Everywhere I go I find a pal
Peter Weinschenk, Editor, The Record-Review
The COVID-19 pandemic grinds on.
We live huddled in our homes now, talking to everybody on the phone and watching the news get grimmer by the day with infections, deaths and mass layoffs.
The tough part is that our “safer at home” existence could, according to some prognosticators, last through June.
Such a hibernation could be a financial disaster, a mental health calamity and a social catastrophe.
Worse yet, howover, it could become a hair apocalypse. With barbershops and hair salons closed during the pandemic, we have little choice but to hunker down and watch our locks get longer and longer.
Pretty soon, we will be reliving the Seventies. The women will all look like Farrah Fawcett. The men will resemble Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin. My only hope is that we don’t resort to disco dancing while solving a Rubik’s Cube puzzle.
Hair growth is no laughing matter. There are women of a certain age who depend on regular trips to the hair salon to keep gray roots from showing through. In many cases, these women depend on their looks to make a living. That means they may need to risk coloring their hair on their own. This is not a risk free proposition.
Thus it’s not enough to worry about an insidious, potentially lethal virus. We have to worry about our hair, too.
The newest fashion statement is the face mask and nitrile glove.
I have started to see these pop up in the local population as people are taking the COVID-19 pandemic as a serious risk.
In one memorable moment this past week, I saw an older married couple driving around in a minivan, each wearing a home-made, plaid cloth face mask.
Indeed, I have my own mask lovingly made by my wife, Susan. The mask was crafted out of an old, ripped cotton work shirt and elastic taken from an old, discarded fitted bed sheet.
I carry the mask in my jacket pocket, along with a single anti-bacterial plastic glove.
A person doesn’t know when you may be face to face with a spiky little virus.
There are all kind of social rules that govern situations where people meet. The handshake should be firm, but not overly firm. You can get close to somebody, but you can’t invade that person’s space. You should have some eye contact but not stare.
All of those rules have been shelved during the COVID-19 pandemic. That’s because we don’t meet in person anymore, just over the computer.
But I hope we get some social rules governing video meetings. People need to adjust video cameras so their heads are not cut off. They should turn lights on in the room they are in so people don’t glow like Casper the Ghost in their computer screen light. And people shouldn’t retire to the couch with their feet up just because they are a little bored with the proceedings.
C’mon people. Let’s have a little virtual etiquette.