The big challenge for those riding to work and elsewhere is how to get a meal-on-the-go into the masked mouth. The catch – without being caught on CCTV cameras at crossings and inviting challans. (Shutterstock)
The big challenge for those riding to work and elsewhere is how to get a meal-on-the-go into the masked mouth. The catch – without being caught on CCTV cameras at crossings and inviting challans. (Shutterstock)

Witerati: Munch ado about masked living

The Vaccine may see many a mask ‘breathe’ its last, but not before spawning a subtle art defining the Battle of the Mask Vs Morsel
By Chetna Keer
PUBLISHED ON JAN 16, 2021 11:29 PM IST

Pandemic season has seen Tweeple putting plenty of foot in the mouth. Who can forget controversy’s children, Donald Trump to Kangana Ranaut? Ah, but have you spotted Pandemic’s populace putting the mouth in the foot?

If you’ve been at the receiving end of the Battle of the Mask VS Mouthful of Morsel, you’ll have an inkling of the drift of things.

Masks may have spawned species and subtle artistry that could give Sri Sri Ravi Shankar’s ‘Art of Living’ stiff (oops, stuff) competition – Art of Licking.

The Vaccine may make masks a thing of history, but masks ‘breathe’ their last not without teaching us a thing or two about tweaking the geography of anatomy.

Whilst the Vax has injected sure-shot sense of security among the populace, the wait for it has been ‘driving’ new challenges – masked misadventures on the go.

The big challenge for those riding to work and elsewhere is how to get a meal-on-the-go into the masked mouth. The catch – without being caught on CCTV cameras at crossings and inviting challans.

Some lessons in New Normal’s ‘Art of Licking’.

Battle of Mask Vs Morsel

In pandemic times, even as not only drugs but also dregs of news are often hard to swallow, masked life’s morsels on the go dish out their own food for thought. By virtue of being tossed unceremoniously left, right and centre, anywhere but into the mouth.

The other day, a friend’s mother fished out her water bottle to savour a sip. Her parched throat behind the stifling mask heaved with relief as if it was a whiff of fresh air. Only to realise that the whiff of air flowed from the lowered car window, wherein peered a potbellied pasha of Haryana constabulary at the crossing, looking cross. And full of airs. Like a belligerent bulldog who’s spied a spaniel crunching on a coveted bone in his territory.

“Yo toh challan banta hai, madamji”.

“Look, I’m wearing it, just slipped it down to have water …” she stuttered sundry explanations for that fraction of a mask-less moment, flailing the mask dangling from her chin as detached from the ‘muh’ as most Netas profess to be from Moh ‘n’ Maya (or Mayawati).

“Art of Licking” Lesson One – This episode served to spotlight simple tricks for Masked Life’s Eat, Drink and Be Ferry.

First, train the throat to survive without hydrogen oxide till you are off the road. Better still, carry straws that can be thrust into the mouth under the mask without dislodging the latter. Best is, take the road less travelled – carry hookahs that serve as stylised straws and also lend a look of ‘Arabian Nights’ exotica, like Pandemic’s variant of ‘Lipstick Under My Burkha’!

The curious case of surviving the long arm of the law by hook(ah) or crook.

Tu Cheese Badi Hai Mask Mask

Another time, Yours Truly was trying to smuggle in bites of breakfast on the go behind the partially dismantled mask when the gulping met grunting from the driver’s seat, “Mask, mask”.

Realising that traffic lights with CCTVs were being navigated, I ducked out of view. Only to realise I had stooped so low in life that what I was shoving into my mouth was not a footlong, but my (un-pedicured) foot. Almost.

“Art of Licking” Lesson 2 – Advisable for Lockdown’s Lollitas & Co, if they want to escape not only cross constabulary but also scowling significant half Lamba ji or Lally ji, is to practise Baba Ramdev’s ‘Adho Mukha Svanasana’ with the mask on. That is, if what Lollitas, Lamba jis & Co are seeking is not Chicken Soup for the Soul, but Chicken Soup on the Stroll.

The curious case of ‘Who Moved My Mask’s Strip-tease’!

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