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5/7/20--On today's episode we're joined by special guest Irene Li, co-founder and owner of Mei Mei in Boston. She talks about the response to the coronavirus pandemic in the restaurant industry at large, and how things look for her eatery in particular. “We know that we are going to weather this thing, even though we don’t know what the other side will look like.” Mei Mei is one of many Boston restaurants now selling groceries after the city made it legal two weeks ago. Consumers can pick up a variety of items that might be out of stock at grocery stores. Li says, “Sometimes somebody will come in just for dumplings and 4 rolls of toilet paper. Other times they’ll buy a $45 grocery box that has eggs and butter and different veggies, flour and yeast.” The social distancing orders have put a strain on restaurants' bottoms lines and have forced Li and other owners to get creative. “It’s all about thinking about new ways to connect with our guests.” Like making Mei Mei's in-person dumpling-making classes into virtual ones, about which she says, “We are selling those tickets out faster than we can put them up on our website." In case you missed it, Wednesday, May 6 marked the first day that mask-wearing became mandatory in the state of Massachusetts. Governor Baker's order applies to anyone "who is in a place open to the public in the Commonwealth, whether indoor or outdoor, and is unable or does not maintain a distance of approximately six feet from every other person." We're looking at an extremely crowded field vying for the Massachusetts 4th District congressional seat. A ruling put forth last month by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court cut in half the number of signatures required to get on the primary ballot. As a result, a whopping 10 Democrats and 1 Republican have qualified for the primary.

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