How the World Continues to Adapt!
There was a great article in the Washington post called Is the pandemic over? Pre-covid activities Americans are (and are not) resuming. The quote I found quite fascinating was the following:
Almost two-thirds of Americans now believe there is little or no risk in returning to their pre-pandemic lives, and 46 percent of them say they have already done so — the highest level yet recorded in an Axios-Ipsos Coronavirus Index survey conducted in mid-September.
That means there is still a third of Americans that feel there is some risk. This is a big change from a year ago when we were finishing up with the Delta surge, while the Omnicron surge was coming.
The chart below is from the Axios-Ipsos Coronavirus Index survey
I think sums it up pretty nicely that some or most Americans have returned to their pre-pandemic lives, while others still have not.
About 1 in 3 is still wearing a mask outside the home at least sometimes. Also, about 400 people are still dying every day from COVID-19. The number of deaths per day in the US plateaued at the current level back in April. 96% of the deaths from COVID-19 in 2022 are individuals 45 years old or older which just happens to be the demographics of the readership of this blog.
A staggering 88% of Americans say COVID-19 has changed their lives forever.
The world continues to adapt in dealing with COVID-19.
What Have We Stopped or are Doing Less?
I found the Washington Post article fascinating as it highlighted several activities or industries that have not rebounded from the pandemic.
Cremations now outnumber burials significantly. This is a trend that has been going on for quite a while. Several years ago I worked with a mortician who wanted out of the industry. His reason was he made much less from a cremation than a burial. Since the start of the great recession, cremations became more and more acceptable to families due to the reduced cost.
We also are not attending funerals. As you can imagine, the vast majority of those that die are older and the people who would attend a funeral are likely to be older.
Similarly, we are not going to the movies. Besides being indoors in most cases, I think we have gotten used to streaming services. Movie theaters have been replacing seating and offering food and alcohol options. I lived in Austin Texas for many years the home of Alamo Drafthouse which started the trend of offering a brew and a burger many years ago.
Symphonies, Broadway shows, and other art groups continue to struggle to bring in customers. This is in large because these venues cater to an older audience.
We also have not returned to indoor malls or other indoor shopping.
We have not returned to indoor dining either. Take-out and delivery rates have declined but are still well above pre-pandemic rates.
Will these trends continue? I do not know but I do know the world continues to adapt.
What are We Doing More of?
The in-person casino business has exploded this year. Many casinos closed during the pandemic and that drove a lot of betting online. Las Vegas casinos are full. I do not understand this but then again I do not gamble. When I worked for IBM, we used to sell computers to several American Indian casinos. The more I understood the business the less likely I was to gamble.
The wedding business is now going full bore. This is likely due to many postponing weddings during the pandemic. Boy are people attending weddings!
Why are we likely attending weddings but not funerals? Think about who attends each and I think you can figure that out. Young people attend weddings and old people go to funerals.
We are getting plastic surgery at record rates. Some hypothesize that we did not like how we looked on Zoom. Others say that because we were wearing masks in public we could hide the changes while we recovered from the surgery.
The world continues to adapt.
What Have We Substituted?
We have not returned to the gym but we are playing pickleball, tennis, skateboarding, and golf. Although organized sports like soccer that hibernated during the pandemic have not come back and there is a fear that organized sports for adults will not come back to pre-pandemic levels. The one exception was basketball, which played primarily outdoors and more than likely with a small group of friends.
We are returning to doctor’s offices but not to our therapist’s offices.
Why is this so Important?
The pandemic has changed many of us forever and not always for the good.
I am writing this post because I want you to evaluate what have you stopped doing and why. The pandemic caused a lot of people who are older to discontinue certain activities. When will you return to those activities?
I have heard from a lot of people over the last couple of months who dropped their guard and caught COVID-19. They got very ill but did not need to go into the hospital and more importantly did not die.
The world will continue to adapt and you need to adapt with it.
What is your next step?Marc Miller