I whispered to a guy I knew who was bagging at the supermarket, asking him to let me know when the toilet paper truck came in, ready to slip him a fin for the info. It already came, he said, and told me how to buy some rolls stashed behind the customer service counter.

I drove into the woods to get a bootleg haircut. I bought eggs at a bakery.

This is our way of life these days. Or should I say, was. The ropes of pandemia are finally loosening up. If all goes as planned, we’ll be eating in restaurants, getting legal haircuts, drinking at bars and going to the Y by mid-July.

And I know everywhere I’ve been during these dark months, because even before they told us to, I kept a corona-era diary.

I know I left the house 37 times in March and visited 22 different places. In April I went out 44 times to 31 different places. To say I was locked down may be an overstatement.

Where’d I go?

To supermarkets, bakeries, fish stores, liquor stores and pharmacies. I also went to the post office, to the UPS store, a hardware store, gas stations, a flower shop and various restaurants and drive-thrus for take-out.

I went to the tire place to get a flat fixed, to the eye doctor for a new pair of glasses, and a plumber came in to replace a broken garbage disposal. I even went to a friend’s house to shoot pool.

Always with a mask. Always at a safe distance. And I closed my home to just about everyone.

I also worked the polls during the March election and a week later sat in a jury pool in New Bedford.

I even played racquetball with three other sweaty guys in the confines of a small court. Of course, this was before anyone knew how serious it was all going to get.

This Monday I’d like to have a little family picnic outside. It’s bring your own chair and maybe your own food. We’ll see …

Saturday sermon

“We think too much and feel too little.”

— Charlie Chaplin

I didn’t know that

Know what other paper product besides toilet paper we’re running out of? Sympathy cards.

So you’re so smart …

Last week I bet you couldn’t tell me why we abbreviate pound with “lb.”

“Boston Public Schools education to the rescue again! This time three years of Latin, before I escaped the confines of Latin School (all male) for my local junior high (co-ed),” writes Doug Wynne. “’Lb’ stands for libra, the Latin word for scales, which figure prominently in the zodiac sign of the same name.”

It also means pound in Latin, writes Dan West.

Adds Doug: “Maybe if you spell Trumper as trumper, people might understand that it is simply a description for jingoistic sheep/lemmings and not meant to be specifically disrespectful to you-know-whom.”

Now, I bet you can’t tell me which of these the current coronavirus isn’t: contagious, living or novel.

Columns for Kids

Donations can be sent to The Greater Attleboro Area Council for Children, PO Box 424, North Attleboro, MA 02761. Since we are still running above my monthly goal of $150, I say: Thanks. See you next week.

ORESTE P. D’ARCONTE is a former publisher of The Sun Chronicle. Reach him at opd999@gmail.com

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