Social Question

jca2's avatar

How seriously are you going to practice social distancing?

Asked by jca2 (16446points) March 14th, 2020

Re: Coronavirus
We are supposed to stay at least six feet from each other. We are supposed to avoid large gatherings, parties, play dates (kids), church services, festivals, conferences, meetings, trade shows, shopping (unless necessary for food or pharmaceuticals).

In the past few days, so much has shut down (Broadway shows, Disney parks, etc.), yet there are still restaurants and movie theaters open, so far.

How carefully are you going to practice social distancing? Are you going to avoid visiting friends, going to parties, going to movies, going to restaurants?

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70 Answers

canidmajor's avatar

Very seriously. I am high risk, I think it is only responsible to not contribute to the overwhelming of the medical system.
I have cancelled social engagements, I have postponed my birthday stuff (next week, you got yours in just under the wire! :-D ) and aside from getting my driver’s license renewed on Monday, I plan to stay in, unless I order take out to help out some local restaurants.

I am waaay past caring if someone calls me “alarmist”. The Italians were full of bravado, now they sing to each other from balconies because of serious lockdown.

Caravanfan's avatar

I am an ICU doctor taking care of COVID-19 patients so I’m self-distancing from those unless I can’t avoid it.

Demosthenes's avatar

As an introvert, I’ve got it under control.

hmmmmmm's avatar

My kids are home because schools are cancelled and I have been instructed to work from home. My wife, however, is a nurse and cannot work from home, so in a way, we are always going to be exposed a bit from her exposure making its way into our house. Fortunately, she only works on maternity, so it’s not quite ER.

I can’t see my family right now because of other health risks and concerns. My mother is not well, and my sister, who has MS, was just diagnosed with breast cancer and had a mastectomy less than a week ago. They have been extremely limiting their exposure to the outside.

To be honest, I can’t really get my head around how this is all going to play out. But I’m being fairly cautious. We cancelled on some parties and gatherings with friends that had been arranged earlier.

KNOWITALL's avatar

I’m going 95% contact free for at least 10 days. Working from home and minus a few laser treatments for the dog one block away.

elbanditoroso's avatar

I’m not sure it is avoidable. Even today, I was buying gas and there was another guy on the other side of the pump, filling his tank. He wasn’t more than 4 feet away.

And at Trader Joe’s there were people walking up and down the same aisle I was. Unless you let one person in a store at a time, you almost have to encounter someone or another.

Frankly, at this point, I’m not sure if spread is really preventable.

cookieman's avatar

I’m normally in contact with about 100 students a week. My daughter is in class with 60-odd kids per day. My with is with about 80 students a week.

Now, we’re all working from home. So the number of people we’re in contact with dropped drastically.

That said, I have eight family members coming over tomorrow for an Irish Boiled Dinner.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

I’ve stopped making out with the mailman.
My husband & I are keeping it pretty low key. That should enable us to get things done around here. But will we??

elbanditoroso's avatar

@cookieman I guess that’s the thing. Unless we’re all willing to become hermits, it’s impossible to entirely separate ourselves from society.

chyna's avatar

I’m staying away from people as much as possible. I’m high risk and work at a hospital. I don’t want to carry it back to anyone else that is high risk.

Caravanfan's avatar

@hmmmmmm Hat tip to your wife. Nurses have it worse than we do—I may spend 20 minutes in a patient room doing assessment and exams, but nurses are with the patients all day.

I come in work in street clothes. I change into scrubs into my office, and then dump the scrubs into the scrub machine at the end of the day. Shower when I get home. I do full PPE when I go into a suspect COVID patient room. I am not that worried, but I totally understand why others are and why they want to stay away from me. My daughter told me that my wife is terrified I’ll bring it home.

jca2's avatar

@Caravanfan: A friend who’s a nurse in NJ wrote on FB that she comes home, takes her clothes off in the garage, goes right into the shower. She wrote that luckily the weather has been pretty warm.

Today when I ran to Walmart and Trader Joe’s, I came home and put those clothes into the machine, and then took a shower.

jca2's avatar

I work in a public building but the actual public doesn’t come up to my floor too often. I have my own office and I pretty much stay in there most of the time. However, we’re doing a site visit to another work location this coming week. I have some parties coming up which I think I am going to bow out of. I also have two birthday things planned, one where friends are taking me to a restaurant and one where I am supposed to get together with two family members. I am not sure which of those things I am going to go through with. Since I work in a building with lots of other people, who I encounter when I go to the bathroom or leave the building, I don’t know how much it will make a difference if I avoid the things in my personal life.

Dutchess_lll's avatar

We really aren’t. I am much more aware of people orbiting through my space tho.
People here just aren’t freaking out. They are in Wichita, tho. My DIL is a manager at a Walmart in Wichita. Shelves are bare. She said people were camped out waiting for truck at 5 a.m.

Brian1946's avatar

@Caravanfan

Can the virus be detected on a person, if that person is asymptomatic?

Inspired_2write's avatar

Very easy here we are told to keep one meter away and don’t touch.
OK with me as I go about my usual business.

elbanditoroso's avatar

At Trader Joe’s this morning – ALL the potato chips, corn chips, tortilla chips, and that stuff was SOLD OUT. Veggies, salads, meat, etc., were all in good supply.

No huge runs on wine that I could see.

I stopped at Publix (general supermarket) on the way home – the entire fresh veggie / salad department was wiped out, nothing on the shelf. Meats, cookies, chicken, dairy – all welll stocked.

Caravanfan's avatar

@Brian1946 Not sure actually. I think so. By the time they get to me they are very symptomatic. I’m not working the outpatient/ER/triage end of things. I’m on the other side.

jca2's avatar

Where I live, the people across the street are having a big party. Their guests are parked all ove the street. I guess it’s like a “It’s the end of the world as we know it” party.

I just took my middle school-aged daughter to her friends’ house (two girls live in the house and a third girl is there, too, so four girls) for a sleepover.

I told the mom about my neighbors having a party and she said “it’s ok as long as they’re not strangers to each other.” When I was talking to a friend about my coworker having a baby shower for her daughter and that I wasn’t going to attend because of social distancing, my friend said “it’s ok because it’s her family attending.” It seems that everyone has their own theory of what’s ok and what’s not ok during this time.

I think two things may arise out of this: either very little will happen and then people will think that whatever they’re doing is adequate, or people will start getting really sick and the rest of us will go “whoa, we really have to start listening to the health officials.”

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

@elbanditoroso -My husband went to the grocery store last night & reported that there was an abundance of healthy foods (fresh & canned veggies) but not much in the way of junk.
People are amazing. lol

Brian1946's avatar

@lucillelucillelucille

When I went to Whole Paycheck last night, a lot of the shelves were empty, but the produce section was remarkably intact, except that all of the organic bananas were GONE! Oooweeooo! ;-0

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

@Brian1946 -
You’d think with all the concern and panic regarding one’s health, there’d be no spinach to be found anywhere and the shelves would be loaded with Doritios. unless they’re a good substitute for TP :P

Dutchess_III's avatar

We went to “breakfast” today. It was 2 in the afternoon though so the restaurant was pretty empty. As I said above, I was more aware than usual of people in “my space.”
Well, the waitress was in my space.
A guy sat down at a booth directly behind Rick. Only inches separated them.
When we left, there were people coming in as we were leaving. We shared space.
I think it’s virtually impossible NOT to share space sometimes.

longgone's avatar

@jca2 I think two things may arise out of this: either very little will happen and then people will think that whatever they’re doing is adequate, or people will start getting really sick and the rest of us will go “whoa, we really have to start listening to the health officials.”

Over here, the very same people who were rolling their eyes are suddenly listening to official warnings. It doesn’t even take that many deaths to shock people, as long as those deaths are happening in close enough proximity.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Oh yeah. I also went to Walmart. Passed several people within 6 feet. The cashier was in “my space.” So was the pharmacist who helped me find what I was looking for.

Sagacious's avatar

This virus is airborne; it is in the air after those infected breathe. The six foot thing is no real protection. I read this earlier on the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policywebsite.

jca2's avatar

@longgone: There have been two deaths (I think) in my state. I think if and when people’s friends and family start dying, it will be a wake up call.

ucme's avatar

Pretty much carrying on as normal, although I’m holding off hugging police for the time being.

raum's avatar

@elbanditoroso The local Trader Joe’s started limiting how many people are in the store at once so they can maintain more space. People stood in line outside in the rain this morning.

It’s no longer about containment, it’s about flattening the curve.

Dutchess_lll's avatar

So they limited the number of people in the store which had the result of customers standing in line outside in the rain….???

raum's avatar

Yup. Not an ideal situation in either case. But single file under an umbrella is still probably better than running around in a panic inside.

janbb's avatar

^^ I suspect that standing in the rain in Cal is such a novelty that folks are quite happy to do it! :-)

cookieman's avatar

elbanditoroso: Yes, exactly.

johnpowell's avatar

I’m not taking it seriously. But my day is being alone in the basement. And if I go out it is to get food at Safeway or to go to the hospital.

I have to catch a bus to get on a train to the hospital. When the bus drops me off the next train is always standing room only. So I wait the six minutes for the next train which is less crowded. I did that before the virus thing since I hate standing on the train. I am always worried I will fall over and make a mess. I can’t deal with the embarrassment of that.

Call_Me_Jay's avatar

I have no fear for myself. But I live with an immunocompromised person and I visit my mother in an assisted living home.

I am really scared of getting and then transmitting the bug.

I am limiting my travels outside the house. Minimizing shopping. I want to go to the movies and will not. I attended a conference last month but will no schedule any more soon.

raum's avatar

@janbb We need the rain!

johnpowell's avatar

@Call_Me_Jay :: If you go to the movies at opening on a Monday morning you will probably be alone. The theater I worked at was dead weekday mornings. So dead we used to let homeless people in for free so they could get out of the rain..

But we would have deal with 7K people on a Friday night.

I was actually talking to a guy the other night about how during economic downturns people go to more movies. This might seem counterintuitive. But really, if you just get a ticket and sneak in a tube of Sour Cream and Onion Pringles from Target it is a pretty cheap escape for a evening.

But this situation kinda tosses that on its head. Since the downturn is related to being in crowded places.

Jons_Blond's avatar

I take it very seriously but I have no control over others. I was coughed on twice at work the other night by customers who were two feet away from me. My youngest son had severe pneumonia in the fall and has had lung inflammation since. He doesn’t need this virus.

I work in grocery. I can’t avoid people right now.

Mimishu1995's avatar

I haven’t got out for two months now. I don’t get out unless I have to buy something for my family. In fact, I would be arrested if I went to work, as no school is allowed to open. There is just no reason for me to go out these days anyway, even without the virus. I have a thesis to finish.

I have used the time to bond with my family :)

KNOWITALL's avatar

@Lucille I bought non-perishables, too, not because I hate healthy food but because fruits and veggies are plentiful here and I have those. When thinking long-term, we got canned and frozen fruit and veggies.

jca2's avatar

On the news today, an epidemiologist said he thinks that the United States should move to shutting everything down, like the way it’s being done in Italy and Spain. He said people aren’t listening and are still going to bars and restaurants and parties and movies and all that.

Yesterday my neighbors had a big party. Friends on FB talked about going to restaurants. People I know seem to feel that because they’re young (or relatively young) and healthy, they don’t have to worry.

cookieman's avatar

“He said people aren’t listening and are still going to bars and restaurants and parties and movies and all that.”

I have seen this. I go to Panera’s for iced coffee every morning and both yesterday and today a group of about 30 soccer-mom-types were all hanging out and chatting after their morning group walk.

raum's avatar

Yes, we need a government mandate because Americans are too dumb and cavalier to effectively self-quarantine.

Someone posted that restaurants were still packed. People waiting in line wearing shirts that say “I will not live in fear.”

People are so fucking dumb.

jca2's avatar

Chuck Todd (political commentator) was on TV this morning saying Republicans are less likely to abide by health officials recommendations for social distancing, avoiding groups, etc. than Democrats.

jca2's avatar

@Caravanfan: What an idiot. He probably has friends who are restaurant owners or theater owners who need business to be drummed up.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

We cancelled our vacation to Hawaii last Thursday 3/12 (we were to leave March 14th). I’m not going to any civic meetings or clubs for the foreseeable future.

Yes there are idiots !

Looks like the GOP skipped health and hygiene classes !

Caravanfan's avatar

@Tropical_Willie We cancelled a trip to Mexico City.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

Luckily I bought refundable tickets. @Caravanfan there will be another trip in the future.

Caravanfan's avatar

@Tropical_Willie We are going on another trip next year with the same company and they are allowing us to put the credit for this cancelled trip to that trip. Mexico City and Oaxaca will be there next year.

jca2's avatar

I’m hearing about people who have weddings and honeymoons that are going to be cancelled. What a nightmare.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

Went by Lowes Hardware, Walmart and local biker bar. They all looked like normal Sunday afternoons in the parking lots. I went through drive-thru at a fast food place, more people inside than usual.

hmmmmmm's avatar

My daughter and I went for a walk in a local state park today and the place was packed. I go there most weekends, but have never seen a tenth of that activity. We had to go to another conservation area/trail.

At least around here, it appears that people are finding the opportunity to hit the trails and enjoy the great outdoors. I’m not sure where these people are normally – the mall?

Brian1946's avatar

A manager at a vegan Thai restaurant where I go, said that even though they had a lot less dining in, it was compensated for by having a lot more takeout and deliveries.

I really like her and that place, so it was good to know that they’re still doing well.

Sagacious's avatar

If you come to my door you will not be invited in. Does that answer your question?

Tropical_Willie's avatar

Update on my meetings for the next two weeks. They are officially cancelled. They may extend the closings.

I received an email blast from my local newspaper (subscribe to updates). They have a patient that is presumptive positive for COVID-19, she was in another state since end of February (implied she was in Washington state). It is not in the community yet, that will change over the next weeks.

Response moderated (Spam)
jca2's avatar

I’m probably going to stop working today, and I’ll be “working from home” for the near future.

I’m meeting a local mom friend and her twins after work so we can take a walk and our kids can socialize. Maybe we’ll order a pizza or something to be delivered. (“Can you deliver to a picnic table in a park?” LOL).

longgone's avatar

I’m really serious about it. I’m not so scared for myself, but very frightened for family members and society in general. I feel responsible for keeping the curve flat. Germany has 28,000 ICU beds. That’s roughly five times as many as Italy has, but Italy is struggling hard despite intense lockdowns and without the numbers having reached their peak. And my local area is at higher risk because of its population density.

Our local politicians are now asking us to refrain from all contact. I’ve cancelled game nights and meetups with friends and family. Everything “official” has been cancelled too – no choir, no book club, no exams. I still went on walks with people up until a few days ago. Now, it just seems too dangerous.

Basically, I’m either home or walking the dogs. I might go shopping once a week, if I can’t avoid it. I talk to family on the phone. I cook, do some gardening, use the internet, or do jobs around the house. It’s not so bad. I need a lot of rest anyway because I keep getting annoying colds.

janbb's avatar

I’m very serious about it. I don’t want to spread it or get it. I walk alone or with one friend but stay relatively far away from her. I will need more groceries at some point – will either go to the store which I am reluctant to do or order online for delivery.

cookieman's avatar

@janbb: There’s always virtual penguin (((HUGS)))

janbb's avatar

@cookieman Virtual flippers wrapped around you!

longgone's avatar

Thought the collective might appreciate this tool for calculating your pandemic footprint.

jca2's avatar

@longgone: Thank you! I just posted it on FB!

Brian1946's avatar

@longgone

Thank you too!

My PFI is 6/1000.

Response moderated (Spam)
canidmajor's avatar

I am 7/1000, entirely because of proximity to NYC. My score would have been different had I seen this when it first appeared. :-)

raum's avatar

84/1000

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