• Steve G

A company is working on a hazmat suit for concert-goers

Let me start off by saying that it's not my intention to bash this company. Like everybody else, I'm more than ready to get back to the world of restaurants and bars and concerts, and I applaud any and all companies that are making the effort to help restore a degree of normalcy to the world.

The "Micrashell," designed by the creative studio Production Club, is described as a hazmat suit "offshoot" with built in N95 filtration masks and other sanitation features that allows users to socialize safely in crowded venues. The company has thought of it all: the suit boasts total smartphone app integration, its own personal bass that reverberates off the wearer's body, a chest camera and voice communication features that allow you to both block out undesirable contacts and alter the sound of your own voice. It also has a spot on the chest for attachable canisters that permit the user to drink and vape in a sanitary way, because vaping while wearing a suit to protect you from a respiratory illness makes total sense.

I mean this is some straight up dystopian shit. Like if you imagine an EDM concert in some futuristic society devastated by war, pollution and plague, this is what the concert-goers would be wearing. I suppose that the suit's design could fit somewhat into today's music festival scene--it even has customizable LED strips to indicate mood and "facilitate connection." But for some reason I doubt that the notoriously scantily-clad EDM enthusiasts are down with destroying their carefully cultivated carefree aesthetic by donning a suit that could've been designed by Tony Stark after he dropped a tab or two.

I went to a Zedd concert once and was deeply uncomfortable the entire time

I was hyped to see Kenny Chesney play at the end of August and have finally accepted that it's not going to happen. But let's say I get my hands on one of these suits along with the other 50,000 attendees. Would I go? Hell no. I mean one of the biggest reasons people see live music is because of that feeling of unity and togetherness that concerts provide. It's therapeutic. You let loose for a few hours and just sing your heart out. But I just can't see myself singing along to "No Shoes, No Shirt, No Problem" while dressed in a PPE suit designed to protect me from a virus that's taken hundreds of thousands of lives.

And how's this gonna work at bars? If this became a thing when I was in college it would be game over for me (not that there was much game to begin with). I can just see my fresh-faced 21-year-old self feeding a girl a line about how Drake's music was made for the club only to realize she blocked out my voice before I even started speaking. I can see a girl's helmet start flashing red the moment I begin to approach her on the dance floor. I mean how would I even know if a girl was worth pursuing if they're all dressed in the same suits? What other metrics would I even use? Their personalities? It's straight out of an episode of Black Mirror.

There is doubt within the scientific community that the suit is as functional and safe as its creators claim, and even more skepticism that such a suit would become widely adopted amongst the population. I'm just saying, if these suits do become a thing, you can catch me on a farm in a flyover state, reading books and reminiscing. I'm too weak to live in a dystopia.

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