04 June, 2009

Avoiding swine flu

It is generally assumed that the company where I work is populated by our world's best and brightest developers, business people, researchers, designers, etc. However, apparently, it is not assumed that these whiz-kids are familiar with the basic concepts of personal hygiene (though, if you look back at my previous blogs on people's bathroom habits here, perhaps that is a valid lack of confidence). Nonetheless, shortly after the whole swine flu "epidemic" hit the scenes, the following educational panels showed up on the wall outside of every restroom in every building:

What strikes me as odd about this is not the fact that they post a reminder to wash one's hands. But the fact that they felt the need to provide an instructional walk-through of the actual procedure for washing hands. As if, had they merely said "Wash your hands after using restroom to help prevent spreading germs", people might have done things like wash their wallet instead of their hands, or lick their hands clean, or possibly wash their hands in the toilet. And the level of detail is just bizarre. Do we have a particular concern, as humans, about removing dirt that is lodged between our thumb and forefinger? Oh, well perhaps if you are performing digital disimpaction of your own bowel in the restroom stall. But otherwise, really? Is it necessary to tell me these things?

The little blurb in the bottom right corner is also extremely helpful. I did not previously know when were the right times to wash my hands. Thank you. I knew that I should wash them after touching animal waste, which is something that I try to do every day. But I did not know that I should also wash them whenever they are dirty!

As a footnote, I will add that washing hands is not the #1 way to prevent giving a virus to others or yourself. The #1 way to avoid giving a virus to others or yourself is to kill yourself in the middle of the woods, far away from civilization, without telling anyone where you are going. The #2 way to avoid giving a virus to others or yourself is to not take a syringe filled with viral media and inject it into necks of all who pass you on the street.

1 comment:

  1. The text at the lower right hand side of the panel is far more amuzing if you read it like a poem. It's like a mis-assembled haiku. A koan, perhaps. I love it.