complete starvation beforehand. I’m no hero like Shakespeare or quarantine and can only do so much.
One might read these essays and be tempted to solely praise David for not only typing words but creating whole sentences of them, then arranging those sentences into paragraphs in praise of both covid quarantine and boyfriends who let their girlfriend eat even if that consumption results in a temporary aversion to dick. However, praise must also go to David’s publicist, who must have called at least two dream publications for scores of out-of-work and freelance writers, asked if they wanted essays by Hollywood offspring, got the green light, and hit send on those essays. Truly, if these two can find the time, what’s stopping the rest of us.