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Boogers and Germs

September 26, 2012

Being stuck in a classroom all day with kids at the beginning of cold and flu season has thrown a glaring truth in my face.

Kids are gross.

At least three of my students have stuffy noses, the kind where the sound of the sniffle lets you know that not a molecule of oxygen is slipping past the walls of mucous. They used up half a box of tissues before the first recess to no avail, the germ-infested wads of damp cotton littering their desks like stockpiled snowballs.

But, at least those kids were trying to clear their nostrils. That’s better than the oblivious kids, the ones constantly sniffling, sucking the drips back into their nose just before they reach the tipping point of gravity.

And they can’t keep their fingers off—or out of—their noses. I looked up today to find one little girl just pulling her finger from the edge of her nostril. Worse, she proceeded to pinch her thumb and forefinger together, then slowly pulled them apart to see how far the attached goo would stretch.

My apologies if you’re reading this before a meal.

Speaking of food, I made the mistake of accepting a piece of one child’s snack today. Two other children immediately wanted to display their generosity and I found myself looking at outstretched hands holding various treats. Kids being who they are, they watched carefully as I tasted their offerings, wanting theirs to be as acceptable as everybody else’s. Not wanting to hurt anyone’s feelings, I ignored the invisible germs coating their palms and took what they shared with a forced smile of thanks.

Two hours later, one of the children went home with a sick tummy. That’ll teach me. My new policy will definitely have to be not to accept food from anyone unless it’s pre-packaged. Preferably in a Sees candy box.

In the meantime, I think I’ll forego tonight’s dinner in favor of a cup of Echinacea tea.

  1. Rick Bentley permalink

    I used to tell our new teachers about the giant germ factory AKA elementary school. Take care of yourself.

  2. Heartspeak permalink

    Zicam! Eat it! Love it! (It’ll minimize the inevitable)

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