I have seen the ghost of COVID future and it is my son’s soccer games. The first one took place last Saturday on a gloriously cliché late-summer afternoon. The sun was shining. Birds were chirping. And adults were slowly arriving at the realization that it’s hard to yell LET’S GO TEAM and GREAT PLAY through a thin veneer of facehole-blocking fabric.

As the game proceeded and the comfort level of most spectators surged from “nonexistent” to “ready to board an unventilated party bus,” the masks receded. Mine did as well. I gave in to the desire for something approximating normalcy and it was fine.

Our decision wasn’t especially egregious, given that we distanced and that outdoor activities of this sort pose minimal danger. The worry is that, little by little, we’re all softening to the threat. The games will move inside come Thanksgiving. Will we recalibrate our behaviors and risk tolerance to account for the more infection-friendly setting? I’ll let you know.

This week’s Haymarket Media Coronavirus Briefing is 1,325 words and will take you seven minutes to read. 


Daily Life In New York Amid The Coronavirus Outbreak
Source: Getty

The inevitable

Collectively, we’re doing a fine job researching COVID’s impact on every aspect of everything. 

The takeaway

The triggering events of 2020 have not been predictable. Much of what followed has.


Metropolitan Transportation Authority has launched “The State of Respect,”
Source: Getty

The pushback

To the list of “tiny, insignificant upsides in the year of COVID and wildfires and financial catastrophe and overt racism,” I propose adding “at least we’re occasionally counterpunching.” It beats the alternative.

The takeaway

Back in the 1680s, when there were no Wi-Fi or double cheeseburgers, Sir Isaac Newton wrote, “For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.” Dude totally saw this coming.


NEW Health COVID-19 testing site
Source: Getty

The smartening

There hasn’t been a day in the last four months that somebody or other hasn’t shared provocative research or insight about pandemic life. I know this because it’s my job to attempt to read it all. It’s exhausting, frankly.

The takeaway

My youngest recently announced that he wants to be either a scientist or a scuba diver when he grows up. With each passing day, it is increasingly difficult to resist the temptation to misplace his kiddie snorkel.


CommunityAmerica Credit Union campaign.workaround

The workarounds

Further proof that necessity is the mother of COVID-era invention:

The takeaway

You’re a problem-solver. I’m a problem-solver. Gooooooo, problem-solvers!


The rest


Stuff you can do


…and some songs.

And so ends another edition of the Haymarket Media Coronavirus Briefing. We’ll be back with the next one on Wednesday September 23, which is Bruce Springsteen’s birthday. Be well.