There are many workers who we took for granted in our pre-Covid innocence - logistics hub operators, truckers, supermarket workers, filling station workers, delivery drivers. Many of them are still out there, risking their health and possibly their lives to make sure we all stay alive and supplied with brioche and seedless grapes.
But of those who are no longer at work, the one worker I always took for granted was the hairdresser. Despite being magnificently vain, as the years passed, I have become fairly relaxed about my hair.
Back in the glory days of the Celtic Tiger, I used to get it cut and straightened, a level of flamboyance acceptable in someone in their 20s, which would be fine except I was 35, and thus looked like someone who should be on the Sex Offenders Register.
But you pass 40 and you focus less on looking like an inbred peacock, and soon you are at the stage where you feel no shame when the hairdresser asks if you want the ears and eyebrows done too. Sher why not, any chance you could take a few inches off the neck, shoulders and lower back while you're at it, for age is just a quicksand of humiliation, and the secret to surviving is to not struggle.
I am now at the Edward Scissorhands stage of Covid hair - random spikes here and there, cowlicks not seen since my First Communion photos reappeared, as I revert to my primal form, half man, half ape. But I'm still vain enough not to cut my own hair.
My eldest son, however, was not so lucky. He has my hair - thick, wiry, prone to jutting out in random peaks. It needs to be short and tight or he starts to go full Mowgli. As the weeks have dragged on, it got wilder and wilder, with a flattened band where his PS4 headset rests, and two random cowlicks at the front which look like an owl's ear tufts.
This was great fodder for my casual dad insults, as we all started shouting 'too-wit too-woo' at him, or calling him Owlboy, or, when he sat down at the computer, telling him not to eat the mouse.
But after a fortnight of that, we got sick of it and of his increasingly wild appearance. So I decided to cut his hair. Hey, what's the worst that could happen?
Cutting hair seems easy enough - you just buzz buzz, snip snip, and make some idle chit-chat about holidays or how they should bring back hanging. The first snag in my grand plan was that there isn't a clippers left in Ireland. So I fished out one of those little nasal trimmers which has an eyebrow attachment, sat him down and set to work.
Long story short, cutting hair is hard. Like, really hard, even with a child that is your own property and whose head you can shove in any direction without a lawsuit. The end result of all this is that Owlboy now looks like a medieval monk who is suffering from a bout of mange, or the lead character in the classic 1985 Belarusian war film Come And See.
Obviously, Alex is glad he is no longer being called Owlboy and taunted with hate hoots, but he is less pleased about us calling him Brother Owlboy, asking him when he is returning to the monastery, or would he like some mead with his chicken nuggets. But he takes it all in good humour because it's not just his hair that is like mine, but also the inside of his head - he likes to make people laugh, and whether they laugh at him or with him matters not.
As he gets older, he gets wittier, and he enjoyed getting Ireland's worst haircut as much as we did giving it to him because we had such a laugh doing it.
And the most important lesson of all our bad haircuts and Covid comedy is that when we all barge back into the barbers, stylists and salons, we tip our hairdressers.