The 2020 #AtoZChallenge (because I am a glutton for punishment)

2020 A to Z Challenge logoWhile I was roaming through posts from #IWSG blog hop participants yesterday, I stumbled across the A to Z Challenge, a challenge to bloggers to post every day (except Sunday) through the entire month of April–and relate each post to a letter of the alphabet (in order, of course). Sounds fun, I thought. It’ll keep me writing during quarantine, I thought. And like an idiot I filled out the signup form, and now here I am, needing to cover letters A and B and come up with 24 more alphabetically-inspired posts. Why, oh why, do I do these things?

Besides the alphabet, I hope to write posts around the theme of discovery. I’m wrapping up week 3 of stay-the-hell-home, and in an effort to retain my sanity, I’m trying to approach this bizarre experience with curiosity. What new strategies can I employ to keep from losing my mind? What interesting new things can I learn? What can I discover in my own backyard (besides dog poop)?

For those of you who subscribe to this blog, I hope my much-greater-than-normal posting frequency won’t drive you away. I’ll try to keep my posts short and entertaining, so you’ll want to stick around. Here we go…

2020 A to Z Challenge Logo - A

A is for Alexa, because this week I discovered how to make Alexa fart. Yeah, you read that right. All the power of a digital assistant built into my TV, and I find it the height of hilarity to tell her to fart. Repeatedly. Dear readers, I even spent $1.60 for–wait for it–the Extreme Farts Extension Pack. I truly wish I were joking. I am a 53-year-old librarian, and 3 weeks of quarantine has reduced me to giggling over synthesized farts. Thank goodness no one has invented smell-a-vision.

If you, like me, have the emotional sophistication of a 12-year-old boy–and an Alexa-enabled device–activate your device and issue the command, “Alexa, fart!” And let the hilarity ensue.

2020 A to Z Challenge Logo - B

B is for backgrounds, specifically Zoom backgrounds. As a quarantined academic, my workdays are now populated with Zoom meetings. In my never-ending (and doomed) quest to make meetings interesting, I discovered custom backgrounds for Zoom. If you have a green screen or a reasonably powerful computer, you can try them too. Just Google Zoom backgrounds and maybe add a keyword or two to indicate the kind of background you’re looking for. I met with an employee today while standing in the middle of Diagon Alley.


Tomorrow I’ll be on Platform 9 3/4.

If anyone knows how to teach Zoom to fart, let me know.

So how about you, dear reader? What have you discovered to keep yourself entertained during this long, strange trip?