The numbers of positive tests – henceforth to be known as ‘cases’ apparently – has recently EXPLODED, coincidentally after a lot of testing has been done. Has the false positive rate of the tests been taken into account? Who really knows, but we suspect not.
And all over again, we sit and wait for Euromomo to update once a week… heart in mouth, in a way no population has ever done before. Yet this is where our attention has been inexpertly directed for a second time, and if it felt laboured the first time, this time it feels like death warmed over (if you’ll excuse the pun).
Meanwhile, as most will be aware, on Tuesday 22nd September Boris Johnson announced some new rules to ‘address’ this situation. To be honest, they seem more like a random list of tweaked parameters in a piece of modelling software than any sort of practical or logical method of combatting an epidemic.
The new guidelines involve reducing the numbers of people who can attend weddings to 15, introducing a 10pm closing time for all places which serve food and drink, as well as encouraging people to work from home.
Masks must now be worn in cabs, employees in ‘close contact services’ are now legally required to mask up, presumably this includes retail and hospitality etc.
Businesses will need to display the NHS QR code, and will face stricter rules to make their premises ‘COVID Secure’, including fines of up to £10,000 for ‘repeated breaches’. The penalty fine for not wearing a mask or observing the ‘rule of six’ has gone up to £200 for a first offence.
You must also wear a mask unless you are seated at a table within pubs and restaurants. You can now only receive table service in pubs and restaurants, although this was later clarified to mean ‘licensed’ premises, so have no fear, this does not apply to McDonalds!
Once seated at a restaurant table, I am curious as to how one is supposed to observe proper procedure for safely removing a face covering, once one is confined to the table area and mustn’t leave the table without a mask…
I guess one should probably bring multiple masks, multiple gloves, a container suitable for hazardous material and perhaps they’ll wheel the hand sanitiser over with the condiments?
It’s lucky this is a play-pretend sort of apocalypse/furloughed holiday, where we don’t really have to feel in any danger and the rules don’t really have to make any sense.
Oh, and apparently the UK government expect these measures to be in place for 6 months, amidst hints at potential curfews and national lockdowns to follow. No mention of the elderly people these measures are supposedly protecting, I guess they’ll stay locked up for Christmas, if they manage to stay the right side of the NICE scoring system till then.
James Donald, please play us out.