Just a random observation, but I’ve noticed that I am experiencing a kind of cognitive dissonance, where I am kinda observing myself not being in a state of panic about the pandemic, while aware that it’s a panic situation.
The numbers are horrible, both nationally and locally, although Connecticut’s hospitalization and fatality numbers aren’t quite as bad as they were in April. And I’m more-or-less minimizing exposure—I am going to work, unlike in April, but my workplace is currently nearly empty, and we’re not letting people just wander through like they used to in the Beforetimes. I’m not imagining that every cough might be the End.
It feels, I think, like the kind of mental state where a person starts taking thoughtless risks.
I went in to a grocery store the other day for a small number of things that we kinda wanted that day, rather than waiting until the next big shopping trip. Not a huge thing, and I was in and out in five minutes without having to spend any significant time close to anyone, but it’s something I don’t think I would have done in April, when I was panicking. And while I’m not making any travel plans for the next four months, I’m doing my work as if I’m going to be here the whole semester.
I don’t know that we should be behaving exactly as we were behaving in April—I mean, for one thing, we know a lot more about how this disease spreads and how it doesn’t, and for another we some of the stuff we did in April didn’t actually make much sense—but I feel like we should be a lot closer to that kind of behavior than to October or June or sometime when the numbers weren’t horrific and increasing. And yet, here we are, most of us unvaccinated and unlikely to be vaccinated for another month or three, and for some reason I’m not panicking.
Tolerabimus quod tolerare debemus,