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Actress Joan Collins almost got kicked out of an Ikea store in the south of France over a face-mask dispute. The Dynasty star was wearing an easier-to-breathe clear plastic visor at the time.
The spry and still active 87-year-old celebrity whose energy level would put Sleepy Joe Biden to shame described what happened at the popular furniture- and home-accessories store in The Spectator:
“On a shopping trip to Ikea I wore a new plastic face visor, which I had seen being worn by London hairdressers. As it’s less stifling than a ‘muzzle’ mask, I could breathe more easily. However, an officious gendarme became deeply offended by it, and while I was mulling over the benefits of Ikea’s gravadlax vs its smoked salmon, he pounced. Gesticulating in Gallic fashion, he yelled at me to put on a proper mask, because visors aren’t legal.
“Chastised, I slunk away, muttering an Anglo-Saxon expletive under my breath, which, as he glared at me, I feared he might have understood. I then tried wearing a clear plastic facemask, of the sort which all the staff at the Byblos were wearing, but although it was easier to speak and to be understood, it forced my face into a hideous rictus.”
Face masks are mandatory in France. The French government has apparently ruled out plastic visors, however.
Collins recalled that she and her husband were stuck in their London apartment because of COVID-19 for three months before they managed to travel to St. Tropez with a daughter.
Although no one needs to hold a bake sale or set up a GoFundMe for Joan Collins after a long career in show businesses, she also noted that six acting jobs went by the boards because of pandemic-related cancellations.
In a separate essay, Collins decried U.K. authorities for engaging in one-size-fits-all age bias. At the same time, because of timidity over accusations of fat-shaming, the government has failed to warn its constituents about rampant obesity, which is a major risk factor for COVID fatalities.
“I’ve always thought western society was terribly ageist, and I don’t just mean ‘showbiz’ folk but across the board. Then our government insisted the ‘overseventies’ (horrible expression) were part of the ‘vulnerables’ (an even more horrible expression) and should remain in lockdown (the most horrible expression of all) until a vaccine is found. That was utter discrimination against the hardy individuals who have no health issues,” she wrote.
“I am in this ‘over-seventies’ group but, having never defined myself by age, I’m not about to start now. I married a man three decades younger, and at my last check-up my GP said I was ‘stunningly healthy’. I am lucky to possess enormous energy and enthusiasm for life…
“Sadly, ageism is the last tolerated prejudice. We are not allowed to refer to people as fat and yet it has now been proven that to be obese (almost one third of the UK population) is one of the major contributing factors in Covid deaths. However, if the government had dared to propose that they too should remain confined it would cause outrage.”
Joan Collins, who has 127 acting credits per IMDB, is perhaps best known on this side of the Atlantic for starring as her portrayal of Alexis Colby in the hit prime-time TV soap opera Dynasty as alluded to above, which generated massive ratings in the 1980s as well as becoming something of a cultural phenomenon.
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