I've also been told I have little tact, so if this offends you simply ride on.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Purell & the Gates of Hell

I stopped by my local Giant supermarket this morning to pick up some blueberries and a couple of asagio bagels.  While waiting at the U-Scan to check myself out, I notice one of the gentlemen ahead of me had covered the handle of his shopping car with Purell sanitary wipes.  The first thing which went through my mind was that maybe he suffers from some sort of immune deficiency.  But then I thought of an article I'd read in the Washington Post.  More and more people do seem to be developing a fear of germs.  Occasionally I have seen people using Purell wipes to clean off the handles of shopping carts and for the life of me I can't understand why.  It's not like you're going to catch Ebola, at least not yet, and not in this country.  So you might come down with a sniffle.  Sure, you may be a little uncomfortable for a couple of days, but it will pass.  What's really happening is that your immune system gets a little workout, a little P90X where it gets to jump around and make noises.  This is why you have an immune system.  Given the choice I'd rather mine was strong and studly rather then flabby and fat.  No one will come right out and say so, but I tend to believe that porky immune systems react slower.  It's important to mention that I rarely get sick.  For me, the worst symptom I get from a cold might be a runny nose for a couple of hours, and then it's gone.  I can't ever remember catching the flu.

Hell in a wipe

Now this might mean that I have a super-hero immune system.  I doubt it.  I just haven't bought into the continuous hype broadcast  in every audio / visual medium possible.  True, nobody wants to get sick, but it happens.  Deal with it.  I thought the bit of the article on asthma really interesting since so many people I know seem to have received that diagnosis from their family doctor.  And every one of them is on some form of medication.  Not that Purell Sanitizer is completely responsible.  Might it not be a wolf in sheep's clothing, however?  Leading you off the path?  Just think of the gentleman at Giant this morning.  Can you imagine what his medicine cabinet must look like?  Does his OTC drug expense need to be figured into his family's budget?  Do Purell sanitizing wipes disguise the gates of hell?  Or are the just the beginning of an even greater addiction?     


  1. When the anti-b craze really hit back around 97 ish, it went way overboard but it was quickly realized that you should only use sanitizers on your hands but no where else. You hands come in touch with stuff you'd rather not and usually spread by touching your face, eyes, nose mouth. If you use anti-b's on the rest of your body you're then killing good bacteria that is part of your immune system.

    Those shopping cart handles hold babies that dribble, leak snot, chew on and have diapers that don't always live up to their billing. (I'm okay with dogs as they are much cleaner then humans and their illnesses don't spread to humans.) In addition, all sorts of foods - meats especially - get placed in there and spoil. The carts are never cleaned unless you include being left out in the rain.

    I just try not to think about it otherwise I'd go crazy and I'd never leave the house.

  2. I'm all for cleanliness, but think that there is definitely becoming a culture of uber-sanitizing everything.

    I'm with you about just letting my immune system do what it was designed to do. As a teacher, I've pretty much been exposed to every bug around and I find that I don't get sick too often. But I do get a flu shot each year. :-)