In just the past week, a naked man ate a homeless guy’s face in Miami, a New Jersey man threw his intestines at police, a Canadian porn star killed a man and ate parts of his body before mailing other parts to government officials, a Maryland man killed his roommate and ate his heart and brain, and a Staten Island pizza parlor owner nommed a dude’s ear. It seems clear that this sudden burst of zombie activity points inexorably to the beginning of the end for mankind. But we started to wonder this morning — from inside our fortified, WiFi enabled, mountainside bunker — whether the only thing that’s changed is that, in the wake of the headline-grabbing Miami incident, we’ve suddenly started paying a lot more attention to zombie-esque stories than we had in the past. After digging around, we found that while the frequency of cannibal stories over the past week is unusual, this kind of stuff happens fairly regularly. Here is a rundown of what we’ve found from just the past six months.
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The remote work bubble
Last week, The Atlantic commissioned a poll from Leger, asking Americans to estimate how many people had worked from home during the pandemic. The results weren’t entirely surprising: Those working remotely tended to overestimate how many other people were doing the same.
Seventy-three percent of survey respondents who had teleworked because of the pandemic guessed that at least half of Americans had done the same. But the actual number of people who worked remotely because of COVID-19 was, at its highest point, roughly 35 percent, way back in May 2020. Let’s skip ahead to last month: About 90 percent of surveyed respondents who worked from home in August because of the pandemic guessed that at least 40 percent of Americans did too. In reality, only 13.4 percent worked from home in the final month of summer.
A shift in COVID policy for NYC public schools
Mayor de Blasio has announced some revised testing and quarantine protocols for the city’s public schools, which will go into effect next Monday. Sample COVID-19 testing of unvaccinated students will now happen weekly, rather than twice-a-month at all elementary, middle, and high schools. This comes a day after the city’s teachers’ union, the United Federation of Teachers, called for weekly testing. …
In another significant shift, the city is changing its quarantine policy for unvaccinated students. Previously, the education department had said all unvaccinated and asymptomatic students in a classroom with a positive case would have to quarantine for 10 days, although older students could provide a negative test result to return to school on day 7. Now, unvaccinated students will not have to quarantine when there is a positive case in the class unless they were unmasked and less than three feet apart.