Thursday, June 24, 2010

PSA: Hand Sanitizer is Not SOAP!

I recently had an e-discussion with a co-blogger about her germaphobia, which lead to the conversation of hand sanitizers. Hand sanitizer was originally meant for hospitals and labs where ppl are exposed to germs and various forms of bacteria all the time or environments where running water wasn't convenient, and at some point it became a commercialized mainstream consumer product. But the way I've seen ppl use it, you'd swear sanitizer was the new lotion or soap. I had a friend who would literally whip out the tiny bottle, splash a little dab in his palms and bathe in it every 20 minutes with a look of satisfaction as if he saved the earth, pleased his woman or thwarted terrorism. You can even get them in multiple colors to match the rest of your stuff. It grew steadily for years but after the world went ape-shit over swine flu......sorry H1N1 (wouldn't want to upset the pig and or pork enthusiasts), you cant walk 10 feet on a campus or office building without seeing one of these dispensers.

I'm a conspiracy theorists. Not in the sense that I believe the government is out to get me, aliens are amongst us and 9/11 was an inside job or the H1N1 was concocted to boost sales and stock of sanitizer, but by my pal Dre's (personal friend, not the rapper) definition: "I don't listen to or do something just because someone says so. If something doesn't make sense to me, I will and do question it."

That being said, I don't get it. Maybe I'm slow or behind the curve here, but am I supposed to sanitize the dirt that's on my hand, wet it, spread it around....and just carry on with sanitized dirt on my hand all day long? Whatever did we do before sanitizer came around? Here's a few things to consider the next time you reach for that bottle:

WASH YOUR HANDS!!! Hey! That's an alien concept! Nothing beats germs like good ol' fashioned soap! Forget about the 1% of germs it doesn't kill, WHAT ABOUT DIRT!? HUH? You can never wash your hands enough or too many times. If you use someone else' computer, wash your hands (you don't know what kinda nut-juices they have all over their stuff) or work in any community environment, you'd better wash so much you lose count. Personally, anytime I walk into a different dwelling, AND ALWAYS BEFORE ANY MEALS, I wash my hands to shed whatever doornob, wall, pole, person or railing crud I picked up along the way. Not to mention whichever, whenever times I scratched myself, sneezed, coughed or played with my hair.

PEE PEE!! Here's a scary insight [takes off his "NO SNITCHING" t-shirt] I would dare say most men (my trips to the ladies room are few and far in between, but that's another conversation) do not wash their hands when they use the bathroom! READ THAT AGAIN. This is probably why I wash my hands so much. That includes the workplace, restaurants, movies, bars, clubs, games and basically everywhere else where there is a public bathroom. One can argue that touching ones own tool is more sanitary than touching everything else in the bathroom, but your tool still should not be shared with the world. Only to select willing participants. I once heard a news report that revealed a high urine content at several bar's so I'd say away from those bar nuts if I were you................pun not intended...but gladly welcomed!
Sidenote: I hope I'm not the only one who uses his foot for everything in the bathroom stall. I'd sooner eat off the bathroom floor before I touched the flush or seat in a public bathroom. There are "no-handed" techniques that require no touching at all,but I'm not sure if that's common knowledge.....perks of being a man.
NUT JUICE!!* (*Credit to LTG for blessing me with that term) I'm positive that I'm not the only person who has to "correct" themselves from time to time (the male member can be very unpredictable and tend to act up in the least opportune situations so sometime we need to re-align him for discretion sake) or who's hand makes a periodic pit stop in the crotchzone, HOWEVER, I am always mindful of which hand I use for that, use my other hand for everything else and I wash my hands constantly. I'm sure you've seen some woman at some point in time mediate a conflict btwn her bra and the sweater puppies, or dig into the cavities down below and rescue a wedgie'd undergarment in distress.
Sidenote: Sometimes, we men try to be discrete about it and try to pull off the "hand in the pocket jimmy tuck around," basically try to reach him from the cloak of your pockets and put him back in place, but that sometimes takes way longer and can draw more attention to yourself. Just go for it, get it over with as quick as possible before you get a ticket for public indecency bc you look like you're pleasing yourself.
SWEAT!! Some people have armpits for hands and sweat profusely. Theses ppl also put their hands on everything....but its ok bc they have a coating of a sweat and sanitizer cocktail. I once heard a commercial say that up to 70% of airborne dirt is human skin. GROSS! Plus, I dont want my hand to be a collection of everyone's lotions.

CLEAN YOUR STUFF [PAUSE]!!! Get your mind out of the gutter, I mean your possessions at work home and school. Ask yourself this, when was the last time you cleaned your phone, keyboard, mouse, cellphone, desk, remote control, doorknobs, faucet, videogame controllers or anything else that sits in your hand for a long period of time.
Sidenote: Other ppl's homes should also be on the list of places you need to wash your hands. You could walk around with a black light, but lets just save everyone the embarrassment and play it safe. They may not share your sanitary values.
HANDSHAKES!!! This unfortunately tips the scale and levels the playing field. Despite all the precautionary measures you may take on your own part, western civilization is that of a touching nature, so we have to make contact with at least a dozen hands btwn leaving and returning home. For some ppl, hundreds depending on the profession or social setting (doubled if you live in the hood - ppl just want to slap five and give you a pound all day long). Many of these people are guilty of any one of these offenses (if not all) at least once in the day and in many arena's its is a blatant sign of disrespect to turn down a handshake. That's why I'm more of a "pound" man or as some ignoramii have dubbed it, "the close handed high five" or the "terrorist fist bump."

Believe it or not, our bodies need to be exposed to most of the natural airborne everyday germs and bacteria bc if we incubate ourselves, we don't develop and grow our immune system. But, in the time that it took for me to type this, I probably touched my locks a few dozen times and scratched my scalp 2 or 3 times, not cus its dirty (washed yesterday), but bc its relaxing and comforting. But if sanitizer gives you a a little peace of mind in a germ infested world, then who am I to salt the earth so that nothing may grow? You might want to consider wet wipes. Not only do they disinfect, they wipe away dirt as well.... and the nutjuice.

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