BEING anti-social is finally in vogue. Introverted types who have spent years carefully avoiding unnecessary contact with strangers are now being shown to have been simply way ahead of the curve. Welcome to our world. Not literally, of course. Stand a bit further away, please.

Staying home, social distancing and taking extended detours to avoid bumping into people on the street are no longer seen as acts of rude or peculiar behaviour. It’s the law. It’s like a government decree has been penned by the reclusive and socially awkward. And legalled by Chuck McGill from Better Call Saul.

Perhaps the only problem with the current rule of self-isolation, in fact, is not enough isolation. Long-term advocates of working from home could happily extol the virtues of a solid six hours of near uninterrupted silence between the school drop-off and pick-up.

Now, with everyone else in the household also around all day every day, it is not quite as idyllic. Throw in the need to chip in with the home schooling and we’d be as well going back to working in an office. And asking people how their weekends were on an endless loop every Monday morning.

The gentle, monastic pace of life isn’t for everyone. For the more sociable members of society this has undoubtedly been a period of tough readjustment.

Three now literally constitutes a crowd. And anything bigger will likely draw the attention of passing police cars. The idea of people, then, congregating in their hundreds and thousands now seems completely alien to us. As a society we have become very claustrophobic very quickly.

Even just someone standing too close as we try to dash around the supermarket throwing anything into our trolley is enough to induce a near panic attack in even the most rational. We don’t know huge amounts about this virus but we’re aware that it can spread very quickly from person to person. Avoiding contact is the best way to save lives.

With that in mind, the latest debate about how best to reconstruct Scottish football – if at all – seems to be putting the cart before this very large horse.

Of course, it is entirely understandable that those clubs who feel they would be left unfairly impaired by the decision to prematurely conclude the bottom three divisions of the SPFL – with the Premiership likely to follow suit in the coming weeks – should start the process of trying to redress the balance.

The 15-club Reconstruction Group will convene tomorrow – remotely of course – for their first meeting and, like Carol Vorderman pulling an all-nighter, will no doubt come up with every possible way of splitting 42 (or maybe 44) clubs into four divisions.

Given every representative will have their own reasons for supporting a particular set-up – see last week’s column on self-interest for more on that – this is likely to be a lengthy process.

Add in the 11-1 voting mechanism and the thorny problem of how to fairly distribute prize money then it could easily turn into a debate that could rival West End run of The Mousetrap in its longevity.

And yet it all seems somewhat futile given the circumstances. With clubs not keen on playing behind closed doors because of the loss of turnstile revenue, then the SPFL can only resume when it is safe for people to gather in large numbers again.

And that doesn’t look as if it will be any time soon. Nobody wants to be overly pessimistic – and looking too far into an uncertain future is a gloomy and precarious business – but football needs to reconcile itself with the very real possibility that we may not see matches played in front of a crowd again this year.

With lockdown extended until next month at least as governments (well, some of them) struggle to keep a lid on the spreading virus, we seem a long way away from returning to what could be considered a normal life.

And when that day does eventually come around, it will need to be a gradual process. Perhaps, as we’re starting to see in more progressive and proactive nations like Austria and Denmark, it will begin with more shops or garden centres being opened and take it from there. But the sanctioning of mass gatherings once again will be somewhere near the bottom of any to-do list.

As the world waits to see if a second wave of the virus emerges in those countries who are close to emerging from the other side, it would be highly irresponsible for any sporting governing body to declare that it is back to business before a vaccination has been discovered.

Instead of working on how best to reorganise themselves into different numbers, perhaps those clubs meeting tomorrow should be focusing instead on ways to ensure they all survive what could become a very bleak winter should it prove impossible to stage matches in front of crowds.

The government’s furlough scheme has been a lifesaver but it can’t be expected to run indefinitely. Self-isolation may be fine for individuals but it will be the death of many football clubs if they don’t start preparing adequately for the possibility of months without income. That ought to be the priority.