Strange to relate, despite the fact that a high proportion if the population are wearing face masks in public a lot of the time, bathing in sanitizing gel every 17 1/2 minutes, or cowering indoors under the bed with the curtains closed, having not ventured outside for months, nor experienced any interaction
with another human being*, the incidence if the common cold in the working population does not seem to have diminished significantly; indeed using a "bit of a sniffle" as an excuse for throwing a sickie seems to have actually increased.
Hmm. Could it be that all these "protective" measures aren't actually achieving anything useful ...?
Perhaps so - but no matter, for we spy a Market Opportunity.
For those stricken with rhinitis, whatever the cause - be it allergic or viral - having a runny nose presents a problem when wearing a mask, particularly the disposable surgical type. In almost no time at all, a clearly visible and rather repellent damp bloom of moisture develops in the approximate centre of the mask, announcing to observers that the wearer is suffering from some dire affliction, and making them wonder if said mask should not be supplemented by the harsh clanging of a handbell and repetitive cry of Udclead** ! Udclead !
Of course, the more savvy mask-wearer chooses not the pathetic and useless non-face-sealing cloth strip mask, but one made from a conformal polymer, equipped with a vision panel, an activated-carbon filter and proper non-return valves; except that the now-unconstrained nasal exudations are then trapped inside the structure and progressively accumulate, eventually reaching the point where the wearer is in imminent jeopardy of choking on their own mucus. Of the two situations, its clear that being a social pariah is marginally preferable to self-induced drowning
Not to mention the disagreeable consequences of sneezing.
Out of entirely unselfish humanitarian motives***, BorgCo have therefore developed a mask which has the simplicity of the cheap, disposable surgical product without the attendant hazards of Death By Bubbling. Under the strip of cheap, ineffectual tissue paper, a nasal cannula is concealed, with a pair of thin tubes passing up and over the tops of the ears via a small, relatively quiet**** battery-powered suction pump and a washable plastic bag reservoir concealed under clothing.
Depending on the size of the reservoir bag, and the virulence of the infection, the system can offer protection from embarrassment from anything between a few hours and a whole week both night and day.
BorgCo are emphatically not responsible for any problems of any nature caused by incorrect insertion of the batteries, causing the pump to run in reverse. No, were not going to include a diode in the power circuit, as it would add a whole USD 3.24¢ per unit which we consider would unduly impact our profit margins.
*We characterise this group as The Lucky Ones.
**It would be Unclean !, if the crier had normal nasal function. (Sp./Pr. modified courtesy of [pertinax]).
*** The selfishness of motives can go up as well as down.
**** Compared to, for example, a typical commercial air compressor.