Back when the pandemic lockdowns started, I wrote a list of things I thought people, businesses and governments were not doing as well as they could. I never got around to writing a blog post about those things, mainly because I did not want to be complaining about minor things when people were dying. People are still dying, but so-called “respectable” news sources are writing about minor subjects, so…
For example, our local newspaper ran a story this weekend about a company that has analyzed alcohol sales during the past year and – are you ready for this newsflash – they are up almost 250%. Who would have guessed?
As the title suggests, I’m giving you my complaint from ten months ago and the current status, as far as I know. Feel free to correct me in the comments or add local variations in your area. I live in Connecticut, the land of the uptight.
Shortly after governments started over/under/appropriately (your choice) reacting to the virus, grocery stores in the area began offering “Senior Hours” so that us old folk could view the empty toilet paper shelves ahead of everyone else. Senior hours at one of the stores where I shop are 6:00 am – 7:30 am. At the other store, they are 7:00 am – 8:00 am. Alcohol sales begin, and the pharmacy opens at 9:00. This has not changed.
Back in January and February, I was busy upgrading two of my computers to Windows 10 from Windows 7 (which I dearly loved). When the lockdown began, I suggested in a tech forum that Microsoft should extend critical security support for Windows 7, especially since people were turning to online shopping – in many cases, people who were new to that realm. There are still over 100 million computers running Windows 7 – without support.
When we were much more concerned about catching the virus from surfaces, I was suggesting (OK, among my friends) that stores do something to move carts closer to sanitizing stations. All the grocery stores still require me to push the cart anywhere from 50 to 150 feet (15 to 46m) before being able to sanitize it. However, one store includes hand-sanitizer at that station and Target has carts and baskets inside the store that have been sanitized by an employee.
I was also an advocate of putting trash cans near the cart corrals so people who were wearing gloves could safely dispose of them. Of the four stores I shop at today, only one has a trashcan in the parking lot. All of them have gloves and masks on the ground. People are disgusting.
When restaurants were closed to indoor dining, the manager of my favorite restaurant was lobbying the state to allow alcohol delivery with food deliveries – Keep in mind that CT only allowed alcohol sales on Sunday and holidays in July 2015 – The state eventually allowed alcohol sales with takeout orders, but not delivery.
Although I spend much less money at Dunkin’ Donuts than I did when I was working, I had suggested (in feedback) that they add a tip feature to the app. The last time I used the app, that feature had not been added.
I have to admit, I do not do enough online shopping to speak with authority here. Back in March and April I saw (on social media) a lot of complaints from online shoppers who found items in their cart being out-of-stock by the time they checked out. I did not understand why stores could not hold your cart for 5-to-10 minutes like the places I shop (tool and hardware) do. I don’t hear these complaints much these days, but I don’t know why.
In April, I was among those supporting the call to fulfill the promise of letting everyone who wanted a corona virus test be able to get one. By the time we had a drive-in test center in our town, they closed it after three days due to low demand.
When I took over the shopping duty, I was grumbling to myself that stores needed to do a much better job of cleaning the self-checkout stations. I am happy to report that the stores I frequent that have self-checkout are cleaning them regularly and all four stores have added touchless credit card readers. Only one had those in April.
Since we were stuck at home with no baseball, basketball, or hockey to watch, I had hoped that TV Land would put M*A*S*H back on in the evenings. Last time I checked, “Two and a Half Men” was still on (I hate that show). It’s OK, I have Hulu.
However you shop, get food, approach testing and entertainment, I hope you continue to do it with your safety and the safety of others in mind. Linda G. Hill’s JusJoJan prompt is ‘specs’ – I got nothing, but I think that’s ok.