A Pandemic Diary

Sunday Morning-  Took a brisk walk to a popular local park to grab some pics of all the people gathered there so that I could then shame them on social media. I was shocked by how many idiots (Covidiots I now call them!) were there and it was almost impossible to maintain my social distance while I was taking my photos. Some of them even had the temerity to blissfully film their experience as if it were a family vacation. People!

Sunday Afternoon- Intended to go to Save On Foods for grocery items but the line up was at least ten people long and I’m not prepared to waste my valuable time like that no matter what the situation.

Sunday Evening- As there are no Whitecaps games right now I have decided to return to Football Manager and have taken charge of Tottenham Hotspur (I have to be better than Mourinho!). It’s been some years since I played the game but it shouldn’t be too difficult to get back into the swing of it.

Monday Morning- Went to Whole Foods for my essential morning croissant and was appalled at how lax they are in enforcing the “15 items only” rule in the so called express lane. Those rules are there for a reason and part of me wished that Jeff Bezos was as strict with this policy as he is with not allowing his warehouse workers to take bathroom breaks. Come on Jeff! Put your foot down here too!

Monday Afternoon- Went to the liquor store and discovered a line up of at least twenty people. But these are exceptional times and I was happy to wait my turn.

Monday Evening- I think it would be easier to fill out a visa form to become a performance artist in North Korea than it is to understand the new FM game! Eventually I handed all duties apart from selecting the match day eleven to my staff and can now concentrate on developing my team. It’s disappointing how many of them already seem to be plotting against me but I am confident I can win them over.

Tuesday Morning- A most distressing incident happened to me on my morning walk. A frail old lady ahead of me was using one of those walker contraptions that seem to be very popular with people her age when she suddenly stumbled and fell into the road. The strict social distancing guidelines meant that I was unable to physically help her up but I did take the time to sit on a nearby bench and shout both encouragement and advice to her.  But after about ten minutes it became clear she would be stuck there for a while so, in one final gesture of goodwill, I tentatively kicked her walker a little closer to her head and wished her good luck. I didn’t hear exactly what she mumbled in reply, but I can only assume it was her heartfelt gratitude.

Tuesday Afternoon- I have now mastered the art of slaloming down the street avoiding all other people to ensure the correct social distance is always maintained. I’ve also taken to speaking inner commentary to myself as I pretend to be a slower version of Alphonso Davies weaving his way through a series of hapless defenders. Perhaps I should try to put some of these commentaries on Twitter? They do seem to be very popular.

Tuesday Evening- I have always liked Son Heung-min as a player. But it goes to show that you don’t really know anybody until you meet them because he has been the lead instigator in trying to turn the rest of the Tottenham squad against me and if it were not for the intervention of Harry Kane (clearly a gentleman and all around good guy) I would be fearing for my job. It has been a solid if unspectacular start to the season but I am confident that once the players and the fans (who, bafflingly, also seem to have issues with me) get to know me and my style of play then all will be well.

Wednesday Morning- I use to get quite disturbed by strange dreams, but in the current situation they represent my only meaningful chance to travel anywhere outside a two block radius of my home. So it was nice to spend some time at Disneyland last night, even if the trip did end with me sitting helplessly at the front of the Space Mountain ride as it hurtled into the roof of my childhood home. How fascinating the human mind can be!

Wednesday Afternoon- Spent a few hours unsubscribing from all the companies who have sent emails telling me how they are dealing with the Covid-19 crisis. It was great to take time doing something really useful and it’s nice to know that I won’t be one of those people who look back at the lock down and wonder why they wasted it doing nothing important.

Wednesday Evening- Tottenham’s home form has been poor and the players are still constantly complaining (apart from Harry Kane who told me today that he appreciates how I have helped improve his game) but a 3-0 home victory over Juventus in the Champions League feels like a corner has been turned. We will be moving up the table before we know it!

Thursday Morning- I was furious to find a stranger sitting on my favourite park bench this morning! I appreciate these are trying times for everybody so I said nothing. But we surely have to maintain some degree of social order and respect if we are to get through this? I trust my look of contempt sent him home a chastened man.

Thursday Afternoon- I really enjoy it when the sirens sound on my street at seven o’clock each evening and we all get to bang pots and pans to support our wonderful health care workers. But I fear there has been a subliminal side effect because, on my afternoon constitutional today, I found myself standing by the side of the road and involuntarily applauding as a fire truck loudly announced its arrival at a quite significant house fire. I can see how the fleeing inhabitants may have taken offence at my cheers, but was there really any need for such terrible language?

Thursday Evening- The impressive victory over Juventus was followed by a dispiriting 2-0 home loss to Bournemouth which was then followed by a crushing 4-0 defeat at Anfield which, mea culpa, was not helped by me accidentally putting striker Lucas Moura in goal. Even Harry Kane was disappointed in me (although he remained a model of civility throughout). With crushing inevitability the board announced that I had been fired with immediate effect. But I am not disheartened! This is all part of the learning curve of being a top coach and I am already applying for other positions and am hopeful of landing the current vacancy at Southampton within days.

Friday-Slept all day.

Saturday Morning- These are the days that I really miss going to the Whitecaps game and seeing all my friends. The guy outside the stadium who shouts at me to tell me when to get my ticket out. The security guard who tells me to calm down when I feel a player isn’t tracking back properly and even the beer server who asks me for ID every single time even though she clearly remembers me. I hope to see them all again soon.

Saturday Afternoon- Read through my first few diary entries and am convinced that this was a good idea! It gives a real insight into how people today are feeling and will hopefully be of real use to future historians. Maybe I should go by the pseudonym Lil Pepys?

Saturday Evening- I have been unable to land any of the top jobs and I can’t help wondering if Son Heung-min has been spreading lies about me. Eventually I was forced to accept the coaching job with bottom tier team Newport County. I have no interest in them as a club, I don’t know any of their players and I certainly don’t want to live there after the bright lights of London. My introductory press conference was a desultory affair as a local hack asked me about my style of play and ambitions for the club. I responded with cliches and  indifference and he seemed dissatisfied. I know how he feels! Perhaps I should delete the whole thing and start again?


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