Monday, September 3, 2018

Microstory 921: Hand Sanitizer

I discussed hand sanitizer in the Stepwisdom entry about Cleanliness in general; wherein I recount my first experience with the stuff as being God-adjacent. For someone like me, cleanliness is extremely important. I’m not a germaphobe, mind you. I get sick all the time, and it has been this way my whole life. I’m not afraid of being infected by something, and I’m about 83% that, if the zombie virus ever plagued this world, I would be immune to it. What I have a problem with is cross-contamination. My OCD is what gives me the need to control the nature of my environment, but it’s my autism that dictates what how that environment should ideally be. There’s this trope you can find on the web called Blessed With Suck. Basically, a character will be burdened with some supernatural ability that is mundane, pointless, or downright inconvenient. There are a lot of superpowers that I occasionally believe myself to possess, like being able to see the future, or sensing other people’s emotions. The one power that I actually do have, all the time, is the ability to feel the ick around me. If you were to clean a table thoroughly, I would be able to touch that table, and tell that it’s happened. No big deal, right? Anyone can intuit the cleanliness of an object. Now imagine you ran your palm along the tabletop. Your hand isn’t particularly dirty; you weren’t picking your nose, or chalking up to climb a mountain. It was just your hand. Well, I can tell that too. I won’t know exactly what happened, but I’ll be able to tell that something contaminated that surface, and it’ll bother me. I once worked with this girl in a room where all the tables were pushed together, and we sat around it. She would put her feet up on her section, and—I dunno, doodle “Mrs. Donald Trump” in a notebook, I guess. When it was lunch time, she would go grab her food, and place her fork on that table...right where her shoes were. Then she would use that fork to pick up food, and put it all in her mouth. She was putting dirt in her mouth, along with animal feces, and God knows what else she’d walked through. Because she was a crazy person. People think I’m weird for walking around with hand sanitizer, but it makes me feel safe, and it makes it a lot more difficult for me to put poop in my mouth. Can you honestly say the same?

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