In the darkest times in history, under the most stressful conditions, and in the most emotionally demanding occupations you will often find people cracking extremely dark and morose jokes about precisely the circumstances under which they are operating. Humor provides a much needed cathartic release valve for the pressure that something like a global pandemic builds up in our collective psyche. It is in that spirit that I am pleased to present to you my 2020 Halloween costume; a medieval plague doctor!
For context during the medieval period - long before the germ theory of disease - physicians caring for victims of bubonic and other major plagues would don these deliciously macabre costumes, with full-body robes, hoods, gloves, and horrifying beaked masks that they would stuff with flowers and herbs to ward off the miasma, or "bad air" that they believed spread the plague. They would also carry a short staff or cane that allowed them to inspect a victim without touching them with their hands. Come to think of it, they weren't too far off in their guesses about spread of disease, though they thought that it was the smell specifically that carried it, and they would often put gemstones in the eyes of the masks because they thought that direct eye contact might spread it too. Choosing to dress up as a plague doctor for Halloween, even during the worst pandemic in a century, is in many ways a reminder of how far we've come and how good we actually have it compared to those that came before us.
Conditions this Halloween morning were absolutely perfect for a photo shoot*! An eerie fog settled in at the local park and I just couldn't resist heading out right away and snapping these; please enjoy!
*Of course, by "photo shoot" I mean my brother held a smartphone and took a few pictures ;)