I’m not fond of grocery shopping. Doubly so when our local “natural” food store operates like a cross between a bio-contamination laboratory and a Soviet food rationing depot. (It’s called Gentle Rain, but Stalin’s Reign would suit its recent transformation.) Normally, a rural store delivers our food. At the beginning of the month, however, they took Canada Day off. At that time I had not created the Notice of Exemption papers that I now use. So I was forced into my first COVID shopping trip.
The corona charade began by standing in a communist bread line. Except, even in the worst of Stalin Russia, citizens were not spaced six feet apart.
When I reached the front of the line, the sentry said: “Do you have your own mask or would you like to use one of ours?”
Opening my backpack I pulled out a white surgical mask and snapped it around my ears: “Hey! If one mask will save Grandma–” I then pulled out a Guy Fawkes mask and stretched the elastic around my head. “–two masks will save the world.”
Instead, the sentry burst out laughing. I assumed that meant I could enter. I opened the front door and stepped inside.
“Now that’s a face mask!” exclaimed the cashier. More laughter from customers and staff. Not what I had expected, but a positive form of dissent.
I grabbed a shopping cart and started following their arrows…
Within seconds a “high risk” elderly lady came right up to me – ignoring social distancing rules – and said: “I love your mask! I can’t stand this nonsense. I just go along to get along.”
Later, another lady told me bitterly: “Ever since they’ve started all these COVID stuff they’ve taken away the senior discounts.”
Standing in line to pay, another yelled: “Happy Halloween!”
A few days later I brought my wife along to join in the costume party…
The second time around we skipped the surgical mask – just wore the Guy Fawkes mask. No one complained or seemed to care. One teenager shot me a “That’s awesome, man!” I suspect he knew the V for Vendetta reference — a comic series about a modern day freedom fighter who wore a Guy Fawkes mask.
David Lloyd, the illustrator for V for Vendetta, said: “The Guy Fawkes mask has now become a common brand and a convenient placard to use in protest against tyranny – and I’m happy with people using it…”
And I’m happy we have this tool to beat them at their own face mask psych-op game, for those who must join the charade. Guy Fawkes masks are available from Amazon.ca, Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk. They became Amazon’s bestselling mask after the V for Vendetta movie. These days, however, I stick to my Notice of Exemption to avoid mask wearing at stores; but I still never leave home without.a Guy Fawkes (just in case).