OT: COVID-19; Venus vs. Mars

So Nevada just finished our first 15 days of gradual, measured reopening; we’re waiting for the latest case/death numbers to determine whether we will pull back, continue as is, or expand.

My wife and I have always been “people watchers”, and we observed a rather interesting phenomenon here in Reno with regards to mask wearing. I hope this doesn’t become too political (and subsequently locked/deleted), but thought some still might find it of interest. So here goes…

First off, employees are mandated to wear masks. Customers have been strongly encouraged to wear masks when they enter businesses. Some businesses will not permit non mask-wearing customers to enter (my dermatologist, for one), others will.

So over the past two weeks, my wife and I been to a half-dozen-or-so places across a wide range of services. And what we’ve noticed is that women wear masks; men don’t.

We took our vehicles to an automotive joint to have SMOG checks. The employees (all male) working in the back were not wearing masks. Since they have no customer contact, perhaps they’re exempt (guessing, here). But the guys who came out to do our paperwork weren’t wearing them either. Other than my wife and I, there were six other male customers in the waiting area; none wearing masks.

My wife has been to both a hair salon and a nail salon. Although I didn’t enter (guests are not permitted inside), my wife noticed the employees (all female) and clients (all female) were wearing masks.

We’ve also been to businesses where there is a mix of customer genders (Wal-Mart, Trader Joe’s, etc.). My numbers aren’t exact, but I’d say about 4/5 women were mask-wearers, while it was maybe 1/5 for men.

Anyone else seen this phenomenon? Anyone find such a disparity between the genders surprising?

Doesn’t surprise me a bit. Women take things like this more seriously.

There’s a reason why married men live longer than single men. Women make sure us guys get check ups. They also keep us accountable on our diets.

I’m sure my life span would be much shorter if I wasn’t married.

I’ve had a limited number of mass public encounters the last 9 weeks. I’m working from home, so pretty much I only see my wife as a close contact person. Everyone else I see in the neighborhood is at the 6 - 10 foot distance level, making conversations also limited. But, at my every other day trip to Kroger or WalMart I’m also noticing more mask compliance with women than men, but not to the extreams the OP is seeing in Reno. I’d say a least 50% of the male customers are wearing masks in the stores I frequent.

I thnk the biggest issue is no one really knows much about the virus yet. So, it’s hard for me to say what’s right - I think we’re all just fumbling along right now.

Masks are Mandatory here where I live in Mississippi when entering any business… Walmart will not let you enter without it… I’m usually in and out in about 10 minutes. I’ll take the mask off as soon as I get outside because it’s hard to breathe with it and I just keep my space until I get to my car. Gyms just opened up last week and when you’re inside the facility you must wear a mask, all your classes are taken outside on the patio by the lake and you do not have to wear a mask you are separated by seven or eight feet from everybody. I got my haircut Saturday and I had to wait in my car until I was motioned in The stylist and me both had to have masks on.

I wear my mask whenever I enter a business, usually Walmart, Kroger’s, or a golf store. Most everyone I see wears masks. I wear gloves also. Yesterday I noticed just the opposite at Kroger’s. Numerous younger ladies not wearing masks. A couple of men. I feel fairly safe on golf course or hitting balls. But always use hand sanitizer when I’m done. I will pay more attention from now on.

Maybe there are not as high of risk as I am. And my wife is definitely high risk. She has not been to a store since this started. Hospital a couple of times for tests etc and to our sons home.

Finally got a haircut. Everyone wore masks

I wear a mask if the establishment requires one… otherwise I don’t. I’m not a high risk nor am I around anyone who is. I do wash my hands regularly and am conscious of things I touch and attempt to maintain the proper distance if possible. I don’t want to give it to someone if I have it and don’t know it. Otherwise I’m not concerned about contracting the disease myself.

Interesting. I live and work in Ag communities. You would hardly know anything different is going on. When you get closer to Denver and those towns, then you see it. I have 2 mask in my truck that I wear going into stores etc. By the way, the mask is not for your own protection unless you have a really, really good one. It is for the protection of those around you. I never wear it in places like Yuma where I am going tomorrow. Heck, they would think I am going to rob the place.

I took my first plane trip since early March last week and of course wore the mask in airports and on the planes. I noticed the same thing in Texas. Around HOU there were mask everywhere. In LUB, I don’t think I saw one. The whole airport experiences were surreal to say the least, but I really never felt uneasy and I am 72. Did have my hand sanitizer in my pocket though and used it.

Have not noticed a difference between men and women on this. Here at least, it seems to be more city v country which sort of makes sense.

Went to church today. There were no mask. A very small church in a small area.

Oh, for all of you worried about gyms, come on out. I got plenty of bales of hay needing moved and more on the way and it will not cost you a thing! Plenty of open space as well.

1 Like

I’ve noticed the same thing in AR as Colorado has there. around LR, lots of masks, but when outside of LR, rare masks. I made the exact same comment about a person wearing a mask in Lonoke would be assumed to be a robber.

And even in LR, far more people are without masks now. WholeFoods, which required a mask a month ago, now has about 1/2 of its customers in masks and about 1/2 without.

I know our governor is not “going to phase 2” as of this week, but most of the state seems to be phase 3 already.

Certainly interesting to watch this thing, as a social experiment.


Seems to me wearing a mask is at worst a mild annoyance. Given how effective they can be at reducing the spread of this virus, I can’ imagine why anyone would object to wearing one. There are sound economic reasons to open up businesses, etc, but failing to wear a mask? Why?

1 Like

We spent last week in Arkansas for a wedding (small 12 people attending) and time with family. In Benton Kroger I saw very few masks and folks didn’t seem to try to social distance. At Walmart Hot Springs very few masks and somewhat better social distancing. This week we are in Gulf Shores AL and Walmart was really full with hardly anyone wearing a mask. Me and my wife wear our masks in any store.

I don’t understand not wearing a mask in stores but it seems many (if not most) do not wear masks. Back home in Chattanooga masks are required at Costco and my daughter said in Publix almost everyone wears their masks.

Overall I have a feeling that Americans don’t like being told what to do. As a child of the 60’s I get the down with the establishment deal. But consideration for others seems to be lost.

This is the thing with me. You don’t have like or agree how this is being handled but be considerate of others.

In a year or three, we’ll look back and know how this was all handled. Until then be cautious and considerate.


Considerably more men die with the virus than women. It has to do with a woman’s immune system and commonsense.

1 Like

Here in the sweet little city of Sainte Genevieve Mo, we have been mostly untouched by the Wuhan virus. Only 8 cases in the county with one death.(elderly with underlying) 6 of the cases were in one family. One of the other two contracted at a factory in another county. Despite this, there are plenty of masked men and women around here. This is a sleepy little town. The line between open and closed around here is a bit blurry. They did shut down our community center and library for 2 months. This resulted in me eating more and exercising and reading
less. I suspect my BP bumped up a bit while my IQ dropped a point or two. It is hard to say on the BP though, because they shut down the two free BP monitoring machines in town, including the one at the CC. That’s a real head scratcher to me. I can now work out but can’t monitor my BP after doing so. The hair cuttin folks came back last week, but they are booked for weeks. In short, while I have not contracted the virus, my health has suffered, I look like crap and I am poorer. I have however, kicked a lifelong addiction to watching sports on tv. So there’s that.

You can buy a good BP measuring device at any Wal-Mart. Omron makes several good ones. They’re about $100.

That’s one hundred bucks I would rather spend on something else, and one more device for me to have to lug around. I live a somewhat nomadic life. We have haven’t had a new case around here in a month. It is time to open up the BP monitors. This is not NYC. In many rural communities, the cure has been worse than the disease.

Well, I suppose if you’re going to carry it around, it’d be a pain in the butt. Mine is at home. My wife & I check ours periodically on it. However, I understand they make one that slips around the wrist–sorta like a large wristwatch.

I was unaware there were public BP monitoring devices in many places. I’ve seen them in drug stores, but I couldn’t tell you of any in Little Rock. Perhaps they’re around & I just didn’t know it, but I haven’t seen them.

I hadn’t eirher until I moved here. I think our hospital paid for them and they are wonderful. One in the grocery store and one in the community center. I was checking twice a day and keeping a journal.

There is a blood pressure seat and arm thingy at the Kroger Pharmacy on Beechwood in Little Rock. Seems like there are others elsewhere but I know this one for sure since it is our Pharmacy.

I’m pretty sure that every Wal-Mart with a pharmacy inside has one.

I’ve always taken the resistance to wearing a mask as a bit of cowardice, like the person is afraid that they will look less manly. It is almost always a man. As Richard noted, maybe a single man, as a married man has a woman pestering him to “do what is right” and to “quit worrying that you look stupid” (she married him anyway!).

The great thing, and this is “silver lining” territory, I realize: at some point, mask-wearing will become as normalized as wearing a seat belt, not smoking in public places, and hiring a designated driver. Then, when the flu season hits people who are at risk, symptomatic, or feeling stressed/depressed/fatiqued can feel more comfortable wearing a mask. Good news: it will help fight the flu bug as well.