Post-COVID times have become exciting as people emerge – like bears from hibernation –  from their domiciles, ready to socialize and spend cash, my husband and I included. It’s as if we Rip Van Winkled for two years, as a colorful, fairy tale-inspired way of expressing our forced quarantine status. We’ve all flocked to restaurants to spend time with friends unseen in those years. In wine-enabled conversations, we learn a lot about what’s transpired in our friends’ lives, but we find that we are typecast as

the designated listeners.

While we are genuinely interested in other people’s lives, we wonder what we are doing wrong. Why aren’t others interested in us, our comings and goings and doings… We’re stuck as

the designated listeners.

We read newspapers, Yahoo news, and books. We watch television news programs, including the nightly news, as well as sit-coms and late night talk shows. Movies may not be our thing, but we’ve delighted in the ones we’ve seen We actively watch sports. We have news and views, yet we remain unable to contribute. While our smiles are returned, we don’t get past that as active listening posture. We are

the designated listeners.

We practice good hygiene, fastidiously showering and brushing our teeth. Our clothing is washed in a timely manner and wield the iron as needed. We mind our Ps & Qs. But, darn it, it’s annoying to be stuck as

the designated listeners.

Here’s a blog post from two years ago, when we were newly incarcerated in the requisite homestay, yet remaining hopeful for the future, when we returned to our social life: https://www.pjcolando.com/a-writer-and-a-talker-limited-to-300-350-words/

We may have to return to dinner dates with each other and/or return to our favorite restaurant, our home sweet home. My husband and I delight in each other’s adventures, We laugh, we listen, we talk – in turns.