Medieval Woodcuts Go Back To The Office

The COVID Delta variant might be spiking, but you know what’s worse than potentially joining the ranks of vaccinated people who have contracted this unpredictable pandemic strain? Your boss spending even one more day with his kids, apparently. If you’ve been fortunate enough to work remotely this past year and a half, you might find yourself forced back into the grind of waking up early, wearing uncomfortable pants, and crying in your car. But don’t worry, you’re not alone! We’re sending some medieval woodcuts to accompany you on this journey.


Spotting that your office’s official COVID / mask / telework guidelines literally recommend using your best judgment while reflecting on where your internal risk/reward calculus has landed you over the years:

Medieval woodcut with large letters reading "CHAOS" above two women talking, a child laying on the ground, and several concerned, hovering animals.

Sneezing in an open office plan:

A woodcut depicting a floating head blowing wind out of its mouth and demolishing a church. The floating head is near a very unconcerned angel, and both are above mourners and a woman who seemingly just gave birth to triplets? There's a Lot going on here.

Greeting the brand-new biome thriving within an open, pre-pandemic bag of trail mix tucked away in your desk drawer:

A lovely woodcut showing a figure breaking free of the confines of this sinful earth as a fat and unimpressed sun lingers above a lush hillside dotted with small buildings.

HR trying to lure your workforce back with free food (Surprise!! All you can eat Dominos coupon combo pizza):

Woodcut depicting a man grinning at three pigs as they slop up food from a trough.

Meeting with your maskless office leadership (make an appointment in reception, COVID!!!):

Woodcut showing suspiciously happy skellies greeting two haggard looking kings.

Re-experiencing the thrill of a bumper-to-bumper mid-commute check engine light (since you haven’t gotten your oil changed since mid 2019):

A woodcut of the most "why am i awake" looking dude ever depicted in art riding a stoned critter out of town. Critter might be a goat, a sheep, a horse, or a cat for all I can tell.

Noticing that the after-hours workplace wellness yoga class is back on the menu:

Five skeletons having a sick dance party. One is completely wailing on the flute.

Making an appearance at the socially distanced indoor happy hour:

Thirteen dudes in old timey pilgrim hats at a pub having the time of their lives. Most are dancing pretty much on top of each other. One is waving fetchingly at the viewer. Another is barfing miserably. One guy is just full-ass laying on the ground. God I miss parties.

Feeling good about waking up early enough to take the bus right up until it arrives at your stop:

The most metal as hell hearse carriage the 1500s ever produced. Skeletons are popping out from all sides. It is being propelled by two angry looking but otherwise normal cows.

Scrying that the sun, the stars, the moon, the CDC, OSHA, and your local and (red) state COVID guidelines have finally aligned so you can work from home again:

A bashful gentleman poses under a tablet of the 10 Commandments, a sword, the scales of justice, and a celestial body reminiscent of the teletubbies baby sun.

Extending your mask as far as possible to minimize your societally obligated facial grooming / makeup routine:

Plague doctor in a beak mask obvz

Blessedly reuniting after 8+ grueling hours of not seeing your dog at all:

A maiden collapsing into an embrace with a disgruntled looking unicorn.

Listening to friends gripe about their fancy bitch return-to-office problems after weathering the pandemic in a customer service job:

Several skeletons servers at an old timey pub, because this woodcut was probably produced during a plague and history is stuck on repeat!!! don't blame me for being on the nose, it's history's fault!!!!

Whether you’re staying home another year or three or you’ve been working in the line of anti-mask weirdos since day one, we’re all united in one thing: laboring under capitalism during a global pandemic. So please, y’all — stay safe, mask up, and be kind to yourselves as we hang in there a little bit longer. Who knows — maybe someday soon we’ll finally get back to safely sharing enclosed space with strangers we barely tolerate.

CC Calanthe

CC Calanthe

If you prick your finger and write “Cat Fancy” on your mirror during a harvest moon, CC will appear behind you and make you put human clothes on your pets. CC is Head Crone in Charge at POMEgranate Magazine, as well as the co-host of Moon Podcast Power MAKE UP!!
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