This is probably my last COVID-19 message

Since the pandemic started, I’ve written occasional bonus posts about my experience. This is the 61st. At first, I wrote frequently, at least twice a month. But since last fall the pace has slowed considerably. There just hasn’t been much new to say.

Recent mask guidance from the CDC suggest that 70 percent of Americans can now stop wearing masks, and no longer need to social distance or avoid crowded indoor spaces. In red-state Indiana, that took down the final barrier. Almost nobody wears masks anymore, anywhere. I’m relieved, but I hope the CDC has its guidance right.

The Omicron surge has passed here in Indiana, and I suspect in most of the United States. The thought seems to be that because Omicron didn’t make people as ill as previous variants, that we are past the worst of the pandemic, and that COVID-19 is now becoming endemic. I’m not so sure the emergence of one less-impactful variant proves that. But I think people are ready for this to be over, and that will surely convert pandemic to endemic. I just hope that we don’t have another variant that has high risk of serious illness and long-term effects.

Source:, February 28, 2022

Like most, I’ve all but given up wearing a mask. I carry one in case I walk into a place that still requires it.

I’m still working from home most days, and I still go back and forth about whether I prefer it to being in the office. I miss what the office was, when everyone was there. When I go now, only a handful of others are ever there. It’s hardly worth the hour-plus commute — especially since the people there aren’t ones I need to meet with. I spend my whole day on Zoom, whether or not I spend the hour plus round trip in the car. So most days I just stay home. But I’m frankly sick of being in this house all the time.

If that’s my biggest pandemic-related problem now, I must have it pretty good.


14 responses to “This is probably my last COVID-19 message”

  1. DougD Avatar

    I sure hope this is your last Covid post too.

    We are thankful that in all this we did not lose any close loved ones or suffer loss of income. What we had to endure was mere inconvenience, unlike many others.

    Ontario just lifted limits on religious gatherings so we are looking forward to full-on Church this Sunday!

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Wow, what a long time it’s been for you since you’ve been able to go to church!

  2. James M Lucas Avatar
    James M Lucas

    I am still masking up. I trust no one.
    I hope that companies are in no rush to send people back to the offices. If they do look for gas prices to skyrocket even more than they are now. A good reason for people to still work from home.

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      I’m not sure I would characterize gas prices as having skyrocketed; what we’re paying is a common price over the last 10 years or so. Sure, it’d be nice if gas were cheaper!

  3. DougD Avatar

    Oh weve been going but most of this time its been restricted numbers, right now I think it`s been limited to 1/3 capacity with masks and social distancing.

    It’ll be interesting to see how many people we eventually get back.

  4. Andy Umbo Avatar
    Andy Umbo

    Plus One James Lucas….trust no one. People who believe that masking is a violation of some sort of rights they think they have, are also the types that will stop wearing the mask at the slightest hint of the lemmings around them just stopping to do so as well. In Wisconsin, I still see many, many people masking in stores; and I do as well. Even in venues where people don’t seem to be wearing masks, the workers in the store still are. The more interaction you have with the general “great unwashed”, the more likely it is you’ll still be susceptible. I noticed a year ago, people were hyper careful to not cough on others and generally cough into their arm or hand; and now people seem to be hacking their spit all over the place. I still maintain my distance as well.

    It isn’t too much of struggle to see that in locations where I live, that the areas of highly educated professionals making large salaries in high-end professional white collar endeavors, are still mostly masked. The areas of my metropolis where the marginally educated and mostly blue collar employed live, gave up on masking months ago; partially responsible for record numbers of covid cases just two months ago, vs. a year ago! I stand with my sociological group and remain masked.

    While I was typing this, I was watching the noon news, and they were talking about a book dissecting the flu pandemic of the 1918 era. One of the things they brought up was that in secondary and tertiary cities, like Milwaukee and Indianapolis; the worst part of the flu pandemic happened in those cities after people thought that the pandemic was mostly over and they didn’t have to mask any more. Hmmmm….

    I still maintain, going forward, I’ll mask every winter, just to avoid the flu and colds!

    1. J P Avatar

      I think there’s very much a “red v. blue” self-selection in mask-wearing. Employees often wear them by employer edict, but otherwise you can almost tell someone’s political affiliation (or that of a locality at large) by whether they voluntarily mask or not. I think some of this is from conflicting research studies that have been pushed by news sources according to their political leanings. I hope that some day passions will cool and we can finally get some high quality research that can be taken at face value and distributed across the spectrum.

      1. Andy Umbo Avatar
        Andy Umbo

        J.P., I think it’s easy to say that it’s a “red vs. blue” issue, but from what I see, there’s plenty of wealthy, well educated republicans I know in various investment companies and corporations in my area, that were always “fiduciary government conservative” republicans, that are still masking (and wouldn’t have ever voted for someone like Trump either, or are embarrassed if they did and won’t again) They also feel zero camaraderie with blue-collar neo-cons.

        I also don’t think it takes a PhD in science to understand that a high quality mask will keep you from breathing in pathogens. I cannot believe that so many people seem to have such a huge problem wearing a mask; I consider it to be as annoying to me as having to wear a hat during cold winter months.

        1. AM Avatar

          As I see on the TV or internet news Ukrainian husbands and fathers say goodbye to their loved ones, not knowing if they will ever see then again, I can barely believe (stomach?) that for two years, Americans cried and bitched over wearing f***king masks. Gawd, how could so many millions have become soft, spoiled, selfish, self-deluded idiots?

  5. Steve Mitchell Avatar

    Hopefully there is light at the end of the tunnel! Here in New Zealand, having successfully kept the pandemic out for two years, and got 96% of the population vaccinated, Omicron has finally breached our defences and we are in the first part of a wave of infections. Still less than seventy deaths in total, so we have much to be thankful for. Of course there are those who are against masks and vaccines – a group of them have been camped on the grass in front of the Parliament for about three weeks now. Many of them wearing tinfoil hats to protect against the Electromagnetic Radiation the Government has apparently been transmitting from the concrete bollards placed by police to control the size of the demonstration. It is causing symptoms remarkably similar to COVID….you just can’t make this stuff up. Fortunately it is only a few hundred people, they do not represent us!

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      I think what’s about to happen is that COVID will just be a part of our lives forever. I only hope that we are truly through with the dangerous variants.

  6. brandib1977 Avatar

    Like you, I still carry my mask but mainly pull it out when in super busy places or somewhere that requires it. I’m happy to accommodate those who find it necessary or comforting.

    My workplace just this week announced that masks are optional for employees so going into the office is far more comfortable now. I do mostly work remotely and go into my office about once a week or as needed. Today I traveled to another branch to perform a task and that was a nice treat. I find that I am far more productive and happier in my home office than at THE office but it is sort of fun to dress a little better, see people and have a change of scenery. I hope I am permitted to maintain this balance longterm.

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      It’s nice to have the choice.

      1. brandib1977 Avatar

        It sure is. I am enjoying the freedom!

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