Are We Actually Nostalgic for 2020?

Jody Aberdeen
3 min readJan 7, 2022

There’s a peculiar thing in the air right now in my tiny corner of Ontario, Canada, just a couple of days into the new lockdown.

I’m seeing it as a peculiar nostalgia for the original lockdown, 22 months ago.

This isn’t something that’s overtly spoken on the social media posts and videos that I’ve watched that first tipped me off to this phenomenon, but it’s there, in the subtext.

(Hell, some people are even baking bread at home again).

Much as the virus permanently transforms one’s sense of taste in some of the infected, I also suspect that the virus has impacted our perceptions of time.

The cycles between experience and nostalgia run quicker now, it seems, the entire world of experience before March 2020 now seeming like something out of ancient history (I still can’t believe I got to fly to France and Colombia in 2019 without worrying about masks or vaccine passes).

The new pseudolockdown (I prefix it with “pseudo” because it’s not quite complete, but a return to Stage 2) may be causing us to feel that what happened 22 months ago was actually more like 10 years ago. It sure feels that way, and really, isn’t the passage of time experienced as a feeling?

Reading between the lines of what my contacts have been saying in their posts and videos, I have to wonder if may be one reason for that possible nostalgia is because this time around, we’re actually somewhat worse for the wear.