You should wash your hands immediately after washing your hands
The sign in the restroom read, “Employees must wash hands.”
I waited 20 minutes, but no employee washed my hands.
When wild animals need to go, they just go. Civilized creatures, like nearly half the humans, need to find a bathroom. Some people carry their own toilet paper just in case they happen upon a restroom. That’s better than carrying a grudge. I’m thinking of carrying my own paper towels.
A woman walked up to my neighbor Crandall as he sat in a local cafe. She began to caress his beard.
“Do you work here?” she asked.
“No,” he replied. “Is there a problem?”
She nodded and ran her fingers through his hair before saying, “There aren’t any towels in the restroom.”
I had surgery that made it difficult to pass a restroom. Every journey began with a trip to the bathroom. This caused me to develop a great appreciation of public restrooms. One of the saddest signs was one reading, “Restroom closed for cleaning. Servicio cerrado por limpieza.”
Portable toilets are good in a pinch, but rest areas rock. Other than loved ones, friends and home, there is nothing I’ve been happier to see than a rest area. I sometimes write columns in rest areas. You suspected that. I read about vandals damaging a public restroom. We can’t have anything nice. Why would anybody do that? Everybody has to go. Were they trying to make America irate again?
After resting in a restroom, I washed my hands with soap. I did so for hygienic reasons and to decrease the spread of disease, but mostly because my mother told me to.
The U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention recommends washing hands vigorously with soap and water for 15 to 20 seconds, the time it takes to sing “Happy Birthday” twice. An American Society for Microbiology sponsored study found about a third of Americans skipped washing and nearly 70 percent didn’t use soap. Women were more likely than men to wash. In a telephone survey, 92 percent of Americans claimed they washed their hands after using public restrooms. Michigan State University research found that the average bathroom user was below average and washed hands for only 6 seconds and just 5 percent washed their hands for 15 seconds or longer. Half the men used soap and 15 percent didn’t wash their hands at all, compared with 78 percent of women using soap and 7 percent of women who didn’t wash their hands. Most people didn’t dry their hands adequately and damp hands transmit 1,000 times more bacteria than dry hands.
I prefer the quiet of a paper or cloth towel over the rumble and roar of a hand dryer. Clinical testing revealed that cloth roll towels are the most hygienic for hand washing. High-speed air dryers, while environmentally friendly, aren’t as hygienic as claimed.
A clean section of a reusable cloth roll towel is dispensed for each use. I worked at a gas station that had one of the dispensers. The problem was that a new roll was installed only during leap years.
My experience has found paper towels to be a leading cause of plugged toilets. Warm air dryers can put more bacteria on hands than were washed off. They recirculate the bacterial laden air in a restroom, contaminating hands, arms, faces and clothing in the process. Most people don’t use them long enough to properly dry hands. And it’s hard to blow a nose or mop a brow with a hand dryer. Trust me, I’ve tried.
Jet dryers dry the hands faster than warm air dryers do. A user places hands in a narrow slot of an air dryer that uses high-speed air jets for drying. This spreads bacteria blown off improperly washed hands and can contaminate hands touching the sides of the slot. A study published in the “Journal of Applied Microbiology” compared the dispersal of viruses when drying hands with paper towels, warm air dryers and jet dryers. Jet air dryers were the worst offenders.
I dried my hands by using a device labeled, “Using these energy-efficient hand dryers reduces paper towel consumption.” I dried my hands thoroughly before wiping them on my pants. I didn’t want to touch the germ-ridden door, so I opened it with my foot. I got my foot in the door and my body outside just in time to see my parked car get pooped on by a bird.
The bird didn’t need a towel. It had no hands and it used a bird waterer as a bidet.
© Al Batt 2018
I Told a “White Lie” to the Officer
Maury, Grandpa is going to make a confession to you as it is the only way to see the humor in what happened. The “players” in this incident were the Dubuque police department, a friend, George Moeller, owner of The Bierstube on Old Highway 20 and Grandpa.
A little background on what took place, Maury: (a) At that time I was on a first name basis with many of the local police officers, and (b) they (when not on duty) along with Grandpa were patrons of the Bierstube bar. This is what happened:
One early evening I was driving home after cocktail hour on West Locust when a squad car pulled out from behind Clarke College and the officer ordered me to pull over for speeding. The officer was very young and new to me. When he informed me that I was going ten miles over the speed limit I produced my driver’s license and replied: “I knew I was but I have to go to the bathroom right now and am trying to get home as quickly as possible!” He glanced at my license and said, “I’ll let you go but obey the speed limits.” I had lied to him and he believed me!
Immediately, Maury, I had mixed emotions – guilt plus euphoria! Now the scene changes to about a month later. That evening I was sitting at the Bierstube bar talking with a young detective (off duty) whom I knew. I can’t recall his last name but remember him as Terry. I told him about “putting one over” on the young officer! Later I recall his raising his voice (for a good reason which I didn’t realize at the time!) as he questioned me on the details, asking me what the officer looked like, was he polite, what age would I guess, etc.
Suddenly, he called to a young man seated down the bar and said, “Come here, John, I want to introduce you to a friend!” I think you guessed it, Maury. It was the young officer I had fooled! Needless to say I bought him a drink thanking my lucky stars I had said nothing derogatory about him!
Much love, Grandpa
1. Who was the first player to hit his 499th and 500th career home runs in the same game?
2. Name the player who led the American League in both doubles and triples in 1970. Hint: He played for the Minnesota Twins.
3. Who was the last running back before Matt Dayes in 2016 to rush for at least 1,000 yards in a season for North Carolina State?
4. Which was the last NBA team before Golden State in 2016 to have 47 assists in a game?
5. Who was the first American woman inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame?
6. Name the last woman before Evgenia Medvedeva in 2017 to win back-to-back world figure skating singles titles.
7. Entering 2018, when was the last U.S. Open playoffs for men’s golf?
1. Albert Pujols did it with the Angels in 2014.
2. Cesar Tovar had 36 doubles and 13 triples that season.
3. T.A. McLendon, in 2002.
4. The Phoenix Suns, in 1991.
5. Cammi Granato, who was captain of the U.S. women’s hockey team that won Olympic gold in 1998.
6. Michelle Kwan, in 2000-01.
7. It was 2008, when Tiger Woods beat Rocco Mediate.
© 2018 King Features Synd., Inc.
Iowa Head Baseball Coach
As he winds down his 5th year as head baseball coach at Iowa, Rick Heller may have worked his best magic act this spring. A 5th consecutive 30 win season after losing several key players off last years Big Ten championship team and here Heller’s Hawks are, on the verge of another NCAA regional appearance that would mark the third time in four years. Heller has these Hawkeyes treading a lot of new waters.
There is work to be done before post season though. Iowa will take its 33-18 mark to Omaha later this week as a 6th seed at the Big Ten tourney, facing 3rd seed Michigan, a team that brought a 20 game winning streak to Banks Field earlier in the year and lost 2 of 3 to the Hawks.
Heller has masterfully managed his pitching staff all year, led by ace Nick Allgeyer, #2 Cole McDonald, Brady Schanuel and freshman Jack Dreyer. With the help of Cascade native and assistant coach, Marty Southerland, Heller annually has had the Hawkeyes playing their best baseball in late May. Look for a ton of Iowa fans to pack TD Ameritrade Park with conference MVP candidate, Robert Neustrom leading the way. Outfielder Chris Whelan, last year’s tourney MVP, has been on fire of late.
After playing one of the toughest schedules on paper, the Hawks find themselves with a 64 RPI and many feel they need to improve on that number a lot this week to receive an at large bid. I wouldn’t bet against them.