A Public Diary During the Coronavirus/COVID-19 Pandemic ~ Day 59

Joe Culhane
5 min readMay 14, 2020


These beauties pop up every year in our yard and continue to amaze me. Thank you, peonies.

One of the closest friends I ever had in this life,
a brother really, has a birthday on this day
he would be turning 39 if he were alive

I find it rather difficult at present
to settle into a vulnerable stance
of being in a space of acceptance

But here I am, surrendering to truth

Why do we find it so hard sometimes
to simply accept what is and then just be

No longer is one of my best friends here with me
to see and experience this strange new reality

But here I am, living through this journey

No amount of wishing will bring my buddy back
though on occasion we visit in dreams, thankfully

And now the path ahead
while often dark and bleak
must be faced and embraced
all of the good, and also, the bad

Let’s raise a glass,
celebrate what we can
give thanks for friends
and for our families

knowing none of this will last


What an amazing thing it is to be alive. Here I am on this Wednesday, May 13th, the year 2020. If it weren’t obvious from what I wrote above, I’m feeling the feels for my good man Brice Ohlsen who has now been on the other side for over 3 years now. He was the closest friend I ever had. There was a core group of buddies that he and I were a part of but for whatever reason, he and I connected the deepest. It was probably due to the fact that shortly after our friendship began, as in maybe a week or so later, we were both meditating at our respective houses, at the same time, working towards connecting in another realm which I’m pleased to share we succeeded in doing. We were what, 13 years old I believe? That sounds right. How far out is that?

Brice would be such a great companion in these bizarre ass times. He has such a unique perspective on the world and couldn’t help but being hilarious basically all the time. He was ridiculous in the very best ways. Man I loved that guy. The love never left to be fair. Tonight that core group I mentioned and a couple close orbiting friends all these many years will link up for a video chat to celebrate his birthday and life. That will be nice. It’s cool to have friends that go way way back. We go in waves of connecting frequently and then not and no matter the amount of time between these points of contact, it is always as if we’ve never missed a beat. We jump right back into that comfortable place of life long relationships.

My goodness how time doth fly. It’s now 11:08pm and I’m getting back to this after having that great hour and some change chat with my old buddies as we checked in and honored Brice. That filled my heart in a sweet way. I sure do miss B though.

And shortly after that chat I popped some popcorn and we sat down to watch the finale of Survivor, that started at 8pm and just wrapped up a few minutes ago. 3 hours of reality television has me all sorts of tuckered out. My darling wife for many years now has been trying to get me to apply to be on the show, I will admit, it looks like a whole lot of fun, especially all the challenges, I am not sure if I have it in me to do the social game and be as deceitful and conniving as these folks are. Maybe though. Either way, I’m not sure I’ll ever actually try out for the show, and while it may go on for another season or two, truth be told, the world post Covid, even while it’s still going strong for that matter, I don’t imagine it having shows like this any longer. Maybe some truly dystopian versions will come out though?

I do admit it I enjoy watching the show. It’s entertaining and man do those games look fun. But a world and reality with things like this show in it seem extravagant and beyond what we humans need to be focusing our energy on moving forward. That time has passed. We can perhaps create shows about survival and surviving as the world burns though. That’ll be important. Not to get too Debbie downer over here or anything but let’s be honest now, shit is getting fucked up and more so by the minute these days. The latest article I just read was about the wet-bulb temperature scenario that is already essentially here, previously it was scientifically projected that it will arrive at the end of this century but nope, we’ve already arrived at a place where it’s happening now. I’ll share a link to the article because it is worth reading. It’s a bit terrifying but it is important to understand what we are facing here. Acceptance of what is will help us to navigate and mitigate the worst outcomes if we address these circumstances and realities honestly.

And I’ll close with that for the night. It’s time to go slide into bed and get some rest. I would love to wrap this up with some sort of uplifting and positive news, hmm, let’s see… Uh, well, I suppose I can note that our yard and garden are doing well and the rains that have come are making all these plants very happy. I’ve read and can see that now more than ever folks are taking actions in their yards and spaces to grow food which is empowering. I’ve been connected with people and groups who share seeds and plants and all that good stuff for many years now though I can tell and indeed have read and participated in even more organized efforts to empower folks to grow their own food. I will have to share more about this at a later date because it is encouraging. Alas, sleep beckons me and I shall heed its call. A good nights rest is so important these days. I am beyond grateful to have a cozy bed and home at this time as I know there are so many whose circumstances are much less comfortable than mine.

May we continue to work towards the space in time where we support all humans and ensure their basic needs are met. That is a crucial first step towards a reality worth celebrating. Peace n’ love to all. May you sleep well tonight…



Joe Culhane

Writer, podcaster, international public speaker, Theater of the Oppressed actor, and lover of this precious intrinsically connected world we are all a part of.