Most people who know me know that I am a germaphobe. It’s a serious problem, especially when living in a bacteria infested, overcrowded city like NY. I ride the subway, hold the pole, and have to forget that about a million other hands grabbed that very same spot. I usually hold on with my fingertips as if I were sipping and nibbling on tea and crumpets with Queen Elizabeth. Or I just stand strong, feet steady, rocking with the train and hoping the conductor takes it easy when pressing the breaks.
Unfortunately, I don’t have as much germ control at my day job. About two dozen teens come to the space on a daily basis. They pick their noses, scratch their asses, don’t wash their hands, and then try to hold MY HAND! I pull my hand away but it doesn’t matter. They use the same computers I do. Their boogery, oily, dirty kid hands are everywhere! Now, I’m at the movies with three teens from my program and my skin is crawling. The teen sitting at my left has her hands deep inside the beverage holders. She is digging her nails inside the grime! And now….oh no!!! She just took her hands out of the beverage holders and rubbed her face.
Please don’t put your fingers in your mouth. Please don’t put your fingers in your mouth. And she just did.
Problem is I can’t tell her how disgusting this is without insulting her upbringing. Like most of the teens from the program she comes from a dysfunctional home and hasn’t been taught how to pick up her pants so her ass crack doesn’t show or that she shouldn’t put her bare feet on the back of the seat at the movie theater. Or that she shouldn’t take both armchairs! It’s not a responsibility that I want to take on.
So, as much as my job’s flexibility allows me time to write and create, I know I must move on. My skin just can’t take it. My hands do not want to be touched by dozens of kids. My elbow needs an armchair to rest on! Today I begin that journey. Once the movie is over, I will drop off these teens, head home, and begin a new job search where kids are no where in the description.
But not before I wash my hands.