June 6, 2021

John Mosbaugh
5 min readMay 24, 2022


Alameda Point today. Been over 15 months.

Walking up the P street at Alameda Point Antique Faire, checking out the wares. We’d had a nice breakfast and coffee from one of the trucks. Good times finding some great vintage Christmas stuff. So much Christmas vintage. One of the vendors told me with a mortician smile that it was a banner year for estate sales, so much stuff being passed on in 20 and 21.

I was surprised by how many people were wearing masks outside. Everyone. This was before the Omicron variant. I had my mask on my chin until I’d go into the tables because if they were wearing a mask I’m not going to be that guy, so mask it or casket and don’t be a dick.

We ran into a friend and he and the Bird were talking in the parking lot row. Then this dude up the way sees me and decides to approach me out there by myself, older guy, grey beard, black tank top, really bountiful black eyebrows with piercing eyes. He had a pirate vibe, and he saw me with my chin mask and held up his arms, started walking towards me and announced “What booster are you on? 100? 200? Do you even know what’s in IT?”

So yea, that’s looking like some fun. Let’s interact. I’ve seen variants of this my whole life.

I met him a few steps before he got to me and smiled and said hey man. How cool is it to encounter this person all out there and obviously he’d decided I was someone he wanted to talk with. We don’t encounter too many loud and proud “pureblood” people here in Alameda County out in the wild.

Turns out he was a friend of the friend Jenny was talking with on the road and his name was Carl. I asked how he was doing and he told me he was absolutely GREAT as he raised his arms to the sky. He said HOW ARE YOU? HOW’S THE VACCINE TREATIN’ YOU MAN? and I told him I was great. I leaned towards him and did the jab jab jab motion on my left arm saying, “I LOVE the shot MAN. Give me all you got! ALL THE SHOTS!” He smiled and I smiled and he calmed down a little and we had a conversation as my friend’s other friend walked up.

Other friend was wearing a mask and a hipster hat. He and Carl and I started talking, exchanging pleasantries and realizing we had a mutual friend. Carl told me the vaccine was POISON MAN and he’d had COVID at LEAST THREE TIMES and each time it got easier. He said “Yea that first time was rough, I had a fever in the hundreds for a long time and it kicked my ass, but the next time it wasn’t as bad.”

I asked if he lost his sense of smell or taste and he said, “FUCK MAN, ha ha I can’t smell or taste ANYTHING anymore.”

I gently lifted my mask up over my nose and my friend’s friend did the same and we took a couple steps back and I laughed and said, “Carl, you do you man. Nice to meet you.”

Carl lifted his arms over his head again, did a 180 turn about, then turned back to me and slowly and dramatically lowered his arm my direction. I shook his hand as he stared into my eyes with those dark eyebrows, good looking man, smiling and I could tell he’d had some quick unexpected weight loss, around the face and on that arm, and there were all kinds of bees fluttering behind his pupils but I’ve seen that look before, that insane shaman sense that’s usually good but not always, then he froze, looked up P street and spied someone up ahead he wanted to go have an encounter with and he was off.

Carl’s friend shook his head, nodded and said nice to meet you as he followed Carl up the street and I watched them disappear into the crowd. I broke out the purell and dosed the hand we’d shook with out of habit then rejoined the Bird and our friend.

It was a great day out there.

I can’t wait for next month! I was away this time…