Updated: Oct 31
I was standing on a three-block-long line to get into IKEA recently— with an apparently unoriginal idea to buy a remote learning desk— when hunger struck. I dug through my pocketbook and found to my happy hoarding surprise an old Ziploc bag of honey-coated almonds, which I offered to my 13-year-old.
She declined, eyeing the crinkled, linty bag dubiously, and also pointing to her mask, questioning how I expected her to eat while a swath of jersey cloth covered the opening to her alimentary canal.
Simple, I demonstrated, and pulled forth my own cloth cover, where I promptly deposited a delicious calorie-dense treat inside. Because I had done so as if this new world reality were the most natural thing, she giggled, and then I did; and soon, the two of us guffawed, creasing up the corners of our eyes and basking in a secret knowledge only enjoyed hitherto by chipmunks.
This small thrill got me thinking how adaptable I’d become, but also wondering what else might I secretly enjoy privately while mouth-sheathed in public
Why, I could…
Eat a T bone steak, with no one the wiser.
Laugh while my middle schooler says something inappropriate but damn well funny.
Floss with my tongue.
Grind my teeth.
Practice articulating difficult words.
Practice spelling difficult words.
Protect my nose from sunburn.
Save on foundation.
Save on lipgloss.
Bleach my upper lip.
Wear wax lips.
Whiten my teeth.
Do facial yoga.
Even practice ventriloquism, using my hand as a puppet, like so...
“Your mask is moving,” my daughter cut in.
“Buzz-killer,” my hand countered. “Have another almond.”