There Will Always Be People Who Just Want to Hang Out at Olive Garden

No matter how bad it gets.

Jessica Wildfire
7 min readFeb 19, 2022


Photo by Martin Courreges on Unsplash

Well, we’re open.

For now…

Recently, I had this thought:

Maybe we should stop measuring the pandemic in terms of hospitalizations and deaths. Maybe we should start reporting the number of bars and restaurants that have to close due to “staffing issues.”

Would that work?

Maybe people would care again if we drove home the connection between all these labor shortages, the supply chain issues, and the fact that a million people are now dead in the U.S., and millions more are living on long term disability. You know, a lot of these people were the ones making our burritos and delivering our groceries. They were driving our kids to school, and teaching them how to read. I mean, it’s not just a coincidence that suddenly there’s not enough people to do these jobs.


Almost everyone has ditched their masks. They’ve decided to make all the vulnerable people, including kids under 5, and their parents, just deal with it on our own. They don’t care.

They’re done.

So much for liberal values…

We’ve gone back to normal, despite disturbing new facts. First, South Africa had a much worse wave than anyone knew. There was just a big undercount in cases and deaths. Second, Omicron really wasn’t that mild. It just took longer to cause severe symptoms, and those symptoms showed up in places we either didn’t expect or weren’t looking at.

Third, children got a lot sicker than everyone thought they would. After weeks of assuring us it wasn’t “that bad” for kids, the CDC finally released a report saying it was downright brutal.

Wait, that’s not all…

There’s a new report that this new subvariant BA.2 actually is something to worry about. Basically, it combines the spread of omicron with the severity of delta. It’s also more immune to antibodies and treatments. Finally, our booster shots wear off significantly after four months.

So, should we panic? No. Should we rush out for toilet paper and bottled water? No