An Ode to My Mask


Edie Weinstein

Edie with a selection of her favorite masks

Edie Weinstein, Co-Executive Editor

My dearest Mask,

I think you are grossly misunderstood.  I hear lots of complaints about you–you’re hot, uncomfortable to wear, you make it harder to understand people, you hurt people’s ears, etc.  There are loads of fights started over you, aren’t there?  Some folks don’t want to wear you, some don’t get the point of you, and other people get pretty mad at the folks who don’t want to wear you.  But those scientists who are trying to keep us all safe are pretty fond of you, and so am I.

I love putting you on every day, little Mask.  I love that you have fun patterns, and I never get sick of finding new patterned fabric to make you out of.  Self-expression is important, and you allow me to show the world a little bit more about me–whether it’s my passion for music, my affection for bumblebees, my interest in sailing, or my fondness for fun, bright colors, you let me wear aspects of my personality on my sleeve, or rather, on my face, like a little bumper sticker!

Furthermore, you are a canvas with which I can craft.  You know I love sewing, embroidery, bedazzling, and everything in between.  You allow me to utilize all those crafting skills and more.  I love that I can personalize you, and you’re a project I can really use.

Of course, once I make you, I get to wear you.  This may be an unpopular opinion, but I love wearing you, my little Mask.  I like to wash you in lavender detergent so that you smell like a meadow, and then I get to smell a meadow all day long!  Your soft fabric is like a hug for my face too, and if there’s one thing I love even more than you, Mask, it’s a hug!

However, the biggest reason I love you so much, Mask, is because you help keep my loved ones and me safe, and you allow me to go to school.  We are extraordinarily lucky in this pandemic to have found you because you are such an elegant way to minimize our risk of getting and giving Covid.  When I put you on every morning, I know I am taking a measure that could save someone’s life.   You make it possible for me to see my friends at school from six feet away or more.  Without you, the world would be a much more dangerous place, and I would still be learning from a distance, missing my friends and face-to-face human connection. 

I know someday we may part ways, and if that happens, it will be because you have done your beautifully glorious duty, and if we are in a world where you are obsolete, it will mean that I will have done my part by wearing you.  Until that day comes, may you be recognized for the service you provide in keeping us all safe, and may we all embrace your work as essential in today’s world.


Much love,