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Pedestrian Oct 26, 2020 9:38 PM

Quote:

How San Francisco became a COVID-19 success story as other cities stumbled
By MAURA DOLANSTAFF WRITER
OCT. 25, 20205 AM UPDATED12:49 PM

SAN FRANCISCO — Much of San Francisco looked like a ghost town during late April. All but essential services were closed. Few roamed the streets. The mood seemed as grim as the gray skies overhead.

Now life has returned. Restaurants and stores are open. Clad in masks, pedestrians last week clutched bags from stores where they had just shopped. Diners sat at tables outside restaurants and cafes. People strolled along the bay on the Embarcadero, and a huge Ferris wheel opened for business at Golden Gate Park.

After cautiously approaching the pandemic for months, with a go-slow attitude toward reopening, San Francisco has become the first urban center in California to enter the least restrictive tier for reopening. Risk of infection, according to the state’s color-coded tiers, is considered minimal, even though San Francisco is the second-densest city in the country after New York.

City officials still are not declaring victory. Characteristically, they warn, the virus still lurks around the corner. And as they have before, they will follow local metrics rather than reopen just because the state allows it.”

Experts credit San Francisco’s success to a long partnership between public health officers and universities, most notably during the AIDS crisis. San Francisco is not monolithic, but its residents largely followed health guidelines. Unlike other counties, which may have dozens of mayors and city councils, San Francisco is also a city with only one mayor and a Board of Supervisors, and both have largely deferred to the judgment of health officials.

The tech industry, which has a prominent presence in San Francisco, played a role too. Companies ordered their employees to work from home two weeks before San Francisco and other Bay Area counties shut down . . . . That not only kept more people off the streets but signaled to the rest of the region that industry giants were taking the threat of the coronavirus seriously . . . .

Of the 20 most populous cities in the U.S., San Francisco has the lowest death rate per capita from COVID-19. If the entire country had followed the city’s approach . . . there would be 50,000 dead from the pandemic instead of more than 220,000.

To be sure, San Francisco has not emerged unscathed. Hundreds of businesses have closed permanently. Public schools have yet to reopen, and the city faces a huge budget deficit. Many residents moved away during the pandemic.

Although life has now returned to city streets, they are nowhere near as full as before the pandemic, when throngs of office workers and tourists crammed sidewalks. Ridership on city buses has plummeted, along with revenues.

Mayor London Breed and Dr. Grant Colfax, San Francisco’s public health director, largely shaped the city’s response to the health crisis . . . .

When the coronavirus hit Wuhan, China, [Breed] said, she viewed it as “way over there.” That changed when Colfax and the city’s health officer came to her City Hall office earlier this year and warned the virus could overwhelm the city’s hospitals, which might have to turn away the sick.

That warning “stopped me in my tracks,” Breed said. She knew that shutting down would hurt the economy and worsen economic disparities, but she said she felt as though there were no other choice. She said she asked herself what she would want her mayor to do. Saving lives was the answer.

One day early in the pandemic, she walked into a grocery store and quickly backed out. People were not following the health guidelines. “I called Dr. Colfax and said we need to shut this grocery store down,” she recalled.

Colfax proved adept at messaging. During the first few months of the pandemic, Colfax, Breed and other city officials held news conferences online three times a week. Colfax was usually grim. He warned the virus could quickly spin out of control.

The public health director began his summations by citing the number of people infected and dead. In a funerial voice, he directed his statement to the families of the dead and told them of his sorrow. He warned of “grave” consequences if the health restrictions were not followed. He worried aloud in July that San Francisco could become the next New York City, Houston or Florida. San Francisco remained in a “very vulnerable situation,” he said . . . .

For her part, Breed hasn’t hesitated to scold. After more than 1,000 people gathered at Ocean Beach early in September for a Burning Man celebration, the mayor took to Twitter and castigated the assemblage, calling it “absolutely reckless and selfish” . . . .

San Francisco police also helped enforce the health rules. When long lines sprung up outside a store, officers arrived to ensure people were distancing and wearing masks. Police patrolled the parks on the weekends and handed out masks. Citations were issued to repeat offenders, but for the most part people complied after being warned.

San Francisco rapidly expanded coronavirus tests months ago, making the city a leader nationally in testing. It also worked with UC San Francisco to build a strong contact tracing program and devoted time and resources to the city’s heavily Latino Mission District, a source of many of the infections.

John Swartzberg, a UC Berkeley infectious disease expert, said San Francisco benefited from the bonds forged among Bay Area health officers and between the city and its public health officials during the AIDS epidemic.

“The experience with AIDS in San Francisco did a tremendous amount to shape the public health culture in San Francisco,” he said. “The relationship between SF General (hospital) and the community was just a beautiful thing to behold. The trust it engendered had a halo effect that spilled over to the entire city” . . . .

https://www.latimes.com/california/s...irus-reopening

Steely Dan Oct 26, 2020 9:48 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Steely Dan (Post 9082615)
we're supposed to go to a friend's small backyard gathering for a b-day party this saturday night, but temps are forecast to be in the low 40s.

my guess is that the gathering will be fairly short-lived. most people in chicago (everywhere) are absolute wimps when it comes to chilly weather.

much to my surprise, the backyard gathering this past weekend went much longer than i expected (nearly 5 hours).

after eating some pizza and socializing around the fire pit for a bit, the host had an outdoor movie screen and projector set up that we watched Ghostbusters on.

people were so in to it that it got parlayed into a Rick Moranis double-feature with Spaceballs as an encore.

even though it was only 43 degrees, it was fun as hell to laugh with good friends at two of the finest comedies of the 1980s.

tayser Oct 26, 2020 9:51 PM

I CAN GO TO THE PUB ON WEDNESDAY!

Two days of donuts! The Victorian Premier announced the easing of all our stage 4 restrictions yesterday, most come off tonight (Tuesday) at midnight for a Wednesday open and the last of them come off on November 8th.

https://twitter.com/i/web/status/1320839207644995584

Lockdowns suck but they work really well.

Other background/analysis: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-10-...ourne/12815330

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-10-...ement/12815424

10023 Oct 28, 2020 8:46 PM

Life in my city sucks. It was just about manageable when the weather was nice and restaurants, at least in East London (aka Euro-Brooklyn) were being creative and doing a lot of takeaway food that you could enjoy in nearby parks. Now it’s dark, rainy, and impossible to get into a pub/bar/restaurant on short notice, you can’t go with people in other households, and you can’t meet or interact with anyone there.

Life is on hold and if they close the gym I will lose any social interaction at all.

10023 Oct 28, 2020 8:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by tayser (Post 9085993)
I CAN GO TO THE PUB ON WEDNESDAY!

Two days of donuts! The Victorian Premier announced the easing of all our stage 4 restrictions yesterday, most come off tonight (Tuesday) at midnight for a Wednesday open and the last of them come off on November 8th.

https://twitter.com/i/web/status/1320839207644995584

Lockdowns suck but they work really well.

Other background/analysis: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-10-...ourne/12815330

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-10-...ement/12815424

Do they work really well? Look at Italy, Spain and France.

Australia will find it easier to limit re-introduction of cases from elsewhere given isolation and distances internally, but it’s not like the virus has been eradicated from the continent and cases will rise again.

You guys might be fortunate enough to have a vaccine available before the Southern Hemisphere winter, but that’s just down to timing.

homebucket Oct 29, 2020 3:14 AM

Some more Bay Area counties are loosening restrictions.

Quote:

3 Bay Area counties advance from red to orange tier
Amy Graff
Oct. 27, 2020

Three Bay Area counties — Contra Costa, Marin and San Mateo — advanced from the red to the less restrictive orange tier Tuesday in California's reopening plan. They join Alameda, Napa and Santa Clara in the orange, while Sonoma remains stuck in purple and Solano stays red. San Francisco is the only Bay Area county in the least restrictive yellow category.

Contra Costa, Marin and San Mateo's new status paves the ways for reopening some businesses for the first time and expanding operating capacities at those that are already open.

The primary changes allowed under in the orange tier include increased capacity of 50% at restaurants, museums, places of worship and movie theaters; increased capacity of 25% at gyms, family entertainment centers and card rooms. Bars and breweries can reopen outdoors with modifications, and nonessential offices can reopen.

Outside the Bay Area, four other counties made leaps to less severe tiers due to reduced infection spread in their communities.
https://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/artic...n-15679049.php

SpongeG Oct 29, 2020 7:05 AM

this video shows what Seoul has been experiencing, a lot of retail closures and less crowded streets

Video Link

10023 Oct 29, 2020 7:17 AM

^ And that’s meant to be “success”. Ridiculous.

kool maudit Oct 29, 2020 8:34 AM

In London right now, and much of the signage is either ads for testing or descriptions of new measures with consequences of non-compliance emphasized.

It's grey, tense, wary and feels like "Children of Men" or something.

10023 Oct 29, 2020 10:51 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by kool maudit (Post 9088883)
In London right now, and much of the signage is either ads for testing or descriptions of new measures with consequences of non-compliance emphasized.

It's grey, tense, wary and feels like "Children of Men" or something.

Yes. Very unpleasant.

Milan seems... tense.

dc_denizen Oct 29, 2020 12:42 PM

Where I live life is pretty normal , except everyone is wearing a mask and nobody is taking the train to the city

the urban politician Oct 29, 2020 1:58 PM

The whole Chicago area has moved back to disallowing indoor dining and bars

suburbanite Oct 29, 2020 2:06 PM

We went back to that about two weeks ago now I think.

I'm basically resigned to the fact that I'm just going to move back to my parents and grind out work all winter. Servers and bartenders are even more fucked now. It makes me furious seeing people in my situation, who can work from home (but are also homebodies who don't want to do anything in normal times) playing the moral superiority card. "No one go anywhere or do anything until the virus is completely eradicated!"

Acajack Oct 29, 2020 7:37 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by kool maudit (Post 9088883)
In London right now, and much of the signage is either ads for testing or descriptions of new measures with consequences of non-compliance emphasized.

It's grey, tense, wary and feels like "Children of Men" or something.

Yeah. I was actually thinking recently that life here kinda feels like a mix of Children of Men and the small town in Footloose. The arrival of grey, gloomy late autumn weather certainly doesn't help things.

I've said before that the overwhelming feeling is people existing as opposed to living.

Plus the ubiquitous pandemic messaging everywhere you go plus everyone wearing a mask gives an Orwellian or Blade Runner feel to everything. (If you can stomach two more cultural references.)

The near-total absence of anything visibly fun is subtle but I think it takes a toll.

There are no noisy joyous kids' birthday parties to overhear two backyards away.

No more bumping into packs of giddy 19-year-old girls running through the grocery store picking up wine coolers and munchies before driving up to the lake.

No more bike rides where you stumble upon a wedding party taking pictures in a park along the river.

No more drunk bachelorettes and friends accosting you on the street and asking you to perform some dumb trick.

No more crowds of parents at local parks cheering their kids on in their sport of choice.

No fun, really.

Just basic "existing".

MonkeyRonin Oct 29, 2020 8:16 PM

:previous: I wish things felt like Blade Runner right about now!

All of those things were still happening up until a few weeks ago though (just more muted and cautious compared to normal times, of course - but it was still a fun summer). Which makes it feel like a bit of a double whammy with lockdowns and the arrival of November gloom coming at the same time.

I actually normally like this time of year, when life starts to move more into cozy indoor spaces (the hygge vibe, if I were Danish), but that's not at all how I feel right now.

The recent closure of restaurants, gyms, and theatres feels more like a punishment handed down by the anxiety-riddled COVID-puritans than it does a necessary, evidence-based defence against our growing, but still-very-much-under-control outbreak. There weren't many cases tied to any of those establishments where proper protocols were followed.

Thankfully there are still a bunch of covered patios with outdoor heaters here!

Brave Oct 29, 2020 8:29 PM

I am currently in Spain and can say that local people are panic-stricken despite the fact that Spanish health care system is very developed and is considered to be one of the best in Europe (here is the proof https://virtoproperty.com/info/spanish-healthcare-system-for-expats. We are going to face the 2nd wave of Covid which is supposed to be even more vicious than the 1st one. No one knows what to expect.

Acajack Oct 29, 2020 9:17 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MonkeyRonin (Post 9089481)
:previous: I wish things felt like Blade Runner right about now!

All of those things were still happening up until a few weeks ago though (just more muted and cautious compared to normal times, of course - but it was still a fun summer). Which makes it feel like a bit of a double whammy with lockdowns and the arrival of November gloom coming at the same time.

I actually normally like this time of year, when life starts to move more into cozy indoor spaces (the hygge vibe, if I were Danish), but that's not at all how I feel right now.

The recent closure of restaurants, gyms, and theatres feels more like a punishment handed down by the anxiety-riddled COVID-puritans than it does a necessary, evidence-based defence against our growing, but still-very-much-under-control outbreak. There weren't many cases tied to any of those establishments where proper protocols were followed.

Thankfully there are still a bunch of covered patios with outdoor heaters here!

Yeah, summer was a bit of a respite with bars and restaurants open with restrictions and smallish gatherings permitted. At least those were the rules here.

We had some sucky things going on in our family (not really COVID-related, but made more complicated by it) but even for the people I know who did not have those challenged I still don't get the impression they would have said their summer was "fun". Everything was way more subdued and limited.

But yes, definitely better than the spring and this fall.

MonkeyRonin Oct 29, 2020 9:35 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Acajack (Post 9089542)
Yeah, summer was a bit of a respite with bars and restaurants open with restrictions and smallish gatherings permitted. At least those were the rules here.

We had some sucky things going on in our family (not really COVID-related, but made more complicated by it) but even for the people I know who did not have those challenged I still don't get the impression they would have said their summer was "fun". Everything was way more subdued and limited.

But yes, definitely better than the spring and this fall.


Might not have been ideal, but you could still make the most of it. I mean, I still got to travel (just within the country), I still got to spend time with friends & family (just with a little more distance), I still got to go out to bars & restaurants, still got to go the beach & enjoy the heat, still got to go hiking & biking & do outdoor activities, the city was still vibrant & lively, and I got 3 or 4 day weekends - it might not have been the best summer ever, but one would have to be pretty precious to not be able to have any fun because of slightly sub-optimal conditions. Didn't get to do any international travel or go to big parties & shows, but I think that's a reasonable sacrifice given that we were still in the midst of a once-in-a-lifetime pandemic.

But now, things just look pretty bleak all around with none of those things really possible anymore, and little respite visible on the horizon. I recently got a kitten though, so at least that's something going for me!

pdxtex Oct 29, 2020 9:37 PM

Most of Portland appears to be getting back to life. Outer neighborhoods feel pretty peppy and vibrant. I took a bike ride downtown last weekend and I'll only rate it 4 robocops/10. Much better than June's 8 robocops. Downtown retail is improving but the dust is still settling. Teenage combatants continue their anti capitalist revolution but even that has mostly lost its steam. My entire office of 1000 people is coming back in two weeks so uncle Warren (Buffet) seems confident we've rounded the bend.

the urban politician Oct 29, 2020 10:24 PM

There are a lot of Chicago area bars and restaurants that are openly defying the indoor ban.

I have mixed feelings. I know they are desperate, and I feel for them. But I also think that Governor Pritzker is genuinely trying to get this pandemic under control.

What can I say. This situation just royally sucks so badly.....

SIGSEGV Oct 29, 2020 10:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by the urban politician (Post 9089599)
There are a lot of Chicago area bars and restaurants that are openly defying the indoor ban.

I have mixed feelings. I know they are desperate, and I feel for them. But I also think that Governor Pritzker is genuinely trying to get this pandemic under control.

What can I say. This situation just royally sucks so badly.....

I see that there are people inside restaurants, but I don't know anybody who would eat inside a restaurant right now.

Maybe something like indoor tents might be a solution, although that does not sound pleasant at all...

mhays Oct 30, 2020 12:41 AM

People like that are going to make this last WAY longer.

When the numbers are low, you can find a happy medium. But it's not in a bar yelling spit at each other.

chris08876 Oct 30, 2020 1:09 AM

Hopefully the outdoor dining sticks long after the pandemic is over. At least in the U.S..

Its kind of nice to see small towns where pre-purge, folks would be eating all inside... but during the summer of 2020, folks be out in masses eating outside and wearing sunglasses. Adds a bit more variety.

Less indoor dining, more outdoor dining during warmer months. Almost like that European feel, in America's suburban wastelands.

dave8721 Oct 30, 2020 2:41 AM

Here in Florida we can easily do outdoor dining year round. In fact we are just now entering our peak outdoor dining season, when its less hot and humid. Of course we have DeSantis as governor so last month he removed all restrictions of any kind on bars and restaurants and stopped any fines (goal was more about creating election chaos). Miami-Dade (despite having a republican mayor) is sort of defying the state by at least trying to have some occupancy restrictions and still levying fines.

Buckeye Native 001 Oct 30, 2020 2:59 AM

I think Arizona (or at the very least, Governor Ducey) is gunning hard for the herd immunity approach, especially now that we're entering the time of year where everything's not so miserably hot. I fully believe that everything he's doing is to shore up support for a Senate run in 2022 if McSally loses next week.

10023 Oct 30, 2020 8:02 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by dc_denizen (Post 9088946)
Where I live life is pretty normal , except everyone is wearing a mask and nobody is taking the train to the city

Where you live must be very suburban. I didn’t expect that.

10023 Oct 30, 2020 8:03 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SIGSEGV (Post 9089613)
I see that there are people inside restaurants, but I don't know anybody who would eat inside a restaurant right now.

Maybe something like indoor tents might be a solution, although that does not sound pleasant at all...

Why not?

Acajack Oct 30, 2020 12:05 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 10023 (Post 9089927)
Where you live must be very suburban. I didn’t expect that.

Where I live is pretty suburban and things definitely aren't normal. Though different places have different measures in place.

Acajack Oct 30, 2020 12:13 PM

Another impact: creeping workoholism.

Without the "break" between office and home that is provided by a commute (even a short one), I, my wife and my friends are all finding we're working more hours. Often for free (well, I am not eligible for overtime and neither is my wife) as it's harder to track and claim overtime in this context. Of course, there is also the fact that there isn't much else to do. We're all at home most of the time instead of going to choir practice, rock concerts or ferrying the kids to the hockey rink.

I find the computer's always on and close by, as opposed to when you come home from the office and you actually have to go to the trouble of turning it on and logging in if you want to stay that connected to work.

Now it's always on and the work day seems to start earlier and also drags more into the evening.

Though I suppose this might just be an adjustment phase and eventually most of us will find a new equilibrium.

But right now I'd wager a heckuva lot of us are doing more work for the same pay.

(Some would argue we're lucky to still be getting paid though.)

10023 Oct 30, 2020 1:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mhays (Post 9089703)
People like that are going to make this last WAY longer.

When the numbers are low, you can find a happy medium. But it's not in a bar yelling spit at each other.

With the current social distancing rules in London we might as well be in full lockdown. It is not enjoyable to go out. And restaurants are suffering doubly because they are actually operating and paying staff, but unable to earn enough revenue to cover costs.

People over 65 need to be told (made?) to stay home to address the real risk and life needs to be allowed.

edit: I was just getting a coffee. Some grey haired old lady with a lower class accent walked in, and when the staff told her she needed a mask just shouted “I’m exempt!” and continued on. Must have been 70. That kind of shit is the problem, not anything young people are doing.

Acajack Oct 30, 2020 1:38 PM

The percentage of young Americans aged 18-29 living with their parents has gone over 50% for the first time since the 1940s.

Acajack Oct 30, 2020 2:13 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 10023 (Post 9090024)
With the current social distancing rules in London we might as well be in full lockdown. It is not enjoyable to go out. And restaurants are suffering doubly because they are actually operating and paying staff, but unable to earn enough revenue to cover costs.

People over 65 need to be told (made?) to stay home to address the real risk and life needs to be allowed.

edit: I was just getting a coffee. Some grey haired old lady with a lower class accent walked in, and when the staff told her she needed a mask just shouted “I’m exempt!” and continued on. Must have been 70. That kind of shit is the problem, not anything young people are doing.

Most people are still on board to play along with the restrictions, but as I've said elsewhere on this board there is less and less sand in the top part of the hourglass.

Restaurateurs and bar owners in our neighbouring province of Ontario lobbied for and won permission to keep patios open all winter with semi-open tents and heaters. Areas like the Byward Market in Ottawa just across the river from me are a sea of white tents with heaters. (Here in Quebec even in this is not allowed. So restaurants can only offer takeout.)

Anyway, the expectation in Ontario is that at least some patrons would continue to come and dine and especially drink in heated "outdoor" spaces.

On Radio-Canada today there was a report about how most of these heated outdoor spaces were deserted. This was on a decent day when the temperature was 5-6C so around 45F. It was mentioned that the cost of heating was actually quite high and many businesses found it wasn't worth it for the handful of customers they'd get over an entire day.

So my guess is that outdoor heated patios aren't really going to be a thing (and be much help to businesses), as we're not even close to the coldest part of the winter yet.

My wife and I actually crossed over to Ottawa to have drinks at some of these places over the weekend. It wasn't unpleasant but not something we'd do regularly. Or maybe it just takes some getting used to? This was a weekend afternoon so the patios were busier. Definitely deserted but not even close to being full.

suburbanite Oct 30, 2020 2:33 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Acajack (Post 9090058)
The percentage of young Americans aged 18-29 living with their parents has gone over 50% for the first time since the 1940s.

I'm back at the parents again and paying a mortgage for somewhere I go to hang out every couple weekends. Living in some crazy alternate reality for the past 8 months. I'm wondering if there will be a bit of a buyers rush at the end of all this. A lot of my friends are all working and living at home, saving stupid amounts of money not doing anything. There's a large segment of the population getting hammered by Covid, but there's also a smaller more well-capitalized group of people sitting on the sidelines.

the urban politician Oct 30, 2020 3:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Acajack (Post 9089983)
Another impact: creeping workoholism.

Without the "break" between office and home that is provided by a commute (even a short one), I, my wife and my friends are all finding we're working more hours. Often for free (well, I am not eligible for overtime and neither is my wife) as it's harder to track and claim overtime in this context. Of course, there is also the fact that there isn't much else to do. We're all at home most of the time instead of going to choir practice, rock concerts or ferrying the kids to the hockey rink.

I find the computer's always on and close by, as opposed to when you come home from the office and you actually have to go to the trouble of turning it on and logging in if you want to stay that connected to work.

Now it's always on and the work day seems to start earlier and also drags more into the evening.

Though I suppose this might just be an adjustment phase and eventually most of us will find a new equilibrium.

But right now I'd wager a heckuva lot of us are doing more work for the same pay.

(Some would argue we're lucky to still be getting paid though.)

Sorry, but I'm kind of having a hard time feeling bad for the "work from home" class.

I and my wife have been going to work and exposing ourselves to the public. Every. Single. Day. Since this pandemic hit. We don't know what "work from home" even means. And the fact that our kids were kept out of school and we still had to arrange supervision for them completely threw a wrench into our lives.

Just enjoy your couch and your personal laptop.....

suburbanite Oct 30, 2020 3:18 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by the urban politician (Post 9090135)
Sorry, but I'm kind of having a hard time feeling bad for the "work from home" class.

I and my wife have been going to work and exposing ourselves to the public. Every. Single. Day. Since this pandemic hit. We don't know what "work from home" even means. And the fact that our kids were kept out of school and we still had to arrange supervision for them completely threw a wrench into our lives.

Just enjoy your couch and your personal laptop.....

It depends on the person, but personally for me work from home sucks (if you don't have kids). It takes twice as long to do some things over teams/phone than it does in-person. It's way harder to just bang through a full day of work. Trying to do anything technical (ie. not just emails but actually building financial models or pitches) on a laptop is absolutely aneurism-inducing. I was going back to the office as soon as it and gyms were open and it was ten times better.

As Acajack said, work hours just blend into this 24/7 mix of "not fully working but not off from work either." I took a week vacation in August and it basically just meant that I didn't respond to emails within two hours but I still probably "worked" 20+ hours that week. I don't know how your practice works but are people emailing you at 11pm on a Saturday? No one has boundaries anymore lol

Acajack Oct 30, 2020 3:35 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by the urban politician (Post 9090135)
Sorry, but I'm kind of having a hard time feeling bad for the "work from home" class.

I and my wife have been going to work and exposing ourselves to the public. Every. Single. Day. Since this pandemic hit. We don't know what "work from home" even means. And the fact that our kids were kept out of school and we still had to arrange supervision for them completely threw a wrench into our lives.

Just enjoy your couch and your personal laptop.....

Sorry about that.

Did not want to sound like I was complaining (too much).

But this is a thread about the changes brought on by COVID-19.

And I do think that for white collar office workers, WFH all the time has erased the demarcation between work time and personal time.

Many days my wife and I are basically online from 7 am to 8 or 9 pm.

It's not the end of the world and obviously many others are far worse off, but it's still a "lesser" situation.

mrnyc Oct 30, 2020 3:43 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 10023 (Post 9090024)
With the current social distancing rules in London we might as well be in full lockdown. It is not enjoyable to go out. And restaurants are suffering doubly because they are actually operating and paying staff, but unable to earn enough revenue to cover costs.

People over 65 need to be told (made?) to stay home to address the real risk and life needs to be allowed.

edit: I was just getting a coffee. Some grey haired old lady with a lower class accent walked in, and when the staff told her she needed a mask just shouted “I’m exempt!” and continued on. Must have been 70. That kind of shit is the problem, not anything young people are doing.


you need to wear your damn mask around so life is allowed. your no masking crowd is to blame for this. it could have been crushed over the summer, or could be held at bay in trouble spots, but you wont wear a mask. and who knows who you have infected, made sick or killed by your reckless, selfish behavior and attitude.

also, nyc looks like a damn shantytown with all these streeteries. and now they want more of it for retail. sad.

Acajack Oct 30, 2020 4:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mrnyc (Post 9090190)
you need to wear your damn mask around so life is allowed. your no masking crowd is to blame for this. it could have been crushed over the summer, or could be held at bay in trouble spots, but you wont wear a mask. and who knows who you have infected, made sick or killed by your reckless, selfish behavior and attitude.

also, nyc looks like a damn shantytown with all these streeteries. and now they want more of it for retail. sad.

Not sure about his behaviour or its effect and that of others on the virus spread, but where I live you can't go anywhere (ie inside any building or enclosed space) basically other than your own house without a mask, and we're still under a very strict lockdown.

There is not really much wiggle room at all for the anti-mask crowd and yet here we are.

niwell Oct 30, 2020 4:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MonkeyRonin (Post 9089558)

But now, things just look pretty bleak all around with none of those things really possible anymore, and little respite visible on the horizon. I recently got a kitten though, so at least that's something going for me!


Congrats on the kitten! We just got a new puppy and it's been... a handful. Being able to go out is quite restricted even when we want to!

Generally my experiences during COVID and this past summer sound pretty similar to yours, which isn't too surprising to me. It was actually a very fun summer and I am excited to see the loosened restrictions on alcohol continue, which I feel like will. I'm against the current ban on indoor dining as I explained in the Canada thread - it seems like a sop to account for an increase in cases that was largely unrelated, not unexpected and currently being managed (though should obviously be watched carefully).

We're going to a heated patio to watch a horror movie at our local with our small friend bubble (no family in Toronto) this evening, which should be quite fun.

someone123 Oct 30, 2020 4:45 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by niwell (Post 9090240)
I'm against the current ban on indoor dining as I explained in the Canada thread - it seems like a sop to account for an increase in cases that was largely unrelated, not unexpected and currently being managed (though should obviously be watched carefully).

It's easy to see how the pressure to do this exists here in BC too through the public health announcements and Q&A periods.

There is a lot of sensitivity around announcing who's contracting covid or who's getting sick and dying. It seems the officials don't want to give some people the sense that they're at low risk, nor do they want to identify individuals or blame certain demographics (lately it sounds like the cases are disproportionately centered in the South Asian community and you can see that geographically). So we are left with pretty vague updates. Some specific "negative" comments like "we know that very few cases are coming from restaurants lately".

This leaves mostly the case count data and a bunch of people who demand action whenever the numbers go up. It would be very easy for officials here to implement useless new restrictions to give the appearance of action and control in this situation and I give them credit for showing restraint. They get pressured by both sides which is probably a good sign. Appeasing extremists on either side would be a disaster for a place that so far has had both low deaths and comparatively mild restrictions.

I see one case was highlighted, a woman in her 80's who died after attending a birthday party.

JManc Oct 30, 2020 4:58 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mrnyc (Post 9090190)
you need to wear your damn mask around so life is allowed. your no masking crowd is to blame for this. it could have been crushed over the summer, or could be held at bay in trouble spots, but you wont wear a mask. and who knows who you have infected, made sick or killed by your reckless, selfish behavior and attitude.

also, nyc looks like a damn shantytown with all these streeteries. and now they want more of it for retail. sad.

Has he said he doesn't wear a mask? legit question, I didn't see where he said eitherway other than complaining about shut downs..

I wear one inside (and want to throat punch those who at this point refuse to) but don't see the logic in wearing one outside but I also don't live in a dense area like New York or London where the odds of me being in close contact with others are fairly high. Squirrels outnumber people where I live.

I think for the vast majority of the country and the world, most have simply let their guard down and become too complacent where by Covid swung back around to say hi again. My wife and I have been eating out regularly again and we'll probably back off and order in order...god forbid cook now that numbers are getting high.

dave8721 Oct 30, 2020 5:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by suburbanite (Post 9090153)
As Acajack said, work hours just blend into this 24/7 mix of "not fully working but not off from work either." I took a week vacation in August and it basically just meant that I didn't respond to emails within two hours but I still probably "worked" 20+ hours that week. I don't know how your practice works but are people emailing you at 11pm on a Saturday? No one has boundaries anymore lol

This part is definitely true. I've been working from home full time since this started and "work" is now basically 24/7. Instead of 100% work for 8 hours, its 75% work for 15 hours. I had to go to work to pick up my monitor from there. I need a full 2 monitor setup, trying to do anything meaningful on a laptop would just be impossible. Its a lot easier with the kids at school now. Was impossible to get anything done with the little ones always needing help with remote school setup.

Acajack Oct 30, 2020 6:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by dave8721 (Post 9090327)
This part is definitely true. I've been working from home full time since this started and "work" is now basically 24/7. Instead of 100% work for 8 hours, its 75% work for 15 hours. I had to go to work to pick up my monitor from there. I need a full 2 monitor setup, trying to do anything meaningful on a laptop would just be impossible. Its a lot easier with the kids at school now. Was impossible to get anything done with the little ones always needing help with remote school setup.

Exactamundo.

It also doesn't take long to transition from where you get a semi-apologetic email or call at 8:30 am which says "Don't know if you saw my email last night at 11, I know it was late, but can you get on it this morning first thing please?", to the expectation that you had gotten on that right away at 11 pm the previous evening.

10023 Oct 30, 2020 7:30 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mrnyc (Post 9090190)
you need to wear your damn mask around so life is allowed. your no masking crowd is to blame for this. it could have been crushed over the summer, or could be held at bay in trouble spots, but you wont wear a mask. and who knows who you have infected, made sick or killed by your reckless, selfish behavior and attitude.

also, nyc looks like a damn shantytown with all these streeteries. and now they want more of it for retail. sad.

You are such a presumptuous idiot.

One, I’m not even complaining about the mask. It’s an annoyance, and mostly for show, but fine. Whatever. I’ve been wearing a mask indoors as required since I went to Italy over the summer. I have to put one on when I walk out of my office to go to the bathroom at work. It’s idiotic, but we are all going along with the farce.

It is social distancing that does not work for social animals, especially in cities, for either business or enjoyment. It is having horrific economic consequences, and not only that, but happiness is not possible.

And no amount of mask wearing would have “crushed” anything. You can have everyone sleep in a fucking mask, and it will not eliminate what is now an endemic virus from circulation. And until there is some differentiation in the rules for different groups based on risk, then governments aren’t even trying to take a pragmatic approach to this, just causing needless additional suffering. Fuck them and their rules.

Americans’ puritanical, holier than thou tendencies are really coming through during this whole debacle.

10023 Oct 30, 2020 7:38 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Acajack (Post 9090379)
Exactamundo.

It also doesn't take long to transition from where you get a semi-apologetic email or call at 8:30 am which says "Don't know if you saw my email last night at 11, I know it was late, but can you get on it this morning first thing please?", to the expectation that you had gotten on that right away at 11 pm the previous evening.

Or video calls at 7.30am because hey, that’s when you’re normally dressed to commute to work and we don’t do that anymore right?

Whatever. There’s nothing else to do.

niwell Oct 30, 2020 7:42 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Acajack (Post 9090379)
Exactamundo.

It also doesn't take long to transition from where you get a semi-apologetic email or call at 8:30 am which says "Don't know if you saw my email last night at 11, I know it was late, but can you get on it this morning first thing please?", to the expectation that you had gotten on that right away at 11 pm the previous evening.


It's definitely an annoyance made much worse during COVID WFH - prior to this I very deliberately refused a work phone and rarely checked email off hours. Now work and home life have bled together in a very unfortunate way, particularly when it's busy. Though lately I have been making an effort to fully log off and ignore my work phone after 5:30 or so, unless it is busy or I'm waiting on something. Now that WFH has become routine our office seems to generally respect this arrangement, and the 10pm emails have dwindled to virtually nothing, with the "it's busy" exceptions.

At this point I actually prefer WFH, but ideally would like to go into the office maybe once a week or so. I'm enjoying the ability to go on walks throughout the day and have time to run errands / do housework. Of course all of this is on hold because turns out a 13 week puppy is a full time job on top of my full time job! Doesn't help that my wife's work (now permanently WFH) seems to be at least 6 hours on zoom calls with mandatory video...

destroycreate Oct 30, 2020 7:44 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Acajack (Post 9090177)
Sorry about that.

Did not want to sound like I was complaining (too much).

But this is a thread about the changes brought on by COVID-19.

And I do think that for white collar office workers, WFH all the time has erased the demarcation between work time and personal time.

Many days my wife and I are basically online from 7 am to 8 or 9 pm.

It's not the end of the world and obviously many others are far worse off, but it's still a "lesser" situation.

Between so many layoffs at our company and being on an insanely lean team at the moment, I've been forced to kiss any past semblance of a work-life balance goodbye. A "vacation day" (since February, I've taken 2) now is more like, I'm expected to work for at least 2 hours in the morning and monitor emails throughout the day for anything urgent. It just doesn't feel possible to take time off without looking bad or like I'm not "pulling my weight'.

100% I am working way more than ever before. There is no commute, so that means 2 more hours I can work. Due to the load I'm carrying, I can't possibly get everything done until 7-8pm.

So 12 hour days are pretty much the norm now. At this point, I'll work 7 days a week to avoid being laid off. I couldn't bear to lose my job right now. Not only would I lose my sanity, I dread the idea of job searching and being broke in this climate.

Acajack Oct 30, 2020 8:33 PM

Where I work you can see who is online among your colleagues on a kind of dashboard.

What I often do is logon right away when I come downstairs to the main floor for breakfast at 7 am, in order to ensure I have spot on the network. (It doesn't happen often but sometimes you can't get in if you wait too late.)

But what sometimes happens is I sense people are "surfing" to see who's online, and as soon as they see the green light come on for me, they send me chat messages asking me for stuff!

It's not so bad when it's people who report to me (they can generally wait) but less fun when it's people that I report to.

Stay Stoked Brah Oct 30, 2020 8:59 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by destroycreate (Post 9090446)
Between so many layoffs at our company and being on an insanely lean team at the moment, I've been forced to kiss any past semblance of a work-life balance goodbye. A "vacation day" (since February, I've taken 2) now is more like, I'm expected to work for at least 2 hours in the morning and monitor emails throughout the day for anything urgent. It just doesn't feel possible to take time off without looking bad or like I'm not "pulling my weight'.

100% I am working way more than ever before. There is no commute, so that means 2 more hours I can work. Due to the load I'm carrying, I can't possibly get everything done until 7-8pm.

So 12 hour days are pretty much the norm now. At this point, I'll work 7 days a week to avoid being laid off. I couldn't bear to lose my job right now. Not only would I lose my sanity, I dread the idea of job searching and being broke in this climate.

Unless you're working for yourself, that's too much. it might be time to start looking for a new job.

Qubert Oct 30, 2020 11:00 PM

/\/\/\ .....All these anecdotes about WFH turning into being on call 24/7 might be the only thing that would put the brakes on this whole endeavor. A lot of bosses are going to assume that if your work is "at home" then whenever you're home you are "at work".


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