Life & Culture

Open Thread Follow Up: When Already?

The votes are in, and everyone but everyone is good and tired of this lockdown.  Although some commented that they’d be careful before removing their masks….mask-free living got the nod with 37 percent naming it the Back To Normal indicator.  Almost as many (29 percent) are waiting for the end of social distancing (Grandchildren!! Family visits! Friends!). It was almost a three way tie between inside dining and drinking (12 percent), cultural activities (10 percent) and the gym (10 percent).  Major League Baseball and the AFL/NFL might have some cause to worry, because only about 2 percent looked forward to seeing live sporting events.

We’ll keep the survey up for a while longer to see if there is any change in the numbers, and we welcome your comments as we go through this lockdown together.


When will things feel like "back to normal" for you?



Photo by Lucrezia Carnelos on Unsplash

Virge Randall is Senior Planet’s Managing Editor. She is also a freelance culture reporter who seeks out hidden gems and unsung (or undersung) treasures for Straus Newspapers; her blog “Don’t Get Me Started” puts a quirky new spin on Old School New York City each week. Send your suggestions for Open Threads to her at




17 responses to “Open Thread Follow Up: When Already?

  1. Waiting on a vaccine and then some, have a partner under COPD umbrella but also don’t think my own immune system would get me through COVID-19… ?!

    New normal it is, how to accept it and live with it? ~Especially not having seen my parents in almost 4 months (a first), i can only hope the new normal will bring us together again but do try to stay in the moment ~SP exercise/yoga/Tai Chi really does help and thank you for it!

  2. I won’t feel like things are back to normal until we have flattened the curve everywhere. I don’t understand the resistance to wearing masks and social distancing and science. It is obvious that it works. Where it has been implemented the numbers have gone down and seem to be staying there.

  3. I agree with Jerry Bates’ answer above. The survey misses the point: the “new normal” will only be possible when the curves in all states and across the country are forced down and flattened out. Until then, masks, testing, and contact tracing are going to be absolutely necessary, despite the opinions of some of the country’s leaders. Until we get the virus under control (which will require the cooperation of all of us), very few will feel safe going shopping or going out to dinner, very few will feel safe sending their children to school, very few will feel safe going back to work.

      1. I do not feel safe going near anyone without a mask! In fact , I move away as soon as possible…if I get Covid, it is a death sentence. I appreciate that you are being considerate of others’ vulnerability.

  4. I miss all my activities one of which was going to the fit fusion class. I know a lot of these programs are on line… It is not the same… I miss the camaderie of people….thankfully things are slowly opening….

  5. All of the above represent normal life to me and now unattainable. I feel if we could get testing with immediate results, then we could test daily and have more assurance until we get a vaccine. Until then my husband, who has cancer, and myself are isolating. It is dispiriting to hear the numbers go up elsewhere. I’m very grateful for Governor Cuomo. We would love to hug our grandchildren but not now.

  6. The list of questions presented miss the most important marker: I won’t feel that we are back to normal until the curve bends sharply downward and begins to flatten out at a very low level. Until then, one cannot consider life as normal unless one lives as if COVID-19 was not really ever going to infect you, your family or friends.

  7. I recall my measles quarantine, short term.
    I recall my fear of polio, long term.
    I recall the 1000 years we had TB sending people to sanitariums.
    But have never before experienced anything like today living in a Life Plan Community in independent living located between an assisted living facility and a long term health care center undergoing federal and state mandates receiving weekly updates on the case load and the deaths reporting.
    Not expecting any less isolation any time soon. So it’s the digital world for me and mine. It’s better than a war zone but a long way from being free.

  8. Until there is a vaccine, masks and distancing are mandatory. Bars and inside gathering areas should not open and every state needs to do the same thing! It will take 6 to 8 weeks to get out of this shitstorm. Once out of it, each state will have to collect the PPEs, tests, etc. They would be smart to put money in grants to businesses that will begin manufacturing PPEs, ventilators, etc and all the things needed for mass vaccinations in the future! All Governors should allow opening slowly.

  9. When there is a FDA-approved vaccine and available to all in the US. I’m not comfortable traveling on a plane, bus or public transportation until then. To this day, I witness numerous shoppers (including children) with NO masks, or older shoppers with masks settled under their noses. This is in NYS – we should know better. Listen to Governor Coumo, protect me from you!

  10. It’s hard to imagine any of above right now. I go out to eat but outside, going to dentist today for cleaning and yikes! will be maskless abd will open my mouth to a stranger. Non of the options sound triggers because they’re inconceivable. I went to spend a month with my family/grands (my son picked me up) & returned via Amtrak and then taxi. It felt liberating. Today marks 2 weeks since I did that. Yay!! ‘Normal’ (minus usual racism please!!) will happen when we’re all immunized .. the rest is silly to consider IMO

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