I am at the wedding. Can I mask myself for the ceremony?

I’m one of two bridesmaids at a close friend’s upcoming wedding. Due to Covid-19 public health orders in her state, she had to postpone the event twice. We are finally approaching the reprogramming date. The couple hold an indoor ceremony with 200 guests (no mask or vaccination required) and an outdoor tent reception. My partner and I are traveling from California. We are vaccinated, but we are uncomfortable spending time indoors with other unmasked or potentially unvaccinated people, especially when breakthrough infections make some people very sick. Would it be cheesy as a bridesmaid to wear a mask all night long? Will people think we are being too careful?


We are in a public health crisis, maid of honor! Protecting your health (and the health of others) completely overshadows wedding attire. Instead of worrying about what others think about your sane mask, maybe you can use your close relationship with the bride to help make her marriage a safer one for everyone. Because 200 people have gathered inside – with no masks, no social distancing, and perhaps no vaccinations – it feels more like a super-broadcast event than a joyous occasion.

Before talking to your loved one, try to appreciate their (quite legitimate!) Sadness and frustration at the multiple postponements of their marriage. Make no mistake, throwing a party is a little potato compared to serious illness and death. But you can still empathize with the couple’s challenges. This sets the stage for a warmer conversation.

Then call her. “I love you and I feel very bad about how hard this marriage has been for you. But with the increasing number of Delta variant infections, wouldn’t it be smarter to move the marriage outside? And requiring vaccinations and masks would make it safer for everyone. Will you think about that? “

The bride may be angry – or she may agree! Ultimately, the decision to attend and wear a mask is up to you. Personally, I can’t imagine ignoring the advice of the CDC to avoid large indoor gatherings. Like it or not, we are now putting our good health (and perhaps our lives) on a smart risk assessment. I’ll leave it to you to make the call and make friends with your friend.

I think a friend of mine may be pregnant. We are friendly, but not BFFs. She didn’t tell me, but I can see her body shape changing. Wouldn’t it be awful to invite her to dinner and serve her a ceviche? (Pregnant women can’t eat raw fish.) If she doesn’t, that would be further proof. Can I?


Request refused! Your plan is manipulative and inconclusive. We each have the right to share personal information (which does not affect others) at our own pace, regardless of the curiosity of others. Also, you’re overlooking the distinct possibility that your friend doesn’t care about the raw fish dried in citrus juices and still isn’t pregnant. Respect their privacy. When she has something to tell you, she will.

I’m a part-time music influencer with several hundred followers on Spotify. My grandfather recently died in a freak accident. We are all in shock. I was very close to him and I am grieved. To help me cope, I made a playlist of songs about loss and grief. Stupidly, I made this playlist public – with my usual custom cover art and song descriptions suitable for Gen Z. Now I’m afraid it looks like I’m trying to profit from my loss to gain likes and followers. I loved my grandfather very much and I hate to think that I disrespect me. No advice?


I applaud your sensitivity to the perspective of this situation, but I think you are forgetting an important fact: your reading list can help others, like you, who are grieving. It’s a beautiful tribute to your grandfather!

I suggest revising your playlist description to make its origin and purpose more clear to your followers. Maybe replace the cover art with a special photo of your grandfather and embroider song descriptions with mementos of him.

I understand that generating income is one of the reasons you became a music influencer. But I bet your love of music – and your emotional connection to it – is greater. Also invite your subscribers to share their painful losses. Personally, I see that you are doing a lot of good here. Don’t be hard on yourself!

My mom and sister are helping me move to college. The car will be packed, so it’s tight for the three of us. My sister insists on bringing hard-boiled eggs for a snack on the road. But hard-boiled eggs smell bad to me and tend to make me nauseous. I asked her to bring something else, but she won’t budge. Ideas?


Let’s find a compromise. Your sister helps you to move, an occasion of recognition. Still, feeling nauseous on long journeys is a big disappointment. How about this: your sister limits her egg consumption to pit stops? She gets out of the car to peel and eat them, then washes her hands and pops mints if necessary. Quite doable, right?

For help with your difficult situation, send a question to [email protected], Philip Galanes on Facebook or @SocialQPhilip on Twitter.

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