Honestly, there are still too many exceptions in today’s new restrictions for Washington state for my tastes (but I recognize that without federal assistance, the state can only support so much).

Stay home. Order delivery and get takeout for food. Let your hair grow out. Order the things you need from small businesses that offer delivery or curbside pickup, or from Amazon or other big retailers that will ship to you.

Travel, restaurants, haircuts, and many other things are niceties, not necessities. And they all depend on the workers who support and provide those services risking their lives to let you have those few moments of faux normality.

If you’re a worker who isn’t able to work from home, take every precaution you can. I’m sorry the federal government refuses to give you the assistance you should be getting so that you don’t have to risk yourself to cater to other people’s selfishness.

When you do have to go out, mask up. And even if you’re out on a trail or hiking and don’t think you’re close enough to anyone else to need a mask, think about those times when you can smell cigarette smoke from far away and reconsider that cavalier attitude towards aerosol transmission. Or, if you still won’t wear a mask, don’t scoff and mock those who do; they’re making the effort to protect themselves and others, and such behavior should be rewarded, not denigrated.

And yes, some of these comments are very pointed, and unapologetically so. As much as I love you all, I’ve seen far too many posts and photos and heard and read too many comments and statements that make it clear that these behaviors aren’t limited to red states, rural areas, and Republican voters.

Yes, this sucks. But death is worse.

If at all possible, stay home. When it isn’t possible, wear your masks. Stop risking the health of yourselves and others.

Seems the USPS had a fairly well developed plan to distribute reusable masks to US households, and was far enough along to have a press release drafted, until the White House killed it. Excerpted from this Washington Post article:

Some top administration officials even hoped to tap the mail service’s vast network — and its unrivaled ability to reach every U.S. Zip code — to help Americans obtain personal protective equipment. The idea originated out of the Department of Health and Human Services, which suggested a pack of five reusable masks be sent to every residential address in the country, with the first shipments going to the hardest-hit areas.

At the time, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention had been working on coronavirus guidance that recommended face coverings, a reversal of its previous position, in the face of mounting evidence that people could spread the coronavirus without experiencing symptoms. The Postal Service prepared for the possibility it might be deputized in the effort, drawing up a news release touting that it was “uniquely suited” to help. The service specifically identified Orleans and Jefferson parishes in Louisiana as the first areas to receive face coverings, with deliveries shortly thereafter to King County, Wash.; Wayne County, Mich.; and New York, according to the newly unearthed document, which is labeled a draft.

Before the news release was sent, however, the White House nixed the plan, according to senior administration officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to share internal deliberations.’

“There was concern from some in the White House Domestic Policy Council and the office of the vice president that households receiving masks might create concern or panic,” one administration official said in response to the scrapped mask plan.