I’ve been to Kansas City and everything is up to date there!

by Bella Rum


Doesn’t he look like he has a fever?

I did a search on hand sanitizer, and I found a recent study because there’s a recent study out there for every “expert” who ever drew breath. I’m sure I’ve told this story before, but this reminds me of that time when my son was about thirteen or fourteen. He told me he finally knew what he wanted to be when he grew up. I was all ears. “One of those guys who carries the cables behind the coaches on the sidelines at NFL games… or an expert.” I knew it wasn’t a burning desire to tote cables that had him so inspired. Toting cables was only an avenue to his real goal of spending a lifetime on the sidelines of an NFL game, but an expert? What was that about?

He said, “You know, when they say ‘and experts say’ I want to be that expert they’re talking about.” As it turned out, he did not grow up to tote bundled cables up and down the sidelines of a Miami Dolphins’ game. He became an expert in something I don’t even know how to explain to my friends. I just tell them he’s doing well and pray that it’s true.


The hand sanitizer thing. You thought I’d forgotten? Not a chance. When I visited the doctor yesterday, I refused to shake hands with her, explaining that she really didn’t want to shake hands with me. Now that I think about it, she didn’t actually offer. She heard me coughing before she entered the examining room.

She was not my regular doc but she was wonderful. This is the greatest practice. Love these gals. She had a bottle of hand sanitizer beside the computer, and she must have hit that pump at least a dozen times (no exaggeration). I was beginning to feel a little leper-ish hence my search on hand sanitizer. The search landed me on BHG. (Don’t you get all your latest research from Better Homes and Gardens?) The “recent study” revealed, as most recent studies do, the obvious.

… alcohol-based gels lose their germ-killing power within two minutes of application — a finding that took many consumers by surprise. … they’re made to eliminate germs on contact, much like soap and water do, says Megan T. Sandel, M.D., a nationally recognized “expert” on both healthy housing and teen health. BHG

“Took many consumers by surprise?” I demand to know who these consumers are. Do you expect your hand sanitizer to protect you from germs you have yet to meet? I use it after shopping to kill the germs I probably picked up in the store, but how could I expect it to protect me two hours later when I wipe my grandchild’s nose? Who pays for these studies? Don’t answer that. I’m so afraid it’s you and me.

IMG_0865Now I’m compelled to mention something you already know, but something I find fascinating. Has anyone noticed how far thermometer technology has come since every little boy wore a coonskin cap, and his mother placed a mercury-filled thermometer under his tongue? I know there’s been improvement (ear thermometer), but thermometers are now the height of swank. I had to use that antiquated instrument in the photo above this week. I asked H if he was sure it wasn’t the rectal thermometer I used on my son when he was a baby. The rectal one sports a slightly more bulbous business end. But would you just take a gander at this baby below, and I don’t mean the child. I bet all of you already have one. I’m getting one of these in my stocking. I’m not in to jewelry. consumer-photo

The nurse rolled this bad boy (or something similar) over my forehead. Within a few seconds she had a reading. So impressed was I that I contemplated slipping it into my purse when she left the room. Bella Rum will never again hold a mid-twentieth century thermometer under her tongue for three minutes while unable to breathe through her nose. Royalty, thy name is Bella.

It doesn’t seem to matter how far we’ve come, some things never change while others can’t stop changing. Soap and water are hard to improve upon while technology can’t stop improving upon itself. Evolution is the essence of its nature, but I have to concede that the mercury-filled thermometer does work and always has. But I’m going swanky, guys.

Video – Everything’s up to date in Kansas City 1955