Wearing a mask is a non-negotiable measure that we all need to take in order to stem the spread of the most prolific and deadly pandemic in modern history. It is also a complete and utter pain in the keister.
Let's just consider some of the new discoveries we've all been forced to unveil since regularly mask wearing hit the scene.
First, humidity. Face moistening, inside an outhouse at a music festival air temperature right in your face. And second, the brutal recognition that one's breath is not on par with the aromas of a Yankee candle or some amazing cuisine. It's actually horrible.
And for most of us, that's as far as the difficulties go. The mask is a new discomfort, a mere annoyance.
But for people who are hard of hearing or deaf, the mask is a serious problem. When lip reading and facial expression are primary means of communication, a sudden shield is devastating.
A recent Reddit thread explored the ways mask-wearing has effected the daily lives of that community.
As Bad As You'd Think
"Its absolutely awful. I have trouble in places with a lot of background noise and have to read lips. My wife helps me out a lot but she can't go with me everywhere."
"It's very frustrating."
The Sounds of Charlie Brown's Parents
"Stranger: blahblah blah blaaah mmph...you?"
"Stranger: blahblah blaaah blaaah..mmph...YOU?"
"Stranger: .......you did?"
"Me: running away"
"Don't Be Mad At Me!"
"It's hell. When asking people to speak louder, they usually end up really yelling." -- lismez
"Which doesn't help because their speech is super muffled so it's just blurred together angry noises" -- bozwizard14
"My mom has this gift where she can speak loud enough for you to hear her on the other side of the house (not a small house, but not giant) without sounding like she's crazy mad and without hurting her voice."
"It's my main proof for mom magic." -- DogsBCoolBro
A Good Analysis
"Sign languages without facial expressions it's not as useful as with, and just emphasize them with eyes it's not enough. I'm a sign language interpreter and me, like all my colleagues, always end up with increase the distance and pull down the face mask."
"There's no other way, with the mask up it's as if a part of the grammatical structure of the language is missing and therefore there would still be a flaw in the communication."
"I wear hearing aids and even then sometimes it's hard to get people. But I'll usually say that I wear them and they will make an effort to speak up or speak more clearly."
"What sucks a** is hearing aids, masks, and glasses day. My ears are like WTF bruh? Or the damn string gets twisted in my hearing aid and when I pull the mask off it'll take then hearing aid with it. Then I'm like oh f*** these things are not cheap at all."
"I'm not even hearing impaired, and I've noticed how much I rely on reading lips." -- The_Sherpa
"People always ask me why I put my glasses on when they're talking to me. 'You don't need your glasses to hear' and I'd say, sure I do, I can hear better if I can see your lips moving, even if I'm not actually reading your lips." -- chiefgareth
This Man Person Has Seven Jobs
"I'm a bit hard of hearing. I can hear sounds just fine. A mouse farts two blocks away and it wakes me up. Human speech however is hard to discern. A lot of it sounds like a loud mumble."
"I need to see lips move to help me figure out what the hell is being said. I hate to ask people to say it again so I just smile and say 'yep.' "
"I have no idea what all I've 'agreed' to over the years."
Breaching the Wall
"I can't understand anything people are saying to me anymore. I always have to move to the side of the screens that are up at businesses, or lean really close to people talking."
"I know I shouldn't because of social distancing, but I have to or there's no way I know what people are saying."
Months of Ringing
"It's been a nightmare. I can barely chat with my customers and coworkers because of it, and have taken to the polite 'oh okay' sort of noises. I miss talking and feel like I've decayed."
"On top of that, the only mask that works for me is the kind you tie behind your head. Problem is, if something gets too close to my hearing aid, it starts to whistle, and the mask straps constantly trigger that."
"So even when I am trying to talk to someone, or a customer ambushes me with a question, half of what I'll hear is a faint constant drone in my ear."
"My girlfriend is hearing impaired and this is something she really struggles with. I'm usually interpret for her and answer questions for her when possible."
"Thanks for asking the question, I think a lot of people wouldn't even think about this, so it's nice to get it out there so people can be more understanding of our hard of hearing friends."
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For the life of me, I can't understand how anyone could still watch The Walking Dead. I just checked and the damn thing has had 11 seasons. 11 seasons!
Can you imagine?
People enjoy watching characters follow a set of train tracks for an entire season I guess. (For context, I made it to the beginning of the seventh season before I threw in the towel, and it was really testing my patience well before then.)
But there's so much more out there that's equally overrated. Television is the least of our problems.
People shared their thoughts with us after Redditor PieinHorse asked the online community,
"What is very overrated?"
"The perceived security..."
"The perceived security of most jobs."
Replace jobs with locks or doors or windows and it's still true.
"Influencers. I'm not sure what's more ridiculous, the fact someone believes they are an "influencer" or those who actually follow them and are influenced by said influencer."
I scarcely think about them. Out of sight, out of mind.
"Designer brands and bags. After owning an item from each brand, it’s really the most big waste of money people can put their money on."
You do get what you pay for up to a certain point.
"The extra leg room..."
"First Class Airline tickets!"
"We lucked up on our last flight that we had no choice but to get first class and our company paid for it, but I can 100% say that it was NOT worth the extra $700."
"The extra leg room was nice, as I'm 6'7", but the "free cocktails" and additional food? Nah homie, I'm good."
Was this domestic? For those short flights First Class is pretty much not worth it, but for international long haul? A lie-down bed for a 13 hour flight is worth the 2x or more price, plus the other perks.
"Casual sex. I prefer competitive sex."
Evolutionarily speaking, life is about competitive sex...
"Being famous must suck big time. Imagine not being able to go shopping, taking a chill walk in the park, go to the beach, supermartket, etc... without people engaging with you."
Say goodbye to any privacy whatsoever. No thank you.
"Spent my prime years..."
"Alcohol. Spent my prime years drinking at college and all that, still say it’s the most overrated thing in history. So many better drugs that could have prevented long and short term health issues, made things more peaceful, more efficient, more successful, and so on. The fact that it’s globally advertised every millisecond proves it’s overrated."
There's nothing wrong with deciding to stop drinking (or never drinking at all) and people should not be shamed for it.
"Huge weddings. Why? Spend the money on something important or on a trip."
Some people want their best day ever to be a big party with all the people they care about. But there is a crazy level of stress involved in planning a party that size.
"Being an adult."
"Being an adult. What BS is this, and why the hell did we want to be adults when we were kids?"
Nah, being an adult is awesome. I wouldn't change it for the world. Freedom!
"Half of the time."
"Hot weather. Half of the time it is just horrible and you’re sweating in your clothes and the other half you’re at the beach burning alive."
Sorry, I'd rather it be hot than be freezing, but I'm one of those people who can never get warm.
Hey, it could be worse. We could be talking about how much Game of Thrones disappointed us (again) and how it is impossible to watch it now, a total slog, knowing where it ends up. Disappointing and overrated indeed.
Have some suggestions of your own? Tell us more in the comments below!
There are things men do that easily annoy the opposite sex, simply by being a guy.
"That's such a dude move," or "typical male," can be examples of snide remarks made following disapproving gender-specific behavior.
"What is something most people think only men do, but actually women do as well?"
Get ready for some misconceptions to be turned completely upside down.
Time For Tootin'
"For years I thought ladies didn’t fart. My mom told me that so it had to be true. It didn’t matter that I was a girl and farted. I thought there was just this magical age where girls turned into ladies and stopped farting."
"Apparently even when my mom did fart, I’d whip my head around and go 'ewwww dad!' Mom found it hilarious, dad not so much. Then one day I was in the bathroom with my mom (cause who trusts a four year old for longer the two minutes by themselves?) and I heard it: The quiet mythical fart from a lady."
"Oh Lordy, I told everyone! Everyone needed to know that ladies do fart, even my mom and she’s a lady! Dad found it hilarious, mom not so much."
"The weird side step."
"Sometimes when I wear really short shorts, my butt cheeks start 'eating' my shorts and I have to try my best to make a discreet weird side step to adjust it..."
Assuming The Position
"Keep hand in pants in a non sexual way when just chilling."
It's A Pleasure
"I grew up thinking women couldn’t masturbate only men could. In middle school I searched up women masturbating and bro my jaw dropped."
Redditors share their thoughts about men and women keeping up with appearances.
Keep It Smooth
"Shave their face."
"I feel like women even keep this a secret from each other until you find out someone else does too or how common it is. Even still most women will rename it as “dermaplaning”. Such stigma around it."
Checking The Fitness Progress
"Flex in the mirror."
"Be dirty and lazy."
"I've worked in customer service most of my life, and can easily say that women's restrooms are an absolute nightmare compared men's restrooms 95% of the time. Like seriously, just throw your tampons in the trash, and wipe up your blood please; you've got a whole roll of tp 6 inches from your elbow."
"Check out women."
"Even straight women check out women. Source: am a straight woman… I think."
Just a thought, or may two or three.
Chivalry Is Non-Binary
"I just said this on another thread but, having fantasies about saving people or sacrificing yourself for them."
Revved Up Without Warning
"Get horny over nothing or randomly."
"Seem to be in deep thought but is actually just gaping at a wall with zero thoughts. Alternately, may be thinking of somethings completely random. That meme about the wife thinking the husband is probably thinking if another woman, when in reality he's thinking of something random ? Ya, as a woman, I relate with that husband."
Locker Room Talk
"Talk and joke about sex. I can’t speak for everyone, but I find girls talking about it more than guys."
"Heck, at one point we were having a little bonfire, and one couple got up to leave. My friend’s wife asked if they wanted to play Among Us when they got home, and the other girl just turned around and casually said 'Nah, this is usually about the time we have sex.' To which my friend’s wife responds 'Oh yeah, we just did that this morning.'”
The point is, all genders are capable of similar behavior that people have been socialized to exclusively associate with men.
And there's nothing wrong with that.
We are all equally guilty of being a little naughty, regardless of gender. So get over it.
It still amazes me that we live in a world where people are charged for drinking water. Water is a necessity! I have a lot of disdain for companies like Nestle, which siphons millions of gallons of water from entire communities only to sell it back to them.
What the hell is up with that? Does that not sound dystopian to anyone else? Okay, then. Water should be free – this should not be controversial.
People shared their thoughts with us after Redditor that_boy_ste asked the online community,
"You can make one thing/service free for the entire planet. What are you making free?"
"Healthcare would be awesome..."
"Clean drinking water, sadly. Healthcare would be awesome and if that covers water since water is essential for health, then yes!"
*cries in American*
"Because there are..."
"Education. Because there are entirely too many ignorant people on this planet."
That and over time this resolves literally every other problem...
"...so children and adults..."
"Education, so children and adults who are not able to go to school or afford to can now do so."
I wonder how much society could have advanced if education were free
"It's already free in my country..."
"Healthcare, it's already free in my country, but I want people in all the world to be healthy."
Life would improve pretty quickly for so many people if this were the case.
"Basic housing: floors, walls, ceilings and a roof, running water, working drains, electricity, heat and air conditioning, cooking facilities, refrigeration, etc."
Though this is "basic" by American standards, which is pretty good by many developing world standards, it should be the basic minimum for people everywhere in the world.
"Clean, free energy..."
"Clean free energy is the best answer. Everything else posted here requires energy to produce."
Everyone is focused on helping people in their day-to-day lives. Free clean energy would help the planet long-term.
"I live in America..."
"I live in America, so I’d have to say hospital stays. Healthcare in general. Moved away from family shortly before Covid, got Covid real bad shortly after. Had no debt. Started my adult life $3,500 in the hole. Yeah, free healthcare."
The debt trap people fall into just because they needed to go to the doctor or hospital is so predatory and wrong.
"Based on my narrow view..."
"Based on my narrow view of the world, housing is my biggest expense. So based on that logic, housing would make the biggest difference. Although, if you consider Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, physiological needs are more important."
I was looking at some budgeting advice the other day. They suggest your housing expenses should be 30 percent of your pay. I laughed and laughed and laughed.
"Transportation. If moving things from one place to another had no cost we could reduce the cost of everything else AND eliminate regional scarcity of most commodities."
Indeed it would! A game-changer if put into practice.
"Therapy is very essential..."
"Hmmmmmm I'd say, therapy, therapy is very essential and can help greatly."
Human behavior has gotten us into most of our world problems, and behavior change is one of the hardest things to accomplish. Therapy is just the tip of the iceberg, but would help at a large scale if free.
Human beings have boundless potential. The world isn't perfect — remember that there's no law saying that things need to remain as they are. Humans have always innovated and reaped the benefits in the long run.
Have some suggestions of your own? Tell us more in the comments below!
When I was a kid, I would occasionally watch this show called Big Bag. It went off the air more than 20 years ago and it seemed to only play at five or six in the morning. If I happened to wake up early, I'd catch it. It was targeted toward preschool viewers and was fun and silly, a partnership between Cartoon Network and what is now the Sesame Workshop.
Sometimes I wonder if I'm the only person who remembers it existed. But I'm not the only one with this kind of dilemma.
People shared their thoughts with us after Redditor LegitimateMangoHeir asked the online community,
"What's a show from your childhood that no one else seems to remember?"
Sagwa The Chinese Siamese Cat (2001)
"I thought Sagwa the Chinese Siamese Cat was a fever dream for so long."
Probably because it only had a single season! Might as well have vanished off the face of the earth after that.
"Hamtaro. For the LONGEST time I distinctly remembered watching the show but couldn't remember what it was called or anything else. I remember having a revelation in middle school and going "IT'S REAL???"
It certainly was real! And it was quite possibly the cutest thing to ever be broadcast on our television screens.
"There's a specific age group that really enjoyed Gargoyles."
Hi, it's me. I'm the age-group. There are dozens of us!
Mummies Alive! (1997)
"Mummies Alive! That and Gargoyles were my favourites to watch after school."
Another one that aired for a single season, it was part of a general trend of "mummymania" in 1990s pop culture.
Out of the Box (1998)
"Out of the Box. So long, farewell, to you my friends."
This one had a good run. That theme song is now in my head.
Count Duckula (1988)
"Count Duckula. The best damn cartoon ever!"
I hadn’t heard that theme song in decades and I was just transported back to my childhood room.
Maggie and the Ferocious Beast (2000)
"Maggie and the Ferocious Beast. Great googly moogly!"
O Canada! This one was cute!
Stick Stickly from "Nick in the Afternoon" (1994)
"Anyone remember Stick Stickley on Nickelodeon? I even remember the jingle but everyone I talk to looks at me crazy!"
Write to me, Stick Stickley, PO BOX 963, New York City, New York State, 10108!
The Angry Beavers (1997)
"The Angry Beavers. People look at me like I’m a psycho when I mention it."
This one — along with CatDog — was super popular!
2 Stupid Dogs (1993)
"2 Stupid Dogs. Well, ain't that cute. But it's wrong!"
I quote that line at least once a day. I loved that show.
You should probably run to YouTube and take a trip down memory lane. Thankfully, many of these are available in some capacity for you to enjoy!
Have some shows you love that you'd like to mention? Tell us more in the comments below!