To Mask or not to Mask
By Bob Small
Being someone with underlying conditions who is not yet ready to be living under, I still continue to mask. This is my individual decision, and I would no sooner tell anyone else to mask as I would tell anyone else what else to do.
Now, in the community which we dwell in, as in many others, the common understanding is that they have declared Covid 19 to now be over and done. Hopefully the virus has heard this and agrees. However, in this community, called Dartmour in my on-going fictional rendering of it (to protect the guilty), there is an unspoken insistance in both requiring that all be vaccinated and, having done that, that they now unmask on an immediate and unilateral basis! Furthermore, there is an unspoken intimation that any refusal to whole-heartedly return to indoor dining, indoor concerts, indoor everything, requires an immediate explanation. We are not exactly being shunned yet but, when my meetings went from zoom to face to coughing face, my absence may have been noted. Or worse, not noticed at all.
Though I have the requisite Pfizer jabs, there is still my feeling that they did not take, or were the wrong ones, as I do not have confidence. Of course, any feeling of being in rebellion against the general public conclusions, of not tossing off of masks, having this new knowledge that we cannot now get Covid 19, or Covid 117, this confidence has yet to infect me.
We continue to hear “Trust the Science” while forgetting science is not always absolute and unchanging. Thalidomide turned out to be a disaster, though it was scientifically approved in 46 countries, though not the US, thankfully. Though we can say gravity will never change, despite the many Spiderman movies, other “absolute” science has changed over the years.
Probably the vaccine will protect me from any Covid. However, that is still my wish and not yet my certainty.
Bob Small is a poet and resident of Delaware County, Pa.