Tag Archives: respirators and masks

Mask Challenge Revisited

Back in 2017, there was an effort by Memes for Inconvenient Disabilities to get people to wear a mask to see what it was like to be a human canary.

Only one person we know of took the challenge, but she did not give permission to share her incredible insights from her experience.

I’ve discovered that Fast Company did their own version of the Mask Challenge and here’s their video: Continue reading

Words Images Life Art Dance

While following the events at Standing Rock, I ran across something that impressed me that was shared from the “Dancing Earth” fb page,  and so I began following them  (please do check them out if you like powerful dance images).

At the end of April, just before MCS/ES Awareness Month was to begin, Dancing Earth posted the image below, and it made me stop in my tracks (as I scrolled through my fb newsfeed). I returned to it over and over again, and I finally asked for permission to share it here, and for the  back story about how it came to be.

This image!

Songs From The Extraction Zones
Rulan Tangen at Santa Fe Arts Institute

I kept hoping to find the words to describe why I find it to be such a powerful image, and why I feel such a personal connection to it, but I’ve been struggling from the effects of too much pollution on my brain. Pesticides, laundry products, and who knows what else have been taking their toll on my ability to string words together to do this the justice I feel it deserves, so this will not be as eloquent as I had hoped it would be, but I still want to share this with you, and maybe you will find some of your own words, or just sit with the feelings.

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If We’re Not Careful

This could happen here too…

We share the air on this little planet. Out appetite for disposable stuff is spewing a lot of toxic waste into the air, and most of it is oil, gas, coal, and petrochemical based.

Beijing  Picture: Austral Source: Supplied

Picture: Austral Source: Supplied

MOST brides are keen to look their best on their big day — but this lovestruck couple took their matrimonial garb to a new extreme in Beijing.

Chinese scientists have warned the country’s toxic air pollution is now so bad that it’s slowing photosynthesis in plants — and potentially wreaking havoc on the country’s food supply.

See the rest of the photos here:

Chinese couple pose for wedding photos wearing gas masks during Beijing’s big smog


I don’t know about you, but I think it’s madness to allow corporations to continue polluting this planet and threatening our very existence just to have piles of stuff we end up dumping in the trash.

What can we do to sustain life instead?

Money, Masks and MCS

Here is yet another way petro-chemical and wireless pollutants and policies create barriers to access, barriers that personal actions and responsibility alone cannot overcome…

Background: Michellina  wrote about her masked experiences on her blog The-Labyrynth, which inspired Colleen to write about her mask breakthrough on her blog Life in the City with a Future, which inspired me to share her link and post on the subject here, which then inspired Suki to chime in here adding her experiences, as well as a link to some really great resources from from The (US) National Center for Independent Living on environmental health barriers to access, which links back here to one of my  posts! And here’s an example of just how prevalent fragrance chemicals are.

And then… my friend Melody posted this photo, which brings up another issue:

How can we have access to our money when wearing disability related “accessories”?

What about the masks we wear to be able to breathe cleaner air?

What about the masks we wear  to breathe? Or the hats and scarves we wear to keep some of the fragrance chemicals off of our hair? Or the special fabric head-coverings to protect from wireless radiation? These are necessary “accessories” which prevent further disability, and allow some of us to lead somewhat more normal lives, kind of like what wheelchairs are for people who can’t walk.

Do they have these signs (and policies) everywhere now?

How do you manage?

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The Trouble With Soot

Soot (and ‘by’products) from burning wood, diesel, coal or other fossil fuels are bad enough for the planet, but did you know that those particles attract harmful chemicals (secondary organic molecules) from the air so when we breathe them in, their adverse health effects can be multiplied?

smokestack earth

Here’s a must see two and a half minute video from The Allegheny Front, a radio program covering environmental issues in Pennsylvania.

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Need Protection?

To Breathe, That Is…

I was looking up masks and found these ads…
I am a bit (but not entirely) speechless…

Find a Mask to Filter Fragrance From Work HVAC Systems

“Companies across the globe are including fragrances in their heating and ventilation systems. It’s part of what emotional branding companies such as DMX call a multi-sensory experience. Retail stores may use scent in combination with audio and visual systems to enhance brand awareness. Smell associations, say DMX, are so strong they can even increase worker productivity. Whatever the reason, these scent systems can make it difficult for employees working in the affected areas who have fragrance sensitivities.”

While it won’t be possible for all workers in controlled scent environments to wear respirators, for those who can, we have a few suggestions:


I do know people who have to wear a mask just to go to work. It’s a horrible way to have to live when toxic chemicals are used everywhere everyday by almost everyone, and so much worse when pumped into the air deliberately. In fact, I don’t think anyone with MCS/ES or respiratory symptoms could work (or visit or shop) in an environment with deliberately pumped in fragrance chemicals, even wearing a mask.

That’s why we have human rights legislation to provide fragrance or scent free policies for working environments (see the sidebar or resources page at the top). These policies actually end up benefitting everyone’s health, not just those of us who are “sensitive”. Soon (but not soon enough) that will change to basic public health legislation, as it has for smoking.

Some multi-unit housing complexes have introduced smoke free rules, but so far there are very few housing options with fragrance free rules. We need them. Wearing a mask all day and night just isn’t feasible or possible, even if we tolerate the (mostly synthetic) materials they are made of, which many of us don’t.

Did you know there are masks for kids? These just make me really sad…

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