|I would rather catch the flu than touch this dollar bill. I don't think I can ever touch cash again.|
So when Rocco scores a goal his teammates need to give him an air five and when Isolde's team beats the pants off Fern's team, they will nod at each other and say "Good game" instead of shake hands. Yeah, that should totally stop the spread of flu! Great idea.
Right, because this will make a dent in the amount of new cases of influenza popping up in New York City. Don't get me wrong, kids are filthy little creatures full of germs and they love to spread them and I'm always looking for new ways to avoid touching them. (This is why I could never be a school teacher. I literally cringe when I see my son's teacher pet his sweaty mop of hair or hold his grimy hand. I always remind her that we don't pay her hazard pay and that I love that kid with my whole being, but I still won't let him touch me until he's had a shower.) However, I don't think stopping a handshake or a high five is going to do much when New York City is in the grips of a flu epidemic.
Not when the rest of the city is so disgusting.
Let's talk about the subway. A high five is banned, because that can transfer germs, but what about the subway? Even on a good day when there isn't a pandemic, the subway is a cesspool. How about disinfecting the subway? Do you know what lives on those poles that everyone holds on to? I've actually seen people lick the pole and wipe their snot on the pole and wipe God only knows what else on the pole. Do you know how close you ride to some infected asshole who was far too important to take the day off for a "touch of the flu"? Close enough that when the asshole sneezes, he sneezes in your mouth. Maybe everyone who rides the subway should be issued a mask and a pair of disposable gloves. Or a haz mat suit. If I still lived there, I would be commuting in a haz mat suit at this point. It's the only logical and sane choice. (Believe it or not, I'm not even a huge germaphobe, can you imagine how real germaphobes are handling this flu outbreak?)
What about taxi cabs? I didn't take taxis very often since the subway was so much cheaper, but when I did, I always tried not to touch anything. Even though every surface is plastic and it seems like the interior of the cab could just be hosed down every night, I got the impression that that rarely happens. I would perch on the edge of my seat and hold all of my belongings in my lap. I never wanted to rest my head against the seat, because I was afraid of getting lice. I'd seen enough episodes of "Taxi Cab Confessions" to freak out if there was a sticky spot on the seat. Plus, again there is a strong chance of catching a sneeze in the face, cab drivers love to work when they're sick. They can't make money if they're home in bed.
What about street vendors and bartenders? How many grubby hands touch people's food and drinks along with germy money and credit cards? Plus, this is another industry where people don't get paid sick leave, so you know they're dragging their feverish bodies into work and squeezing a lime in your drink or serving up your souvlaki with their bare hands.
And the sheer volume of contaminated door handles, elevator buttons, escalator handles, and stair rails in that city makes my skin crawl.
I think it was a good effort put forth by the soccer league, but until New York douses itself in Purell and Lysol and issues haz mat suits, a ban on high fives at soccer games isn't going to do squat.
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