Why don't some people wash their hands?

No hand washing after the toilet : Expose the creeps!

I was silent for a long time. The expected reader comments kept me away: “Trees have to die for such nonsense!” And of course “Is it summer slump again?”. I am also aware that the world has far more pressing problems. Yet. The older man in my Kreuzberg café convinced me that this text is necessary.

We met in the toilet the other day. He at the urinal, just finished, took a paper towel from his pocket, wiped his penis, folded the towel and put it back in his pocket. He went to the sink, but didn't turn on the tap, just looked briefly in the mirror and then left the room. Outside he was sitting nicely at the table with his friends, drinking cappuccino and looking very cultured.

The pig.

Washing your hands after using the toilet is not an achievement, but a minimum standard of civilization. Toddlers can do it. Even if you can't get anything else done in life, you should master it.

The others are always disgusting

Studies say that this is primarily a male problem. Every fourth person does not touch the tap after visiting public toilets - but afterwards doorknobs, elevator buttons, table tops ... and shakes strange hands. The motive is simple: Most only feel disgust towards third parties, never because of their own body. In addition, men consider their genitals to be the most aesthetic, personal and valuable of all. They completely miss the idea that others do not share this assessment.

A friend told me the other day about a colleague who in front washes his hands every time he visits the toilet so that his penis stays nice and clean.

Maybe social control will help. Basins could in principle be installed outside the toilet rooms, ideally right next to the entrance door. Anyone who comes out and doesn't wash their hands at least does so in public and reveals their dissociality.

You could also try rewards. Anyone washing their hands and activating a light barrier will then receive a treat from a machine. As with dog training.

A promising field test

Perhaps more brutal pedagogical measures will also help. Last week I developed a new one and tested it right away. In a well-frequented restaurant in Bergmannkiez, I waited near the sink until one of the toilet visitors saved himself from washing his hands (which took less than five minutes).

I followed him into the dining room, had him sit down at his table next to the female companion, leaned down to him and said in a friendly manner and so loudly that the next table had to notice: "But next time you will wash your hands, yes? ”The man stammered something about“ I did, ”it sounded unconvincing.

The first field trial was, it seems, successful. However - thesis! - the humiliation and thus the educational effect can be even more drastic in other places, for example in the foyer of the Deutsche Oper, in Borchardt or in the corridors of federal ministries. Who likes to try it out?

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