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Tom Hanks Pleas for People to Wear Masks in the COVID-19 Era


Tom Hanks recounted his COVID-19 odyssey and shared a common-sense plea for wearing a mask during an interview with Stephen Colbert on The Late Show Tuesday.

Hanks and his wife Rita Wilson were famously the first two high-profile American celebrities to contract the virus, testing positive back in March while in Australia, where Hanks was working on a movie. Hanks told Colbert he still has no idea where he might’ve caught the virus and noted his symptoms were significantly different from Wilson’s. Wilson, for instance, lost her sense of taste and smell before that was known to be a common symptom; Hanks remembered with a laugh: “We were eating takeout food that I thought was delicious — it was savory goodness, it had butter sauces, it had come from a highly recommended joint and she was saying, ‘This tastes like oatmeal to me.’ I thought she was insane!”

As for his own symptoms, Hanks said his bones felt like they “were made out of soda crackers” and an area that felt particularly sore all the time was his butt. He compared the sensation to getting beat up by an older sibling, joking “It felt like your older brother had held you down and just kept fisting you in the buttocks until you said something like, ‘I love Flipper!’”

Elsewhere, Hanks spoke about how even back in March, Australia was prepared to do contact tracing and care for people who weren’t famous celebrities who’d contracted COVID-19. Since recovering, he said he’d been donating his plasma, which can help others fight the disease, and he also issued an impassioned call for people to wear masks to stop the spread of the disease.

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“Honestly, if you drive a car, do you think it’s your Constitutional right not to use your turn signals?” Hanks quipped. “You should use your turn signals. ‘Cause otherwise you might run into somebody and somebody might run into you, right? You want to obey some aspect of the speed limit, right? You don’t want to go 120 miles per hour in a school zone — you slow down. You try not to hit buildings and pedestrians. You give that a shot, don’t you? Isn’t that the least you can do when you’re driving a car? I think the least you can do in the United States of America and around the world is wear a mask and wash your hands and keep your distance, holy smokes.”





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