To Mask or Not to Mask

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Today we move from a mask mandate to something called a mask advisory where masks are not required but recommended. Of course, because everything is political and we can’t agree on anything, the state mandate doesn’t apply universally. The bigger cities (including mine) with mayors from the opposite party are still keeping the mandates in place.

And businesses in the “free” counties can pick and choose to keep the mandate in place. I’m getting a knee injection on Monday and the doctor’s office still requires face coverings. I suppose this makes some sense although I got my last shot last year right before shut down where a temperature check was required but masks weren’t common or mandated then.

The gym I had been attending is removing the restriction at least at the one location in the “free” county. But they have hours set aside where masks will still be mandatory for all. I guess to provide a comfort level for those who are not yet OK with being around the unmasked.

We suspect that the big box store we visit for food is still going to require masks even though they sit in a “free” county. Corporate responsibility and all that. It is funny because they play messages in the store saying masks are required and if you aren’t OK with that, you are free to shop online and have your stuff delivered. That made sense when the mandate was in place but seems backward now. I’m guessing most of the people who still want to wear masks would probably rather just stay at home and avoid crowds of any kind.

I don’t know if OwnerGuy has changed plans or not. His original thought was that he wouldn’t require them for students on private lessons but would for groups and parties. And instructors will be masked unless the student is comfortable with them not being masked. This is kind of getting back to where things were when they first reopened.

In other words, it will be a confusing mess probably leading to some confrontations somewhere down the road. Plus, it means that you’ll still likely need to take a mask when leaving the house since you won’t know for sure if the place you are going will require them.

Outdoors is not yet a requirement if you are in a park. But going to the zoo or a garden within our city will still require a mask even though you are outdoors. We have a big auto race coming up in May. It will be interesting to see how that is handled.

And not yet sure about the Farmer’s market which is also outdoors. We have two in the vicinity so we’ll see if they follow the county rule or if they are another category with a requirement as well. It is possible that the one in the next town north will still require them since they do it on city property and anyone entering a municipal building is still required to wear one.

I’m not going to get into a discussion on masks because most minds are made up and closed. Those who think they are effective and keep people safe are probably horrified that we are relaxing rules. Those who think they are mostly useless are just wondering what took so long.

But if I’m able to go to a few places without a mask, I’ll consider it a positive.

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