I watch the panic buying and high demand items with interest. First to fly off grocery store shelves was toilet paper and milk followed by hand sanitizer, paper products, and anti-bacterial cleaning supplies. Then the sale of gloves, masks, and face shields surged. The locust swooped in, hoarding canned goods and shelf-stable foods like rice, dried bean, and pasta. As business sent employees to work from home, sales of webcams, routers, Wi-Fi boosters, headphones, and videoconferencing software soared. Let’s not forget the run on over-the-counter cold and flu medications, pain relievers, and thermometers, as we learned COVID19’s symptoms.
I found it funny that purchases of gym equipment and alcohol gained in popularity the same week. As we settled in for the long haul, board games, puzzles, and video games claimed their day in the spotlight. Self-isolation has increase home-cooked meals and baking. Store shelves lack yeast and flour as people bake bread, rolls, and cake from scratch. Social distancing coupled with increased videoconferencing, has us scrutinizing our image on the screen. Is it any wonder hair dye, hair clippers, beard trimmers, and other grooming supplies are the latest must-haves?
I have the luxury of observing other people’s reactions because I practice disaster preparedness every day of every year. The chest freezer is stocked, labeled, and the contents cataloged and rotated. I maintain backups for my backups. My grocery list contains mostly fresh fruits and veggies, and staple replenishments. Last week a woman sneered at my 15 items and asked if that was all I was buying. Yep, just the necessities for the next two weeks.
Have your buying habits changed?
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Jo Hawk The Writer