Ross: When masking up becomes just another everyday habit

May 26, 2021, 7:04 AM | Updated: 10:44 am
Wearing a mask habit, mask directive...
(AP Photo/Jeff Chiu, File)
(AP Photo/Jeff Chiu, File)

A group of us met for lunch yesterday — all of us were men of a certain age, by which I mean we were well into our Social Security years. All of us were vaccinated, all of us were outdoors, but in the official group picture, the only person with a mask on was me.

I’m trying to figure out why, and in particular I’m trying to decide if I have become one of “those” people – a mask-worshiper trying to signal superiority. A lot of you are saying, “bingo, Dave.”

But that can’t be it. I’ve known those guys for 40 years. They already know how great I am. It had to be something else.

I knew that being outdoors and among the vaccinated brotherhood, not even Jay Inslee would make me wear a mask, and yet, I kept it on until we were safely inside the restaurant’s backyard tent. We were at Mean Sandwiches in Ballard, by the way (really nice guys despite the name).

Anyway, once we were in the tent, it was mask off, no problem. So why did I keep the mask until the tent?

Could it be that deep down I doubt the vaccine? Maybe. I’ve been wondering why I had zero side effects.

Could it be the fear that a listener might see me unmasked and yell “hypocrite”? Definitely part of it. Or worse, that John Curley would see me and just start yelling.

But ultimately, I think it’s just the habit. I now associate going outside with masking up. It’s almost like a seat belt. I spent my entire childhood unbelted, so belting up was a habit I had to work on. Now I stay belted even in the ferry line.

We have air bags, crumple zones, automatic braking, but I still belt up because I feel more comfortable. The same way I always wear socks, even on warm days. Sometimes even with sandals.

Therefore, I’ve concluded that no, I am not one of “those” people. I wasn’t keeping it on to shame anyone or signal superiority, I was wearing it as a face sock. So there.

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Ross: When masking up becomes just another everyday habit