Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Confessions From a Germaphobe

As my son and I scanned the isles at the shoe store
A choking gagging sound
made its way up and over the volume
of the joyful, buy me, buy me, shoe shopping music.

I peered around the isle and saw a mom
frantically and unsuccessfully cleaning throw up
from the floor mat just inside the front door.
The mysterious barf child was nowhere in sight.
Continue reading...


My eyes grew wide
my heart started pounding
I turned towards my son “We have to get out of here!”
His pleading eyes looked down to the box
that held his prized black and red Vans shoes.
“But Mom?”
Resigned to his need for the shoes
I slowly approached the cash wrap area.

The throw up lady was checking out.
I watched in horror as her fingers
pressed the buttons on the credit card swiper.
Her germ covered hand reached
for the pen that Mr. Happy Shoe handed to her.

My curious eyes tried to avoid the scene of the crime
but there it was
the vomit encrusted welcome mat.
Welcome to my nightmare.
Innocent victims were walking through it.
I had to turn away… it was too much to bare.

It was our turn….
I looked at Mr. Happy Shoe and asked about the barf child
I confessed, “I am sort of germaphobic”
His concerned look made me continue
“I’m not weird or anything”
My son's cheeks turn red with embarrassment in disagreement.
“My daughter had a liver transplant 2 months ago,
she’s at home with Daddy”
Mr. Happy Shoe looks concerned
he nods his head, asks the appropriate questions and offers me the germ-infested pen.
I reluctantly take it since I don’t have mine.
I reach into my purse and grab my Purell.
I douse my hands, my sons.
The smell of alcohol envelops me, reassures me, shields me.
We leave.

As we drive away I put serious thought into resuming my search for a kid-sized plastic bubble.
The kind that hamsters roll around in…

A tear rolls down my cheek.
Evidence of
the frustration
the madness
of a germaphobe.

3 Comments:

Blogger Moreena said...

Oh, boy, this had me laughing and moaning at the same time. I swear that it has added multitudes of gray hair to my head just cringing every time I hear someone cough or sneeze. One time I was out with Annika and some kid let out a juicy, ucky cough right as we were passing by and my hand just flew up and clamped right over Anni's mouth and nose to keep her from inhaling until we hit a safe distance. Then I doused us all with purell and wiped her face with an antibacterial wet one. Overkill? maybe... Futile? probably...
Of course, Anni thought I was insane, but she's used to that by now.

1:15 PM  
Blogger Laurie said...

Oh, God! I was laughing so hard at this one...you just described ME!

11:50 AM  
Blogger Marisa said...

Oh Mika, so will Nolan ever go shopping with you again?

10:32 PM  

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