I have been stunned to learn during this lσcкdσωn about how many people make all kinds of unnecessary/superfluous trips for many reasons: being disorganized/inefficient, having compulsive habits, being bored (shopping out of boredom), wanting "human interaction," etc. Such people seem to have never done anything but that, and thus they are unable or unwilling to adjust to a New Normal.
It's obviously just common sense to limit trips during a situation like this. (Fewer trips, less exposure -- simple math.) But for people who lack common sense, local authorities and daily (ad nauseam) news conferences leave no doubt: they're providing the direction for you.
While overly-frequent trips are troubling, much more shocking to me is what I have also learned about America's eating habits, including their willingness to increase their exposure (through pick-ups, deliveries, and the food itself) by continuing to rely on take-out food.
I'm sorry, I don't understand: I am not assuming that most people are gourmet cooks or glued to The Food Network, or anything like that. But how difficult can it be to open a can of soup, pour it into the soup pot, and heat it on the stove top? In my area -- an area that prides itself on culinary arts, from simple to advanced, and for all classes of people, it would seem that more than half of the local population nevertheless considers frequent (more than 2-3 times/week) trips to pick up prepared food to be "essential activity."
I am much more understanding if one or both parents is working away from home. But in these current cases when in many households both parents (and all of their children) are home because of work and school closures, why would it be necessary, let alone "mandatory," to buy prepared food?
Also, of course, sold out, is anything frozen and prepared. What is not being bought is/are fresh ingredients: meat to cook, vegetables, and fruit. What did the U.S. population do before "the pandemic?" They all ate in restaurants and had never cooked before?
The third surprising trend is what's missing on the shelves -- besides (still) toilet paper: junk food. Good luck finding popcorn or most chips. Combined with all the people enigmatically flocking to beaches and other recreation areas, did America decide that the job & school closures amount to paid vacations? (Sorry, didn't hear that one on the news -- nothing about paid vacations). If you're assigned to work at home, you interpret that as an opportunity to Par-TEE with all you've got, including at home in front of the tube, stuffing your face with junk food? It seems like a bizarre response to worldwide illness. Is this massive denial, or what?