Free-standing temporary sign on a sidewalk corner proclaiming WEARING IS CARING and showing two cartoon people, one with short hair and the other with long hair, wearing face masks covering their mouths and nose.

Every city around here has its own publicity and enforcement schemes for Covid-19 safety, though the criteria and general requirements are mostly decided at the county or state level. I haven’t gotten out to El Segundo much since the pandemic hit, so I hadn’t seen their “Wearing is Caring” slogan until this weekend.

A sign on a window for a dance class studio that says We Dance Outside with a picture of an awning set up in the parking lot.

When Covid-19 hit the area, a lot of arts lessons halted or went online. But it’s a bit tricky to do things like a dance class over Zoom. Back in June when I went hiking at the botanical gardens, I was there on the day that a local kids’ dance studio had set up a stage for their year-end recital. Outside. With minimal audience. And all the dancers at least six feet apart.

This one’s set up a semi-permanent tent in their parking lot (which you can see in the picture on the sign) so they can conduct lessons outdoors, where ventilation helps cut down on coronavirus transmission, with shade — because virus or not, it’s freaking California in summer. (Not that you can tell from the pall of smoke in this shot, because wildfire season is year-round now.)

It’s been really interesting to see how places have adapted (when they can, anyway) from squeezing as many people into an indoor space as possible, to trying to spread out safely and outdoors. Like the gym I’ve seen that set up their exercise equipment in the parking lot. Or all the restaurants that have fenced off parts of their lots to make temporary patios.

Though I still haven’t done even outdoor patio dining since this all started. You can dance with a mask on. You can shop with one. You can hang out and talk with one. But you can’t eat with one. Takeout is fine for now.

ead and shoulders of a cardboard cutout of Spark (Pokemon Go) with a pennant covering his mouth and nose like a bandana.

I walked by the kid’s room during this morning’s online school session and found that he’d set up the Spark standup (the Team Instinct leader) that he and Katie made for Pok√©mon Go Fest to block the doorway as if standing guard.

Fortunately, Spark is considerate enough to wear a face mask per pandemic recommendations.

Be like Spark. Not like Jessie and James. ‘Cause you know they’re only going to wear masks for disguise purposes.