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Hands off my Food!

                    By Alan G. Cellini

For those of you who are reading this column with croissant in hand, a slice of pizza or even an icy cold drink at the end of the day – please go wash your hands. 

And if you prepare or serve these goods for others, and you didn’t take care of this sanitary need; hands off my food!

Just think about it, even though it’s not pleasant.

If the guy or gal who prepared or served your food had not washed their hands after taking care of certain personal needs - then you’re at risk of contracting what he or she might be culturing - the ability to spread something unsavory to your palate.

Not a very appetizing or comforting thought to consider while enjoying culinary or beverage related pleasures.  

However, I’m not attempting to serve you food or drink.

And, I’m not trying to stir up… well you know what I mean. I’m just saying that washing one’s hands before eating and/or dishing out the consumables is a healthy approach to preventing the transmission of bacteria or virus that can make you sick or even kill you.

The risk of contracting viruses such as (Hepatitis A) had made the news here in the Big Apple,
not too long ago.

Last year the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene offered free vaccines to people who had visited Socialista, a West Village restaurant, where a bartender was diagnosed with that sickening and infectious disease that attacks the liver.

Even the Hollywood elite are not immune to such risk of diseases such as contracting Hepatitis A -
that attacks the liver.

When Demi Moore had thrown a 30th birthday party for her paramour Ashton Kutcher at Socialista, which included hundreds of celebrities, they too were exposed to the risk of Hepatitis A – and I don’t refer to some hip hop performer famous for his albums, but a bartender serving consumers that night.

According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), the Hepatitis A Virus “is usually spread from person to person by putting something in the mouth (even though it might look clean) that has been contaminated with the stool of a person with hepatitis A”.

Just to clarify any misunderstanding, stool is feces and not something you sit on. And again - I’m not trying to stir up…well you know what I mean.

Some of the symptoms of the virus are jaundice (yellow looking skin and eyes), fatigue, abdominal pain, nausea, diarrhea and fever, much the same as other illnesses that attack the liver.  

And, even though we can help prevent liver disease by controlling our alcohol consumption which does not contribute to contracting hepatitis – I’ll drink to that;

we can help prevent the risk of contracting (HAV) and other viruses by washing our hands with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds before preparing, serving and eating food.

So, the next time you’re thinking of having a croissant, a slice of pizza or an icy drink at the end of the day, think of the guy or gal who’s preparing or serving your food or drink.

Just ask them pleasantly to wash their hands if they’re not regularly doing so - even though they might look clean.

If the result is not insult, and they don’t tell you to take it some where else, then you’ve made a difference in helping to prevent the spread of disease and the betterment of a healthy lifestyle.

Tip them accordingly and you’ll see a smile and maybe set a trend or make a friend - If you sense insult, and they toss you to the street - then just say hands off my food! 

And take it somewhere else. 

Heck, I’d wash my... for a tip. We’ll you know what I mean.

But, then again what do I know…



                             It wasn’t about Hillary after all, or was it?

                                                               By Alan G. Cellini     

Who wants to be President? I do, I do - Oh, please pick me, pick me.

I said, PICK ME!

The hardball political strategies of the Hillary Rodham Clinton camp proved un-winning in her quest to secure the full backing of the Democratic Party, which would have given the Senator an opportunity to take the helm of the country as President.

The Democratic Party that had promised to support her and then had chosen another candidate to represent them in the 2008 presidential election - set to take place on Election Day, Tuesday November 4, 2008 – chose Barack Obama, Senator from Illinois - the rising star of course, who has the potential to unite and lead this nation and bring it forward into a new era. 

With the 2008 Democratic National Convention having run its course during the week of August 25-28 at the Denver Pepsi Center, where Hillary played the house and the unity card on Tuesday August 26, under the theme of,  “Renewing America’s Promise”, one must consider the age old adage that ‘promises were meant to be broken.’

And, in the spirit of the “Unity Tour” when Obama and Hillary took it on the road and came to a stop in Unity New Hampshire after the democratic primaries were decided, Mrs. Clinton in her ambition for unity, asked her supporters to back Mr. Obama and “create an unstoppable force for change we can all believe in.”

And many did - however, believe in her he did not - at least not for the #2 – big seat.

But, she must have known that, because on Saturday August 23, 2008 - Barack Obama chose Delaware Senator Joseph Biden to join him on deck of the Democratic ticket for the Presidency of the USA.

Although Joe Biden, also lost the bid for the democratic presidential nod, he was deemed more valuable, because he brings to the plate a strong background in foreign affairs as a member of the Senate Foreign Affairs Relations Committee and Chair of the 110th Congress, with a plan to end the Iraq war – something most Americans can identify with.

Now with Hillary’s popularity contest having waned in the presidential sense, let’s  see what big bone will be tossed HER way in the form of a big cabinet position – of which she was most likely promised to receive in exchange for encouraging her supporter’s to vote for Obama.

With a higher level ranking in Washington as a cabinet member, what can Mrs. Clinton do for us locally, that she hasn’t done in the last eight years as Senator – in her “unstoppable force for change?”

Hillary Rodham Clinton currently sits on the Aging; Armed Services; Environment and Public Works; Health, Education, Labor and Pensions committees.    

The next president, whoever is elected should promise her a big seat, to make change happen – hopefully leading a national Health Care initiative. Just visit – however, as a recommendation, I would suggest renaming it – 

But, then again, what do I know…



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Copyright . Alan G. Cellini. All rights reserved.