THIS week, the actor Chris Hemsworth was photographed with his agreeable-looking child, in the sunshine, outside their beachfront home in the exclusive Australian surfing resort of Byron Bay.
And I guess everyone thought when they saw the picture: “Well, lockdown’s working pretty well for him.”
Yeah, and it can’t be too bad either for Mrs Hemsworth. Living by the sea, in paradise, with a triangular- torsoed Hollywood hunk.
But then if you take a glance at your social media, you’ll notice that absolutely everyone else is living the Hemsworth dream.
It’s an endless parade of people’s perfect sourdough baking and of jolly board games with the kids.
This morning, my Instagram feed featured a young family doing a fancy dress dinner, a girl on an enormous horse, a woman sprawled on the bonnet of a Mercedes SL, a man with a cute dog, doing exercises, and a shot of some cows taken through a wisteria bush.
On Instagram, no one is ever bored, it never rains and everyone’s breasts are perfect. Especially Chris Hemsworth’s.
FAT WIFE SLOBBING OUT
This is having an effect on the nation’s teenagers. They have been told there will be no exams this year and that all their school work was for nothing. They’ve been told they have to stay indoors and that they can’t see their friends.
And it’s driving them mad because they do not read newspapers. They do not listen to the BBC news. And they replaced Radio 1 with Spotify five years ago.
This means they never hear any actual news. So they don’t know what’s going on.
Instead they look at their phones (constantly) and all they can see are pretty girls with swimsuits up their a*** cheeks, and Chris Hemsworth, and parents who have turned the cellar into a nightclub and lots of cute ducklings.
And they’re thinking, as they watch the rain trickle down the windows at their house: “Why can’t I have some of that?”
In the olden days we’d have smacked their bottoms and told them to stop being spoiled, but that’s not allowed any more. So I’ve come up with another idea . . .
If you are an old person stuck in a tower block, waiting for Covid-19 to stick its warty little head through the letterbox, post a picture of your surroundings on Instagram. Don’t hold back. Show us the overflowing cat litter and the photograph of your husband, alone in his hospital bed.
Show us also pictures of your sister who is in a care home and hasn’t had a visitor for five weeks.
And your food cupboard which has nothing in it any more. And your empty bottle of Senokot.
REALITY OF LOCKDOWN
In fact, we should all get in on the act. Don’t wait for a joyous moment to photograph and share. Send us instead pictures of stuff you didn’t enjoy.
The particularly gruesome bit of wax you’ve just pulled out of your left ear. The turd your dog just did on the mat. Your fat other half slobbing out in front of the TV.
Your kids throwing Monopoly pieces at one another after a row over Fenchurch Street station.
Instead of sharing your perfect loaf, send pictures of the charred wreck that went wrong, the scarf full of dropped stitches, the wonky self-assembly garden furniture that broke the first time you sat on it.
Hit us with the reality of lockdown. Admit that it’s one part happiness and nine parts ditch water.
And then maybe teenagers will start to understand that life is bookended by the lucky and the not so lucky. At one end you’ve got the Hemsworths. At the other you’ve got a frightened old man in a tenement block in Bermondsey.
Maybe then they will understand they are somewhere in the middle, and stop bloody complaining.
There is much debate about what increases your chances of dying from Covid-19.
But there’s one thing everyone agrees on. It likes to kill fatties most of all. And how have we responded to this?
Well, I don’t know about you but I’ve addressed the issue by sitting on a sofa for six hours a day, eating slabs of Cadbury’s Fruit & Nut chocolate and getting up only to go to the fridge for another bottle of wine.
I guess I’m working on the principle that soon I’ll be so fat, there won’t be room in the house for me and the virus as well.
But there is one problem.
There are now so many empty bottles sitting by the bins at the bottom of the drive I just know my neighbours will assume I’ve been throwing illegal parties, and call the police.
A nurse made headlines this week after moaning about the cramped conditions on a London Tube train at 5.45am.
She said she was risking her life at work and pointed out that she shouldn’t have to risk it even more while commuting. Fair point, you might think. But hang on.
In the olden days – before March – people may well have been on a Tube train at that time because they were coming home from a club.
But these days, nobody on a Tube train at quarter to six in the morning is there for fun. They’re ALL going to work.
There’s nothing wrong with that. It’s what most of us have been told to do all along. But I do agree that commuting on a cramped Tube is bloody dangerous.
So I ask once again for parking restrictions to be lifted immediately, as this would allow people to go to work in the blissful self-isolation of their own cars.
Portsmouth from above
An aerial photograph of Portsmouth taken this week showed that the colour of the sea has turned from the usual mud brown to a shimmering, aquamarine blue.
It’s the sort of colour you usually associate with the Caribbean, and it is genuinely amazing.
Naturally, green people are saying it happened because the lockdown means less traffic. And they may be right.
Or, let me just lob this one in . . . it happened because the photographer was experimenting with some of the filters on his new phone.
My phone’s got so many that if you gave me long enough, I could take a selfie and make me look like Chris Hemsworth. Or his wife.
For the past couple of years, farmers have not been allowed to spray their bright yellow oil seed rape with insecticides called neonicotinoids.
As a result, a lot of my crop is dead.
But on the upside, I’m now seeing more bumble bees than I have in years. And yesterday I saw a tortoiseshell butterfly, the first I’ve found since about 1972.
But that said, my eyesight is so bad these days, it could have been an actual tortoise.