Friday, May 16, 2008

Germy, the 8th Dwarf

It seems that the fad with blog writers on the interweb is to run around screaming their heads off and ranting emotionally about the AWARENESS and EDUCATION of some concern of the writers’ that everybody else is already pretty damn aware of.

Blogger: I want to raise awareness of AIDS!
Blog Reader: Why? Has it recently learned out to use a gun? Is it running for office? What new developments have occurred with AIDS that I couldn’t possibly already know?

What a fabulous bandwagon to jump on! I want in on this action!
To this end, I feel that it is my duty as a blogger with delusions of grandeur and a megalomania complex to bring AWARENESS to a problem that we all face. Sure it’s a problem that has been plaguing (literally!) humans for about as long as Joan Rivers has been alive (estimated lifespan: 2,500 years and still going strong. Keep it up Joan!) But that doesn’t mean I can’t talk at length about it to make myself feel like I’m EDUCATING and making a difference in the world! (My motto is: If I’m not making a difference in the world, then I’ll just sit here about pout!).
Germs. They suck. Bigtime. I hate ‘em. But, much like women, you just can’t get away from them; they seem to be everywhere and love to stick to you and take over your life until you’re nothing but a pathetic, blubbering heap, afraid to get out of bed.
People love to pay germs lip-service, (which would totally be a great name for an escort company. Lip Service: We’re famous for our tongue lashings!) without really doing anything about it. A person will make sure to wash his/her hands before meals, but doesn’t think about washing his/her hands after touching things other people have touched, (like keyboards and t.v. remotes). Or, people make sure to cover their mouths when they cough or sneeze, but use their hands for this purpose and then go on to touch doorknobs and video game controllers, (here’s a hint for everybody, cough or sneeze into the crook of your elbow, that way you’re not spreading germs around like Johnny Bacteriaseed. Dig?)
Germs have been with us forever, they’re not going away. They cause things like flu and diseases, and they’re pretty good at their job. In fact, germs recently must have been hanging out with Roger Clemmens, ‘cause they have bulked up and stepped their game up to ridiculous new levels. Ever heard of MRSA? I hope so, because approximately 19,000 people died of that in America last year. Compare that to the approximately 12,000 people who died from AIDS. Pretty crazy eh?* And yet, not that many people are familiar with this “Superbug.” And it’s just the tip of the germ iceberg, (man, that would be one gross iceberg!)
MRSA, or Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus is a bug that can be picked up almost anywhere, the gym, school, the playground, the opium den, gentlemen’s club, but most commonly at hospitals.
Yes, that’s right. Hospitals are extremely dangerous places to go and should be avoided unless you’re dating a really hot nurse (or doctor, aim high!). You can go in for a small gash on your leg and end up dying two months later because the doctors were sloppy and spread MRSA to you from sheer absent-mindedness. How stupid would you feel if you ended up dying from something you got at the hospital from the very doctors you trusted to save your life!? The answer is: not really, because you’d be dead and beyond the ability to feel much of anything. My advice, in that case, is to become a ghost and haunt the shit out of St. Elsewhere son!
The sad thing is that doctors know better about infection control and contamination, but either don’t have the time, are forgetful or just plain apathetic to do much about it. Don’t believe me? Go visit the waiting room at your friendly neighborhood hospital or free clinic and just watch the doctor go from patient to patient, touching them, poking them, prodding them, sticking fingers into various orifices all while wearing the same pair of gloves, or even worse, no gloves at all. Any nurse who reads Eighty-Four Glyde can attest to this, I’m sure.
Fighting germs is easy and simple to do, (without going overboard like Monk) and can be accomplished without donating any money or time and without me having to host some kind of whack-ass and completely pointless Myspace auction. The most important thing is to wash your hands. Not so much that they’re red and the top two layers of skin are gone, just at certain times: before eating, after working with raw foods, after touching communal objects of “iffy” nature (like porno mags at the sperm bank) and when you’re Pontius Pilot and you don’t want to be blamed for Jesus’ death.
An important thing though, and not often addressed, is that you should wash your hands with just plain soap and water. Antibacterial soap is a no-no because germs just laugh at that shit. Some germs die when you use antibacterial soap, but the rest just get stronger and stronger. Also, if your hands are visibly dirty, (like you just changed the oil in your “green” car with a red ribbon bumper sticker or something on it) then just using antibacterial gel won’t cut it. You’ve got to wash all visible dirt off first, then go with the gel as a dessert, for extra cleanliness.
Man, I sound like a overbearing, know-it-all jerk, don’t I? Sorry, that’s just the price you pay for RASING AWARENESS! and EDUCATING! people. Comes with the territory.
So, in conclusion, next time you feel like jumping on the latest fad disease to eradicate with words and slogans, consider looking into the avoidable things that kill us that aren’t as sexy or a la mode, but which are easier to combat and require less money and time. Most of us work somewhere; why not buy some hand sanitizer and put it around the office? How about some flyers in bathrooms with some facts and figures, encouraging people to do the thing they’ve been taught to do since they were kids? (i.e. wash hands) Why not do something instead of writing about something? It’s pretty damn easy. (Yes, I know I’m writing about something, but this isn’t about me. I’m secure in my OCD tendencies and an ex taught me the value of hand washing. This is about you: John or Jane Nastycuticles).
And now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go sneeze on somebody’s door knob.

*No, I’m not going to cite my sources. Cite deez nutz! I used the internet to look that shit up and you can too. It’s really not that hard.

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