If you turn public bathroom faucets on with a piece of tissue and your friends think that the aroma of Purell is “your scent,” then according to this book you are a germ freak.
Regardless of labels, nobody likes to get sick, and here Allison Janse and Dr. Charles Gerba dish out tips on germ avoidance with a healthy dose of humor. All of the basics about coughs, sneezes and washing your hands correctly are included, but the majority of the book advises on how to handle germy situations that everyone experiences occasionally that can put you on the spot.
What do you do, in a business or otherwise important situation, when a snotty (literally) person wants to shake your hand, maybe to seal a deal? Janse says fib a little; tell the person that you just had a serious sinus infection, and you don’t want to possibly pass it on via a handshake.
There’s advice on using public toilets (don’t squat!), restaurant and break room etiquette (avoid communal condiments), and grocery shopping (take advantage of the free sanitizer cloths that most major stores offer to clean the cart handle – studies have found that one in five carts are contaminated with blood, mucus, urine or saliva.)
As you read you’ll pick up little tidbits like how kitchen-cutting boards generally are germier than toilet seats and how you can be fined $100 in Alaska for farting in public. The infusion of humor here takes the mundane and makes it fun, but it also gets the job done. It’s impossible not to add a few things to your germ avoidance regimen after completing the read.
One more thing; if someone gives you a used copy, make sure to give the book cover a good wiping down.