Civil war at the office: Wimps vs. Knuckle Draggers?

Are you anxious to return to normal work hours in the normal place and with the normal commute? If so, prepare to raze (as in destroy) your mask.

Or are you dreading the thought of going back to the old office? Especially if there is a serial hugger who needs little excuse to go into a clinch with you. Or maybe a serial close-talker who loves garlic.

In the 13 to 15 months many feds have been working from home, lots of things have changed. Starting with you.

Unless there is another pandemic or a major change imposed by Congress and the White House, many work at home feds will be required to return sometime this year. In some cases, the return is designed to help the workflow and make it easier for customers of federal agencies. In some cases it may primarily be to put federal workers — the creatures of The Swamp during the Trump administration — back in their place. In the last two years of the administration, many agencies were downsizing or eliminating telework options for employees. Just this week Rep. Jody Hice (R-Ga.) suggested that feds start returning to the office.

But nobody knows the return schedule or how many workers it will include. Yet. But more changes are coming.

When all or most of us are back at the office, will it be like a giant, happy family reunion? Or will offices split along tribal lines, with some people wearing masks while others sneer at their fears and have been chafing under COVID-19 rules for too long?

The good news/bad news is that wherever they stand on the safety protocols each thinks/knows they are correct. That is both comforting and irritating at the same time.

The pro-mask folks think the face covers, distancing and vaccines have been a success. The anti-mask, anti-vaccine cohort thinks this all been a crock of peanut butter and that their own willpower and righteous have protected them.

Many people are confused by the newest CDC guidance on masks and behavior around others. Also varying rules or guidelines set by individual states, cities and counties.

Back-to-workers might feel safest in states Like Connecticut, Maine, Vermont, Massachusetts and Rhode Island where (as of May 18) more than 47% of the eligible population had been fully vaccinated. The District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia — with the largest concentration of feds — ranked 10, 16 and 17 respectfully in the percentage of fully vaccinated. Workers who have taken all safety precautions up to now might be even more reluctant to return to work in states with the lowest percentage of vaccinated people: Tennessee, Louisiana, George, Arkansas, Alabama and Mississippi. You can check out the numbers where you live here.

Nearly Useless Factoid

By Alazar Moges

For some time, there was confusion about the relation between giant pandas and racoons. But through DNA research it was proven that they are much more closely related to bears despite being vegetarians. Giant pandas are now labelled in the Ursidae family along with the seven other bear species, while Red pandas are now put in the Procyonidae family along with raccoons.

Source: University of California, Santa Barbara

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