Pug Boy

A young man is sitting on the station wearing a mask – a paper mask showing the face of a cheerful pug dog with its tongue hanging out. I’d already noticed him waiting through two trains and now he’s put on this mask. Definitely time to ask.
“Are you O.K.?”
He pulls up the mask.
“Yes I’m fine,” he replies cheerfully.
In the face of such cheeriness, I feel a need to explain my officious behavior.
“Sorry, it’s just that when you work at a station you need to look out for people’s um… mental health,”
“Sure. I don’t blame you for asking,” he replies, smiling and putting his mask back.
So that’s that. He seems sane enough.  But he’s wearing a pug mask. On an ordinary weekday.
The mystery is solved -sort of – when the next train came in and a young woman gets off and greets him.
She doesn’t acknowledge the mask, but she seems pleased to see him.

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