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Birthday bash something to write about

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It is one of those blank page, blank mind days. I keep remembering that William Shakespeare wrote “King Lear” while he was quarantined during the plague and I keep waiting for my muse to come and fill me with pandemic inspiration. Not happening.

It’s not so much that there is nothing out there worth writing about as it is that so many people are saying so much about what is going on in the world today that there is very little fresh and new to say. Besides, the people who agree with me are already thinking what I might say and the people who don’t agree with me just get mad if I say it.

I could share my views on people with guns walking around downtown Raleigh, Sen. Richard Burr’s short-lived beard, Obamagate and Sen. Mitch McConnell’s classless comment, the beautiful but sad pictures of empty cities, Kelly Clarkson without makeup, the return of the Bundesliga, online learning, the social distancing of my summer clothes with buttons far apart, or freshly picked snow peas from the garden — but I won’t.

I’ll just share a very personal observation: I have wonderful friends! I went to a socially distanced, under-10-people bring-your-own lunch picnic in a friend’s spacious yard. When I arrived, I was amazed to discover a beautiful pseudo cake covered with flowers, happy red and orange cupcakes, balloons blowing in the breeze, a banner on the front of a car, and assorted cards and bags and baubles — for me.

My birthday comes amid a tsunami of family birthdays and they are all celebrated together, which is festive and fine, but it was lovely to have a party of my very own. It wasn’t even a milestone birthday; just one more in an ever-mounting parade of them, so I had no expectations of any special notice. Instead, my friends made me a pandemic memory to cherish.


Jean McCamy is a Wake Forest artist.

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