Do we really need pants? And other lessons from a pandemic year

For many who have been working from home, real pants became optional.

(CNN)We're one year, or roughly 31,536,000 seconds, into this new, strange pandemic life.

We've missed loved ones and weddings and funerals, dance recitals and baseball playoffs, more "firsts" and simple pleasures than we can even count at this point.
We've learned how to laugh with our eyes, through masks, from 6 feet away.
    We've learned how to work and sleep and play and exercise and relax -- all in the same room. We've learned to value human worth by the size of their toilet paper stockpile.
      As I sit here wearing holey sweats, I know there are lessons from the past year I'll likely carry for the rest of my life. Here are my favorites.

        There are very few instances in life in which pants are required

        By now, most of us have shown up to a video conference call looking sharp from the waist up and ready for bed or worse from the waist down. We've neglected our facial cosmetics when going out -- masks will cover that chin hair or blemish -- and debated about whether it's time to actually, literally burn all the bras. Covid-19 has introduced new beauty norms that are likely to impact a post-pandemic world.
          "There's almost been an equal split down the middle of Covid-19 era beauty/fashion from minimalist and bare-faced to anything goes to full-out glam," said Rachel Weingarten, a pop culture and trends expert and former celebrity makeup artist.
          "On the one hand, you have those who believe bras and pants have become irrelevant and don't see the purpose of even putting on a pair of shoes anymore," Weingarten said. "The opposing view often includes those who have a lot of Zooming going on and feel either the pressure or relief of an opportunity to dress up -- at least from the waist up -- and spend time on their makeup and hair."
          Weingarten believes we'll eventually strike a balance between the extremes we're seeing play out now. "As we move forward, we'll find a comfortable middle ground," she said.
          "Painfully high heels never should have been the norm, nor should have we aspired to the unrealistic proportions dictated by the fashion gods. My hope is that as we move out of the pandemic, we'll want to feel cute again without feeling pressured to chase perfection."

          Whoever can open produce bags in under 30 seconds without licking a finger deserves an Olympic medal

          Can you complete the open-the-produce-bag challenge? Ready, go!
          With overseas spectators at the Tokyo Olympic games likely canceled and fewer sports to watch on TV, produce bag competitions are not a bad idea. Over the past year of living with Covid-19, we have had to adapt in so many strange ways.
          Who ever thought they'd greet their mother with a spray bottle of disinfectant? Or find entertainment in watching the neighbor take out the trash?
          "Oh, it must be Wednesday again," I find myself saying, impressed by her 90-degree bag toss into the can.
          We have adapted to a bizarre, new normal that is indeed starting to feel frighteningly normal. My 3-year-old kid gets concerned when people talk about not wearing masks indoors because he doesn't remember life before the pandemic. We look to copious amounts of digital entertainment -- including oversubscribing to apocalyptic-themed media in a cruel act of psychological warfare on ourselves. I hear there was this place called a movie theater where you could watch movies on a big screen and eat popcorn to your heart's content.

          Touch is not overrated. Unless it's from your spouse

          The well of loneliness deepened during the pandemic as we were told to stay at home and not socialize.
          Some 80% of young adults were feeling lonely and depressed during the pandemic, according to a 2020 study in the Journal of Psychoactive Drugs.