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English as a foreign language

Living as a German in an increasingly English-speaking world

Articles from April 2020

2020-04-30: Why the lockdown was a good idea

Imagine someone sitting in a warm and cozy house while there is a bad blizzard outside.

Imagine that person commenting that heating was totally unnecessary because it was warm and cozy.

You would tell that person that they are completely crazy, right?

Anyone who tells you that the lockdown was unnecessary: it’s exactly the same thing.

2020-04-17: Stay safe, safe healthy and stay sane!

Inside your home, you can act as if you were not infected. Unless you know or suspect you are, anyway. Because the people living with you have probably cought any SARS-CoV-2 you might have before you ever knew you had it.
But outside your home, please act as if you were infected, even if you think (like I do) that in all probabilty you are not.
Wear some form of mask when you go out. Okay, if you are going for a walk and you are not expecting to meet any other people, fine, don’t. Have one around your neck and draw it up if you are encountering other people. But if you are going out for provisions, definitely wear something to cover your nose and mouth. An improvised mask, a balaclava, a scarf, anything. Anything is better than nothing.
You are not doing it for yourself. You are doing it to protect everyone else. So stay 1.5 to 2 metres or more (5 to 7 feet for your metrically impaired people) away if you can. Yes, I know you can’t at all times; you might want to hold your breath while you can’t, like when you are passing people on a crowded track.
If you are outside, it will certainly not hurt getting more space between you and other people, especially people that are exercising. (Please don’t exercise in popular spaces. Try to limit your intensive exercising to non-scenic routes if you can. Even better, talk a leisurely walk outside and then exercise on your stationary bike inside your home if you can.)
Please stay safe, stay healthy and stay sane.
See you on the other side.

2020-04-08: Coronavirus tells us: health care and sick-leave pay need to be accessible to all, or at least most, people

What do you think happens if you have a pandemic going on, and people with symptoms shy away from seeking medical help? Yes, they go on with their daily lives and infect boatloads of other people.

This is dangerous. Societies need to be organised so that people who are sick can stay at home without losing pay, and seek medical attention and treatment without risking financial ruin for themselves and their families. Which is important. Not only for those at risk directly, but for societies at large.