The strange new normal of not giving a s*** | Opinion

MAY 4 — It feels strange to me, being able to walk into the nearby snack shop without my phone, without needing to trade my location data for entry.

While it means I can get my usual cup noodles with a lot less hassle, I wonder just how much is going to be dismantled from our daily routine.

It’s early days yet but doing errands and casual drives around Petaling Jaya, I see people are walking around masked and it looks pretty much the same.

Then I go on social media.

Huge crowds at KLCC Park and in malls, people happily embracing no longer needing to worry about social distancing.

Make no mistake, stranger, if you come nearer than a metre to me in the grocery line, I will make you shrivel under the laser gaze of my disdain. 

I suspect in the coming weeks, people are going to start forgetting that thing we call personal space. 

People wearing face masks sightsee and snap pictures in the heart of Kuala Lumpur during Hari Raya Aidilfitri holiday May 3, 2022. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri

There will be those who will handily “forget” to keep their masks on when entering malls, which is apparently the case with many Bangsar/Publika/Mount Kiara expats who have been doing it since before the outdoor mask mandate ended. 

Dear God, if I do die from Covid, please do not let me catch it from an annoying Westerner who insists that masks do not work. 

Speaking of masks, I am still waiting for my 3M mask that will offer a higher level of filtration as well as social intimidation.

It also comes with a special speaking diaphragm so people can hear me more clearly with the option of helping me do a great Darth Vader impression should I wish them to go away.

The study that says my having psoriasis means a 33 per cent higher risk of being hospitalised with Covid-19 and a 36 per cent higher chance of dying from it means I need to be more cautious, because that’s unfortunately what this new normal is down to — personal responsibility. 

As I told a friend, the only way to survive this pandemic is by extreme distrust of your fellow man and indoor spaces.

No matter what the health minister says, I will risk being called uncouth over shaking someone’s hand. 

*This is the personal opinion of the columnist.

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