By Devin Peacock
Queerantine Stories are personal essays or artistic pieces about the queer and trans community during the Coronavirus Pandemic. We hope their stories will help show their varied experiences in different communities within the Jersey City area and throughout the nation.
Like many of us, when the news first broke about the epidemic happening in China, I wasn't personally interested. Concern grew, my life as a performer continued, and I thought to myself “Well, it's not here so...” Then, all of that changed.
I use payments from acting, hosting, singing, and dancing gigs to sustain myself. On March 13th, I was suddenly flooded with phone calls and emails telling me that many of my gigs were being cancelled or rescheduled for later dates when I was lucky. All of my acting auditions/appointments were cancelled, and all of the potential gigs for my cover band MXTAPE were now put on hold.
This was rough. I had spent my adult life grinding and hustling for new opportunities to perform, and advance my career. Now, everything has been put on hold for an indefinite amount of time. This was terrifying.
To combat the circumstances, I decided to treat the quarantine like it was only for a few weeks. This wasn't the first time I had been without gigs, so I could use that time to be productive in other ways. I started writing songs. I worked out at home instead of the gym. I even grew out my “quarantine beard”.
These productive activites lifted my spirits, but the reality was that the immediate future was still uncertain. After a while I found myself fighting against the fear, frustration, and uncertainty of this pandemic. My finances are an important element of everyone’s life, but because of the circumstances, I wasn't certain when I would see another check. This was terrifying.
Weeks later than my friends, I finally received my stimulus check. I filed for unemployment. These gave me some piece of mind. I began to realize that regardless of what my financial status is, I should still consider myself very lucky. Countless people across America lost their lives. With each passing day, I saw bad news for many of my friends. People close to me were infected themselves or lost someone they love to this disease.
I'm choosing to stay positive. I will not give into despair. I have set a few goals for myself during this quarantine, and I continue to fight for them. When the new normal begins, I hope to have as many new skills as possible to take this world by storm, and hopefully don't have to wear a face mask!
Devin Peacock is a charming chic MC/Host who also uses acting, dancing and singing to entertain others. Aside from formerly hosting with Radio Disney NY, he also hosts private parties for various clientele within the tri-state area. While self-producing original content independently, he has been a part of numerous film, commercial and tv productions including Facebook Portal, Nissan, Blue Host, The View, As Seen on TV, Santander Bank, “Girl Code” on MTV, “Fatal Encounters” on Discovery ID, “Celebrity Ghost Stories” on Lifetime's LMN Channel, etc. This is also enhanced by his years of experience as a singer in live shows as well as currently being a singer/dancer in the 90s/00s cover band, known as MXTAPE.