A Wandering Mind In A Not Normal Time
My Pandemic Journals
“Good luck” . . . not the normal farewell one expects following a night of ale-fueled, if trace-anxious, camaraderie. But then, normal was no longer a thing.
From March 18 – July 4, 2020, I kept two running journals documenting the initial wave of the C19 pandemic. What started as tense topical rants and past-present weave-togethers spun out through the vacuum of those early days, evolved into deep-dive cross-examinations of myself, my home country, and humanity. Throwing my lived experience and those I was in contact with into a thought-blender overflowing with daily headlines, scientific articles, and as much historical background as I could lay my hands on, I began to hone in on definitive themes to go with each day. There was much redundancy, the days and themes often recursive and repetitive. But, those were often redundant, often recursive, repetitive days. That said, there was plenty of unique mulling too. For this was all new and it was blowing the doors off all that I did know. As if for the first time, I could see just how interconnected all things were. I saw with clear eyes what the pandemic was laying bare in our national lives, how an epic crisis and the tidal weather of America’s lurching response to it was dialing into sharp relief just how f-d up our “normal” had really been. It was clear there was much work to do. It was also crystal clear that what I was documenting was a pivot-point instant, a moment that was historical just as soon as it hit the page. Entries that start off wandering about the whirling immediacy of the moment widen in aperture and coalesce into a set of daily rallying cries for how we push through. Only two questions remained: Would we? Could we?
This project would push to 70+ entries before all was said and done. Here are a few . . .
Journal 1 : March 18 - May 14, 2020
Journal 2 : May 15 - July 4, 2020
Sample Submission Sets (PDF)
(4-5 entries per set)