Monday, January 26, 2009

Back to Life

Were you getting bored reading about my illness? Because I was getting bored of writing about it. And living it.

Fortunately, I'm back to my regular life, and with it, much more interesting blog fodder.

For example, there is a public washroom in my workplace which we share with our visitors. It's not horribly disgusting, but it is a public washroom. It can safely be assumed that no surface in there is truly clean. People fill urine sample bottles in there and then leave them standing on the counter by the sinks while they wash their hands, for example. Therefore, I always assume there are trace amounts of urine on those counters.

I touch everything in there through a layer of paper towel.

Today I went in and a woman had her stuff spread out everywhere. She had a very fuzzy, cozy blanket that I guess she wears like a cloak over her parka. It was drapped over the counter into the basin of a sink. A lovely, furry blanket, soaking up all the germy water from the sink basin. Yuck.

She had also left an open can of pop sitting out on the counter between the sinks, where anyone could drip water or soap into it.

Meanwhile, she was in one of the stalls, carrying on a LOUD conversation on her cell phone.

When she emerged, she started chatting with me. And I have to say, she had a very likeable personality. Friendly as can be, big smile, obviously not an anxious type. She was complaining in a good-natured way about how difficult it is to find a subway token in a handful of change. She then proceeded to pull all the contents of her pockets out and spread them across the counter.

Is it crazy that this type of behaviour gives me the heebie jeebies? I don't consider myself to be excessively germ-phobic. But it's a public bathroom, for crying out loud!


Warped Mind of Ron said...

I'm not very phobic like that. I always assume that I've consumed much worse things that I don't know about so why panic about the few things I do know about. May not make sense but it works for me.

Kate said...

I'm not too germy phobic. I wouldn't want to spread all my wares out on the counter tops in a public bathroom, but I sure don't worry about it very much.

Anonymous said...

Bathroom germs aren't as nasty as you'd think. What do you think has less harmful germs and bacteria: the washroom at work's toilet seat or anything under the banner of the TTC?

LL Cool Joe said...

Yeah totally bored. Joking!!!

I can't say I'm that jumpy about germs either. But then my younger daughter had threadworm, so maybe I should be!

Glad you are feeling better. :)

Sabrae Carter said...

LOL! I'm a nurse like you know and I don't touch ANYTHING or put anything down in public restrooms!

NicoleB said...

I'm not phobic, but there ARE certain things even I don't do.
While I might put my handbag on top of the sink, I wouldn't put my jacket or scarf there.
I always hobble around with them tucked between my legs ;)
I wouldn't make phone calls while in a stall either.....

Anyhow, glad you feel better :)!

Sparkling Red said...

Ron: I'm like that when it comes to restaurants. I've eaten in restaurants that were later closed down due to rat or roach infestations, but that never bothered me. I didn't get sick, so how bad could it have been?

Kate: That's good. Worry is probably worse for your health than germs. ;-)

WIGSF: I'd say they're about equal. I consider the entire TTC to be as dirty as a public bathroom, as I have seen it used for that purpose many a time.

LL Cool Joe: With kids it seems pointless to get overly concerned with germs. They're going to catch everything going and then give it to you anyway. At least, so I hear from the moms I work with.

Sabrae: Finally - someone agrees with me! I think it's because I work in a medical environment that I'm so germ-conscious. Staff wearing latex gloves, and bio-hazard bins are a constant reminder to think about contamination.

Nicole: That's a sound policy. I keep track of which bags or packages I've put down on a restroom floor, and I will NEVER allow them to be placed on a kitchen counter or suchlike once I get home. I do find the knees to be a useful clamp for anything I want to keep clean. The penguin walk works quite well between sink and hand-towels.

San said...

I guess I'm kind of in the middle of the germ phobia statistical spread, but when I was anemic a few years ago, the behaviors you've described here would have really made me gag.

Aurora said...

I find myself getting more germphobic. I think it started when I was sick and asked a doctor how to avoid this whole 3-colds-per-winter deal. he was like, how often do you wash your hands? (da-dum!)
So now I'm germphobic to the point where I now feel mildly weird eating in public places. But this winter I haven't been sick.