On October 24, 2011, Chuck Wendig tweeted:
Writing is really your gig when you have a bad day but you say, “You know what? This story ain’t gonna unfuck itself.” And you dive back in.
— Chuck Wendig (@ChuckWendig) October 24, 2011
In 2012, I changed the thought from fuck to muck (I’m not quite as adept at cursing as Chuck) and made a Wheel of Unmuckery for the workplace. As in this cash reconcile ain’t gonna unmuck itself. This lawsuit ain’t gonna unmuck itself. This department ain’t gonna unmuck itself. It’s true of story and it’s true of corporate work and it’s true of life.
It’s especially true of this moment in time. The world, the country, the pandemic – none will unmuck themselves.
What does that mean? We humans must do something.
What does it mean when we are under stay-at-home/safer-at-home/lockdown orders? We humans must do something.
Sit down and write a list of things we must do. We must physically distance ourselves from others outside our immediate people. We must wash our hands, which, I mean, I thought we might already have been doing but apparently not. We must listen to experts, a thing we are very out of practice doing in this country. We must heed the experts, a thing many of us have proudly flouted in the past. We must watch the government’s actions rather than listening to the roar of the voices.
There are things to do but the big thing to do is to withhold from doing things. Refraining from doing some things helps unmuck the pandemic. By letting essential workers do their work. By clearing space for those essential workers. By stopping the spread of Covid-19. By stopping the misuse of personal protective equipment. That’s a lot of help simply by not doing. Dive into the not doing.
To borrow from Chuck, humanity is really your gig when you have a pandemic and you say, “You know what? This pandemic ain’t gonna unfuck itself.” And you dive back in.