one of the things that struck me on my first trip to japan a decade ago was some people going out in public and on the train wearing medical masks.
"are they trying to avoid catching a cold?" i asked. "it doesn't seem like a mask would be very effective."
"no, they masks are for others' benefit." wife replied. "they're trying to avoid spreading their own cold."
@pho4cexa Well, I don't see it as a positive thing : they're forcing themselves to go out (to work, probably) when they have a cold. I'd rather they stay home to recover properly, it's best for everyone.
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