100. Hard Pass on the Salad

Saturday October 17 2020

So, Kroger has reopened their communal salad bar station. I was shopping yesterday after work to find inspiration for a quick and easy dinner to bring the end the week to a full stop and noticed the grazing bar was stocked again. Kroger closed the thing down back when the restaurants were mandated to do carry-out only and since then the space has been a display of bags of tortilla chips.

And giving it a quick glance, it appears the populace of our little town was laying in wait to consume its goodness, maybe even right there on the spot. One lettuce bin was scraped clean and most of the remaining containers were in need of restocking as well.

Kind of a small observation, right? But it gives a clue to how tired everyone is of this mask-wearing and social distancing. We’re so over this.

Too bad the virus isn’t.

In Governor DeWine’s update on October 15, we’re told that cases in Ohio are increasing. According to the Ohio Public Health Advisory System, we have 29 counties that have a very high risk of exposure and another 41 counties that are high incidence. That puts 10 million Ohioans, 85% of the population, living in an area with a high risk of community transmission.

Ok, so that’s just Maybe’s. Maybe we’ll be exposed and maybe we’ll get sick. But hey, maybe we’ll be ok. But there’s this, too.

Today marks the fourth day in a row of more than 2,000 new COVID-19 cases in Ohio.

Governor DeWine also announced the state’s positivity rate was 5.4% and the seven-day average was 4.2%. This is up from September when the positivity rate was 2.7%. He reported that today Ohio has 1,042 COVID inpatients in hospitals, which is a significant increase from the 563 patients on September 20, 2020. Source: https://coronavirus.ohio.gov/wps/portal/gov/covid-19/resources/news-releases-news-you-can-use/covid-19-update-10-15-20

“The only way, the only way we can beat this virus back is to follow the prevention methods we have been talking about since the beginning of the pandemic,” said Governor DeWine. “Stay home when you are sick. Social distance. Wear a mask. Always.”

Look, I’m resistant to the face mask thing, too. In fact, the times I’ve had to walk back to my car to get the thing are too many to count. I don’t wear a face mask when I’m outside and sure as heck don’t have it on while driving, like I’ve seen some folk do. But I’m not willing to go as far to place blame on our Ohio leadership, as one friend who refers to our governor as Dictator DeWine.

And holy cow, people. The face mask doesn’t protect the wearer, of course. It’s the best technology we have right now to keep your germs from speading to others, whether you’re carrying the virus or not. It’s not perfect, but it’s what we got right now, along with washing your hands, which is disturbing that we need to keep saying that one.

Right now the goal is not to stop coronavirus, but to keep the spread at a manageable pace so our health resources are not overwhelmed. The long-term goal of ending this pandemic will come later with a viable vaccine and the herd immunity we build over time.

And my advice? Stay away from salad bars in Ohio for now.

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