Spread the Thanks

Plates, silverware, and glassware shining bright,
Table all set, but no one to invite
To prevent a Covid-19 super spreader event,
Though feeling much discontent.

No great expectations this year;
Just a simple meal and tall glass of beer.
Side benefits to self-imposed quarantining —
Not doing massive cooking and cleaning.

Though most grateful to have technology
To spread my wishes and apology:
Sorry to say from miles away,
Have a Happy Thanksgiving Day!

Covid-19 Norm: Social Dining at a Distance

Mario and Claire pick up their Sunday Special lunch order at Shay Grill’s curbside. They drive to a neighboring office park, where they easily spot their friends already set up in folding chairs next to their SUV in the wide expanse of the empty parking lot. Roger and Ann wave to them.

Mario parks about twelve parking spaces down from where Roger and Ann are situated. He and Claire position their folding chairs to face their friends. Claire snaps her finger just before she sits down, remembering to grab the bullhorn from the trunk of the car.

“We’re so glad to see you both. How are you guys doing?” Claire calls out through the bullhorn.

Ann picks up their bullhorn and responds, “We’ve been looking forward to finally having lunch with you and Mario.”

Images: Pixabay

Unmasked

Rayburn rose from the dead and donned his mask. Halloween night! Time to party with his deceased neighbors. Long time no see. He shuffles to the Chambers mausoleum, thinking how ornate it looks compared to the Drakes’ crypt from last year’s bash. The sound of bones clacking discordantly reached his ears as he entered the marble structure. Rayburn immediately recognizes Theodora, even with her mask on, who welcomes him with a request to dance.

The evening wore on with much animation as everyone had been still for so long. Suddenly, someone screeches with alarm. Quiet befalls the group as all eyes turn to Jack O’Lantern, whose mask has somehow slipped off and is dangling from one ear. In all the years they’ve held their annual gathering, they’ve never had such carelessness happen. It was one rule they’ve all agreed to – “Wear a mask and hide the decay; for today is when we can forget we’ve not passed away.” But seeing the slitted nostrils and jagged mouth jolted them to realize such visages of horror also lurk under their own masks.

The Strain trilogy by Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan (a trilogy blurt)


Thanks to fellow blogger Lashaan, I became aware of this book trilogy written by one of the writers/directors I follow – Guillermo del Toro. With the first book published in 2009, The Strain, followed by The Fall, and ending with The Night Eternal, the series echoes what’s happening today in the context of a life-changing pandemic.  However, other than the mention of mask wearing and growing absenteeism in the workplace, that’s where the similarity ends between the present reality and the story. The trilogy takes us through progressively deteriorating apocalyptic conditions with little hope for a cure to a virus that stems from biblical times. As the storyline unfolds throughout the series, we learn more about how vampirism has become mythologized. It’s a horror story full of gore, action, and imagination worthy of a triple read during these Covid times.