The Atlantic Daily: You Probably Didn’t Have the Coronavirus in January

Let’s quickly recap four things we learned about COVID-19 this week.

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It’s Friday. Let’s quickly recap four things we learned about COVID-19 this week. Then, for those of you who are lucky enough to stay put, we offer some suggestions for a weekend in quarantine. (To the essential workers who aren’t able to stay home: Thank you.)

1. You’ll probably never know if you had the coronavirus in January.

But you likely didn’t. Estimates vary widely, but all the available evidence suggests that very few Americans were infected at the top of the year. We may never know who they were.

2. Concerns about a new, more contagious strain of the virus are likely overwrought.

“There’s no clear evidence that the pandemic virus has evolved into significantly different forms—and there probably won’t be for months,” Ed Yong, whose essential coverage of this outbreak you may have read, reports.

3. A much-hyped coronavirus treatment is connected to a black-market cat drug.

This is a wild story. Remdesivir, currently our best hope for a COVID-19 treatment, is very similar to a drug called GS-441524, which is used to treat a different coronavirus in cats. The latter is widely available in underground markets in China.

4. “Karen” is now a popular pandemic meme.

The long-standing meme “has been adopted as a shorthand to call out a vocal minority of middle-aged white women who are opposed to social distancing, out of either ignorance or ruthless self-interest,” our technology reporter Kaitlyn Tiffany observes.

Deborah Lee Soltesz / Coconino National Forest

Celebrate moms. This year, Mother’s Day lands amid a particularly tough time for those with small kids. Some families remain physically separated and unable to gather.

Whether you’re able to be together this holiday or are just connecting via FaceTime, here’s something lighthearted to discuss: Do children crave the food their mom ate during pregnancy?

Take a visual tour of the United States. Every Sunday, our photo editor Alan Taylor devotes an entire gallery to extraordinary photography of one American state, as part of his “Fifty” project. Can you guess where the shot above was taken? Reveal the answer.

Watch. Our critics reviewed a few recent television releases, including:

Play our new Sunday crossword. Caleb Madison, our crossword puzzle editor offers some tips for beginners.

Try the coffee trend that’s all over the internet. Whip up some dalgona coffee while you read our culture writer Shirley Li’s reflection on the drink’s place in pandemic culinary history.

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