Sunday, April 24, 2011


By Wendy Joy

Washed my banana like I was washing my baby!
Clean As A Whistle!
I think I knew I had a problem last week when I was in the kitchen washing and drying the outside of a banana as if it were a new born baby.   It used to be enough to open it carefully and take great pains to make sure the outside peel did not touch the more.  Now the banana needed a full bath, a steam shower and body scrub!  Then a nice dry pat down with a paper towel.  Maybe not the first paper towel on the end of the roll, but the second one.  That one must be cleaner for not hanging out so recklessly on the end of the roll for the last hour and a half.  Then and only then was my banana ready for consumption....and then and only then did I realize that my germaphobic situation was in full throttle.  I was a germaphobe! 

Please don't sneeze in my drink!
It all started when I was out at a restaurant.  I noticed that when you spoke to a waiter or waitress while they were serving your food they spoke right above your tuna on rye and there was a 50 percent chance that their spit would end up on your plate as well.  I am a very sociable person but I had to hold back during serving time.  "No questions when you are being served" I tell my friends at the table...."why?" they would ask.  Look,  at this point there is no time for the question "why" and I get very serious about the possible spit in the plate situation....."the waiter could spit on your plate!!!!!"  I hold all questions until my plate is in front of me and then I move my wine glass to the other side as the waiter answers. 
There I am between a rock and a hard place!
The grocery store line is another problem.  It always seems that right before it is my turn the woman or man at the counter feels compelled to put their finger up by their nose.  By then it is too late to turn back.  I am locked into position between two people and I am at the point of no return.  That's o.k. When I go home I will wash the outside of the popcorn bag as well as every other item in my cart!  And yes this does get me to thinking about all of the things that I don't see!
I don't think it really started at the restaurant, I think it started when I got old enough and people started to say hello and goodbye by shaking hands.  At some point in time it started to freak me out that my newly washed hands were no longer newly washed and instead covered in whatever that person was just touching.  It's not that I need my hands to be freshly washed...I'm out there living life, getting dirty ( I think) and enjoying every second of it..but why all the needless handshaking and passing of the germs. 
 Not to mention passing of the perfume!  I think that as I write this story that would be my latest freak out.  I leave the house every day with a soft smelling vanilla scent.  By the time I come home from an event, dinner or party, I have collected nine hundred scents.  All strong at least when they are mixed together on my body.  I am very excited to get home and jump into the shower! 
Ever have someone come to your house and sit on your bed with their dirty jeans?  Yes, they just came from a long subway or taxi ride and park their jeans right on or near your pillow.  yes....I love that.  I've since learned to cover all beds with a coverlet or something like it, but when the coverlet is filled with a lot of dirty jean sitting action, how do you draw the line there? Do you just put it off to the side and try to forget about all the jean action it got when you put it back on your bed, or do you wash it everyday like everything else?  I was doing all of this way before bed bugs arrived in New York.  I had my bed bug protectors for the mattress and my coverlets for the top.  Where does the madness end?
I am so way passed the "don't put your hands on the doorknob when leaving the bathroom"  That is so yesterday!  I've been doing that for years.  Leaving the bathroom for me has been an ongoing circus act.  I have one foot up in the air to flush, if there is no hook, my bag is in my mouth while squatting and the sink work alone is magical while all done with the elbows....and of course the final paper towel exit combined with my round hook shot of the towel into the garbage before the door hits me in the back.  I should get a college athletic scholarship for this only negative being the bag in the mouth....major germs there.....but I have to choose floor or mouth. 
There are so many things I've learned to avoid like the squeezed lemon or lime in my diet coke.  The thought of the hand that could have been anywhere squeezing an open lemon into my drink and also did they cut the lemon with the same knife that they just cut that piece of raw meat with???....that's disgusting!  Watching the man take money from someone with gloves on and then ask me "what would you like?" with the same gloves on....."oh nothing yet, I'm just looking".
 I think I have this germ thing down to a science and believe me I am an equal opportunity germaphobe.  I wash my own hands the second I walk in the door and make sure they are clean before I touch someone else's food!  I also stay away from my nose when I am about to serve you a meal at my house!  See that, now you can come for dinner and not worry!!!

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