This is one infection you DO want to get

I know you must be weary and tired of all the COVID-19 news you are seeing and listening to on that constantly blaring TV.

So, let me tell you about an infection that is a happy one. I call it the Writers’ Infection.

I first caught it about six years ago. Then, my son, Matt, in California got it, then son Chip, in China, got it and, maybe finally (but I hope not), my California son’s wife, Anna, my daughter-in-law, wound up with it, too.

Here’s what it is: I began writing in response to a little contest in the Tribune Chronicle in 2014. Mostly I wrote about good old Warren, when I caught the Writers’ Infection.

One column I wrote was about my California son Matt’s very first BMX (Bicycle Moto Cross) race in Harding Park in Girard — which he won. He was but 10 years old when he won that first race.

When Matt read about my description of it in my column that I sent him, he, now in his 40s, decided to try out BMX racing again. He since has won many trophies, which he has donated back to the tracks and, get this, he wrote about it in “Pull” magazine, a monthly magazine published by the American Bicycle Association that is devoted to the sport of BMX racing. He wears the “No. 1” plate on the front of his bike.

He has contracted the infection.

His story in “Pull” was called “Take the 1,000-Lap Challenge.” The goal was to hit 1,000 laps for both racing and practice. He exceeded that goal handily and, incidentally, I have placed a window sticker on my car that says, “2019 District Champ, USA BMX#1.”

Then, son Chip, a high school teacher in Putian, China, where he has the good fortune to teach English, math and physics to the brightest in Putian, wrote about his experiences with COVID-19. Some of what he wrote made it into the Tribune.

Little did we know back in mid-March, when he was describing the isolation, that the stay-at-home quarantine and confinement, the wearing of masks, the sudden deaths and the throes of cabin fever that this COVID-19 outbreak there in China would become a world pandemic involving us all.

He got the Writers’ Infection, too.

Then Anna, my California daughter-in-law, who is a mom and St. Helena council member, wrote a huge, well-researched front page story in the April 19 Napa Valley Register. It was about the 50th anniversary of Earth Day (April 22) that just happened to arrive during our unprecedented global health crisis. She hopes that we will carry forward the lessons and practices from our experiences during the shelter-in-place order to reduce our carbon footprint.

She also has acquired the infection.

So there you have it — four of us in the same family who have caught the Writers’ Infection. There is no vaccine for those of us who have caught it.

I don’t think anybody wants to have one.

Mumford, of Warren, can be reached at columns@tribtoday .com.


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