Past Imperfect

Past Imperfect – #585

Karen, left: “Doesn’t this make you feel pretty and special?”

Archie, right: “Those aren’t quite the two words I would use. Can you explain to me again why we’re wearing these things on our faces?”

Karen: “Silly, I already told you. Noses are no longer fashionable.”

Archie: “How can that be? Most everybody has one. And they’re kind of permanent, unless you stick it where it doesn’t belong and somebody named Bruno finds your ass in a dark alley and wants a souvenir for his boss.”

Karen: “You’re being absurd.”

Archie: “Me? You’re the one who has decided that a body part is no longer proper couture. What kind of delusional crap is that?”

Karen: “It is NOT crap. I read all about it in the latest edition of ‘Upper Crust Monthly’. It was the featured article. They wouldn’t make it a feature if it wasn’t true.”

Archie: “If it was true, it wouldn’t be in a trashy supremacist tabloid to begin with. Was there also a section on where to find the whitest sheets with the highest thread-count? Shop here and attend the latest Klan rally in high style.”

Karen: “That isn’t fair. And how did we get from noses to racism?”

Archie: “When you renewed your subscription to ‘Upper Crust Monthly’. And, again, when you insisted that we wear these ridiculous mini-masks. You’ve got a lot of delusion trapped inside that cloche hat of yours.”

Karen: “You are really vexing me, Archie. You’re just mad because we didn’t have sex last night.”

Archie: “We didn’t have sex because you were wearing that insipid mask and I felt like doing so would be a violation of wildlife somehow. I don’t want to make whoopee with something that has a snout. I no longer recognize my own wife, in more ways than one.”

Karen: “And I no longer recognize you. We used to have the same beliefs and had the same subscriptions.”

Archie: “I’ll grant you that. I was a blind idiot for a long time, but now I’ve stopped drinking the poison.”

Karen: “What changed?”

Archie: “When George Floyd couldn’t breathe.”

Karen: “I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

Archie: “You should. I’m terribly ashamed about my ignorance, and I’m even more ashamed that it took me so long to pay attention. This country has a terrible, wretched problem that has gone on far too long. And I’ve contributed to the problem by pretending that I can’t see what’s right there in front of me, like the nose on my face.”

Karen: “But noses are no longer-”

Archie: “Stop. Just, stop. You need to come down out of your privileged cloud and take off your privileged mask and stop subscribing to magazines and politicians that create fear out of nothing. Look the camera in the eye and promise to do better.”

Karen: “I don’t know if I can. I’m so used to the way things were.”

Archie: “Those ways were wrong. Look at the camera.”

Karen: “I’m trying, but…”



Photo graciously provided by Rivergirl. I would imagine that she didn’t expect me to take this where I did, but I hope she approves…


16 replies »

    • Thanks, Angie. I truly believe that great change will only come about when we stop playing the games of “just ignore it and go on” or “that’s just the way they were raised” when it comes to friends and family members with offensive views. We have to talk about it and we have to be honest. Painful? Sure. But it’s a minor pain compared to the pain of those who suffer discrimination of any kind….

      Liked by 1 person

  1. It was the time of Covid. Something people in the far distant future (provided there is one, the stupidity in THIS future that should not have ever been is ghastly and might just eradicate humanity entirely) will talk about with wonder and awe and privately thank their version of God that they didn’t have to live through. Just like my generation and World War II…that sort of thankfulness.

    People being what they are (that Karen person is their leader. As sad a commentary as that is) some lack of wit decided that just because one (sensible one) must mask, doesn’t mean the mask has to be that ugly ass white cotton-ish affair.

    Thereafter cones, the plague doctor mask, skeleton ‘faces’, hoards of frolicking dogs, kitty feet (aw the widdle bean toes), the America Flag, the Mexican Flag, Any Flag of any country anywhere, and hundreds of thousands of other ‘designs’ (none of which are any more effective than the plain cotton type); have made their way to the marketplace. Capitalism is hard to kill and damned if some invisible, microscopic bug is gonna kill it!

    Myself? I have one with hoards of frolicking dogs (chihuahuas in the main), a full face Golden Retriever and the aforementioned skull in my mask ‘wardrobe’. Yeah. I’m ready to rock & roll. Archie and Veronica (koff koff Pardon me) KAREN need to get with the program. Beak face masks are so YESTERDAY…..

    Liked by 2 people

    • Additionally, in that future, the wise people will wonder what the hell went wrong, where, that resulted in the most privileged country in the world having the highest number of needless deaths. I’m glad you mentioned our generation being thankful we didn’t have to live through World War II. Apparently, that thankfulness has evaporated from some in our generation and never existed in segments of the younger generations. People are whining because they have to wear a mask? Go back to World War II and review what the citizens of this country sacrificed for the greater good…

      Now, on to the mask trove. We have quite a few. Once it became clear that we would be wearing them for a while, Partner and I went on bit of a frenzy, picking up clever ones here and there in stores but mostly surfing the web. Yes, it’s become commercialized, which is a bit sad, but at least there are options that allow you to show your personality without spending a fortune. Carpe diem, right?


    • The photo is unsettling, I’ll give you that. But is it any more unsettling than some of the images we’re seeing today, like Trump hoisting a bible he’s never read outside a church he’s never attended?

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Christi. I was initially concerned over the reception for this one, what with that unexpected pivot.

      I scribbled out the first few lines of dialogue without any really goal in mind, then paused, contemplated the photo, and the dual facial expressions of “acceptance and avoidance” triggered something. I always have fun with the Past Imperfects, but my favorites generally involve those stories where things click even more when you go back and look at the photo again…

      Liked by 1 person

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