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Monday, March 3, 2008


Anyone who has watched television for even a day would be convinced that we are a nation of germophobes.

It seems that every other commercial reminds us of all the germs and viruses that are just waiting to attack us. I'm not advocating that we live in filth, but we've gone too far. It's not necessary to disinfect every surface of your home unless you have no immune system.

My mother used the same wooden cutting board for years and she never bleached it, or disinfected it and we were a very healthy family. We never worried about the germs on doorknobs or subway straps and poles.

In their attempt to "warn" us about the dangers in everyday life, some companies have gone overboard. There is one commercial (I don't remember the name of the product) that shows a mother, in front of her children, opening a door with her foot because she's afraid of the germs on the handle and with no regard for the person who next touches this door.

It's my opinion that we need a certain amount of exposure to germs and virus in order to build immunity. I can't help wondering if the emergence of "superbugs" is the result of all the anti-bacterial soaps and sprays that are on the market. This may be just a coincidence, but I've found that the people who are most careful about touching surfaces in public are the ones with the most colds. What next, do we have to start wearing surgical masks in public?

Or maybe I'm just cranky because I had to miss a party today because I have a cold and didn't want to expose my friends to my coughing and sneezing.

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