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June 17, 2020


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I am in a similar place at least emotionally. My young adult daughter went to a nearby college town with three friends. They stayed in a friend’s apartment and drank their drinks and ate take-out.

It was not socially distant but there were no bars involved. That felt tolerable.

I’m not going to any gym anytime soon.

My 18 yr old is being a stickler for the rules, but she is generally anxious about socializing so I think this might be an excuse for her to avoid people. That’s not great.

One thing we will remember about the summer of 2020 is that it was not great.

The comment above hits on what I was going to say about Joe's visit - I think a road trip is not the best idea, because you are purposefully stopping in multiple places, and coming into contact with a lot of people. Could he go stay in a cabin or apartment somewhere with his friends rather than the road trip? Also being in a car for hours on end is a very confined space and air-space.

The way I think about it is - if you were to find out a week later that you had Covid, and you had done XYZ unnecessary things, how would you feel about the amount of people you exposed to the virus. And then if it's something I don't need to do or I can do it in a safer way, I re-think it.

But that aside, I think you're doing your best and hitting a good sensible middle ground.

It is so hard to figure these things out. We are contemplating a trip to my dad's. He's actually more lax than we are about precautions. But we haven't seen him in a long time. But it's also a 2-day drive (or 1 really long one that I don't want to do).

I got summoned back to work but am still at home since there is nowhere to send my kids, really. Or nowhere that we feel will be ok.

Medical reason - someone close to me is an essential worker who can't work from home and is often in the presence of others, even though usually able to be >6ft, so he has been masked for weeks and weeks for 8+ hrs a day (except lunch if he can manage to grab it). And he deals with sleep apnea. Originally I had made him 2-layer fitted masks, but after he had daytime, WAKING apnea episodes at home, something had to change. His body had gotten so used to breathing shallowly with the mask that it just ...took a break!?! So now he wears the one single-layer mask I made much more loose-fitting around his cheeks and chin.... He is probably not protecting his neighbors as well as he might, but on the other hand, he can breathe more deeply and hasn't had any more daytime apnea. But it was SCARY, and if the lighter mask hadn't fixed it, yes he would have to become a "medical reason" non-wearer. And it would SUCK, because externally he would look just like the "selfish jerk" non-wearer.

My daughters' ballet studio has people coming back wearing masks, but since they still allow for at-home zoom class, we're still home. The mask is a big challenge with hard exercise - the 9yo's teacher was reminding her students, "Remember, when we're breathing hard, we just pull the mask out like this (pulls straight out from mouth and nose, to allow air easily in the sides), so we protect our friends from our germs but we can breath." Thoughts? I'm just glad my daughters are still dancing at home, with all its drawbacks, because their lungs don't have to fight the masks....

It is easier to be charitable in the clear light of day, and so today I am happy to acknowledge that the guy at the climbing gym might have had perfectly legitimate medical reasons for not wearing a mask.

But I do feel strongly that if he wanted to hang out on his phone he should have parked himself outside on one of the picnic tables, instead of sitting in a spot that required every single person coming and going to share his air, and every person talking to the front desk staff to stay near him for the entire length of their conversation.

I guess I feel that people who can't tolerate masks should take extra care with physical distancing as a sign that they're willing to do their part. When this guy was moving around the facility he was not at all shy about getting in my space, and it colored my perception of his response to the mask directive.

OKAY I am doing my best to pray for him instead of thinking more grumpy thoughts about him. CHARITY, it's a hard thing.

I think it's probably not unreasonable to pull a mask forward? Part of what I hate about wearing a mask while breathing hard is the damp feel of it sucked into my nostrils. Pulling forward gently seems likely to alleviate that discomfort without interfering with the ability of the mask to capture droplets.

We're not doing ballet this summer because I just don't know about safe in-person ballet classes.

I am personally starting to lean towards plexi face shields rather than masks. Apparently as effective, not as hard for long wearing, and could be personalized in fun ways.

Yes, I would agree that medical-non-wearers have a responsibility (in a social-capital sort of way) to limit the difficulty they are causing, but I suspect the ADA might say you can't enforce that ON them, which was probably the gym's concern. On the other hand, anyone who isn't vaccinated against measles has to agree to stay home if there's an outbreak at school, even if the person has a medical exemption.

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