Friday, November 8, 2013

On Cross-Contamination

by Kris Pitcher

Boarding the plane I waited to pass a woman in first class who was frantically swabbing down her entire seat with handi-wipes. She had her tray table out and hit every surface on that thing. People around her scoffed, and she was crazy.

Having settled into my seat the row across from me housed a man and his toddler. His wife, infant and mother-in-law sat in the row behind him. He did a great job through the flight of managing a restless boy.

As the flight attendant came to gather trash, she asked him if she could take the half eaten apple he had placed on the empty seat next to him. He told her no, they weren't done with it, and he handed it back to his wife who put it in a plastic bag.

Gross, I thought, it had been sitting right on the seat. Then he began to sniff the toddlers pants. I knew what was coming next. Thinking back to the woman in first class I wondered if I had any handi-wipes.

Sure enough he changes the toddler right on the seat, didn't put anything down. Next, he puts the used pull-up right on the seat where the apple had moments before been. Nice.

And this is why we have to concern ourselves with cross-contamination and hand washing. This is why the lady in first class may not have been so crazy after all. This is why as competitors we need to be careful of our food sources, storage, and cleanliness of preparation etc.

I closed my eyes and was thankful I had not eaten off my own tray table, or really touched much of anything around me. Wash your hands, don't touch your face, keep your apple away from your poop.

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