When it comes to precautions, why does it feel like most people have an all-or-nothing mentality? For myself, the reopening process has many smaller steps. For myself, the steps are in rough order:
- Going to the barbershop instead of cutting my own hair. This is where I am right now. (Before I was “fully vaccinated” and during the height of this winter’s surge in January, I cut my own hair at home.)
- Going to outdoor events but with a mask on. Examples include parades, fairs, fireworks, and playing sports.
- Not masking up in outdoor areas where I cannot count on keeping 6 feet away from everyone else. Popular walking trails come to mind. This is as far as I got last summer.
- Not masking up in crowded outdoor environments, such as the ones I mentioned in Step #2 above.
- Going to indoor events with a mask on. Examples include Dave and Busters, parties, concerts, etc.
- Not masking up in public indoor spaces, such as stores and the venues mentioned in Step #5. This includes indoor restaurant dining.
- Travel: This includes air travel and staying in hotels. Air travel means spending hours sharing the air with other people in an indoor environment. Staying in hotels means spending lots of time sharing the air with other people (hotel employees and other hotel guests).
I’m using the wastewater viral load figures to assess the current risk level.
My return to the world of junk food will be sometime around Step 4, Step 5, or Step 6. Even in the post-pandemic world, I’ll be eating less junk food than I did in the pre-pandemic world. Yes, the short-term risks (infectious diseases and inflammation) are a bigger motivator than the long-term risks (blood cholesterol). Of course, avoiding the food coma and unquenchable thirst may be the biggest motivators of all.