I took this photo nearly a month ago, figuring it was likely the first of many more I would see over the course of this winter. Between fears of Ebola and the far less exotic (and easier to deal with) seasonal outbreaks of flu, this may well be the winter for the wearing of surgical masks.
But then yesterday I saw Interstellar and saw the same masks. To my surprise, characters in the film were using them for a completely different reason – dust! The future depicted is one where farmlands have again turned into a Dust Bowl. Crops have failed (can you say ‘Monsanto’?) and the Earth’s population faces starvation. Bleak, eh.
So, maybe my concerns over seeing a woman on a bus wearing a surgical mask shouldn’t be so great. After all, buses are likely a veritable Petri dish for sharing germs – breathing in each other’s faces, hanging on to straps (who knows who might have held on before you, and what they might have been infected with?), so maybe she had a good idea.
Not exactly wanting to go out on a limb (not even a big one) with any predictions, but I’m wondering whether we’ll see more of these masks blossoming before spring.