Slack. More slack.

I’ve been slipping up. Our local grocery store, Willie’s, only reluctantly and belatedly started insisting on customers and staff wearing masks, which was why we’ve been driving an hour each way to do our shopping. But lately I’ve been ducking into Willie’s for quick items — like today, I was hoping for a fresh salad for dinner tonight, and taking a few hours to get that was too much. They’ve also been much better about requiring the workers to mask up.

But today…four separate clueless idiots wandering the aisles, maskless, and no one said a word. I guess we’re going back to driving long distances to find stores with responsible management, because this place is not trustworthy.

Are we ever going to get out of this pandemic mess? Not at this rate.


  1. blf says

    Fortunately, none of shops in the village where I live are that stoopid. Today, in fact, at the local fromagerie, there was an amusing moment when the young lady saw me come in and fumbled to put on her mask (she was drinking coffee), causing both of us to laugh and joke (me in poor French, her in better but learner’s English)… with more giggling later when I fumbled picking up a slice of cheese I’d asked to taste.

  2. says

    Part of the problem is it is actually dangerous to tell people they need to wear a mask and grocery store workers aren’t paid enough to put themselves at risk of assault like that.

  3. gnokgnoh says

    University of Pittsburgh, where my daughter is a freshman, just returned to “elevated risk” because of a rapid rise in Covid cases. No more hybrid, all virtual classes, no more group activities, no more socially-distanced dining halls. Good grief, we have a long way to go.

  4. Kagehi says

    Had the person that was “front end manager” go out for smoke yesterday, come back not wearing a mask, and didn’t put it back on the whole time I was still on shift. The other person I commented about it to, and should have called her on it, just shrugged. This is in a store that has a freaking sign “still” outside the door, because the “national” policy of the stores is to be masked, and ask that people coming in do so, for everyone’s protecting, and has had a standing rule that anyone refusing to mask who is an employee (they don’t have the f-ing guts, unfortunately to enforce it on customers here) and refuses to wear one can go home, and not come back for the rest of the day (or possibly never, depending on their attitude).

    But, its Arizona, so I suppose the fact that the idiot whose, own party is trying to punish him for having actually, temporarily, doing the right thing, just removed all restrictions in the state makes it all super OK, or something. Or, maybe I just work with flipping assholes and fools.. Yeah, think I will go with that one.

  5. dean56 says

    One of my wife’s nephew’s and his wife just tested positive. She’s going through treatments for cancer. They “have no idea how they could have been exposed.”

    Ten days ago they went to Gatlinburg(sp?) for some concert. Ate in restaurants there and back. Went to the concert. Have no idea how they could have been exposed.

    Stupid like that is certainly why this shit will be around for a long, long, time.

  6. publicola says

    Not just stupidity, but selfishness and willful ignorance. Walmart has a national policy requiring masks, but here in So. Carolina nobody enforces it. So you’ll see, not only customers without masks, but employees without them or pulled down under their noses. Couldn’t even find a manager to complain to.

  7. says

    I live in Louisville, KY. The local grocery stores my wife and I go to (Kroger and Meijers) have signs informing customers to wear a mask before entering the store. For the last year pretty much most people have masked up and that was a relief. However during the past two weeks I’ve noticed more people without masks, or they have a mask on but pulled down. I just don’t understand these people! We’re not out of the woods yet!

  8. says

    I have a boatload of Trump-supporting family members in central California (the state’s darkest red zone) who have largely ignored precautions during the pandemic. One niece just scampered off to San Diego on vacation. After all, it’s spring break, so why not travel 300 miles for fun instead of staying home? And her mother is strenuously opposed to vaccinations. I haven’t been near any of them in over a year now, even though I’ve been invited to multiple family gatherings. Oh, and they want to recall Gov. Newsom, too, because he’s a tyrant, or something. Anyway, he keeps warning about Covid and they don’t like that.

  9. raven says

    In my area of NorCal, mask compliance is still very high.
    I too stopped at the supermarket.
    Most people my Boomer age were…double masked. That is the thing now.
    With just one mask, I felt almost unarmed.

    One of my wife’s nephew’s and his wife just tested positive.

    That happened to a friend of mine.
    She had to visit her daughter and granddaughter in Florida for Thanksgiving.
    Caught Covid-19 virus.
    Had blood clotting problems and lost parts of both lower limbs. She is now learning to walk with artificial feet and it is harder than it looks.
    She does know where she got the virus though. Somewhere between here and Florida.

  10. hemidactylus says

    I guess it’s personal comfort level. Most public places I go there is pretty high mask usage though many have exposed noses and a few chin diapers. There will usually be a few maskless bad apples I scowl at as I try to pass with a wide berth. After my second shot I will be more comfortable finally though aware of potential for breakthrough cases and variants rendering vaccination less effective.

    Part of me wonders if the crapshoot of occasional asymptomatic immune challenge will become the new normal and how that works out in the long run per immune memory status toward coronavirus groups in general and danger of deleterious breakthrough symptoms.

    If you’ve had multiple boosters against variants and been exposed several times to variants what happens if a different sort of coronavirus emerges such as MERS was or the one that hit in 2002-3? Would a virus like that be less of a problem to those with some degree of recent immune memory to SARS-CoV-2? At least the biotech capacity to develop and distribute a matching antigenic profile would have a quicker turnaround time given the new mRNA vaccine technology right? Or would it still take roughly a year?

  11. whheydt says

    SF Bay Area… At the local stores I do the household shopping in (Safeway and Costco), mask wearing level is quite good. A few people wear them below the nose, but most do it right.

    At this point, my wife and I have both had both doses (my second was last Saturday). She got a couple of masks that say “Vaccinated and still masked”.

    Since our daughter works in Contra Costa County and they just opened up vaccinations to everyone over 16 who lives or works, one may hope she’ll get her shots soon.

    Best recent news is that Phizer is reporting excellent results on 12 to 16 year olds. Since the resident grandchild (the other two are in New York) is 13, perhaps this summer he can get vaccinated as well.

    For interesting and far less depressing news, I’ve been following geologic activity in Iceland. (I recommend the videos being put up by Reykjavik Grapevine. Their latest was shot near the eruption site Tuesday night. Spectacular footage.)

  12. Rich Woods says

    @hemidactylus #11:

    At least the biotech capacity to develop and distribute a matching antigenic profile would have a quicker turnaround time given the new mRNA vaccine technology right? Or would it still take roughly a year?

    I’ve seen forecasts of three to six months, though they tend to cluster towards three. I think much of last year (April to November) was spent on building up infrastructure and testing production runs in parallel with the quicker work on antigens. The manufacturing capacity is still expanding and is set to do so throughout this year. There’s already talk about boosters covering eleven SARS-CoV-2 variants being made ready for November.

  13. gnokgnoh says

    Live in the Philadelphia metropolitan region. We have a very high mask usage even outdoors. The kids don’t leave the house without a mask and go to school and play all day with one on. They think that is just part of their clothing every morning and like to color match. Every single person in grocery stores is fully masked, zero exceptions. Cases going up on university campuses are due to spring break and idiot students. Most of the kids in Florida the last few weeks came from elsewhere in the country.

  14. Pierce R. Butler says

    hemidactylus @ # 11: … a few maskless bad apples I scowl at …

    Masked scowls don’t have much effect, especially on the oblivious.

  15. says


    I didn’t know the man. I went to support my friend. Just hitting kind of close to home in recent days. The group we both belong to just started in person dancing again for those of us who have completed the vaccines, so it seems late to be felled by the virus in a way

  16. birgerjohansson says

    Just in.
    Sarah Palin understands COVID19 after getting COVID19. She is now urging people to wear masks.
    (no comment).

  17. birgerjohansson says

    About people ignoring medical science… Celebrating a year of COVID, I checked out God Awful Movies from Mars 3rd 2020.
    “GAM237 The Goop Lab Are You Intuit”
    Gwyneth Paltrow gives pseudoscience a bad name. She falls short of telling people to drink drain cleaner, possibly because she had better lawyers than Trump.

  18. DLC says

    I feel lucky. the county I live in still has a mask mandate, and stores are still largely enforcing it, with very few people refusing. I got my first of 2 vaccine shots last month and will get my second on Friday. things are looking up. Not much, but some.