Old Hobbies Reborn in the Pandemic

Marisa Mendosa, Art Director

9th March, 2021

Throughout this pandemic, people’s interests and activities have fluctuated significantly. In the first few months of lockdowns, many people had the time to try new things and certain activities, like breadmaking, became extremely popular. But recently, many people have begun reverting back to old habits and activities that they haven’t done in years.  

Senior Carly Lankarani attested to this pattern exactly. Initially using the pandemic time to make baguettes, lately, they have been getting back into playing games from their childhood. “I’m not going out, and like I’m not seeing anyone,” Lankarani said. “I have to kinda like make my own fun and figure out ways to do stuff with my friends without leaving my house. So like, a lot of online gaming.”

Lankarani found that despite thinking they grew out of these games, these were great ways to connect with people as well as to “unwind” from the stresses of school and college applications.

Senior Megan Bryant found herself getting back into something she hadn’t been able to do consistently since middle school, reading for fun. “I stopped reading because I was not able to have the mental energy to read after finishing with school and homework,” Bryant said. “I now have the time to sit down for hours and get into my book.”

Just like Bryant, many people have found that they now have the time to spend to get back into activities they either grew out of or couldn’t find the time to do anymore. Senior Meiwan Gottschalk, who recently ventured back into the world of online gaming, stated, “I have too much time on my hands,” as the reason for reverting to these old habits. 

While Gottschalk’s habits may have popped back up out of “pure boredom,” other students have varying reasons for why they have reverted back to these activities. Senior Maya Scanlon fell back into something she used to do but found stimulating for her brain: puzzles. With her extra time, she now could sit down and focus and take her mind off other things with a puzzle.  

With the abundance of time that students have on their hands, whether it is due to not being able to hang out with friends in-person or canceled extracurricular activities, some have found that these old activities bring back memories of simpler times. For Lankarani, they had been really into games like Webkinz when they were six-years-old. “I wish I was as happy as I was when I was six years old,” Lankarani said. Playing some of these games has brought back mixed emotions of nostalgia and longing for the simplicity of childhood. 

Bryant, on the other hand, uses her activity of reading to help with mental health. “I always have felt more inspired and positive while reading a good book, so now that I had the time to sit down for hours with a novel, I decided it would be fun and good for my mental health to take up reading again.”

The lingering question is whether these activities are just going to be a blip in people’s lives or if they may transfer into a post-COVID lifestyle. Both Lankarani and Gottschalk have really enjoyed playing games recently as a way to connect, but they likely won’t continue as frequently once things return to normal. Lankarani added that they may get back into gaming if there is a popular new craze in the future. For Bryant, the reintroduction of reading has been great and rejuvenating. “Quarantine has really made me realize how much I miss it and how good it is for my mental health, so I definitely will be continuing it after quarantine as well.”

As students continue to stay distanced and apart from one another, people may continue with these old habits, or potentially, as new trends pop up, people may try new things.