Thursday, January 5, 2012

Community Condiments

Have you ever thought about those condiments sitting on each table in a restaurant? How many people have touched them? How many of those people have filthy, germy hands as they pick those containers up? How often are those containers cleaned, if at all? And I'm not talking about a "wipe down" once in awhile, but really CLEANED?!

The hubby and I had a late breakfast at The French Laundry in Fenton a few days ago on our way to see the art museum in Flint. It's a very popular place and we had a half hour wait to get a table. Lots and lots of people kept coming in to eat, and the line was getting longer and longer, as we all kept crowding around trying to find some space to wait for our turn at a table.

When we were finally seated at a tiny table in a corner behind the doors into the larger dining area, another couple was seated in the opposite corner behind the doors just after we were.

When their food came (HEY! We got seated FIRST! Still waiting for our food...), the young man took the salt grinder and put the end where the salt comes out of directly into the palm of his hand while he grinded the top with his other hand. It was flat against his hand so now whoever uses it afterwards is going to get their salt coming out against the germs his palm left behind. He did it this way so he could take the salt out of his palm & sprinkle it exactly how he wanted it all over the food. I get why he did it, but I didn't like that canister being flush against his palm where other customers expect uncontaminated salt to come out from.

When my stuffed french toast came, along with a bottle of pure maple syrup, completely sticky with trails of syrup left by other diners, I tried to eat the french toast with the sweetened cream cheese and strawberries alone. It was too dry, not nearly as good as the stuffed pancakes I can get at my niece and nephew-in-law's restaurant (for 1/2 the price too!). I agonized over touching that syrup bottle for a few moments, then I picked up two napkins. One napkin held the bottle while the other napkin twisted off the screw cap. Ta Da - no germs! :-)

Well, at least I hope there were no germs! How do I know some moron didn't use his finger to swipe some dripping syrup off the rim of the bottle?!?! Ugh!

Speaking of which, I just remembered something I saw at a spice shop up north. My mother and I went to Pepper Mill Spice Co in Alden, Michigan a few years back. I watched in horror as a dumb woman kept opening the spices for sale and sticking her saliva-wettened fingers into them for a taste. There were signs everywhere telling customers NOT to open and taste the spices for sale. I went to find the manager to let her know what the idiot woman was doing. Several bottles known to now be contaminated were whisked off the shelf and thrown away. She should have made the idiot pay for them! Grrrrr

My mother also told me that she saw her sister-in-law lick all of her fingers after eating Red Lobster biscuits and then pick up the salt shaker to use. Mother now has a real germ phobia about salt and pepper shakers in restaurants.

I don't like touching anything that other diners touch in a restaurant. I don't like those condiment containers full of all kinds of germs and bacteria! Too many people have gross habits. Maybe the best thing is to have your own condiments handy to take to the restaurant with you.

Bon Appetit!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

We Love You, Dave, But.....

We used to own an art gallery in a strip mall in W. Bloomfield, Michigan a decade ago. It was near one of the best restaurants in the metro area, Eurasian Grill. The owner is a right jolly little fellow named Dave. GREAT guy, always friendly, talkative, treats you like you're his best customer and friend, even if he hasn't seen you in quite awhile, always ready with a joke and lots of laughter. His laugh - oh my gosh! It just cracks you up to hear his crazy, booming laugh! This is a happy place to go for an excellent, upscale meal.

So this is where we went to dine tonight. Dave was under the weather though and there was no laughing or visiting with us this evening. After he seated us he went back to the front of the restaurant and proceeded to cough, hack, snort, and make all kinds of the most disgusting sounds he possibly could make while us diners tried to swallow our food.

I was in high anxiety mode thinking of the germs he was coughing around! He just spat all of his coughs and snorts into the air, not even trying to shield them from the rest of us as he walked back and forth many times. I was glad he was not stopping to chat at our table, as he always had before!

I was and still am very nervous thinking about all of his sick germs in the air and on who knows what! We have a big New Years Eve party to go to in a couple days that I'm really looking forward to! Plus they're depending on me bringing the cocktail meatballs - a triple batch this time.

So, Dave, we love you, but seriously, you should stay home when you're that sick! The restaurant is not going to go under if you're not there every single minute to keep an eye on everything. STAY HOME WHEN YOU'RE SICK! None of the rest of us needs to catch what you've got!

As soon as I got home I took a Zinc and a Vitamin C. Please don't let me get sick, please don't let me get sick, please don't let me get sick, please.... 

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Sniffles and Sneezes, 1955

My husband found this video. It's an "Oldie but a Goodie"! It should be required viewing for every person on the planet! At least several forced viewings for all!

How I wish germs showed up black so we could all see them before touching them! They'd be easier to clean away too. No excuse for missing vital sanitizing - there they are, completely visible!

Ah well, such are the things of dreams - for a germaphobe, anyway!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Lunch With Girlfriend

I was out with a close friend for lunch this past Tuesday. She is possibly as big of a germaphobe as I am - remarkable, isn't it?! We went to my favorite niece and nephew-in-law's restaurant in Farmington Hills, The Maple House. It was the first time my friend was able to go there with me. She loved it! She plans to go back there with other friends and family now.

Anyway, everything was going fine, besides my fave niece NOT being there for my friend to meet! Her hubby and his mom were there and we enjoyed talking to them though. The food was fantastic as usual. No germs to report on as they are very careful there, just the way I like it! :-)

Then two young women were seated just behind the booth we were seated at. My friend was sitting directly behind one of the women, their heads a mere few inches from each other. The woman had curly hair she kept digging her fingers into, scratching at her scalp and then flinging her hair and whatever she had dislodged from it at my friend. I watched this go on for awhile. Then I said something - poor Adrianne! Not a happy camper after that!

After I used the bathroom, we walked next door to the drug store where my friend bought a couple items. She told me she could FEEL the woman behind her doing something, but didn't know what it was until I'd told her.

At the checkout, a very, very sick old woman came up behind us and proceeded to cough violently at the back of my friend. I quickly stepped to the side, away from the woman, but my friend had to stay put with the items she wanted to purchase. At least the old woman was very short and my friend is very tall, like me. So if a germ escaped from the woman coughing (after I moved away I only saw the old lady coughing into her sleeve, looking ever so miserable and practically on death's door. Poor thing!), it would have hit my friend's butt, so not too bad as far as germs being spread goes, I suppose.

Then when we were outside some great beast of a woman decided to step off the curb to the parking lot just a few inches from where my friend was talking to me before we said goodbye. She was so close I think she might have almost brushed against my friend.

Maybe I should go out with Adrianne a great deal more since she seems to attract the weirdos and germs to herself more than even I do! That way I can be free of them! Awwww, poor Adrianne, just kidding, my dear!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Sitting On Santa's Lap

We were at the Old Redford Theatre last night to see "It's A Wonderful Life." We got pictures taken with Santa Claus before we went to grab seats in the balcony.

I have the weirdest look on my face here! I usually don't look the greatest in photos, for some reason, anyway. But this expression is quite odd. Am I reacting to Santa's overly friendly, continual patting of my leg?   (Notice my hand on his, perhaps trying to make him STOP?!)

Or am I about to burst into tears thinking of all the germs that must be on his lap from countless other butts that have been parked on it? When's the last time his costume has been washed anyway?!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Mail Germs

Geez, I haven't written anything in over a week now! Guess I just haven't felt like it. I was going to write about something my girlfriend told me when we were out for dinner the other evening, but I haven't gotten around to it yet. If I don't do it soon, I'll forget everything I wanted to say, as my short-term memory is quite lousy now.

Anyway, I just got off my exercise bike and need to get upstairs to take a shower, but figured I'd write this other thing down since it just happened a little while ago. I thought it might amuse all of you. How many of you are there anyway??? Oh, I wish there were millions more just like you! And then perhaps I could become rich, rich, RICH off of this little writing habit of mine! haha

So my friend from New York sent me a message on Facebook a little while ago. She said she wrote me a five page snail mail in addition to another letter she wrote earlier in the week while she's away visiting family now.  She'll be mailing the letter tomorrow.

She then said: "Flu is going through here...all of us has had one symptom or another."

I then wrote: "Egads! Am I gonna pick up your flu germs by handling the paper you wrote on?!?!?!"

She replied: "I could have sent you a pair of rubber gloves but I have already sealed the envelope! LOL Worst case you could stick the letter in the freezer a couple of days!!"

I know I've heard somewhere...on the news, it was....sometime ago, that germs can live on paper for awhile. I can't remember for how long they live on paper though! I refuse to touch mail now when it first gets delivered. Who knows if the mail lady is sick? Who knows if her hands are clean? They probably aren't, as a matter of fact! She's riding around in her truck all day without use of a sink, touching everyone's mail box with countless germs on those things, let alone all the envelopes she handles and whatnot!

The hubby puts my mail on my couch, that hated piece of leather furniture from crappy Art Van Furniture, when he comes home and I do not touch the mail until I'm about to wash my hands anyway. Or I'll often wait until bedtime and take it upstairs to read in my bathroom. That way I've got more leisure time to read it and then it's so handy to be right there, ready to wash my hands after finishing bathroom business!

Okay, I see those raised eyebrows from you all. Yes, I admit I'm a freaky weirdo. There it is! I just cannot help it!

Does anyone know just how long germs live on paper???

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Onions to Ward Off Sickness

Yesterday I was shopping at Kroger for some groceries. At the checkout I noticed the cashier was sick. I thought about changing lanes, but the other lines were longer and I would be next in line in the sicky's lane. It was still tempting to change lanes though to a longer but safer line!

When the cashier glanced at me I asked her if she had caught a cold, but she muttered she just had a headache. She was very grumpy with the customer in front of me, a rather difficult, outspoken older lady who complained and griped about everything the cashier was doing.

I really think the cashier was sick though with her watery eyes, red nose, and phlegmy cough. It made me nervous to think of her touching my groceries that I would then have to touch when I got home. Especially since I saw her coughing into her hand as she was ringing up the other customer's items.

The old lady in front of me then agreed that she thought the cashier was sick. She then proceeded to say the cashier probably called in sick, but was told she would be fired if she didn't come to work. I replied the cashier probably had to come in because she needs the money to pay her bills like all working people.

Another cashier came to help bag the old lady's groceries. The two cashiers were speaking quietly together, looking at us, as the old lady and I were talking. The old lady was telling me she hasn't been sick in the past four years since she has taken to placing onions in every room in her house. She swore it worked for absorbing sick germs and that I should try it. I was polite and thanked her for the advice, telling her  I get sick very easily and stay quite sick for a minimum of two weeks, usually now three weeks.

Well, I hate onions, as many of you know. I would never be able to stand having onions all over the house. Ewww, YUCK! Only one time did I buy an onion, to please my sister-in-law when my brother's family was coming over for dinner back when I was newly married. After that one time I vowed to never allow an onion into my home again! Nasty, smelly, foul tasting things!

But I was curious about the old lady's claims of an onion being able to keep one from getting ill. So I looked it up on the computer when I got home, after putting the groceries away. I found that it is not true on the snopes website. This article on the myth of onions keeping everyone healthy was quite interesting to read though. Here it is if you're interested:

Oh, and as far as the sick cashier touching my groceries - it never happened. I actually had planned on asking her to use the sanitizing gel by her register before she rang me up, but she left before I could speak to her. The other cashier that came to help bag the old lady's stuff was the one who rang me up. I felt much better for it!

I bet the cashier went home right after all of this, feeling completely miserable. Besides being sick, she had two women discussing her in front of everyone! Sorry, Kroger cashier!! Hope you feel better soon!