Esquire (USA)

Sal­va­tore Fer­rag­amo

- —Michael Se­bas­tian Bob Seger · Michael Jordan · Zoom Video Communications · John David Washington · Christopher Nolan · Dunkirk · Los Angeles · Esquire · Washington · Jay Inslee · Jimmy Fallon · Georgia · Detroit · Indiana · Salvatore Ferragamo · Bronx Zoo

TWO WEEKS INTO THE QUAR­an­tine, I lost it.

Early one evening, as I was do­ing the dishes, “Night Moves” came on the ra­dio. I have heard that song, by Bob Seger & the Sil­ver Bul­let Band, one million times, and I’ve en­joyed it each time. But on the one million and first, I cried. Not the sort of eye mist­ing that’s easy to ex­plain away. I openly wept. My wife walked into the kitchen to find that her hus­band had be­come the real-world avatar of the Cry­ing Michael Jor­dan meme. I wrapped my arms around her and let my body go heavy.

I know what you’re think­ing, and I agree: “Night Moves” is a ter­rific song. But it had never moved me to tears un­til that day. Not even close. This was grief. I was mourn­ing the one million times I’d heard “Night Moves” be­fore the virus came and changed every­thing. The song re­minded me of when things felt nor­mal, and I longed for that. But this was also cathar­sis. I was let­ting go of a by­gone world so that I could start mov­ing to­ward what­ever comes next.

Most fore­casts for the “new nor­mal” de­pict a world of masks and Plex­i­glas, six feet of sep­a­ra­tion and vig­i­lant hand­wash­ing. I’m ready for that, but I’m not look­ing for­ward to it. In­stead, since the night I sobbed over “Night Moves,” I’ve fo­cused on the mo­ments of joy that I hope will evolve into new tra­di­tions.

Be­fore the pandemic, not once did I eat a week­night din­ner with my two young daugh­ters, be­cause I re­turned from the of­fice too late. Now we eat to­gether ev­ery night. I want this to con­tinue.

Ev­ery week­end for the past sev­eral weeks, I’ve joined my col­lege friends on a Zoom call. We’d never done this pre­vi­ously. Now I can’t imag­ine a world with­out it.

I find strength in the mere thought of ob­serv­ing these rit­u­als af­ter the quar­an­tine lifts, and af­ter the virus is sub­dued.

The way we make a mag­a­zine has also changed. This issue’s cover sub­ject, John David Wash­ing­ton—who stars in the sum­mer’s most an­tic­i­pated block­buster, Christo­pher Nolan’s Tenet—was pho­tographed at home in Los An­ge­les by fam­ily friend Do­minic Miller (while ob­serv­ing all the nec­es­sary safety pro­to­cols, of course). In the ab­sence of a full crew, Do­minic cap­tured John David with a unique in­ti­macy, which you can see on page 44. Else­where in the issue, you’ll find pure es­capism—like the be­hindthe-scenes, hour-by-hour ac­count on page 82 of the night in Jan­uary 1985 when the decade’s great­est singers gath­ered to record “We Are the World.” (Most of them, any­way. Prince wasn’t there. Nor was Bob Seger.)

On page 54, we’ve re­vived and up­dated a clas­sic Esquire fea­ture, “What I’ve Learned.” This time it’s “What We’re Learn­ing”: twenty per­spec­tives from across the coun­try on how the virus has changed people. Par­tic­i­pants in­clude Wash­ing­ton gover­nor Jay Inslee, Jimmy Fal­lon, an ER physi­cian in Ge­or­gia, a wildlife vet­eri­nar­ian at the Bronx Zoo, and a fu­neral di­rec­tor out­side Detroit. Per­haps the most res­o­nant words come from an eight-year-old from In­di­ana named Katie. “Mostly, I’ve been sad,” she said, “but then I get re­ally happy.”

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