(This article is designed to follow two others: Masks Don’t Help You Much, and Defying Mask Mandates. If something in here doesn’t make any sense to you, perhaps you missed it in one of the other two.)
As I begin this, it’s quarter past five in the morning. I’m just back from taking out the garbage. I usually do this around three, but today I slept in. I do this in the middle of the night for two reasons: one, it’s much cooler; two, I’m less apt to meet people, so I don’t wear a mask.
The reason I don’t wear a mask while hauling trash is that I tend to hyperventilate. I get panic attacks which induce asthma, and masks set me off for some reason. I’ve read articles and talked with smart people, and on their advice I’ve tried acclimating myself through long use — and with some success. Even so, I find that the only way to be sure I don’t pass out on the (concrete) stairs is to take my mask off while hauling heavy burdens.(more…)