I had seen the eater.com clip Monday about Schiller’s and was just too grossed out to pass it along. It also looks a bit hoax-y to me so I didn’t link to it. And I think I was in some denial; I spent my birthday there in November and just yuck, yuck, yuckity yuck. But the latex glove article in today’s New York Times reminds me of one reason I’m anti-glove. [Which is a different concern than latex allergies, which are also on the rise! Dear friend Bo , and Isabel I just discovered, actually have this issue and have had nightmarish responses to latex.]
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve watched the bagel guy [pre-gluten-free-ness obviously] make a very nice everything with a schmear and top it with lox. Nothing outrageous there, quite normal in fact. And yes, he’s wearing gloves, as any good establishment will insist upon. But what he doesn’t realize, because he can’t feel it, is that he’s getting very intimate with said lox. As in lox slime all over his gloves. When he takes my order he can’t possibly know that he will be passing along highly toxic materials on to my bagel. How could he know because he can’t feel that his hands are dirty! Because in effect they aren’t, they’re safe and clean in the glove. And the glove that has turned orange with lox-y goo doesn’t concern him, because they’re gloves and not his hand. So he’s still thinking, “My hand are clean-I’m using safe practices here.” And then, he moves to make me something! With those lox-y, gooey, fishy killer hands! PS I’m very allergic to salmon. Of course, I politely ask him to change his gloves and hope that he hasn’t slimed too many implements that will be making my bagel.
How many times does that happen behind the scenes? Too, too many I fear. Oh dear, what is the answer? Constant hand washing is difficult to regulate so is constant glove changing. And as latex allergies, that is allergies to the latex itself, are on the rise, asking food handlers to wear them might be asking them to risk their health. I don’t have an answer here; is there a good answer?