Friday, March 13th, 2020
Deaths with no funerals. Refrigerated trucks are reportedly arriving soon, to park outside hospitals to hold the dead.
Facts will be at play; they are long out of fashion here. Americans do not like the word no.
Things are changing fast.
Most of my staff have been laid off or are on reduced hours as of today.
The city is quiet. Even on a beautiful warm spring day, the usually noisy playground across the street is silent.
Earlier in the week, the impact of the virus was compared to 9/11. Now, by week’s end, it is being said to be “worse than 9/11.” Clearly, it will be much worse—in terms of the number of people it affects as well as its impacts on the economy, travel, everything. And, the effects of the virus will last longer and will have more impact across the country and around the globe.
Subway use is down almost 20%. Museums and libraries in Manhattan closed yesterday. Who knows when anything will reopen.
There are lines outside the big supermarkets in Manhattan—Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, and maybe others. The LifeThyme health food store on Sixth Avenue had no line. It had most foods on the shelves, though no meat or rice and only gluten-free pasta. Fresh foods and vegetables were in full supply. At the Union Square farmers’ market, there was plenty to buy, but fewer vendors. Maybe some vendors had left by the time I got there at 4:00. Had they already sold out, or did they never show up?