One of the most controversial topics in the United States right now, especially with the presidential election upon us, is the use of masks during this tumultuous time. Masks are everywhere. You can find masks from all kinds of creative Etsy sellers or in your favorite stores. Hell, you can even find masks that match every single outfit you have!
At present, masks are required in all indoor locations, at least when you are in common areas. You can see more cautious people wearing masks while walking down the street or while in the car transporting someone who is elderly or autoimmune. I will admit that the first few times I was out and about once lockdown eased up, I was a bit shaken by seeing everyone in masks, but I got used to it pretty quickly.
At first, the masks made me feel some sort of collective anxiety, which, let’s be honest, wasn’t totally in my head. I thought about how worried we were about being close to each other with such a present, but invisible, threat. But once I actually went out multiple times and acclimated to being a part of society again (I had happily taken a hiatus from that for a bit, since it gave me an excuse to just stay on my couch…although I couldn’t quite avoid the dentist), masks just became another article of clothing. It was just something else we all wore, like shoes or shirts.
Not only did I get used to seeing everyone in masks and wearing one myself, I also began to realize that there are some serious benefits to wearing a mask (you know, besides helping to stop the spread of infectious disease) that I hadn’t even considered. Here are all of the great things about wearing a mask!
I only started drinking coffee regularly recently, and with this new habit, I was also blessed with coffee breath! Don’t get me wrong, I have always had bad breath after certain foods or if I didn’t have the chance to brush my teeth in a bit, like anyone else, but there is definitely something familiar, comforting, and gross about coffee breath…well, when you yourself have it, at least.
Something that says “I have given my body the caffeine it needs to function,” even if it also says “I hope I don’t have to get within a few feet of anyone this morning!”
One of the best things about masks (and social distancing) is that I don’t have to worry about coffee breath, or bad breath in general, because no one can smell it! This amazing revelation hits me every time I leave my house in a rush without time to brush my teeth…you know that panicked pause you have when you realize that your breath is truly rank? Panic no more! Not only does your mask have you covered, but everyone also has to stand at least 6 feet away from you! Okay, so not quite as far away as you want them to be, but it’s a start.
Oddly enough, even though I used to sing all the time (and, you know, actually had a good voice) way back when, now, when I’m jamming out, I mostly just lip sync to songs on the radio. Well, you know, I lip sync while imagining that I’m dancing and singing in the music video, but that’s beside the point.
This isn’t always limited to my secluded car, however, and I have a tendency to lip sync while I’m like, out in the world. This, combined with my propensity to talk to myself, makes me seem at best weird, and at worst, creepy.
Now, while wearing a mask, I can lip sync songs to my heart’s content and everyone is none the wiser. They may still see winking happening at appropriate times in the song, but oh well. I guess I’m not totally going to get away from being considered creepy…
Maybe She’s Born with It…
…maybe you just can’t see half her face! Zits are an annoying fact of life, and while some zits can be created by the dreaded “mask-ne,” zits still appear without the aid of a face covering. The main difference now is that if I have any zits on my nose or below, no one can see them! Every time I see a new whitehead crop up on my chin or struggle to get all of those blackheads on my nose, I take comfort knowing that when I go out, no one else will even know they’re there.
Tired of seeing people you know at the grocery store and making small talk?
“How are you? What’re you doing with your life? Do you remember that time you totally embarrassed yourself at that party? So funny.”
I don’t know about you, but I haven’t had any of these awkward encounters in months. This year should have the slogan “2020: The Year I Didn’t Run into Any People I Graduated with in the Store Because We Have No Idea Who Anyone Is.” Unlike a classic masquerade, where people are anonymous because you can’t see their eyes, in our world, everyone is anonymous because you can only see their eyes. We’re in a perpetual anti-masquerade, and I am loving it. The only people who know who I am is my family, friends, and every single barista at the local coffee shop — all the people who matter most in my world.
Throw out Those Toothpicks!
Similar to no one having to smell your coffee breath, no one can see if you have anything stuck in your teeth! No more awkward conversations where you go home and realize you had spinach in your teeth the whole time! Conversely, no more situations where you see spinach in someone’s teeth and then you have to decide whether or not you say something. Someone else’s spinach is no longer your problem! Whew!
Ski Masks…Not Just for Robbers (and Skiiers, I guess?) Anymore
Every winter, do you find yourself wondering why you live where the air hurts your face?
This year, the colder seasons may be a bit easier on you! Don’t get me wrong, your everyday mask isn’t as warm as a ski mask that is meant to keep you from freezing to death on the slopes before the St. Bernards can find you (side note: do they actually deliver nog, or did the Fairly Oddparents lie to me?), but still, having a barrier on your face will help a bit with those cold gusts of wind. I don’t know about you, but I could definitely use anything that will keep me colder during those unforgiving winter months.
So get your breath as rank as you want! Ditch the pimple cream! Leave some food in your teeth for later! Your mask has you covered.
All jokes aside, I hope that you and your loved ones are staying safe and well at this time.