We must accept the word from medical scientists and that of Ms Zoom-out-zol claiming masks prevent the spread of the dreaded corona, and we’ll be dumb not to bite the bullet and accept the necessary evil.
By the same token it appears sportspeople fall under a category not requiring masks under certain circumstances – circumstances that to my arid mind do require masks. Take rugby. Thirty players at a time roughing it, sixteen in tight scrums. Imagine heads and hands exchanging sweat, nose drops and often blood, making a deadly cocktail on which Count Dracula would’ve thrive - and that in a compressed space without fresh ventilation.
However, the guys on the bench, sitting there calm and collected, are expected to wear masks. Hey?
The anomaly aside, masks provide crazy moments, naturally, at my expense. Like a visit to my favourite GP for a check-up. He starts off with the customary throat test using a laryngoscope. Whilst taking aim, his nurse bursts through the door armed with documents.
For a split second the doctor is distracted, looks away, but still gives the mandatory instruction, “Say aaah!” and keeps coming brandishing the laryngoscope. I stutter the “Aaaah!” but he can neither hear me nor get to my throat. I’d forgotten to remove my mask.
It still carries the indentations left by the prodding instrument. The nurse, having witnessed the cameo, turns tail in a paroxysm of laughter.
A few weeks later my Heidi suffers an injury, so off to the clinic for x-rays and in gale force wind and heavy rain arrive at the medical facility. Haring it from the car leaves us drenched. With a wet mask and fogged up specs I’m unable to complete the myriad admission forms. The tiny print doesn’t help matters.
A friendly security lady spots my predicament and offers to do the job. But not unlike the GP’s nurse, can’t contain her giggles. “Excuse me for saying so, meneer, but you look so funny. Like a moon man”.
Noting the annoyance in eyeballs popping out through the fog, she tries softening the blow. “Like Dirty Harry, acting like a spaceman”. It only exacerbates my irritation as I’ve never considered Clint an oil painting – and with wet mask and fogged up specs he’ll look bloody hideous. Like me.
Need to replace my shrunken and dented mask. Sigh.