I’m fortunate to have two hands, and for a long time I’ve had a simple, straightforward Policy for them: World hand, my hand.
My right hand (I’m right-handed) interacts with the world. Doorknobs. Train handrails. Fist bumping with you. Faucets.
My Left hand is for me. Picking up sandwiches. Flicking a piece of lint from my eye. Rubbing my chin sagely. Eating Sno-Caps.
I’m not a germophobe, but at one point I took a look at the world around me, and it made easy sense that it was full of microscopic landmines. I realized it didn’t take a lot to avoid the majority of them.
This slipped out at work, if “slipping out” means that I told everyone about it. They all made fun of me.
With all of the CoVID-19 madness happening, I don’t feel triumphantly vindicated–how could I possibly?–but I do feel that I have been living in accordance with a smart policy.
Epidemiologically, of course, it’s not idiot proof. My hands do interact, such as when I clasp them together and raise them over my head upon receiving a major award, or when I wring them together upon learning of some sad event. And then there’s my keyboard touch pad, a filthy sea awash with interacting germs from the left and right sides of my world.
And we all know that things like sandwiches can themselves contain dirty microbial secrets.
But I think this policy has helped me reduce my exposure to bugs and germs. Right now this commonsense reduction and outright avoidance is more important than ever, so I wanted to share my policy with you.
I have tried to teach my children this policy. It strikes me that it might be one of the most important things I give them. At one time, I might have said that a bit more tongue-in-cheek than now.