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A Return to Normalcy

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I watched the Inauguration of Joseph Robinette Biden Jr from a small window on my laptop while I manned the controls of a Zoom call. While I don’t see President Biden as some savior, seeing a person who can hold a coherent thought did give me a twinge of hope – no matter how small – for this country again. In the first hours of presidency, Biden began overturning Trump’s bigoted legacy. Whispers of the impending impeachment of former President Donald J. Trump littered the pundits’ commentaries as they covered the Inauguration. While this is the only action to take on the former president, January 20, 2021 was a day meant to celebrate the transition of power from one president to the next; however, Trump and family decided to leave with their tails between their legs and not attend the event.

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The Midnight Disease

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The problem, if anything, was precisely the opposite. I had too much to write…

Michael Chabon, Wonder Boys

Have you ever gone back to read something you wrote in the past? Something at least decade ago, when the world felt like it had more promise. This is something I do whenever I’m stuck, which these days feels like a constant for me. Blame it on the distraction, or blame it on my inability to focus on any one thing without my mind bouncing around walls of my cerebrum.

As a writer – and I use this phrase rather loosely these days – I’m not allowed to believe in writer’s block. They pretty much beat it out of you in college creative writing courses. And any other writer that I know tells me the same thing. I haven’t written a short story in some time. The last thing I wrote – aside from blog posts – was a revision of the gravediggers story, something I’ve been toying around since the Bush administration.

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Tweet loudly; throw a temper tantrum for an election lost

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I stayed up late, not sure when I finally knocked out. The TV remained on throughout the night, a habit I picked up whenever there’s a major storm – natural or political. The volume remained just above a whisper, allowing me to perk up whenever an important update is made. An anxiety boiled in my stomach, almost reminiscent of the 2016 election. The feeling ate at me, no matter how much I tried to deny it. (I’ve written this before, haven’t I?)

Sitting at work, I had my computer open to MSNBC, Twitter, and FiveThirtyEight. My coworker approached me, asking if everything was all right.

“I’m worried, you know?”

She nodded, though misunderstood the source of my anxiety. Covid-19 has run our lives these last several months, and now the library was on the brink of reopening our department, spiking our risk of exposure.

“No, not that. Well that too, but this. All of this,” I responded.

After all, it was Tuesday, November 3, 2020. “I’m not going to get any sleep,” I admitted. “Going to need loads of coffee tomorrow. This whole week, maybe.”

“He’s going to win,” she said. “I can feel it.”

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Giving Money to Strangers

After watching the shit-show that was the first Presidential Debate, I visited the Joe Biden campaign site and donated money. At the age of 37, this was the first time I’ve ever donated money to a presidential or any political campaign. During Obama’s first campaign, I didn’t have a steady job, working odd writing gigs here and there. For his 2012 re-election, I was working part-time and a new father. I don’t want to talk about Hillary Clinton – I voted for her and believe she would have handled the position better than Donald Trump has and I’ll leave it that.

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Dear Friend,

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I’m not sure if this will letter will reach you, but I hope it finds you in better spirits than my assumptions do. Understand that I’m not a stranger to wanting to vanish. I know the path to isolation well enough that walking there is second nature, if not my first. Like all creatures of this world, we hide when injury falls upon us. And what greater injury than that of bruised pride?

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