I was at the gym the other day and saw something I’ve never seen before: A kind of bipedal bullfrog on one of the elliptical cardio machines lined up in front of the TeeVeees. It wasn’t actually croaking – though it looked as if it might, at any moment. But its face bulged – and then collapsed – with every exhalation.
Through its “mask.”
Not so much a bipedal bullfrog but rather a True Believer – in the medical efficacy of “masks” as preventative screens. In his defense, at least he wasn’t one of those people who wears the “mask” – under their nose. Or takes it off as soon as they sit down to eat. That is obviously for show.
He never took it off. For the 30 minutes-plus I watched him, his cheeks would inflate and deflate, along with his labored breathing. Which probably became increasingly difficult as the interior surface of his “mask” became laden with the moisture of his exhalations.
And what of his inhalations?
Less oxygen – more fibers? Just the ticket for good health . . .
Whatever your take on “mask” wearing, no “mask” was ever meant to be worn while exercising. Have you ever seen surgeons in the OR doing jumping jacks while “masked”? Their “masks” are designed to prevent them from dripping something into an open wound; they are not designed to be athletic equipment.
The “mask” worn by the True Believer wasn’t even a surgical “mask.” It was a disposable “mask” that came from a box that came from China, with a caution on the side of the box advising that the “mask” within the box neither protects the wearer from inhaling viral particles nor from exhaling them around others – the material not being fine enough to filter out particles as small as viruses.
But it was at least probably easier for him to breath through it. Probably also easier for him to breath in the fibers on it – keeping in mind the flimsiness and disposability of these “masks,” which are meant as visual aids only.
This is a measure of just how bad it still is. How badly afflicted some people still are – and probably will be, for life.
It is a measure of their fanatical inability to perform due diligence. This True Believer obviously believes what the “experts” at CNN and MSNBC have told him about the efficacy of “masking” but has clearly never taken the time to look into it for himself. If he had, he’d have to know that no maker of “masks” recommends wearing them while breathing heavily – as when exercising. Because “masks” restrict airflow – i.e., breathing – which they must in order to serve any filtration purpose. It may not be a meaningful restriction when the person is just breathing – normally (though there is evidence that even in this case, the wearer is taking in less oxygen). But when he is breathing heavily, there is no question less (air) is getting in than would otherwise be getting in – and that cannot be good.
It is like running with a tourniquet on your thighs – or trying to drive with horse-blinkers over your eyes.
Mesothelioma – or something similar – is probably in this guy’s future, too. Lung disease being a function of toxic foreign particles being inhaled.
And how about exhalation?
The True Believer/Bullfrog’s forceful gusts were causing his “mask” to partially lift off his face. So not only was he partially un-“masked” during each exhalation, he was exhaling more of his contagion-laden breath, more forcefully – increasing the chances someone in the vicinity might breath in whatever he’s got.
Which is probably nothing. But that’s not how the True Believers see it. It is why they wear that “mask” – and bubble with rage about the rest of us, who don’t.
From their hypoxiated point-of-view, we are the reckless ones – and the dumb ones. These notions probably being a function of those who hold them being hypoxiated. Oxygen deprivation is bad for the brain, too.
But don’t tell it to Mr. Bullfrog.
. . .
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