I am one of the few people bummed at masking rules being loosened. And no, it’s not flattering. It’s 100% vanity.
I hate my nose!
There. I said it. I never talk about it but it’s bothered me all my life. My nose is, in a word, large. It’s the kind of ethnic nose that makes people say things like, “But it’s a part of you.” “We love you the way you are.” Or my personal fave, “It gives you character.” Really? I’m lousy with character. I have too much character. My character should be continued on the next person. I don’t need an oversized nose to let folks in on that non-secret.
Over the years, I’ve considered and reconsidered getting a nose job--a process more attractively known as rhinoplasty. Hello, rhino!
But then came the mask mandates. At the beginning, they took some getting used to. How many times did I get to a destination and realize I had to go back home and get a mask? We finally started leaving them in the car.
And then came the inevitable pictures. I always have my phone with me which for me (as it is for most teenage girls) at least as much of a camera as a communication device. In selfies with my mask, I’m reduced to eyes and hair. It’s an image I can live with. The nose? Under there somewhere, but it didn’t pull focus.
I imagined that those who knew me might think something like, “I can’t see her nose. I know it’s large, but it’s probably not as large as I remember.” And those who didn’t know me might think, “Hey, is she a WASP?”
So, when we began seeing fewer mask requirements, I began feeling a twinge of sadness. I’m as happy as the next person to be able to work out without sucking cotton, or go to a restaurant without accidentally trying to put a fork through my face covering. But I just look better with one on.
But now, be still my heart! As I write this, the CDC is talking about going back to masking up in certain situations. I also feel a bit guilty about saying that. Should I be more upset? I’m upset for the social condition, for sure. Was it brought on by my vanity? Probably not. I’m just not that powerful.
Ultimately, I’ll follow guidelines and mask up when needed. And I’ll know in my heart that on those occasions, I’ll look like the smaller-nosed person I’d always hoped to be.
Honey Parker has been writing, writing, writing for decades, decades, decades. In there, she has also been a standup comedian, a Hollywood screenwriter, a director, and a co-author of edgy business books. Careful-ish is her debut novel. It is the first in a trilogy. It is comedy-ish.