I’m not sure when it started, but I’d say within the last 10 or 15 years. Before then, everyone coughed and sneezed into handkerchiefs or tissues. My father had cloth handkerchiefs. My mother, who did the laundry, hated those things.
My generation preferred tissues. Once in awhile, if a sneeze or cough came on quickly, you’d use your hands. And, if anyone saw you sneeze or cough into your hands, you would loudly announce that you would be back after you washed them. If nobody saw you, however, you were off the hand-washing hook.
Now, it’s all about the elbows. Everywhere you go, everywhere you look, people are sneezing and gagging into the crooks of their elbows. And then they pull out sanitizer and clean their hands. How about cleaning those elbow crooks?
Think about it. How often do you wash your coat, jacket, sweater, or hoodie? Not every day, I’m sure. So, every time someone grabs your elbow, they’re getting a palm full of germs. If you make a habit of using your elbow to sneeze into, those germs have mated with previous germs and there’s a colony living in your elbow crease. And how do we combat this problem? We buy more Purell for our hands.
We must have the cleanest hands of any generation ever. That’s why I don’t understand why some people refuse to shake hands. You aren’t going to catch anything from someone’s hands, especially since you’ll sanitize your hands immediately after shaking. But, you won’t think twice about grabbing someone’s elbow, or hugging someone.
Until now, you’ve probably never worried about catching the plague from elbow grabbing, but now that I’ve alerted you to this scourge, I will offer a solution. I propose that we go back to carrying tissues, but the sanitizing kind. We should have one readily available at all times. Then, the next time a sneeze comes on, we’ll be ready. Immediately after sneezing into our elbow crooks, we can whip out a sanitized hand-wipe and decimate those germs. Not only will you have clean elbow joints, but you can say you wiped out a crook.