Larry Banman – Don’t lick your fingers when counting money
September 17, 2009
Depending upon whom you talk to or which media propaganda machine (outlet) you choose to listen to, we may be close to a swine flu epidemic or perhaps this is simply another typical early fall cycle of colds/sinus infections/strep throat/flu
I always preferred the term “Kremlin Krud” to pandemic, but I don’t want to get hung up on splitting grammatical hairs.
I find it somewhat fascinating to watch the different reactions people have to being ill or to the threat of being ill. A certain percentage of people assume evasion tactics like limiting their exposure to any person they perceive to be sick, wearing masks or obsessively washing their hands. Some people adopt a “what-will-be-will-be” attitude and assume that exposure will help build immunity. In theological terms, I find that similar to the difference between free-choice people and those who embrace predestination, but I digress.
My wife and I represent what I believe to be the two main camps when it comes to illness. She faithfully obtains a flu shot, has impeccable hygiene habits, gets plenty of rest, has healthy eating habits and lives right. On the other hand, I got a flu shot once, my sleep patterns are erratic at best and I eat anything that isn’t nailed down.
And, every year, she gets hammered by a bug or two while I skirt by with perhaps a sniffle. To be fair, as a public school employee, her exposure level is off the charts. I will be the first to admit that somebody (me) is not getting what they deserve and somebody else (she) is getting what they don’t deserve.
I wish I could say that I have found the secret to maintaining good health, but my advice is probably not to be heeded. I have been called doctor, but that is more of an honorary designation and doesn’t indicate any formal training in the field of medicine. I do have a vitamin regimen that I embrace but, other than that, there are only two tips that I believe have made a difference in my health.
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Whenever I open a door, I automatically straighten and stiffen my lower back. The twisting motion of a too-heavy door no longer pulls my back out of whack (I apologize for the technical terminology).
In addition, for a variety of reasons, I find myself counting a lot of money (mostly small, unmarked bills). When you count a stack of bills, the moisture in your fingers is whisked away and you tend to lose traction with your fingers. My instinctive reaction was always to replace that moisture by licking my fingers. That practice stopped immediately when I was informed about what actually lives on the surface of a well-traveled dollar bill. I immediately developed a phobia about licking my fingers. Now, the closest I come is if I spit on my fingers from a distance not less than three inches.
Once ill, there is another dramatic difference between my wife and I. She continues to soldier on, resolutely moving one foot in front of the other. I, on the other hand, treat any illness as if the world is about to end. In addition, I may be able to regularly avoid the discomfort of a cold but I trend toward the higher drama ailments of kidney stones, pneumonia and faux heart attacks. I think I have a secret predilection to sympathy.
I don’t discount anybody’s efforts to maintain good health. Mostly, I think we all try to avoid the discomfort of the cold and the irritation of a head cold. As you face the battle of the germs that seems to coincide with the shortening of daylight hours, I have only word of advice – spit, don’t lick, when counting money.
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