Friday, January 18, 2013


The other night, I went to greet someone at a dinner party I hadn't seen in a while. My arms were wide opened, I was smiling.  She said, “Don’t come near me, I don’t want to give you my cold." I had no intention of giving a French kiss, or going anywhere near her lips. I was planning on a good old-fashioned cosmopolitan air kiss. I know she didn’t mean it but "talk to the hand" gesture put me off a bit.

She sat down with her drink and dug into a bowl of small crackers.  She didn’t say anything to the crackers, nor to us and of course, crackers don’t talk. So, I spoke for all of us in the room and in the bowl, “You'll probably pass your cold to us by tucking into the bowl of crackers," I said with a chuckle.

We’ve all,  and definitely with good intentions, avoided someone’s friendly greeting by pushing out our hand in a gesture of protection. If you have a cold and you think you’re that contagious, why are you out?

Did you tell the bartender that you had a cold when he picked up your glass? Did you touch doorknobs and ring bells? Did you tell the taxi driver not to touch your money because you have a cold? Did you not shake hands at the networking party?

I have a confession. I have had a cold and hugged friends and relatives. I haven’t heard a sick report because it wasn’t the nasty, drippy cold. Had it been, I would’ve stayed home.

There’s has to be a better way to protect people you care about without making them feel like you don’t care about them. I like air kisses myself and plenty of soap and water.

At the end of the dinner party, The Cold Lady gave each and everyone of us a big, hearty hug! So far, no cold reports.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I love this because it's an issue I deal with regularly. I think I have thrust my hand out to avoid getting too close to people when I was contagious. On the other hand, two customers of ours (a couple) used to come in with dripping colds, hacking, throaty coughs, and snotty kleenex that they left strewn all over the table. They always insisted upon the huggy routine with saliva-soaked kisses and, of course, occasionally passed on their colds. Finally, I showed them the hand and told them that I don't hug during cold season. (Okay, part of this was an excuse because to tell the truth, they are obnoxious, passive aggressive jerks.) We haven't seen them anymore, but then again, I didn't get a cold last winter either.