The fourth week is ending. Where are we with social distancing?

Max Bean, Contributing Writer

At the end of this fourth week, it is clear that some things have been solidified within the University’s student body. Social distancing is at an all-time high. I saw this wondrous phenomenon for myself when I visited the Malesardi Quadrangle Friday night. As soon as the students saw me, they immediately began socially distancing. I even attempted to go up to a group of my peers, who immediately socially-distanced to the opposite side of the quadrangle.

Social distancing has also impacted teaching and classes. Rather than teaching indoors with these new standards of social distancing, more professors have turned to Zoom for their answers. In fact, classes via Zoom are a common occurrence already, with students sometimes having their entire school day online. They rarely talk or connect with classmates in-person (as that would violate social distance guidelines), but they do learn how to “focus” on the teacher while memorizing the answers to the latest leaked quiz. Since so much time is dedicated to Zoom-based classes and online homework, the “Freshman 15” is taking full effect. Kids get their meals, sit down at their desks and eat during class time. Of course, the note-taking process is arduous and, as a result, the meals get cold by the time they’re finished.

Between the note-taking and the eating, the students rarely get exercise. I should know — I’ve gained 30 pounds since the first week of school (the whole freshman 15 myth is a bare-faced lie — clearly another example of fake news). Aside from the classes, homework and food, there’s nothing else to do but sleep. Occasionally, I see people running around outside, but they’re just being chased by campus security for not social distancing. As long as said security allows for those students to get a six-foot head start, I’m perfectly satisfied.

Events on campus appear to be affected by this social distancing issue as well. Oftentimes, people were so distant at the Uptown events I hardly saw anybody attend apart from those who lived nearby. I thought some of the events appeared completely deserted before I saw an Uptown employee pull out a tape measure and scale the distance between people talking with each other.Whenever it wasn’t up to par, the offenders had to be physically removed from the area, as to not disturb others. One time I got too close to the guy making caricatures, and the next thing I knew I was tossed onto the Malesardi Quadrangle, the closest place that people were allowed to congregate. I mean, that was before I got too close to one of the people watching the weekend film— then I got dropped in the middle of Market Street. Next thing I knew, a car got too close to me and security towed it to Danville, Pa.

Plenty has changed during these first few weeks of college, and I am sure plenty more will change as a strict contrast to college life. Remember: never get too close to people.

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