I just read a scientific article (without moving my lips too much) on what may have been the worst year ever — 536 CE. Or AD if you prefer that abbreviation. According to these scientists — Trump devotees by default excluded because facts are involved — 536 was the worst year ever! Volcanic eruptions, freezing winters, no sun, failed crops, and perhaps worse, no TV or Netflix to get through it. Neither chocolate nor cinnamon danish had been invented yet. Times were literally and figuratively dark. A mask of misery had covered the globe.
I can only presume with little or no scientific evidence, and even less research because it’s too damn hot today, that people back then must have been freaking out. (Kind of like now, except we have Netflix and danish of various sorts.) The superstitious and uneducated masses, lacking any real guidance, must have run wild in the unpaved streets, begging for help, searching for any answers, and fearful of their neighbours (also, kind of like now). The many simple and few enlightened folk must have hid in their homes and hoped for the best and some kind of miracle to free them. (Also, kind of like now. Is it just me or does anyone see a trend?)
2020 vs 536
Many have said that 2020 is the worst year ever! Virus, death, racism, riots, an American election with two old white guys, China spying and running rampant over democracy, millions unemployed. The usual. But people have become very angry and vocal of late. [Note to reader: I am not suggesting people don’t protest. Quite the opposite, they should stand up to the entrenched powers that be. Or kneel. Or whatever gets some good media attention. It gives me great material to work with for the blog.] But at times it might be a little too emotional. Too in your face. Too much fomite-soaked anger blowing in the wind.
We could all really use some emotional masks.
I am not talking metaphorically here. Some smart person (Trump devotees by default excluded) is going to come up with some kind of mask that inhibits or in some way tempers our emotions.
My design, which was rejected by the patent office for using too many swear words and containing a selfie of me wearing nothing but a moose hat and slippers, is simple. It will look like your regular everyday mask you can buy at any of the major mask outlets (such as Musk’s Masks, Masks-R-Us, Masks, Flasks and Basques).
The difference is it will come with a 12oz (355 ml) container of liquid emotional modifier (read: booze) of your choice. To start, four kinds would be available: Scotch Whisky for the upscale set, Beer for the blue collar audience, cherry-flavoured schnapps for the rustic crowd, and Vodka for those who wish to keep their consumption discreet, but still not give a crap. At the start of your day, soak your mask before you go out. Or talk to anyone in your household. Repeat at lunch, coffee breaks, dinner and bedtimes. I’m not saying you have to drink the booze, just inhale the vapours until you’re giddy and a little sleepy maybe.
While there are other ways to tame our emotions, such as therapy, weed, pills, yoga, archery, wood-working, setting small fires, or playing strip poker, I say give your mask a shot. Of schnapps preferably.
Friar Druker of Snickerdoodle