“When we least expect it, life sets us a challenge to test our courage and willingness to change; at such moments, there is no point in pretending that nothing has happened or in saying that we are not yet ready." Paulo Coelho, The Devil and Miss Prym
I don't get it, it's such a small, easy thing to do. So no, guess I don't understand the "Anti-Masker" movement.
There's an old corporate saying, that shit rolls downhill from the asshole at the top. Thus, our increasingly whacko President refuses to set a principled example by donning a mask in public. It leads one to believe that he must think it doesn't work. But always consider the source, this from the same guy who told us the C virus was no big deal...that we've got it under control.
It goes without saying, but I'll say it anyway: When one needs honest information about science and medical studies (or anything, for that matter) they shouldn't be looking to Facebook for answers. My first stop is the Mayo Clinic's website. They have built a solid reputation for accurate, unbiased reporting on disease and treatment...researched based information we can rely on.
Where's the harm? Why not cut up a t-shirt or fetch an old bandana to wear when going to a store or where groups of people gather...especially when they are not wearing masks? As I sat in the car this week, waiting in the grocery "Pick Up" section at Walmart (why isn't EVERYONE using this free, No Contact grocery shopping app? Talk about reducing exposure) less than one third of the people passing into and out of Walmart were neither masked nor gloved, including families with children.
To be clear, the main purpose of wearing a mask is to reduce the distance aerosolized droplets travel as a result of a cough or sneeze from an un-symptomatic COVID Virus carrier. One of the main complicating factors about COVID is how highly contagious it is. Perhaps more importantly, another unfortunate factor is that it can take up to three weeks for symptoms to develop. It doesn't take a rocket scientist with a degree in medicine to understand how and why this virus is so easily transmitted when carriers have yet to develop symptoms and feel just fine...good enough, in fact, to go shopping/dinning/whatever...and then, un-knowningly, shares the virus with people in close proximity or by leaving it on things they touch.
To be clear, again, the virus would still be around even if everyone wore masks and gloves. But what scientific studies are now revealing is, the more people who wear them, the flatter the "curve," and the sooner we can resume life as we knew it before 2020.
You remember, those days, right, when we could gather in close proximity over a buffet of wings and mugs of beer and cheer for our favorite college or pro football/baseball/basketball/soccer/whatever team on tv? Or watch a favorite game-show/reality-show/American Idol/The Voice/Golf/American Ninja Worrier/whatever, instead of "Classic Reruns?"
There is a growing movement of sorts lately, where more and more people resist wearing masks and gloves. Then, to make matters worse, they gather close together unprotected in demonstrations against states that are trying to exercise caution instead of just throwing open the "doors" and hoping for the best. I, for one, will be thrilled to bear the slight inconvenience of wearing a mask and gloves if it allows me to rejoin with friends and family at a favorite pub...have a drink, order a nice meal, and help our local businesses and their employees get back to making a living. They have probably sacrificed and suffered and worried the most throughout this unexpected virus ordeal, and deserve a shot at getting back on their feet, both financially and with safety.
Imagine how it would feel if you found out it was you who unknowingly passed the virus to a waiter/waitress, and put them out of work again for weeks...possibly fighting for their lives? And, more importantly, what if they didn't survive do to your selfish behavior?
We all long for those pre-pandemic days, times when we could get on a plane without giving thought to catching a highly contagious virus that might take our life, or being worried about being quarantined somewhere far from home...wondering how many ventilators they have?
Why are so many people suddenly rising up, resisting, protesting, refuting and refusing common sense behavior during a pandemic...choosing self-centered, narrow-minded and politically set-in-their-world-view rut that they are not willing to risk the embarrassment/political incorrectness/whatever? of putting on a mask?
To you I say this: What if you are wrong? What if masks do help, even a little bit, to shorten the time it takes to get back to what we once had, and, in retrospect, took for granted...a more normal life?
Do you REALLY think your gun or civil rights are being threatened by a few extra rules during a world-wide pandemic? Seriously? Enough that you march in the streets, armed to the teeth, no less? Me thinks you are misguided, or, perhaps, "mislead" is a better word.
We are fast becoming a country divided instead of united. If we can't agree now on whether or not to don a mask, how will we, when we really need to, ever agree on anything ever again? It's a recipe for a disaster, and when it happens, it will be far worse than this pandemic that temporarily cramps your lifestyle.
Michelle, a friend of Ruthie's, joined me and the Hiker Babes for a punishing grind up to a viewpoint ledge that overlooks Lovely Ouray (Alpine Overlook). Michelle has a couple shops on Main Street Ouray—The Blue Pear and Bloom—so be sure to check them out when you're in town.
I stepped off at my usual expeditious pace...one, to experience the forest in solitude, and two, to gain a little training effect for the summer senior olympic games with Pal Leon, should they not be cancelled like everything else.
Michelle, much to my surprise, stayed right on my heels. "Well," I mis-thought, "She'll drop back soon enough."
I pushed a little harder, but she kept pace. Plus, she didn't seem to be breathing near as hard as I was. Hmmm. A "ringer."
We engaged in banal chat as we climbed, which served to further zap my O2 levels, but didn't seem to bother her in the least. I gave her the short version of my life's story (about a mile's worth, anyway) then listened to her story.
It turns out Michelle is a ski instructor during the off-season. Ah ha! Skiing at 12,000 plus feet for 5 months a year, legs fighting gravity? No wonder she's in such great shape.
"Feel free to pass," I offered, almost hoping she would so I could back off. It turned out this was her first "altitude hike" of the year.
Yep. A "ringer." I was truly humbled, yet motivated. :)