The real story of the toilet paper shortage (Marker)
by Will Oremus
Why is it still hard to find Charmin at your local grocery store? Hoarding and irrational panic may play a part, but the more fundamental issue is a real, sudden change in demand and a complicated supply chain that can’t turn on a dime.

Wait, how long are we supposed to wash our hands for? (FiveThirtyEight)
by Maggie Koerth
Some experts recommend washing your hands for 20 seconds, others for 45. Some focus on technique, some on water temperature. It turns out there are no totally clear data-based rules for any of this, although research can give us some good guidelines.

The COVID-19 strike wave (Vice)
by Aaron Gordon, Lauren Kaori Gurley, Edward Ongweso Jr., and Jordan Pearson
The current crisis has turned retail and delivery workers into “essential employees.” That means they’re putting themselves and their families in danger, but it doesn’t mean they’re being paid well or treated with respect. The result echoes labor unrest in earlier times.

Plague, smallpox, the 1918 influenza pandemic, and COVID-19 (Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists)
by Ibrahim Al-Marashi
Diseases with mysterious origins in other animal species? Xenophobic rumors and conspiracy theories about the spread of a deadly pandemic? History can tell us how this went down before—and what measures have worked to respond effectively.

The southern coronavirus nightmare (The Atlantic)
by Vann R. Newkirk II
In some places, coronavirus fatalities are overwhelmingly concentrated among those over 70. In the American South, the story is different, thanks to poverty, racism, and a lack of access to care.

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