In full agreement with Bush and Cheney

The NY Times had a hilarious article on how politicians use hand sanitizers, especially Purell, during a campaign where pressing the flesh is the order of the day.

I am a HUGE fan of Purell and carry a little bottle around with me in every handbag/backpack/travel bag. I am convinced that my use of the product has protected me from various infections over the years. So, for the second time, I am in full agreement with our President (the first was the nuclear deal with India – even though he can’t pronounce nuclear!)

“Good stuff, keeps you from getting colds,” Mr. Bush raved about hand sanitizer to Senator Barack Obama, Democrat of Illinois, at a White House encounter early last year.

There are lots of Dems who are also Purell users – Bill Clinton, Obama, Gore etc. But the one Dem I completely disagree with is Bill Richardson.

“It’s condescending to the voters,” said Gov. Bill Richardson of New Mexico, a Democrat.

Come on! No way is it condescending — it is not personal. It is that once you shake hands with a thousand, a hundred, even ten people, there are chances that your hands are all germy. You are doing your constituents a huge favor if you stay healthy through the campaign.

Purell did not play such a big part of my life in California. I drove to work in my own car and did not have to deal with public transportation ever. But once I started commuting to NY regularly, I started using it while I traveled. Planes can be hugely unhygienic. I won’t go into the gory details, but those tiny toilets are the main problem (if this is the situation when on the ground, the air has to much, much worse!). And despite using a paper towel to open the door handle (yes, you read right!), I always felt safer after Purelling! Especially if I had to eat or use my computer.

Okay, okay, I am not a freak. I am a slight germophobe, but with damned good reason.

Once I moved to NYC, Purell has become my constant companion. I love using the subway and use it to get around town all the time. However, I hate touching the subway bars — I mean can you blame me? At the very least over a thousand people have touched the same bar just that day. Of that thousand, I bet you that a good chunk of them are sick and a whole bunch of them haven’t washed their hands in a while! So, on occasion, if I can, I hook my arm around the bar instead so only my clothes are touching the bar. But in rush hour sometimes you absolutely have to hang onto a top bar. In those situations, Purell to the rescue. G, a friend from California who visited, is just as careful and we had hilarious subway episodes, clinging onto the bars with the crooks of our arms!

I even have Purell at home. There are times that I need to put on my shoes and leave quickly, with no time to run back to wash my hands. So, I’ve placed a Purell dispenser near the exit for easy use.

An invention that has changed the world – at least my world and that of Bill Clinton, George Bush, Dick Cheney, John McCain, Al Gore…