By Jilly Krawczel | | Contributing Writer

On this campus, there’s been an abundantly clear correlation between a man’s athletic status and his ability to wear a mask. The correlation is that sport men are significantly worse than the general student population at getting a mask over their nose. Breaking down and discussing the plethora of potential reasons for this phenomenon is not the point of this article. Instead, I would like to argue that they’re actually providing a vital service to the student population. I choose to believe they are making the conscious decision to benefit society by revealing more of their faces than we’d like to see. I will begin to explain with a brief anecdote. 

Around this time last year, I started a new job. I was introduced to dozens of new people, all wearing masks. Throughout the pandemic, I began to notice that whenever I’d meet someone for the first time wearing a mask, my brain would automatically complete their face in the most visually attractive way possible. Months passed and I was certain I knew what these people’s faces looked like. Suddenly it was May; people began to get vaccinated and the masks slowly started coming off. It was then that I realized for months I had been living in a fantasy, having convinced myself that every day I worked and interacted with hotter-than-average people. Time and time again I would see someone remove their mask for the first time and feel severely disappointed. Shocked. Betrayed. I was forced to rapidly come to terms with the fact that I’d been living a lie that I had invented in my head. It’s a terrible feeling— thinking you’ve been surrounded by hot people for months when that has blatantly not been the case. However, I am comforted to know I am not alone in this struggle.

It’s an experience so universal it has a name. Maskfishing: when someone removes their mask and appears less attractive than they were when they wore it. This is what I believe the sport men of our institution are fighting. They’re simply doing their part to let the people of our campus know upfront that they are NOT hot. Next time you see a sport man with his nose out of his mask, his tiny, weird mustache showing through— thank him. Thank him for his honesty, his bravery. Thank him for displaying his realest and truest self, not hiding behind the facade of semi-attractive eyes when the rest of his face doesn’t follow suit. 

Senior Jilly Krawczel is a Contributing Writer. Her email is jkrawcze@fandm.edu.

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By TCR