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We're not out of woods, so keep wearing your mask

George "Clay" Mitchell
Press Argus-Courier

Another thing to consider as we approach the one-year anniversary of the COVID-19 pandemic — we're still not in the clear.

I have speculated with my family it'll be late spring or summer before any resemblance to normal will return. In the meantime, wear a mask if you can't social distance.

I'm happy to see more and more people wearing masks because until we get about 75 to 90 percent of the population vaccinated we'll still need to follow all the other guidelines. Just remember the mask has to go above the nose. Even if you get the vaccine (both shots) keep wearing the mask be a good example for other people.

One thing I'm going to do going forward is wearing a mask from mid-December to mid-February when I attend basketball games. I haven't had a cold or the flu this season and I hope I don't. I usually get waylaid for about a week and spend another four or five weeks recovering (which is probably a case of walking pneumonia).

I'm not sure why people are so hesitant on wearing masks, but if they are supporting high school athletics... wear a mask. There is no real medical condition to keep someone from wearing a mask, if they really believe they have one. That person should probably stay home and not venture outside for a while.

My suspicion about masks and why people may not like them now... is that it isolates you from others. Doctors and nurses wear them to isolate themselves from their patients. People fighting disease may wear a mask to isolate themselves for protection. 

Superheroes wear masks to isolate their identities to protect their families. 

But humans are social creatures. We need each other. All this isolation and separation from our families will and can take a toll on our mental health. It is important to reach out to others, especially to those who don't have immediate families. A phone call... a zoom call or meeting... maybe even visiting outside for a bit if it's not freezing. 

But if you're in the presence of another person wear a mask. This is also important as we reach the home stretch of basketball season.

District tournaments are coming up around the corner. We didn't have state title games last year, let's keep wearing our masks so that the kids can finish their seasons.

School districts need to make more masks available at games and events. Those things should be sold right along with T-shirts and popcorn and nachos. Maybe they are being sold and I just somehow keep missing them.

We should let the kids design the masks and put the best one out there. It would be cool to have a different mask for each of the different sports or afterschool activities. The masks could be used to raise money for the booster clubs or help our families and friends impacted by this event. 

I guess at some point folks probably thought COVID-19 was going to go away. Unless we each do our part and just wear our masks, we're going to be dealing with this again in the fall.

So... wear your mask.