my pandemic diary didn’t have enough pages

This week I filled the last page of a slim diary I bought from Walgreens back in April thinking, “This should last me the whole quarantine.” It didn’t.

But I found it useful to freewrite for a few minutes each day, to discuss with myself whatever was on my mind and have a moment to spell things out. The downside is that I think it burned whatever confessional energy I might have normally put toward the blog posts. So I’m starting another journal, I’ll write daily entries by hand, but I’m gonna have to come up with some system for not disclosing too much in that little private paper medium.

            Cuz then I’ll have nothing left for the site.

            Or maybe I should just transcribe the entries

            The “diary” that I keep here on the blog is necessarily more formal than the stream-of-consciousness stuff I was scribbling in the journal (the hardcopy journal from Walgreens)–and there was a lot of stream-of-consciousness scribbling, holy shit, I think it’s something to do with the isolation, the quarantine, it seems to be opening some kind of artery into my unconscious or whatever. One thought links to another and that to another and that to another. It almost feels like, if practiced responsibly, quarantine could work as some kind of mental health practice. I think there was just so little stimulation from the outside world that my unconscious was like, “While I’ve got you here, let’s revisit the Bad Things.”

From the diary of street artist Phlegm.

            And it was helpful. I think I worked through some interesting personal shit. Alas, those kinds of entries are hardly readable (broken sentences and references to things without precedent), so I can’t put them on here.

If the journal affords me a slight uptick in mental health, but impedes my blogging, I’m prepared to say that I’d rather have an interesting blog than a cloudless mind.

            How about we cement a promise here, though: if I’m still alive and working on this blog int en years, I’ll transcribe and publish my entire 2020 quarantine journal.

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