CategoryCoronavirus Diary

Pandemic Puzzling

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With the pandemic raging and many people staying home when possible, jigsaw puzzles have become a popular pastime. There’s even been a shortage of them. I’ve been doing jigsaw puzzles for years, with both trepidation and determination. Do jigsaw newbies really know what they’re in for? The Hero’s Journey Whenever I work on a puzzle, especially those 1,000-piecers, it’s like I’m undergoing the...

Dreaming of COVID

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Just a few short weeks ago I wrote about how COVID was getting inside of me and impacting my fiction writing. Admittedly, having COVID infiltrating my thoughts when writing isn’t nearly as bad as getting the virus itself, which I’ve been fortunate enough to avoid. So far. But now COVID has found another way in. Last night I dreamed about COVID for the first time. I was hungry and in...

A New Game I Want to Play

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It’s the day after Thanksgiving and I need to get moving so I head out on my bike because my legs are too tired and toes too achy for running today. I ride as far as the town park and pass by the tennis courts where I play during the summer. The courts are full of pickleball players. I stop and watch. I’ve never played, but I pick up most of the tactics and rules watching the four players on the...

It Gets Inside You

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I haven’t tested positive for COVID yet, but it’s gotten inside me in other insidious little ways. Here’s a first-time occurrence for me: I’m at my desk novel writing, deep in a chapter. I pause. Part of the work of storytelling is asking questions: Is this authentic? Could this happen? Is this behavior believable? These questions came to mind and I’m suddenly wondering whether my characters...

The Savoring Never Ends

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I savored shaving. I savored the wind chimes. Today, the raspberry gets its turn. I learned about the importance of savoring, early in the era of COVID-19, during this much-needed and free online course at Yale, “The Science of Well-Being.” This is my second crop of raspberries this year. The first crop I greatly savored, every afternoon in my yard, peering into the bushes and parting...

How COVID Has Impacted Me So Far

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I add these posts under the category “Coronavirus Diary” but I don’t write much about the impact of COVID-19. Turns out it’s just one of many negative impacts on our lives these days. I couldn’t have a blog category for each misfortune–the list would be too long. And the impact on me has been a lot less than it’s been on millions of others. So I should...

Thinking of Ice Rinks in July

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Maybe I’m motivated to write about winter because I’m sweating through the hottest, most humid summer I can ever remember, and I haven’t had a chance to swim once. Not once. And I had another reminder of winter when the New York Times, in an article about climate change, pointed to a scientific study about backyard ice rinks. Who knew backyard ice rinks were the stuff of science? The research...

Six-Word COVID-19 Stories

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I’ve got a thing for the six-word story form. I wrote six-word memoirs. Here are some six-word coronavirus stories. Locked downOpened upLocked again Craved hug,settled for a nod No mask?Don’t tread on me. More idiocy, more cases, more deaths Social distancing comes natural to me Bartender! A double martini!Sorry, students United States leadsin COVID-19.Sadly. Sanitizer takes over from...

I Feel Bad About Restaurants

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To go out to dinner as a child was a rare and special occasion for my family, even when we went to the ubiquitous Your Host, a chain of 31 mediocre family restaurants in the Buffalo area. Fish fries and toast points. Yum! As we got older, into our teen years, my parents would take us out to dinner to a nice restaurant once a year, so we could get a little culture and practice our manners. These...

THE PLAGUE, Albert Camus

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No longer were there individual destinies; only a collective destiny, made of plague and the emotions shared by all. I probably would not have chosen to read “the Plague” if we were not in the grips of the COVID-19 pandemic and had I not found the novel on a bookshelf. But it seemed an appropriate read, tucked between my rereading of the most important novels in my life. I had just...

THE WORLD ACCORDING TO GARP, John Irving

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During the period of COVID-19, I’ve been re-reading novels from a list of twenty-five of The Most Important Novels in My Life. Next up: THE WORLD ACCORDING TO GARP. Published in 1978, when I was in college, the first time I attempted to read Garp I put it down. A few years later I started reading it again, and this time I couldn’t put it down. What changed? Sometimes you’re just...

Today I Flew the Flag, Not Upside Down

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Julia asked if I was putting the flag out today. I realized I should. I flew it for one reason only: It’s Memorial Day and I wanted to honor those who died while serving in the U.S. military. They deserve this honor. Otherwise, I haven’t been flying the flag. The last time I did, in 2016, I flew the flag upside down as a call of distress. I got some pushback over that. I’ve been...

Memorial Day 2020

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May 24, 2020. Memorial Day Weekend. This is the front page of the New York Times today: 100,000 thousand dead so far in the United States from COVID-19. So far. The sub-head to the story states, “They Were Not Simply Names on a List. They Were Us.” There will be more deaths. Probably many thousands more. Compare this number to the number of U.S. deaths in war. Almost twice as many...

COVID-19 Reaches the Cottage

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My calendar has been a lot less full these days. It’s the nature of my lifestyle during COVID-19 and my life in general as a writer: I have unstructured time that I use the best I can. Today I had an alert from my calendar: this is the weekend I’m supposed to open the family cottage. The cottage is an inherited asset shared among my siblings and is a lifelong gathering and living...

Croquet: Sport in the Time of Pandemic

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The tennis nets around town have been taken down. Solitary running and my home gym set up only goes so far. I need competition. I need a sport to play, one conducive to social distancing. Croquet anyone? I have an old backyard croquet set I inherited from my father. It’s very ordinary, but I guess you could still call it an heirloom. The mallet heads are grass-stained and dented, and you...

David Klein

Published novelist, creative writer, avid reader, discriminating screen watcher.

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