When you don’t want to touch things with your hands, you learn to use your foot. I have become quite skilled at picking up various items with my foot and dropping them in the trash can, and as you will see, have acquired other skills as well.
Today was an exceptionally busy day for my right foot. It began with a co-worker bringing a file into my cubicle. At times someone will walk quietly to my desk and leave files or papers without saying a word, and I don’t bother to turn around. I was very glad that I happened to be looking this time. I saw her coming out of the corner of my eye, so as she walked in, I turned to say something. Before either of us could utter a word, though, the sticky note that was on the cover of the file came loose and wafted to the floor. What I saw was – doom! She would pick it up, stick it back on the file, and then the file would be contaminated. It was going to snowball into a huge ordeal that I did not want to mess with.
I had to think fast. It all happened in about five seconds. It fell to the floor, she immediately bent down to get it, and I stomped on it with my foot, barely missing her hand. “I’ll take care of it,” I said, and we both laughed. I believe she thought it was a little odd, but it was over quickly. After she left, I lifted up my foot and looked at the bottom of my shoe. It was stuck all right. I tried using a napkin to peel it off but couldn’t get ahold of a corner, so I left it. I had to wait till later when I was able to put on a pair of disposable gloves to remove it.
A short time later my neighbor in the next cubicle came over to chat for a moment. She was holding some empty envelopes, and two of them suddenly dropped to the floor. I was on a roll, so I reached out with my foot and dragged them towards myself. She gave me a quizzical look, but she is the one that I have talked to a bit about my phobias, and so I explained what happened with the sticky note and that I might as well take care of the envelopes also. She is curious about my OCD, but she has seen me do things such as this enough times that she is no longer fazed by them. So she walked away, I used my shoe to move the envelopes over to my trash can, and I dropped them into the can with my foot.
But the foot wasn’t done for the day. Not yet. It was ten minutes to 5:00, and I was at the sink washing out my teacup. The sink is a busy place at the end of the day, and I heard someone come up behind me. Most people wait patiently while I finish washing, but once in a while someone feels the need to elbow in. This person stole the running water from me, put her bowl in the sink underneath it, and said, “I’m going to let this soak while I’m in the restroom.” Then she walked off and left me with a soapy cup. Again, quick thinking was a must. I hurriedly rinsed my cup because the bowl was filling up fast and the water would start splattering in a couple of seconds. Then it was overflowing, and I had no way to turn off the water because the intruder had also hovered over my folded napkin which was waiting on the counter for me to use to turn off the faucet. I didn’t see her touch it, but I had to assume that she did. I had used my elbow to shut it off in the past, but I was exhausted from spraying rubbing alcohol all day long. After the briefest of deliberations, I took a quick look behind to make sure the coast was clear, I said a mental “Hi-yah!” and kicked the handle down with my foot. Let’s face it – the faucet was dirty anyway. Non-washers touch it all the time. Still, I felt guilty adding to it, so I ran to my desk, poured alcohol on a napkin, grabbed a sandwich baggie, and went back to clean it off. It was not clean enough, but it was time to leave, so it had to do.
What did your foot do today?