What did the hand sanitizer end up being useful for?

Happy April Fools’ Day! Are the biggest fools those who frantically stocked up on hand sanitizer? What did it turn out to be useful for? Before the coronaplague hit, we had about 8 ounces left in a couple of bottles here. With five people in the household we’ve barely touched any of it. I use a touch after grocery shopping (having locked the car so that nobody comes in and steals the precious mini bottle!), but that’s a once/week activity.

What ordinary consumer has actually ended up needing a large personal supply of hand sanitizer (a.k.a. “Clear Gold”)?

8 thoughts on “What did the hand sanitizer end up being useful for?

  1. I have to use hand sanitizer every time I come and go from my apartment. Which means, 1)getting the mail 2) getting deliveries/boxes from the mailroom 3) getting to the car 4) going for a walk

    Now obviously I can wash my hands when I come back in, but not when I am going out. There is no way I am going to be able to not touch my face for any significant amount of time while out.

    If this lasts for even a couple months and I am not able to restock the little supply I have remaining, my risk level is going to rise.

  2. Toucan Sam wears leather gloves when out in public. He has only been to the pharmacy and grocery store. Before and after putting the leather gloves on he uses the hand sanitizer. He also wears a mask in public to discourage him from touching his face. He sanitizes the mask each time with hand sanitizer. When the Toucan returns to his nest he washes his hands with soap and water.

  3. At a (uncrowded, spotlessly clean) doctor’s office today I observed the following behavior by the receptionist:

    First she asked for my ID card and insurance from behind the closed glass partition and slid it open just enough to take them from me, enter the information in the computer, and then slide them back out like she was working with radioisotopes in a lab. She did not sanitize her hands after touching my cards. Then she had to visit the restroom, so:

    1) Leave reception desk to visit the restroom.
    2) Enter restroom (staff facilities, not general public) wash and dry hands (I could hear the dryer – twice!)
    3) Return to desk touching nothing (door closed by itself).
    4) Sit down at desk, spritz hands with sanitizer, scrub hands and dry them with tissues from a box on the wall.
    5) Answer phone and use keyboard/mouse that she had previously been using, without sanitizing them. I thought about asking her why she didn’t sanitize the phone and keyboard, but kept my mouth shut.

    How she thinks her hands were contaminated enough to trigger the sanitizer routine walking 20 feet from the restroom to the reception desk is a complete mystery to me. Maybe she was worried she got something on her hands after washing them, from the inside doorknob of the restroom on her way back to the desk. The office was spotlessly clean. Then I looked around the room: they had about a half-dozen COVID-19 awareness flyers taped all around the place (which was empty except for me) and the 60″ flat screen TV was running various COVID-19 warnings and guideline messages in an endless loop, so she’s looking at them all day long. I wouldn’t be surprised if she’s using a bottle of hand sanitizer a day between work and home.

    I suppressed a sneeze in the waiting room to avoid causing a panic.

    The doctor, who I saw for the first time, was wearing an N95 mask and gloves. This was a routine physical exam, just disrobe to the underwear.

  4. By the way, so restrictive are the laws in Massachusetts that the Commissioner of Public Health had to issue a special directive allowing pharmacists to compound hand sanitizer for public, over-the-counter use (read the rules!) Apparently hand sanitizer is such a tightly controlled substance that prior to this outbreak, licensed pharmacists weren’t allowed to make it themselves!


  5. Most of my hand sanitizer usage over the years has traditionally been: (1) use it at the office, after returning to my desk from being in a lab or conference room; and use it before having lunch at my desk; (2) use it upon re-entering the car, such as after shopping or whatever.

    Since I am now barely going anywhere… working at home, pretty much no shopping besides groceries… my hand sanitizer usage has gone way down.

  6. I actually have a box of those sanitizing hand wipes (the kind you use on picnics and camping trips) that I bought a couple years ago because Austin apartment complexes like to cut off the water for hours at a time without warning. I haven’t used any of them since this mass hysteria started, because the water hasn’t been shut off. I had previously bought a bottle of the liquid hand sanitizer for the same reason, but threw it away because I didn’t like the slimy feel.

    It’s amusing to consider selling the 200-odd remaining hand wipes to hysterical idiots for $20 each, but if I did that I’d probably just get arrested for committing capitalism.

  7. Everybody has a story. My wife’s club hosted a large meet-greet for students before Thanksgiving. By chance she brought home two large opened pump bottles totalling about a quart remaining. Gloves/masks not so much, I’m reviewing all the youtube mask tutorials but we are almost 100% homebound. I’ll try the folded designs; the hurricane and subsequent moves got two sewing machines so we are down to hand stitch or stapler.

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