Ok, Masks On. What About The Rest?

At this very second and as I am thumbing at the screen of my well-used iPhone 11 pretending to be a blogger via the WordPress app, my fiancé and I are in Concourse A of the Tucson Airport awaiting our flight to Denver. We are sitting at one of those raised tables that have outlets in the middle so that Alexis can use her laptop.

Conveniently, the restrooms are directly behind us. Some wannabe YouTuber and his girlfriend are on speaker phone across from us (behind a plexiglass shield, naturally) but for two hours here we have sat. A few planes roll across the runway, passengers pass back and forth, the mayor of Tucson’s voice plays over and over again welcoming everyone to the city while her Spanish message goes on a whole minute longer than the English version, and intersected between Regina Romero’s goodwill messages are polite reminders that we all need to be wearing our masks at all times.

Polite except for the continuous reminders that we would be violating federal law and subjected to removal and fines if we chose not to wear a mask.

So, we continue to sit here fiddling with our various technologies, masks slowly melding with our lips and noses without the need of Heinrich Zemo’s super-super-glue. like I said, we had been here for nearly two hours already. Bathrooms are right behind us. Every twenty to thirty feet there are Purell dispensers. Our table is directly next to the waiting area for one of the gates. It has been mostly empty ever since we got here.

My point is, we have been here for a while and even though I’ve been reading I can’t help constantly looking around and seeing what the hell is going on around me. The quasi-fascist messages about masks “for our safety and for the safety of other passengers” have played too many times for me to keep track of. I actually stopped counting at fifty. I look at every single person who walks by me or is sitting somewhere that I can see them and they are all law-abiding citizens, from a glance. They are all wearing masks.

What I have not seen the entire time I have been sitting here at the Tucson Airport is anybody—airport employee, airline employee, or outside contractor—wiping anything down. One person gets up off a stool or a seat and another person sits down. People are using the hand sanitizers but not a single person has been around to refill them. I have found two that are empty so far. After that last sentence, I got up and went over to the two empty dispensers over a half hour since I last slid my hand under them. Still empty. The restrooms are still covered in piss and toilet paper. The countertops are flooded. Multiple soap dispensers that were out of soap when I first visited this morning after getting past TSA are still empty. In an attempt to reach each and every PokéStop in the airport before my flight, I walked the entire stretch of the airport one last time. I did not spot a single janitor, nor even a janitor’s cart.

They are making such a gigantic deal about wearing masks as if that is the one and only thing that will stop the spread of COVID-19. They let the rest of the airport get filthy and remain filthy, but they want to be vigilant about making sure people wear masks. You can’t wash your hands properly after going to the bathroom because they don’t give you soap. You can’t sanitize your hands unless you buy the fifteen-dollar travel size bottle at the gift shop. But you have to wear a mask. Federal regulations require it. Apparently the government cares about our health and safety.

I don’t know about you, but that sounds like the biggest load of shit I’ve ever heard. All the times it’s played in the speakers over my head.

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