Advice From the Trenches

Avoiding the Maskless: One reader wonders why not everyone got the message

Don Dughi Collection

Dear C and Dr. B;

My Thanksgiving plans were ruined by an idiot non-mask wearing coworker. When seeing clients she doesn’t wear a mask because she says that it interferes with communication and empathy. She just doesn’t get the whole “protective safety measures” thing. So what happened? She tested positive for COVID the day before Thanksgiving, which means not only did she expose her many clients, but our entire office to COVID. Doesn’t she realize the consequences on others of her idiotic decisions? How can we get it across to people: You have no right not to wear a mask in public, you are doing it to protect others and yourself – and masks do work if both people have them on and are 6 feet from each other or more.   

What makes this even worse is my boss did not even send out a memo warning the staff of their possible exposure prior to Thanksgiving. I had to find out via the gossip chain! All idiots! 

Surrounded by Idiots

Dr. B says: Unfortunately, you can’t do too much about it, Surrounded. Currently, Republican conservative media is saying the pandemic is over and that it’s only being perpetuated by the Democrats. Of course they’re ‘idiots,’ but there are a lot of them. The Supreme Court this week just backed them up saying you can’t make people wear masks in large gatherings, it’s unconstitutional. Unfortunately, it does requires a uniform law and response from authorities like seatbelts or no smoking, as it is essentially the same thing. 

Masks have been politicized by someone who is, in my opinion, the biggest idiot in charge, and all the lesser idiots have followed suit. Like with HIV, people should be able to hold others who blatantly infect them accountable. This is a crime, possibly murder, in fact. But with masks, it’s seen by some as your right to kill others. This is what happens from the divided politic of this country anti common sense dangerous craziness. Not much you can do about it.  

C says: Okay, enough ranting! This argument is getting old. Yeah, I know – idiots won’t wear masks, they see a protective health measure as a plot against their person freedom – blah, blah blah. 

Look ­– the prolonged stress and hardships of the pandemic are at such a point that we are like dogs chasing our own tails, each panting after their own cause because there’s nothing else we can really DO. I don’t want to hear about it anymore because it’s wasted energy. Okay, it’s just true – if people ARE idiots, there’s nothing you can do about it. Dealing with the anti-masker conspiracy theorists is like dealing with someone who has Alzheimer’s. They are lost in their own reality. Correcting them is pointless. If you are going to be with them, you have to play along and try to steer them gently, and without their knowing, in a better direction. Whenever possible, just stay away from them.

But please, Surrounded, don’t give up! The one thing that is certain in life is change. Things are going to change. In January, we will have a responsible adult in the oval office again, one who believes in science and wants to get the country out of this mess, not promote himself, his personal businesses, or his next run for office. The whole “I won’t wear a mask” thing is going to become as unpopular as smoking in restaurants. In the meantime, protect yourself. Avoid the maskless assholes. Wait it out. Our nation’s four years of darkness are coming to an end.

You can visit Dr. B’s blog at