No Really, I Left My Face Mask At Home Accidentally (A Lesson)
There's a lesson here. It's gonna take me a little bit to get there but ride with me for a second ok.
This is my favorite face mask. The one you see above and it's pictured below.
My girl Chrissy Sue in Anchorage made it for me. I have several more.
I made that one myself.
But I digress. I have several face masks. I wear them often. I color coordinate. I'm that dude.
Last night, after a particularly busy day, I finally made it home. After several phone calls and other at home duties, I had no desire to cook. So I stopped in the middle of everything I was doing and ordered Chinese takeout. A little spot literally right around the corner from the house. I can be there in five minutes. They said it would be ready in 20-25 minutes.
Of course it would.
So I had time to finish more stuff at home. Mind you, I've been working all day. I should be relaxing at home. But no, I'm still going nonstop.
I'm watching the clock. Time passes. Too much time passes. I'm leaving 5 minutes later than I should have. I throw on my flip flops, grab my wallet and phone, run out the door. Hoping to get there and not get the look from the guy behind the counter. I hate being late for a pickup because they will call you. And then you get blacklisted from placing orders there. I still have an Alaskan phone number so when they see it show up on the caller ID, I don't want them putting me on the naughty list of takeout customers.
It's me and my issues. Step off.
I leave. Jump in the car. I'm not speeding but I'm trying to make this five minute drive in about a minute. I pull in. I get out. I walk into the restaurant. As I approach the counter the dude is looking at me.
"Adams" I say. My last name.
He grabs my bag. I then notice the plexiglass they have installed at the register. When did they do that? Oh well. Makes sense.
Dude is like, "how are you paying"?
I already have my card in my hand.
"Uh, yeah our machine is down. You don't have cash do you"?
Bruh, if I had cash I...nevermind. "No man."
"Do you mind walking next door to Quality Dairy. They have an ATM machine."
Not his fault.
Go get some loot, come back get your food, go home, eat. That's the mission.
I leave the restaurant, get in the car, drive about a half a block to QD (cause apparently my butt is too lazy to walk over there...what? I'm wearing flip flops), and get out the car to run in to the store.
THEN IT HIT ME.
Oh snap, I don't have a mask on.
It just hit me right then and there.
Dude at the restaurant didn't say anything.
But I knew going into QD, I needed a mask. And I had looked down my nose and poo pooed at people who waltzed into any store that I was at without a mask.
How dare they? Don't they care? I bet they are waiting for someone to ask them "where is your mask sir"? So they can fight and talk about how "I thought I was in America" and have it out right there in the store. I've seen the videos of people and at Costco. I dislike those people.
I was now one of them
Not intentionally. No. I'm one of the good guys. But for once, here I am. Accidentally. And what do I do?
Remember, 5 minutes from my house. Right around the corner. I could just run home, back in the house, get my mask, come back, go in the store, get cash, go get my food, come back home.
I was already running late in my head.
I COULD NOT AND WOULD NOT BE INCONVENIENCED.
I said bump it and decided to go inside anyway. I would be quick. In and out. No muss no fuss. And no one is gonna say anything right? I mean I never said anything to anyone.
I got out the car.
I walked up to the door.
An old dude, who looked like he's been through some stuff, and had rode his bike to the store to do some laundry was standing on the side of the door about to light up a cigarette.
I gave him the wassup nod. He nodded back.
"You need a mask to go in there".
Note, he was not wearing a mask. He was smoking.
BUT HE CALLED ME OUT.
I looked at him. I breathed in. That heavy sigh. Cause all this had lead up to this.
I looked at him and said, "yeah".
And walked right into QD, hurried up and walked over to the ATM, past everyone else in the store (who for once WERE ALL WEARING MASKS go figure).
I felt their eyes leering at me.
No they weren't. But it was my guilt.
Because I had did the same to folks who came in and weren't wearing masks. At grocery stores, convenience stores, everywhere.
Now I was one of them. One of the folks who I had always looked at and judged.
How dare they? Not doing what they are supposed to. They're not like me. Not doing like me. They're different from me. If they would just do like me everything would be fine.
I was on the other side. I was being judged like I had judged them.
I didn't like it.
But it was necessary. Because it was right then and there I learned a very valuable lesson.
Cause at this very pivotal moment in time and living in this country, we want people to understand what it's like to live on our side of the street and be like us. And we're not willing to consider what it's like to be on the other side. Not for a minute.
We don't want to switch sides and be over there. Because we know already, what we've done, and judged them for it from over here.
You feel me?
I'm guilty too.
We all need to make that uncomfortable step and look at it from the other side. No matter who we are or where we are in this thing called life, on this planet we call home.
We have all got to get along. We all have to take a minute to enjoy perspective from the other side.
We have to talk about it. And be prepared to have our eyes opened and our feelings hurt. And to learn.
Lesson...not over. Because we all need to keep learning.
Thank you Lord for teaching me that one.
Thank you for listening.
BTW, my mom let me have it when I told her about this and she said "you need to keep an extra mask in your car. You've got a bunch of em."
God I hate it when she's right.