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Thread: Germaphobes

  1. #1
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Germaphobes

    I'm not a germaphobe but I married into a germaphobe family. Fear of germs, of course, falls along a spectrum. This range runs the gamut from the very natural respect Disease commands (after all, it makes war and famine look like amateurs in the human death toll department) and reasonable precautions one should take so as to avoid contact with the Bubonic plague, to the type of fear that might best be considered a phobia or in the extremes even a form of mental illness. In between, we find folks that drink beers from the same bottle with sick friends (hey, alcohol kills all dem germs), people who go through a quart of hand sanitizer a week, people who wash their hands 16 times a day (maybe the job demands it...maybe not). The only constant feature that most share is the fact that each individual feels they take just the right amount of precaution and everyone else either too much or too little.

    What measures, if any, do you take to protect yourself during cold and flu season? Are surgical gloves and masks part of your wardrobe? Are you one to go through a bottle of hand sanitizer weekly? or are you the kind of soul who can munch on a snack in the bathroom with a clear conscience? Has anyone found that the addition of children in their life altered their views towards disease prevention/sanitation? Do you have separate sleeping areas when your wife/hubby/SO is sick? Do angels fear to tread where fools rush in, or does that which does not kill only make you stronger?

    Last edited by Maister; 02 Oct 2009 at 10:42 AM.
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

  2. #2
    Cyburbian Duke Of Dystopia's avatar
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    I think you are shorting some of the four horsemen. It is often war that acts as the prop man for famine and disease. Without war, distribution systems would be better funded with ample food to prevent famine. With happy healthy people, disease is out of a job!

    Scientists tell us (if they can actually be believed) that simple hand washing with soap and water is the healthiest. That our kids could actually use a little more exposure to a little more dirt in order to stimulate the bodies defenses.

    Don't kiss girls with MONO!
    I can't deliver UTOPIA, but I can create a HELL for you to LIVE in :)DoD:(

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    Cyburbian Mud Princess's avatar
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    Geez, Maister, where did you get that lovely picture on the left? Zombies-R-Us?

    I remember my grandmother being quite the germaphobe; the woman was constantly spraying Lysol around her apartment! Of course, she grew up during an era when many ailments were not easily treatable.

    I am definitely an advocate of simple hand-washing with soap, and have tried for years to get my husband to wash his hands more frequently... without success. He is much more likely to catch a cold or the flu than I am. I keep a small bottle of hand sanitizer in my purse, for when I'm away from home (e.g., at a public restroom that's out of soap); otherwise, I think washing with soap is just as effective.

    I have to admit, though, I am somewhat paranoid around small children. They are a lot less careful about washing their hands and tend to transmit colds and other ailments quite easily. In fact, the people that I know who have children tend to be sick more often.

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    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Mud Princess View post
    I have to admit, though, I am somewhat paranoid around small children. They are a lot less careful about washing their hands and tend to transmit colds and other ailments quite easily. In fact, the people that I know who have children tend to be sick more often.
    In the pre-child era I might have gotten maybe a cold once a year; since Junior started pre-school, I'm probably getting sick three times as often.

    Folks who have it the toughest, though, are the ones who have compromised immune systems or take steroids or other immunosuppressants AND have children.

    Quote Originally posted by Duke Of Dystopia
    I think you are shorting some of the four horsemen. It is often war that acts as the prop man for famine and disease. Without war, distribution systems would be better funded with ample food to prevent famine. With happy healthy people, disease is out of a job!
    I don't know about out of a job, maybe just nervously scanning the employment ads for other prospects.

    Quote Originally posted by Duke Of Dystopia
    Scientists tell us (if they can actually be believed) that simple hand washing with soap and water is the healthiest. That our kids could actually use a little more exposure to a little more dirt in order to stimulate the bodies defenses.
    Oh, and according to these same scientists it should NOT be anti-bacterial soap. Studies show it is no more effective at sanitizing one's hands than regular soap and may provide some bacteria enough non-lethal exposure that they'll mutate and acquire more tolerance to anti-biotics.
    Last edited by Maister; 02 Oct 2009 at 11:20 AM.
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

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    Cyburbian Veloise's avatar
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    Urban Utilities class, 1976. We went on a field trip to a sewage treatment plant.

    Fascinating stuff. Tomato plants growing in a drained lagoon, straight out of Jack & The Beanstalk. And the inevitable "what's it like to work here?" question of the help.

    "Your first three weeks, you get sick, and stay sick. Then you recover, and you never catch another cold or flu."

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    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Birthday cake has got to be another thing that strikes fear into the hearts of germaphobes. Nothing like a toddler hosing down everyone else's cake with a bacterium rich stream of spittle while trying to blow out candles.

    Toilet flush handles and bathroom door handles/doorknobs are other scary things.
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

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    Cyburbian Veloise's avatar
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    Shaking hands.

    With men.

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    Cyburbian Mud Princess's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Maister View post
    Birthday cake has got to be another thing that strikes fear into the hearts of germaphobes. Nothing like a toddler hosing down everyone else's cake with a bacterium rich stream of spittle while trying to blow out candles.
    That's it. I'm never eating birthday cake at a kid's party ever again.

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    Cyburbian ofos's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Veloise View post
    Shaking hands.

    With men.
    Shouldn't this be in the bad user interface thread?
    “Death comes when memories of the past exceed the vision for the future.”

  10. #10
    Cyburbian The One's avatar
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    Ahhh.....

    Quote Originally posted by Maister View post
    Birthday cake has got to be another thing that strikes fear into the hearts of germaphobes. Nothing like a toddler hosing down everyone else's cake with a bacterium rich stream of spittle while trying to blow out candles.

    Toilet flush handles and bathroom door handles/doorknobs are other scary things.
    I gotta admit....reading these comments made me throw up a bit in my mouth......................now pass me a large piece of that birthday cake!
    Skilled Adoxographer

  11. #11
    Unfrozen Caveman Planner mendelman's avatar
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    I'm no slob, but am quite far from what would be considered a germaphobe.
    I'm sorry. Is my bias showing?

    Let's not be didactic in this profession, because that is a path to disillusion and irrelevancy.

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    Super Moderator kjel's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Maister View post
    Birthday cake has got to be another thing that strikes fear into the hearts of germaphobes. Nothing like a toddler hosing down everyone else's cake with a bacterium rich stream of spittle while trying to blow out candles.

    Toilet flush handles and bathroom door handles/doorknobs are other scary things.
    I don't eat food that little kids have touched, breathed on, or otherwise had anything to do with.

    Quote Originally posted by Veloise View post
    Shaking hands.

    With men.
    Generally unless I know their habits. I generally don't like shaking hands unless I know you.

    I am not a germophobe, but I am slightly immuno-compromised so I try to minimize up close and personal contact, wash my hands religiously, and keep the house appropriately cleaned. I am a little weird about my kitchen and fridge but that's because I worked in food service a long time and have a thorough understanding of how good food can be unsafe very quickly. I think little kids need to get dirty, it helps their immune systems become robust. I dislike all the sanitizer and antibacterial stuff because it contributes to bacteria/viruses evolving to not respond to treatment so easily.
    "He defended the cause of the poor and needy, and so all went well. Is that not what it means to know me?" Jeremiah 22:16

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    Research

    Hi everyone!

    I'm a college student, and am working on designing a retail store for one of my classes. It's called SANItopia, and it's a store created specifically for people with germaphobia, or those who just like to keep things clean, such as myself. I was working on coming up with ideas and I thought, why not ask the people who we're making this store for what they'd like to see in it?

    We have no budget limit for this project, so anything goes. If you, as a germaphobe or someone with germaphobic tendencies, could have store made for you, what would you want to see in it?

  14. #14
    Cyburbian The One's avatar
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    Well.....

    I'm licking my fingers at this very moment!!
    Skilled Adoxographer

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    Cyburbian imaplanner's avatar
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    I carry a 6 foot long wooden stick. If you get within 6 feet of me I beat you with the stick
    Children in the back seat can cause accidents - and vice versa.

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    Super Moderator kjel's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by imaplanner View post
    I carry a 6 foot long wooden stick. If you get within 6 feet of me I beat you with the stick
    Good answer!
    "He defended the cause of the poor and needy, and so all went well. Is that not what it means to know me?" Jeremiah 22:16

  17. #17
    Cyburbian Emeritus Bear Up North's avatar
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    My distribution center makes tons of money during these times. Some of the products that we wholesale include latex gloves and dust masks. Just so you know my bias, prior-to discussion.

    Discussion:

    This Bear is certainly not a germaphobe. And I should be, because of the altered ability of my body to fight infection. Oh well.

    Back to comedy:

    Always liked (and adhered-to) the infamous "10-second rule". If you know the rule, you probably follow it also.

    Now about that cake......yum!



    Bear
    Occupy Cyburbia!

  18. #18
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by lienna28 View post
    We have no budget limit for this project, so anything goes. If you, as a germaphobe or someone with germaphobic tendencies, could have store made for you, what would you want to see in it?
    Foot or elbow operated door openers, auto flush/auto sink/auto towel dispensers, sales staff should all be wearing masks and gloves, tear-away handle covers for shopping carts.

  19. #19
    Cyburbian Planit's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Mud Princess View post
    That's it. I'm never eating birthday cake at a kid's party ever again.
    Thats why you do cupcakes at kiddie parties...


    Mrs. P uses the hand sanitizer stuff with Wee P at public restaurants and similar type places. I tend to wash hands occassionally and try to be considerate aorund others.
    "Whatever beer I'm drinking, is better than the one I'm not." DMLW
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  20. #20
    Cyburbian ofos's avatar
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    Upon a speedy return from the bar restroom, a friend of mine was asked "Did you wash your hands?" His classic response "Of course. You don't think I'd touch myself with dirty hands, do you?"
    “Death comes when memories of the past exceed the vision for the future.”

  21. #21
    Cyburbian
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    Quote Originally posted by Maister View post
    What measures, if any, do you take to protect yourself during cold and flu season? Are surgical gloves and masks part of your wardrobe? Are you one to go through a bottle of hand sanitizer weekly? or are you the kind of soul who can munch on a snack in the bathroom with a clear conscience? Has anyone found that the addition of children in their life altered their views towards disease prevention/sanitation? Do you have separate sleeping areas when your wife/hubby/SO is sick? Do angels fear to tread where fools rush in, or does that which does not kill only make you stronger?
    I try to eat healthy and stay active so I have good resistance. Other than that, not much. I wash my hands regularly. I never use hand sanitizer. My grandfather was a bacteriologist/virologist and let me know what approaches are worthwhile.

    I don't like being around kids when they're sick, and even when they aren't I find myself washing my hands frequently. Those little hands cover a large area of surfaces...and body parts. Pinworms, anyone? I DID get my last stomach flu or food poisoning at a 2 year old's birthday party.

    People tell me when I have kids I'll sanitize the living crap out of them but I doubt it. Too much time and effort. All those sanitizers do is kill the least resistant germs and leave the most virulent ones behind. I sleep with my husband when he is sick, unless he's really noisy or moving around a lot. Then I'll sleep somewhere else.

    I think that covers it.

  22. #22
    Cyburbian Veloise's avatar
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    Exhibit hall: hand sanitizer!

    Unbelievable. Right on the tables next to the company schwag and the bowl of fun-size treats.

    This is at a trails conference where the snacks consisted of a huge bowl of potato chips, another pf pretzels, and a third of some really strange trail mix (healthy stuff commingled with neon mini M&Ms).

    Maybe they should be passing out little packs of mentholated Kleenex.

  23. #23
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    2012 update. My views on germs continue to evolve as I watch Junior grow. Make no mistake children are only slightly higher on the infectious disease chain than plague-infested rats, but the remarkable thing I have discovered is how much disease kids don't get. Case in point, about a week ago Junior dropped a celery stick in the kitchen sink (those in the know realize toilets are generally cleaner than kitchen sinks) picked it out and ate it before I could stop him. He never got so much as a tummy ache out of the deal
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

  24. #24
    Cyburbian btrage's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Maister View post
    2012 update. My views on germs continue to evolve as I watch Junior grow. Make no mistake children are only slightly higher on the infectious disease chain than plague-infested rats, but the remarkable thing I have discovered is how much disease kids don't get. Case in point, about a week ago Junior dropped a celery stick in the kitchen sink (those in the know realize toilets are generally cleaner than kitchen sinks) picked it out and ate it before I could stop him. He never got so much as a tummy ache out of the deal
    We are not germophobes in our household. We do take measures to reduce sickness during the winter months; encourage the girls to wash their hands frequently/keep their hands off their face, crack windows open whenever possible; dust/vacuum a little more often.

    We never get flu shots and we rarely get sick. My girls didn't miss a single day of school last year. Sure, we get head colds and the occasional stomach flu, but nothing too severe. I honestly think it's in our genes, but then my parents and my sister are always sick.

    As our girls have grown up, we are also very hesitant on over-medicating them with over-the-counter products. We just make sure they get plenty of sleep and reserve the medications for when the colds turn into coughs. I think this has helped because it has built up their immune system. Looking back, when I was younger, I remember refusing to take medicine my mom was trying to give me. Maybe that has led me to having less illness as I've got older.

    I laugh at the people who use the cloth protectors for their kids in the shopping carts.
    "I'm very important. I have many leather-bound books and my apartment smells of rich mahogany"

  25. #25
    Cyburbian ofos's avatar
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    I refuse to go to Germfask. Not sure what a fask is but if it starts with germ, it can't be good. I'll stick with Seney.
    “Death comes when memories of the past exceed the vision for the future.”

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