That Masked Man

medmaskThese are difficult times and I have tried to keep my Inner Curmudgeon at bay as I considered the response of the county to Covid-19.   I have particularly been gentle on the CDC since they have to deal with our current political climate in which who’s right sometimes seems more important than who lives.  But I am very frustrated with the CDC’s handling of the issue of masks.  For weeks we were told that masks didn’t prevent from catching  COVID-19, they just helped keep you from spreading it.  They said that masks weren’t necessary if we kept a 6 foot distance from each other and that we should not buy up masks so they would be available for medical personnel.  Being a good listener, I went unmasked, scoffing at those wearing them.  Meanwhile, the hoarders grabbed  up everything from medical masks to those made for carpenters.  THEN, the CDC changed their tune, recommending that everyone wear masks when out.  They specifically said leave the medical masks for doctors but that horse was already out of the barn. 

I don’t want to  pick on the CDC, and erring on the side of caution is probably not a bad thing right now.  But evidence of how far tiny droplets from humans could travel existed long before COVID-19 and I read that there was evidence the virus could spread before a carrier was symptomatic weeks ago.  By waiting, the CDC made it impossible for us good listeners to get masks and damaged their own credibility in the process.  And upped the sense of panic to where now see people out waking or running by themselves wearing masks.  People, if this virus is so contagious that you can get it outside alone, we might as well just all get together and get it over with.

So, now there are videos all over the internet telling us how to make masks ourselves.  Being a good listener, I wanted to make one but my wife is not seamstress (and I’m not a seamster, either).  I found a video that claimed I could easily make one out of a sock.   I found and old (but clean) athletic sock and followed the directions carefully.  When I tried it on I looked like, well … a man with a sock on his face.  I particularly disliked the heel sticking out on one cheek.   I am not a vain person but I was not going out looking like that.  If you are on social media I’m sure you’ve noticed that an online cottage industry has sprung up of people who ARE seamstresses and seamsters selling masks they’ve made.  I found a nice plain black mask on Etsy that was reasonably priced and ordered two.  That was April 4 … delivery date was ostensibly April 7-9.  To carry us over, my wife and I bought bandanas that we tie over our faces when we go to the store.   I feel pretty silly and to be honest with you, every time we walk up to the cashier, I have to fight the urge to say, Stick ’em up.  This is a holdup.  But what the hell, it’s only a few days ’til I get my real mask, right?  Wrong.

You see, the dealer on Etsy was overwhelmed with orders, so it was April 8 before the masks were ready to ship.  I’m a small business owner, so I was patient … my order made it to the USPS facility in Cedar City, UT on April 10.  I figured it should be here by the 11th.  And sure enough, using the tracking number, I watched it reach Provo at 10:00 am, the Salt Lake City depot at 11:56 am.  Almost here, right?  Well, yes and no.  On April 11, it masked manarrived at the West Jordan USPS depot, less than a half an hour away.  Delivery for sure by tomorrow, I thought.  Nope.  April 12 it was at the San Francisco CA International Distribution Center.  Really.  And here we are on April 14, and the tracking number yields this:  Your package is now moving within the USPS network and is on track to be delivered to its final destination,  It is currently in transit to the next facility.  Shit.  I wonder where that will be.  New Zealand, maybe.   In the meantime, if you find yourself behind a masked man in a camouflage bandana at Target, it’s Oldereyes.

Be safe …

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6 Comments on “That Masked Man”

  1. Margy Says:

    I went to the CDC site about masks and they say they should be worn in “public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies), especially in areas of significant community-based transmission.” I wonder how many people consider those two parameters when deciding if they should wear a mask.

  2. Meg Says:

    This made me laugh! I’ve seen the tutorials for sock masks and didn’t think I could bring myself to wear it. I have a bandana which I am trying to fold into a mask as directed, but it is so thick I’m not sure I could breathe, which sort of defeats the purpose of protecting me. On the bright side, I arrived at Walmart as they were unloading a shipment of TP. Score!

    • oldereyes Says:

      Glad you enjoyed it., we need to keep laughing. My daughter, who lives nearby brought us a 30-pack of TP from Costco today, so we won’t need to find any for a long time.

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