Author Archives: dfgately

About dfgately

Middle School Principal Jericho, NY

My COVID-19 Diary: Did you read it yet?

There were newsstands on Flatbush Avenue that would get the papers around 11 o’clock so you could buy it on your way home from hanging out with your friends on a Saturday night. Back then, that was a trade secret reserved for “night owls”. Continue reading

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My COVID-19 Diary: What’s left to talk about?

Because we consume the same media,  Matt and I begin many conversations, “Don’t ruin it for me, I didn’t _____ “ (fill in the blank: “read the article”, “watch the game”, “see the movie”).  In Matt’s defense, he is fantastic at this. Continue reading

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My COVID-19 Diary: A routine on a Sunday?

This is an every week installment that features some individual who lives in the five boroughs, but usually, Manhattan, describing their routine on a Sunday. This section has spotlighted New Yorkers from every walk of life Continue reading

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My COVID-19 Diary: Friday un-Focused #7

You learn quickly when you’re an educator that kids think you’re old. I was 23 when I first started teaching, I thought I was pretty young, cool even. To my students, I may as well have been Methuselah. Continue reading

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My COVID-19 Diary: Writing. Who are your buddies?

I never realized how much the mere presence of other people in my life pushed me to accomplish more and meet the expectations the world has for me. It’s not like people passed me on the street and said, “Hey you, get back to work!” It’s just that you felt the presence of humanity and responded to it. Continue reading

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My COVID-19 Diary: Writing. “There’s always things.”

I once complained to my wife that I feared I might not have anything about which to write, she replied, “There’s things Don, there’s always things.”  One of the best pieces of advice I ever received about writing.  Continue reading

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My COVID-19 Diary: Writing. What works for me.

Avoid letting other tasks infringe upon them. If you’ve got kids, and writing takes place best when they are napping, do that. It’s unfortunate that the same machine that I use to write is also capable of delivering Twitter, Facebook, and Voxer. Continue reading

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My COVID-19 Diary: Why write?

If I have to give myself a grade for my performance during the quarantine, and why not, everyone seems to be grading themselves during this time, I’d score myself a fairly generous “C+”.   But one thing I have managed to do is publish a blog post every day during the quarantine. I’m happy to have done so for a variety of reasons. Continue reading

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My COVID-19: Friday un-Focused #6

We all have shining moments in our day. I love the notifications I get from Waze telling me how long it will take me to get to my next meeting if I leave the house now. “Scheduling meeting with Chad – Light Traffic – Leave now to be there in 27 minutes.”  During quarantine, I arrive at this meeting sitting at my dining room table via Google Meet in 27 seconds. Continue reading

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My COVID-19 Diary: Is it a snow day? “I don’t know”

Even before social media, a rumor like this would travel around my school in about eight minutes. You’d hear a collective cheer raised by the entire student body. But this doesn’t happen because I possess years of experience with “Snow Day Stone Face.” I really should play more poker, but I don’t allow gambling in the lunchroom. Continue reading

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