Sunday, November 20, 2005

Young person's honesty

While driving along the highway yesterday, our youngest announced his need to use the washroom. His timing was impeccable: the exit to the rest stop was just coming up.

When he was done, he dutifully trooped over to the sink and I helped him stretch his little hands into the sink to wash his hands. It was tough for him, but he told me how much he likes washing his hands, and he always has to wash when he's done.

I thought he was ignoring the regular parade of men who were using the facilities, then nonchalantly walking out the door. As he proudly announced that his hands were all clean and rinsed, he turned to me and asked, loudly, how come that man wasn't washing his hands.
He: "Didn't he make a pee, too? He must have forgotten to wash his hands. Should I tell him?"
Me (quietly): "I'm sure he forgot...but we never forget, do we?"
He (still loudly): "We always wash our hands. Then we don't get sick."
Smart kid. It's amazing how so-called knowledgable adults could learn the basics from a five-year-old.

Your turn: How do you respond when you see someone not washing in a public washroom? Does it disgust you as much as it disgusts me?

11 comments:

Better Safe Than Sorry said...

i feel the same as you. you would think with all these viruses in general, people would wash their hands more. to not do it there, ewwwwwwwwwww.

Thumper said...

I honestly don't pay much attention to other people in public restrooms, unless they ask for help (and you'd be surprised how often that happens...like an old lady who thought she'd broken the self flushing toilet...) If they're not washing their hands, I'm not noticing. Too busy enamored with my image in the mirror, I suppose ;)

kenju said...

Yes, it disgusts me too, Carmi, but I don't usually say anything. I doubt it would do much good.

Good for you for teaching your boy to wash up after using the toilet; and hope he still does it later in life.

Heather said...

Well, a lot of people use hand sanitizer from their purse. I have been known to do that rather than touch the faucets, towel dispenser, and door handle AFTER my hands are supposedly clean. But, most who don't wash their hands are guilty of nastiness.

ribbiticus said...

smart kid you've got there, carmi. so many others can learn a thing or two from the little ones. it truly is disgusting to see someone not washing his/her hands after using the restroom. especially when you see them using their hands when digging into their food with much gusto. ewwww.

Ms Mac said...

I am always disturbed when I see adults who leave a public bathroom without washing their hands. It's these people who make your diligent handwashing redundant as you have to touch the bathroom door handle after them.

Hnestly, it's quite revolting. Good on the young 'un for remembering to always wash his hands!

Carmen said...

You have a smart little boy there, Carmi. Good for you!

Trillian said...

I'm often surprised at how many women don't wash their hands in the ladies' restroom. Yuck!

My friend has her PhD in microbiology and toxicology and she recently told me that a test was done where a small amount of sewage was placed on a piece of toilet paper, and then 7 layers of toilet paper were placed on top of it. A person then touched the topmost layer of the toilet paper and came away with traces of sewage on his/her hand. Makes you think.

puremood said...

I don't say anything to strangers.

My little one ist the same way as yours. She MUST wash her hands - she will not go without doing so. It's a great habit to have.

mike said...

totally disgusting. When hygiene comes up in group conversations regarding closed building environments and the flu and such, I make sure that I let people know that sharing workspaces and keyboards and such and not washing your hands is as much of a problem as sneezing on someone. And if the person I saw in the washroom not wash their hands is in that conversation and I happen to catch their eye, well all the better. I am going to now use my shoe to flush the toilet and wipe down my keyboard...

Plain Jane said...

I don't say anything to strangers, either. I figure it's not worth the row that could ensue or the profanity that might come along with telling me to mind my own.

It's a disgusting oversight (I refuse to believe someone would intentionally not washing their hands!) and I've learned to carry a travel size of anti-bacterial with me - for those times when I'm forced to shake someone's hand or use a public restroom.

I also tend to use a papertowel or tissue to open a restroom door to leave - there are FAR more germs on there than anywhere else! *shudder*