Tuesday, June 02, 2020

Mask wars

“Be careful not to choke on your aspirations.”
--Darth Vader
I am amazed at the amount of  energy (an money) spent on finding a face covering that isn't a pain in the butt to wear. The pandemic has spawned a whole industry of face coverings from the practical to novel. And none of them are cheap or comfortable. To further complicate things, except for the hand made ones, most come from China and take a long time to get. 

Part of the problem for me is that I have a big head, big ears, a big nose and a double chin. So most face coverings simply don't fit right. Plus I wear glasses and most masks fog them up. So I need to choose between walking around in a fog with glasses or walking around in a fog without glasses.

Face coverings also create socially awkward situations. If you go on a walk and don't wear one, you feel guilty when you pass someone wearing one. And if you wear one, you feel silly when you walk by someone not wearing one. Or annoyed that they aren't wearing one.

I spent about $40 to purchase five of the black masks I'm wearing in the photo above. They have a velcro strap that holds them firmly in place. And they have these cool looking plastic vents on each side that are supposed to help you breath. Finally they come with these charcoal filters that aren't washable and you are supposed to change after a day or two. And the filters cost almost as much as a new mask. 

I wore one of the masks the first day they arrived and I swear some guy said something about "creepy" to the person he was walking with. Not really what I was going for.

Ironically, the most comfortable masks I've found are the paper-like disposable kind that come in boxes of 50. At first you couldn't find them anywhere. Then my wife bought a box at a local drug store for almost $50. Now you can find them on eBay for about $15 a box. I imagine in a couple of weeks they'll be going for $5 a box.

Nothing like a pandemic to bring out the capitalist in people.

No comments: