Good news: the end of the human race has been averted.
Much has been written on the social consequences of social distancing. From leisure-time activities such as eating out, going to the cinema, or just shopping, to the new norms of working, everything has changed.
Remote working from home, that might have developed over many years, has been forced on both employers and their workers in just a few weeks. While many have welcomed the chance to work in their pyjamas, with a glass of wine to hand instead of office coffee, there are some drawbacks for the economy as a whole. Among the losers are cinemas, theatres, restaurants, bars, bowling alleys, nightclubs, nail bars and hairdressers, to say nothing of mass events like football matches.
Many have found working from home to be a pleasant experience and would like to do more in the future. However, there are disadvantages, not the least of which is no set working hours. Working from home means you are always connected, always on call.
But a major problem, one that threatens the continuation of the human race – men and woman do not get to meet. University graduates have probably already found their mates, but school-leavers going straight into a job will have no opportunity to meet their life partners if they are forced to work from home.
Fortunately, the government is aware of this problem. All births are registered with the state registry office and the information stored on a massive, nation-wide, database. The information will include details of the birth, the parents, and their jobs.
This information can be used to find a suitable match for every new-born child. Your life-partner will really be for life, starting from day one. No more tense evenings in the pub, anxiously scanning every new arrival. No more trying to start a conversation with the blonde who takes the same train as you every morning. No more wondering if the office secretary, with a body like that, can really be so dim.
No, as soon as you are old enough to use a computer you can look at www.my_mate.gov and, with just a few clicks, see who you are going to spend the rest of your life with.
The government will also take responsibility for the Total Fertility Rate (TFR). A TFR of 2.1 children per woman is the replacement-level fertility. If replacement level fertility is maintained over a sufficiently long period, each generation will exactly replace itself.
As 2.1 children is a difficult number to achieve, some woman will have to produce three offspring while others will have to make do with just one. The government will let you know where you stand.
And to end with a touch of seriousness in this otherwise humorous blog, in the UK the TFR is just 1.79 births per woman while in Israel it is 2.63. Statistically speaking, the UK is heading for oblivion.