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Don’t stand so close to me (some details on Social Distancing)

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Young teacher, the subject
Of schoolgirl fantasy
She wants him so badly
Knows what she wants to be

I was going to think of a tricky title to mislead people into reading this blog; we’ve all been saturated with talk about social distancing.

Yesterday I wrote about PPE – specifically why certain people should wear it (and have it available to them) – that is, nurses, therapists, doctors visiting the homes of people or those in hospitals or working with people who have Covid or are at risk of Covid (everyone).

I described who I felt should not be wearing PPE – those visiting the supermarket, people out for a walk with their dog, others in their own houses, watching TV.

I was asked by someone about schoolteachers; there is specific guidance on this although my take is the same as everyone else – if very high risk, Shield, if medium risk, do everything you can to not contract Covid i.e. work from home if possible and everyone else, wash hands and maintain Social Distancing.

Also, if you are low risk but live with someone who is very high risk I’d suggest you should be trying to maintain the 2m distance and follow the advice such as using the bathroom, kitchen and living-room at different times, different towels, changing your clothes when you get in from work; this will be very difficult if not impossible for those who live in small houses or flats.

Now, you need to think that most people in the UK are not teachers, doctors, nurses or policemen, they are not home (domiciliary) or care home staff.

I thought I would pick-on those working at Tesco as they are the most exposed amongst shop workers (as far as I have seen) –

The same rules should apply in relation to Shielding and medium or ‘at risk’ – you should not have to sit at a till or stack shelves if you are in one of these groups; as many of these staff are in zero-hour contracts, I am not the person to advise on how they will get paid – avoid major financial penalties. If anyone reading this does understand, please let me know.

Once you have tackled the high and at-risks groups, you have everyone else.

What should they do?

Well, everyone else at work should, and I apologise for this as it is not very inspiring, Social Distance, Hand Wash, reduce activities to a minimum.

Don’t stand so close to me was The Police signing about a teacher who has the hots for a student. Not something we sing about much today; it was based on Nabokov’s Lolita.

Staff in work will be faced with the same problem.

Your colleagues might not get it.

We have to be ready and prepared to express our feelings, ‘Social Distance’ or ‘I’m keeping my distance’ you might say, to remind someone they should take a step or two backwards.

This applies to every situation.

You can’t Social Distance in an operating theatre; it just is not possible. You can minimise the numbers of people in the room to just the essentials (e.g. no students), you can’t distance during a cardiac arrest; yet, in most other situations it is feasible.

In my work on Friday it felt weird to ask staff to keep their distance; I am as bad as everyone else, worrying about offending someone.

It hadn’t sunk-in fully the situation we are in (and trust me, it has been sinking deeper and deeper of the past eight weeks).

My recommendation for everyone?

This is workers in schools, care homes, shops, hospitals; if you can stand 2 meters from someone do it.

If you can’t it is OK.

Just think, ‘Am I making someone else feel uncomfortable by standing too close?’

If you are shopping don’t stand or bend-over the guy stacking the shelf; wait for him or her to finish or give them a chance to step aside to let you in.

And, if the porter, doctor, carer or whoever says, ‘Social Distance’ get it quickly, don’t look blank, don’t make them feel bad – they will often be feeling frightened, worried or stressed at doing such an un-English thing as trying to put others in their place.

This will all soon be over and we can get back to huddling, cuddling or whatever.

Be well and take care.

social distancing.jpg

2 Replies to “Don’t stand so close to me (some details on Social Distancing)”

  1. We’ve been getting deliveries of things we need, and even though neither of us have the virus (thus far, but who knows what might be on board) we decided to self-isolate as I was in hospital with a chest and throat infection in November, and am in my late 60s. Most of the drivers are very careful, but a couple have been too close, so I’ve moved away from them. I think some people just don’t ‘get it’ yet.

    My husband and I are doing a sort of compromise distancing. We are – at his suggestion – sleeping in separate rooms as he was afraid he’d breathe or cough on me in his sleep! But I can’t say we’re always a two metres apart, during the day.

    I’m going mad disinfecting things, though…hopefully that will help.

    I wish you well, Rod. I emailed but was and am aware you’re busy, so no need to reply. I think all the doctors and nurses on the planet are in a horrible position right now, and I wish more people would realise the good work you’re all doing.

    Liked by 1 person

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