I rode several bus routes over the weekend to check out how well riders were taking to the new state edict to wear a face covering in public.

As expected, close to half the riders did not have masks at all. A program to distribute free masks would help a lot, in that regard. Thank you, City of Renton, for taking the lead!

The more infuriating behavior, though, was the significant number of riders who had masks on, but were not wearing them over their mouth and nose. They just had them on over their chin, as if getting some fresh air in a place where they didn’t feel the need to wear them properly.

Inside, where the air recirculates, is actually where you most need to wear a mask, to protect the other people in that place from you. Being asymptomatic does not mean you don’t have the virus.

If you are on a bus, and you do not have a mask on, then you are a threat to the health and safety of everyone else on the bus. Pulling your mask down to expose your nose and mouth makes you as dangerous as all the maskless riders.

Do I need to remind y’all that hundreds of thousands of people have died from the virus?

Another infuriating behavior is when riders wait until they sit down to put their mask on, or take it off as they get ready to leave the bus. When you are standing over other riders is actually when you are the greatest threat to them, as the water droplets from your breath rain down upon the people you walk by.

So, please, oh please. Don’t risk the lives of your fellow riders. WEAR YOUR DAMN MASK. If you are waiting for the bus and see it approaching, make sure your mask is up over your nose and mouth. Expect some drivers to pass you by if you don’t have your mask on properly.

Then keep your mask on properly while you are boarding, while on board, while you are deboarding, while around other people at the bus stop, and anywhere, inside or outside, where there are one or more people around you.

Don’t be a killer. WEAR YOUR DAMN MASK.

64 Replies to “WEAR YOUR DAMN MASK”

  1. I was shopping at the Overlake Fred Meyer on Saturday. I was looking around and realized how high the level of mask wearing was. So I started to really scan everyone in sight. 100% coverage… Amazing. They did have people at the doors but they’ve typically had “greeters”. I don’t know if they are now stopping people w/o masks and telling them that by law they are not allowed to do business with customers who aren’t wearing a mask and risk fines and loss of business license if they continue to disregard the law. Will Metro be fined for non-compliance? Do they risk being shut down as all private business is?

    1. Interesting. I guess it makes sense if you think about it. Overlake is relatively well educated with plenty of first generation Americans — exactly the type of people who follow the science and aren’t afraid to where masks. I’m afraid that probably isn’t the case with all of the Fred Meyer’s in town.

      1. I shopped at the Renton Fred Meyer yesterday and it was virtually 100% mask compliant, too.

      2. A view from Snohomish County…
        I shopped at the FM in Lynnwood on 164th on Sunday. They’ve had employees at the door keeping an eye on customers entering the store, as well as offering general assistance, and yesterday was no different. My observation regarding mask compliance among shoppers during my trip there that afternoon was that roughly 95% were wearing a mask of some sort. So, still pretty good and definitely a much higher face covering compliance rate than I observed back in March.

    2. I go to that Fred Meyer often. I had been trying to avoid it (in favor of Costco), because only about half the customers were wearing masks. But a couple of weeks ago, something changed, and now everone is wearing them.

    3. Reading some more, it seems only Yakima County businesses can be fined or lose their business license for not enforcing mask wearing by customers. I get the phased approach and basing it on infection rates. But having different penalties in different counties for the same action, not so sure that would hold up to a court challenge. Tail light out in Yakima, off with your head; Thurston County, slap on the wrist. The danger, be it tail light or spread of a disease is the same regardless of where you are so how can the State mandate different consequences? Seems anything like this would have to be enacted by the county government.

      1. Tomorrow that mandate is in effect statewide, as announced on July 2.

      2. @John S.
        Do you have a link to that order. Not that I doubt/challenge you; that’s what I believe I heard on the radio (hard to link to) originally. This whole thing is a confusing mess. While not a supporter of Jay Inslee, I believe he’s administratively handled the Covid crises extremely well. I would have done some things differently but the whole thing’s a crap shoot. I will give him unreserved credit for saying publicly there has been a working relationship with VP Pence and keeping what’s best for our State separate from politics.

    4. A month ago, the Ballard Fred Meyer had terrible customer compliance, which is in contrast to the rest of Ballard grocery store customers. I made the choice to not return, so I’m not sure if it has improved since the mandates, especially today’s deadline.

      1. I shop there. Customer compliance is much better than it initially was before. However I also specifically go in the early morning on the weekend to shop, the store is very empty before 8am. No real lines. Just you and a bunch of instacart shoppers.

        That said I’ve only seen a store employee manning the door once this entire time. The store itself seems to be doing the absolute bare minimum. Compared to another more upscale grocer I go to which closed all but one entrance. Has man at the door who cleans carts and meters how many people are in the store at a given time.

  2. The last few months has exposed the ignorance and/or selfishness of a large percentage of the American public.

    Maybe we’ll learn and be better in the future, but I’m not holding my breath.

    If you’re riding the bus without a mask (or going to the store, etc.), you either don’t believe masks reduce the spread or you just don’t care. Either way, you’re a crappy human being.

    1. Yeah, the mask debacle goes beyond simple partisan bickering and has physically indicates to the rest of us, who we can safely leave out of rebuilding our country going forward.

      1. It’s a nice thought. But the truth is, *other people never disappear*. We will have to live with the mask deniers – we will have to bear the burden of them on our backs as we try to keep our civilization going. One way or another, we’ll have to adjust our lives to live alongside these horrible, unbearably selfish people.

        Sorry – I’ve been ruminating a lot on such things as of late.

      2. Oh I know they’re along for the ride. Doesn’t mean we need to let them drive.

    2. It’s also exposed the science and lack thereof of the effectiveness of masks in preventing the spread of the Wuhan virus. The Chinese virus is so new, the data has yet to still be completely analyzed. Many scientists have differing opinions. An example from this doctor:


      One may be a crappy human being in your opinion, or one may be open to trying to understand what the scientific data of many may mean for all of us.

      1. I’m really confused with your Twitter link or what point you’re trying to make with it.

        This guy put a mask on, did different activities (singing, sneezing, coughing, etc) onto agar plate, showing that distancing greatly reduces bacterial contamination on the agar plates and that masks effectively eliminate it.

        He then goes on to state that his personal experiment does not demonstrate the effectiveness of masks against SARS-CoV-2 because (1) he doesn’t currently have COVID-19 and (2) viruses don’t grow on agar plates. He even states that his experiment is not an experiment, but rather a single source demonstration showing that distancing and masks are extremely effective at stopping the transmission of DROPLETS, in which SARS-CoV-2 most quickly spreads.

        True experiments have pretty much unanimously shown that masks are extremely effective at stopping the transmission of SARS-CoV-2 and this guy’s demonstration concurs with that. The anti-mask talking points seem to solely come from non-scientific individuals or “doctors” whose field is neither microbiology no even medicine for that matter.

      2. Rich is a PhD microbiology director. He explains what is shows and doesn’t show. The science is so new with this Chinese virus that we are still learning. Science is ever-evolving.

        Please provide links to your statement of “true experiments have pretty much unanimously shown that masks are extremely effective at stopping the transmission of SARS-CoV-2.” Then why is HK heading toward a shutdown even though they all wear masks?

        Here’s a link from CDC about viral transmission: https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/eid/article/26/5/19-0994_article

  3. I’m deeply disappointed in Sound Transit for consciously refusing to enforce a mask requirement on Link — or in stations:


    Not like it should be a surprise, but our public transit agencies are willfully creating two tiers of safety: people with cars deserve to be safe, but people taking transit (like us) do not.

    I’m sure there are social justice issues with enforcing mask requirements. The smart people at Sound Transit should go solve them, rather than absolve themselves of responsibility.

    Personally, I have ceased my use of public transit. I’m to a location next month that better supports getting around entirely on foot and by bike. Of course, most transit riders don’t have the privilege to do that.

    1. At Seatac Stations, ST employees don’t all wear masks. I’m not talking about chin wearers, either. Nothing.

  4. When passing by someone without a mask, is there any protective value in holding your breath for a few seconds, or that just a feel-good measure?

    1. Yes, I would think so. A typical mask protects others more than it protects you. Distance matters for many of the particulates*. So if the other person is not wearing a mask, holding your breath is a good idea.

      * Unfortunately, there is increasing evidence that the disease is being spread by the particles that hang in the air a lot longer (https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/health/scientists-urge-who-to-acknowledge-virus-can-spread-in-air/). That means you can get it even if you are a long distance away from someone (or even if that person has left the area). However, it is still a case where the more of it you get, the more likely you are to get the disease (which is why time spent with someone who is infected is matters).

    2. Holding your breath makes you breathe more deeply when you stop, so that probably negates any benefit. I’ve tried to hold my breath around post smoke, cigarette smoke, and bus exhaust and I doubt it really helps.

  5. What about air circulation on the buses? I was walking by a bus the other day, and it looked like none of the windows were open. This is wrong, in my opinion. Lots of the windows should be open. Yes, it will be cold. Live with it (or you may die from the disease).

    1. I’ve taken the bus several times. I wear an n95 mask , in order to protect myself as much as others. I bring my own Clorox wipes that I use to disinfect my seat and wipe the handrails before I touch them. Finally, I push open the windows around me If they are closed. I’ve been half tempted to bring Lysol with me to spray the inside of the bus!

    2. Metro’s aircon can filter all the way down to virus-sized particles so as long as the air handler is running, which is it most of the time, you’re still at lower risk than hanging out in a grocery store or at a restaurant.


      (That said, I do agree with you that the windows should be open—and the aircon running—as much as possible, but wearing a mask when out in public, regardless of mode of transportation, is the important part.)

      1. Interesting, I didn’t realize the filters were that effective. That is like those used on airplanes, which make a huge difference. Thanks for that, it makes me less worried about seeing a bus with the windows up.

    3. This is a tricky point.

      The best situation is to have clean filtered air blowing on you from above in laminar flow. That’s how cleanroom and fume hoods (flowing upward) are designed. That way you have a clean bubble of air around you, and any droplets you make fall down to the floor and away from other people breathing.

      Turbulent flow from open windows both stirs up droplets (bad) and disperses them (good). Having the windows open is thus better than standing in an unventilated box, but is worse than being in a box with a gentle flow of airconditioned air blowing down.

      1. Good point. I think that would especially important if some people didn’t wear masks (as the heavy particles would fall to the floor, and could be stirred up from strong winds). So maybe not all the windows — maybe just one or two.

  6. I saw that an ST Express route 560 had as one of their exterior alternating messages, besides 560, and something else I forget, was Wear a Mask.” I think I like that message better than Metro’s “Essential Trips Only.”

    1. that route is operated by Pierce Transit, hence the different messages. As soon as pierce co moved to phase 2, they switched the signs to that.

  7. Usually shop at QFC because I can walk – had a reason to go to the local Safeway last weekend for an item QFC doesn’t carry and wow…

    QFC: ~95% mask wearing by customers, ~60% adherence to one-way aisles

    Safeway: ~40% mask wearing by customers, no attention to one-way aisles. Saw an entire family of 4 with no masks just walking around the store talking loudly.

    1. I wonder if Kroger is enforcing is actively enforcing the mask rule? I did also make brief visit at the Safeway on 140th in Bellevue and the level of mask wearing was high enough that I don’t recall being near anyone without a mask. But I didn’t think to scan everyone I could see. One Kroger policy that’s strange is all the QFC stores have one way isles (as do all Safeways). Neither the FM at Overlake or Totem Lk have one way isles. Not that I’ve seen one way isles do any good.

      1. I’ve been avoiding my nearest Fred Meyer (chaotic in normal times) and have found that Kroger seems to have evened out much of the price variation between QFC and Fred Meyer. Not sure if that is Fred Meyer’s prices going up or QFC’s going down but regardless that removes my incentive to visit Fred Meyer

        Total Wine incidentally has been a good experience: greeter checking for masks, well-staffed to keep lines minimal, and those stores are quite large for the customer traffic so you don’t feel crowded.

      2. Total Wine Bellevue had a greeter at the entrance handing out masks to those who didn’t have one.

        Masks should be handed out at every transit center, P&R, Link station, and major downtown bus stop.

      3. I shop at the U Village QFC and it has been more then 95% of the customers wearing masks and at the same time most people are following the one way aisles. They were doing the social distancing when waiting in both the self check and regular checkout lines.

        On the other hand I had to go Walmart in Lynnwood and there it was the opposite where maybe 20% had masks and people were going everywhere and not doing the social distancing.

      4. The Safeway next to U Village is, oh well, 90% or so masked. Last time I went I only saw one guy without.

        There are probably 1/5th as many people in that store as in the QFC 100 yards away.

    2. In my neck of the woods in West Seattle, I noticed similar trends up until Inslee put down the edict for mandatory face mask wearing in public places – I chalk it up to Safeway attracting a poorer, less educated clientele, which may be due to lower prices. The more expensive stores like QFC attract a better educated, higher earning clientele, which may account for higher face mask compliance.

  8. The word on the street is Metro is working to fix a glare/reflection problem with their bus driver shields. I also hear some ST drivers, even though it’s now pay as you enter, don’t feel safe with this arrangement until the shields are installed, and will still board people through the back door, and discourage fare payment, to maximize distancing between them and riders. ST drivers are being given KN95 masks, but Metro drivers aren’t, because they aren’t collecting fares yet.

  9. Hear, hear. Mad and motivated about this.

    Some of us in this community have family we have to think about here. It’s one thing if we get this virus and hopefully in service to a cause greater than self; another if they do and die alone – I say again, alone – under plastic with a tube in them for something they didn’t up for. That’s a hell even parents who drove their autistic kid to the hell of compound PTSD of public schools don’t deserve.

    To paraphrase a great Republican President… Every American in every state now has a decision to make: Either you are with us or you are with Covid19. What happened to that?

    Moving on, time to start a new virus. We’ll call it AnTibodyU1576. Apparently if the comments at https://www.facebook.com/ATU1576/posts/4684270074932052 are to be believed, “social distancing is not even close to happening in the back of the bus. One of the reasons I picked a Swift run M-F is because the boarding policy is relatively unchanged. The masks offer little to no reasonable reassurance that we will be safe. During my refresher training it was brought up that the money from the fare box was around 22 million a year. Apparently that is worth a driver’s health or life.” Another operator said, “Best passenger on Friday. She informed me that she was riding at her own risk and she was exempt from wearing a mask. I as a driver am not allowed to do anything except push the non payment button on my orca.”

    Where is the transit police in Snohomish County and with respect other counties? What are we going to do to go get our transit operators’ backs? They’re calling from their coach and your phone is ringing… pick it up.

  10. I feel so much safer–and presume drivers do too– occupying the ADA section now that it is no longer used by individuals having long loud one-way conversations with the driver.
    (Although it still happens that those who are so inclined will do so from farther back in the bus, spreadin’ them airborne droplets.)

  11. “Masks should be handed out at every transit center, P&R, Link station, and major downtown bus stop.”

    The problem is, how to implement that without letting one person take the whole box, just to be a jerk. Paying people to stand around all day and hand out masks is expensive.

    Perhaps a reasonable compromise is to have the security guards at Link stations hand out masks, since they’re getting paid to be there anyway.

    1. This would make the most sense because they would be the ones to remind people to wear a mask in the first place.

      Makes it a lot easier if they can just act like the person forgot their mask and hand them one. As opposed to accusing them of not wearing one on purpose.

  12. My experience the past month on Link and the 7, 10, 11, 41, 49, 131, 132, 522, and First Hill Streetcar is this:

    – Most routes had at least 80% mask use. Some had only one or two people at a time without masks.
    – The worst was the 132. On one trip none of the eight people around me had masks. On another maybe half had masks.
    – The second worst was the 7. On two northbound trips (one from Columbia City, the other from Cloverdale Street), mask-wearing was around 50-60%. It was worst in the high-volume area between Mt Baker and Intl Dist, and on the second trip, north of Columbia City.

    I’ve also been on the 50, 73, and 124, but I was the only passenger on the bus so I can’t say what other riders are doing.

    From this limited experience there seems to be a corrollation between working-class areas and non-mask-wearing. Some of the non-mask-wearers look like they may be Republican, others look like they maybe can’t afford masks, others may find them hard to get (if they live in a retail desert and don’t have good home and a credit card), and others may not value masks for other reasons. Less than 5% of the riders appear homeless so that’s not an issue.

    I don’t know whether this pattern applies to other routes like the E, 36, 40, or 550.

    Asdf2 said he’s been shocked at low mask wearing on Link. My experience has been the opposite. I took Link southbound Saturday afternoon. Six people were in my half-car from Westlake. All wore masks except one who kept it down most of the time, and another I couldn’t tell whether she did because I could only see the back of her head. During the trip to Rainier Beach another dozen people got on and most of them had masks. One couple had one person masked and the other not.

    1. Thank you very much for the very informative (and factual) comment.

      I would like to push back (gently) against the one part that I think is not factual, simply because I think assumptions are unwarranted and generally in poor taste during today’s political discourse.

      “Some of the non-mask-wearers look like they may be Republican” – I think it is really hard to tell one’s political inclinations based simply on ‘looks’, and very dangerous to assume that it is possible. Of course, wearing political attire is a different story, in which case, I think it would be worth mentioning that explicitly. If it is just inadvertent stereotyping, I think it is worth trying to catch that and root it out from each of us, so I mean it only as a request for further consideration, no ulterior criticism.

      Thank you again.

    2. That’s why I said “may” rather than “is”. Specifically, they were white with a redneck style. No lettering to show any definitive inclination. But that is the demographic with an above-average inclination to not wear a mask to show that they’re not Democrats or socialists and don’t take orders from the liberal elite. Whether these individuals were trying to show that, I don’t know.

      1. Thank you very much for the clarification, and I expected nothing different, to be honest. :)

        I just wanted the clarification to be written out because I think we all benefit from it, overall. And stereotyping based on looks is something I try to help society do less of when I can, since I belong to some communities which have, in the past, been stereotyped based on (changeable) looks, mannerism, and clothing, too. So I feel like it is only fair that I hold all of us (including myself) to the standard I would like others to apply to me, too.

    3. Perhaps you’re right, the redneck styles are so widely used that they’re nor a reliable indication, even when combined with not wearing a mask. I started thinking of another situation that I thought was the opposite but I guess it’s the same.

      Namely, I was a skinhead, and we’re sensitive to being called racists because in over half the cases it’s absolutely false. Skinheads started in 1960s as a working-class movement and different ones have every political view under the sun. In the 1980s white power groups hijacked the look as a recruitment tool and scare tactic, but only some skinheads agreed with them and joined them. Some became activists against them, but most just kept going as before. The most ironic thing is when somebody comes up to you and start telling you what your laces mean, rather than asking you what your laces mean. (As if they always meant the same thing everywhere at every time. Maybe you just like the color.) So I wouldn’t want to unjustly accuse somebody of a belief they don’t have.

      1. Thank you for sharing this. And yes, I think this is exactly the sort of assumption I hope all of us will learn to make less and less over time.

      2. We humans have a deep, instinctive, tribal urge to know who’s on our “team” and who isn’t, even at times when it logically doesn’t seem to make any sense. And, in this day and age, “tribe” often means political party.

        It’s gotten to the point where, when I watch YouTube videos having nothing to do with politics, it is impossible to resist the temptation to try to guess whether the person on camera is a Democrat or Republican, using whatever clues and stereotypes I have (e.g. age, gender, race, whether they seem to believe in science or religion, and, of course, if it’s on camera, where they live and what kind of car they drive).

        Yes, I know it rationally makes no sense, but the human tribal urge runs deep.

      3. @asdf2, completely agree with the existence of that tribal behavior. But IMHO the only way forward is to stomp it out from within ourselves whenever we can, and doing so publicly so others will follow. I am as guilty of that as anyone else. One random (but related to transit) was an elderly lady who was riding the 271 sometimes when I was, too, and she would spend most of the time verbalizing Bible passages from whatever chapter and verse she was reading at the time. It would be easy to make any number of assumptions about her, and I made them, and I faulted myself for it at the time. I continue to do so now.

      4. The point in this context is not who somebody votes for but whether they’re not wearing a mask to make a political statement. That affects what techniques might be successful to get them to wear a mask. If somebody can’t afford a mask or has difficulty getting one, then hand them out on buses and make them more available in local stores, especially reusable ones which don’t have to be replaced every day. If they’re not wearing a mask for other reasons, then a light or heavy nudge might incentivize them, depending on how strongly they need to be convinced. Maybe they usually wear a mask but it just broke or they forgot it.

        But if they’re not wearing a mask for political reasons, they’re not likely to respond to handing out masks, encouragement, stern rebukes, fines, etc. And these views tend to be strongly held, so not likely to change in a couple months. So there’s a practical reason for figuring out what percent of riders aren’t wearing a mask for political reasons, first to figure out how big the problem is, and then to figure out what to do about it.

  13. About a month ago, I rode the 26, 44, and Link to/from an appointment downtown from Wallingford. At that point, I think there was about 2/3 compliance, with the remainder either having no mask or wearing it improperly.

    I rode the E on Friday to/from another appointment in north Greenwood – mask wearing + physical distancing was close to 100% on the northbound leg, but much less on the southbound leg about an hour later. While it was still about 75%, there was the boisterous crowd that was typical on the E in the back that were much less compliant, plus the bus was *far* over the 18 passenger limit. Fortunately I only had to ride for less than 15 minutes but a lot of people were standing in the aisles, with total occupancy of at least 30. I think part of the problem was that the E makes almost every stop on Aurora, so even if the bus had its “bus full” signage going, people waiting would be able to get on.

    I don’t know what the solution is for either problem, short of having fare or law enforcement involved, which obviously has its own problems, particular for under-represented populations.

  14. “I don’t wear a mask for the same reason I don’t wear underwear. Things gotta breathe.” Florida resident to Palm Beach County Commissioners.

    1. Gross, Sam, but what a masterpiece. My campaign’s off for Palm Beach County Commission. But have to give her credit. Just by being like she is, I think that for miles around her actual location, Social Distance from really takes care of itself.

      But….uh oh, considering the source….No WAY you’re gonna tell us Fare Inspectors should be handing out anything in addition to masks!


  15. I strongly agree! People wearing masks around their chin or neck are exponentially more irritating to me than those without. I’m a Metro operator who’s been frustrated not only with riders’ laissez-faire attitude toward this deadly virus while in my workplace, but also with Metro, which has failed to provide better education and resources to riders (like available masks), which would better protect workers and riders. Metro has also failed to provide us operators with basic scientific guidelines around airflow on board. I have had to piece together how best to use the windows and the air/climate control, but there has not been any widely posted information on best practices for this, which is probably why riders have different experiences on different buses.

    BTW, Metro has also told us not to enforce the mask policy, which I understand to some extent regarding conflict deescalation, but we are not allowed to pass up maskless riders, as you suggest. We are not allowed to ask people to put their chin mask over their nose and mouth, even disabled riders that we come into close contact with.

    1. So a restaurant owner or barber shop gets shut down if they don’t comply with the law but Metro can just ignore it? Sounds like lawsuit time if any driver contracts the virus. But they shouldn’t have to wait to be harmed. Washington State law prohibits employers from forcing employees to work in unsafe conditions.

      1. Also, Washington businesses are now required to turn away customers if they aren’t wearing a mask, but public transit will not turn away customers if they aren’t wearing a mask.

  16. When was the last time this country’s whole population ever had to face anything like the COVID pandemic? 1918, wasn’t it? While it seems a lot longer, like forever, present conditions have really only been around what, four months?

    Everybody with a vested interest in attracting attention really truly got their chance, didn’t they? Which in a State capital like Olympian is really our town’s major industry. Our whole State pays us to host, and contain, things and behavior nobody deserves to have to put up with back home.

    However, his last week or so, a new participant has entered the discussion. The virus itself. “Didn’t believe we were for real? Well, they say that Nature Bats, Last, and, man, We’re Nature Personified!”

    But behind it all, isn’t this really how Natural Selection works? Individually and as a species, what happens to us is more or less out own undefeatably FREE CHOICE. So as the side that bellows the loudest about the FREEDOM increasingly reaps the rewards of it…..

    The rest of us have got to wash our Union battleflags clean (not burn them, like the Flag Code says) and go combative to force our Government, and our every employer, to deliver us our God-Given Freedom to have the wherewithal we need to live and work protected. When we take Slavery Called Penal Servitude out of the Thirteenth Amendment, we can replace it with the right to PPE.

    It isn’t God who’s insisting the US Federal Government has no place in public health. Whoever IS saying that….well, being Americans, we’re in a good position to tell him our Laws can do just fine without his ORDERS.

    Mark Dublin

  17. I just started taking metro again over the past month. The first couple of times everybody was masked up, which let me to believe that transit riders were rightfully following public health guidelines. Yesterday, I took a couple buses to Greenlake and was startled to see only about 60-70% compliance. And most of the offenders were sporting the chin-cover look. It was disheartening and I’m a little surprised that I was surprised. Humanity is flawed at best.

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