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Follow the signs

Jeanne Sager - Columnist
Posted 1/19/21

The signs are everywhere: To maintain social distancing, only (insert very specific number) customers are permitted inside at one time.

We may have miles and miles of open fields and forests, but …

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Follow the signs

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The signs are everywhere: To maintain social distancing, only (insert very specific number) customers are permitted inside at one time.

We may have miles and miles of open fields and forests, but small town life comes with small lobbies at post offices, pharmacies, and bakeries just the way it happens in the big cities.

The question, it seems, is what should you do when you encounter one of these signs?

I thought it would be simple enough.

It's just what you do when you see “push” or “pull” in big print on the door to one of these establishments.

You read it. You follow it.

Simple, right?

And yet, time and again, I step up to an establishment, read the sign, peer through the window to count the people, and the math doesn't add up.

There are too many people.

Did they see the signs and ignore them? Did they just not read them at all?

Other times I wait my turn (in the New York cold), step inside when the numbers are right, only to be “joined” by people who've ignored the signs. Suddenly all of us on the inside have nowhere to go to maintain distance. They've just made us all that much more unsafe.

I don't get out much. Somehow that makes all these incidents statistically that much worse. If it happens nearly every time I do go out, what's happening every day out there while I'm hiding at home?

How many postal employees, pharmacy employees, bakery employees…and all those customers…are being constantly put at risk?

If you are reading this, you've just proven you have the capacity to read a sign too. Now all you have to do is follow their instructions.

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