SCENE: Mitch BERG is biking through Como Park when he hears some muted sobbing. He looks toward a park bench, where he notices Avery LIBRELLE sitting, wearing four masks, which are becoming slowly soaked in tears. BERG visibly hesistates, but his sense of compassion overwhelms his reflexes. He gets off the bike and walks over toward LIBRELLE
BERG: Er…hey, Avery…
LIBRELLE: (Stifles a sob) Stay at least 12 feet away!
BERG: Nooo problem. What’s the matter?
LIBRELLE: I…I don’t know. It’s just that with the CDC suddenly scaling back mask mandates, and Governor…
LIBRELLE: …Walz ending mask mandates early, I just feel…(sobs again)I.
LIBRELLE: Strangely… empty.
BERG: Like part of your purpose in life has been removed.k
LIBRELLE: (Small sob)
BERG: Like all your moral authority has been snatched away.
LIBRELLE: (Bigger sob)
BERG: Like you’ve lost your only response to that evolutionary instinct you have to respond to what you see as an existential threat – a sabertooth tiger or a famine or Pearl Harbor? That you’ve had your power to fill the void left by generations of plenty, safety and security has been ripped from your life?
LIBRELLE: (Wracked with a convulsive sob).
BERG: (Lets LIBRELLE cry a bit, then) Well, the good news is, most people have been vaccinated…you’ve had your vaccine, right?
LIBRELLE: (mustering some irate composure). Of course.
BERG: Well, there. you…
LIBRELLE: Twelve doses.
BERG: (jaw flaps in breeze for a moment before he shakes it off). Makes sense. To go with the four masks.
LIBRELLE: It’s six.
BERG: Of course it is.