Letter To My Fellow DC Commuters, Part 1 in the Social Contract Series

Dear Washington, DC commuters:

I realize that the weather has been unseasonably warm this fall; today it’s in the low sixties. Guess what? The cold germs that your little ones are bringing home from school don’t care. Better for them that it’s warm; makes it that much easier to annex your sinuses while demanding safe passage to your lungs. A few pointers for dealing with the cold:

At EVERY DRUGSTORE IN THE COUNTRY, they sell pocket packs of tissues. Keep them on you. Snot rockets are hilarious, but only in the company of pre-teen boys on the playground. Blow your nose. There’s no reason to leak like a faucet when a buck will buy you a ten-pack of tissues from the CVS dollar bin.

Sneezing happens. Coughing happens. Sneezing doesn’t have to happen all over the back of my coat. There is no reason for my jacket to acquire a layer of lung tissue and slime because you cannot perform a simple procedure. Repeat after me: lift arm. Bring forearm to mouth. Sneeze and/or cough against it.

NO, NOT YOUR HAND, MY GOD. Please do not sneeze a wad of snot into your hand on public transportation. Do you know where that hand ends up? Escalator rails. Hand holds. Ticket kiosks. Your fellow commuters. Remember the germ revolution working south toward the lungs? That’s how it starts. Don’t you remember Mr. Rogers? I’m pretty sure he went over that.

In short, try to keep your snot to yourself.

No love and no sharing my tissues with you,