Leonard: Yeah, you can’t stay in your apartment for the rest of your life
Raj: Why not? With online shopping and overnight delivery, I can get anything I want. Look, I just ordered a case of Dinty Moore beef stew and two live lobsters on Amazon.
Leonard: Lobsters overnight?
Howard: Oh, you’re kidding. Let me see. Well, I’ll be. Look, you can throw in a couple steaks and have a surf and turf
Leonard: The surf and turf sounds good. See if they have corn on the cob.
Bernadette: Guys, we’re trying to get him out of here, not you in.The Big Bang Theory The Monster Isolation 2013
And no I don’t mean in terms of the Democrats and their m-m-m-my Corona bit.
I mean in terms having a society that is in a position to cope with this situation while still functioning.
Consider the following. During the Spanish flu epidemic 100 years ago that killed thousands, watching a baseball game would have been taking your life in your hands.
Today not only can fans watch just about every game on TV but March Madness and the NBA & NHL playoffs (when they resume) are available both on TV and streaming, but unlike 20 years ago when you’d have to hit a bar to see it on a good high def screen is an affordable item.
Consider colleges, Many colleges are not holding classes because of the current virus situation, however with streaming and teleconferencing a professor is in a position to not only teach a class but interact with students in person or as a group so their physical presence is not vital.
20 or 30 years ago paying your taxes, or registering your car, or getting the water bill or electric bill paid meant standing in a long line. Today all of this can be done online with a few click and thanks to electronic transfer of funds, even those without the net can likely pay by phone.
Furthermore many of the jobs involved here are jobs that can be done remotely. In 2004 when I 1st started working remotely it was a novel thing. Today tens of millions in the US have that ability to do useful work without leaving the home.
Even industries that are traditionally not done remotely can adapt. With a smart phone, online or remote payment and a few people ready to drive, a local supermarket can institute a delivery system fairly quickly, thanks to doordash your local restaurant can get your favorite dish to your home without a lot of fuss. Cripes even McDonald & Wendy’s delivers these days
And I haven’t even mentioned Amazon or Netflix or facebook which means that movies, TV shows, books and social and personal interaction is an easy thing to achieve and just about any product and service we need can be delivered to our door with minimal contact.
And of course there is gaming. Online gaming is a staple of entertainment so you can have a blast with friends or even alone and not even leave the house (might I suggest Dynasty Baseball as I’m about to start a new league).
Cripes even vice is safer (although not for the soul) as dancing around a pole in front of a bunch of drunk men in a club can be replaced by a web cam where you don’t have to have a bouncer ready to act for your safety.
In short even if government finds it necessary to limit contact in public spaces and people retreat to their homes to isolate themselves during this crisis we as a society have reached a point where such isolation, while an inconvenience will not be crippling.
Of course this is not true for everyone. Mom and pop stores will suffer, buffet restaurants will suffer (although they can sell and deliver by the pound) and medical facilities and jobs that require regular physical contact with others will still be communities at risk, not to mention the warehouse workers who will need to deal with Christmas like volume when this becomes the norm.
However we are damn lucky that this virus hit in 2020 and not a Century or even a decade earlier