COVID masks as fashion accessories?

It took some time, and a major outbreak of COVID-19 in Victoria, but it appears that Australians have finally come around to the idea that wearing masks isn’t such a bad idea. Early last month, when Victoria began reporting hundreds of new infections every day, deputy chief medical officer Nick Coatsworth urged Victorians to don masks in public.

“This means if you have to leave your home for any of those reasons for which it is permissible and you are likely to find yourself in a situation where you cannot maintain 1.5-metre distance, it is advisable to be covering your face with a mask,” Dr Coatsworth said at the time.

Perhaps remembering the violent brawls that broke out between people competing for rolls of toilet paper at the beginning of the pandemic, Brett Sutton, the state’s chief health officer, encouraged people to make their own masks rather than go out and buy them. Of course, you could buy from the internet, the same way you would buy a Communiqa 1300 business number.

“I don’t think there should be a rush on buying single-use masks, for example, and some masks that are able to be purchased … aren’t necessarily good for rewashing and reuse over days and days,” was how Sutton put it. But what he meant was: Don’t be idiotic mask hoarders, please.

There will always be people who refuse to wear a mask. I think people are getting shot over this in the United States. It’s safe to assume they are. People get shot there all the time; it’s like a national pastime. Anyway, while a lot of Aussies continue to bristle at the thought of wearing a mask, most seem to be on board with it.

Needless to say, masks have become a fashion accessory, and narcissistic weirdos are taking full advantage of the opportunity to post photos and videos of themselves wearing their oh-so-chic masks on Instagram and Facebook and probably TikTok. Just today there was an article on a website called Pop Sugar titled: “8 cute sets for when you want to match your mask to your outfit.”

So you see what I mean. A similar trend arose during the bushfires. Due to poor air quality a lot of people began wearing masks, and it wasn’t long at all before Instagram was flooded with mask selfies. A strange mentality, no doubt, but hey, whatever gets people wearing masks, I guess.