Coronavirus Chronicles / Reactions in a Time of Plague

May 26, 2020

An Ongoing Series

 

 A compendium of thoughts, reflections, asides or just whatever

 from a variety of writers, artists & everyday folks, during the Pandemic

 

Survival in Nature

by Dave Moriaty

 

From here, the city no longer roars. At night the frogs sing, uninterrupted by sirens. There is the whistle of a distant freight, then just the insect noise and the fireflies.  

 

In the archives, there is a picture of the Congress Avenue bridge shortly after it was completed in 1910. A horse and wagon, two pedestrians, a bicyclist. Last week at 11 am I drove across and there was just me and a bicyclist.

 

Late at night sometimes you hear the mad max

crazies screaming across the bridge and up 183 taking advantage of the deserted road. The cops have clocked more people at over 100 mph than in history. 

 

(Photo: Chris Brown)

 

Motorcyclists die and car crazies sometimes survive. A BMW rolled at high speed when it went off the road and was finally stopped by a tree. The driver, who was wearing his seat belt, survived. His girlfriend who was not, did not. She was ejected 40 feet before the tree. The driver tested positive for alcohol and meth, the breakfast of champions.

 

It’s a wonder any men survive to senescence. I briefly owned a Honda Superhawk when I was stationed in South Carolina. I remember maxing it out at 105 on the two-lane blacktop when any stationary object you might encounter is instant death, not to mention an armadillo, or a pebble in the road. 

 

Paradoxically, there seems to be fewer wild beasts in our micro wilderness. I guess now the humans are gone, the beasts have more room. No more coyotes, just some herons and a pair of wood ducks.

 

When civilization roars back, it’s gonna be really loud.

 

______________________________

 

Dave Moriaty (c) 2020 

 

Dave Moriaty was the Managing Editor of the original Austin Sun from 1974-1977.

He lives in Austin overlooking a river, and observes its patterns from his deck.

 

 

 

 

Michael Ventura to James Medlin: 

 

The answer to everything these days seems to be: We are all connected so stay isolated.

 

Where's Jean Paul Sartre when he's needed? NOT playing baseball, that's where.

 

Yet baseball remains the most grounded and comforting of all absurdist philosophies: No matter how badly you're losing, you still get a ninth inning. No one can run out the clock on you. Ninth inning that is the height of human philosophic depth.

 

Yours ever, that great infield hitter, positioned somewhere to the left of second base,

 

Michael Vincent Ventura

 

Medlin back:

 

Through depressions and World wars, baseball has always been America’s glue. It’s a distraction uniquely American in origin. And even though we live too fast these days for it to be the most popular sport, it is still the one sport where we stand up and sing about crackerjacks. Here’s hoping I can take someone out to the ball game real soon. 

 

Have been contemplating the eternal mystery of why tea remains hot longer than coffee does. I considered many factors - density, color, climate, chemical balance. I stayed up for days sampling both products over and over and over. At last I discovered ... oh dagnabbit, I can’t remember!

 

James Medlin

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

From Enrico Deaglio in Turin, Italy (virus numbers changed to reflect most current data as of 4/04/2020):

 

Friday night Italy reached 119,827 positives, and we had 58,773 deaths, 760 in the last 24 hours. Two thirds of the cases and the deaths are in Lombardy, in the towns of Bergamo and Brescia, heart of steel and mechanical industry. There is a kind of psychosis for an incoming “battle of Milan”, that means that if the virus spreads in the metropolis, the health system is going to collapse.
Fact is that the ratio of deaths in Lombardy is abnormal, more than 10 per cent of the positives. No sure explanation. Old population; pollution that has weakend the lungs of the Lombards, insufficient protection of doctors and nurese who have indeed helped spreading the disease Density of population, no clear statistics. Autopsies are not performed, bodys are carried away by army trucks and cremated outside Lombardy. Surely one of the sources of contageon has been the football match between Atalanta (the Bergamo team) and Valencia (Spain) for the Champion League. It was attended by 40.000 thousand supporters in a crowded stadium. Nobody dared to stop it because it was the first time Atalanta played the Champions league. So, Atalanta won 4 to 1, and probably caused some thousands of deaths.
Nobody thinks the peak is going to be reached soon. At least two more weeks.

People are behaving well, but surely the phase of singing from the balconies is finished. 71 per cent have faith in the government (coalition of PD and 5 Stelle). Populist propaganda (Lega di Matteo Salvini) has nothing to say. Can’t blame immigrants. Alas for them, no immigrants are involved. Berlusconi took his private jet and flew to his villa in Nice with his new mistress, 30 years old.
Industry has stopped. The food chain is still working. Supermarkets are still full of food. Roma and the South of Italy still seem less affected.
Torino is desert, everything is closed. 

 

 

 

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