Hey there, remember me? I think we met at a potluck once. That’s okay if you don’t remember. The only thing you need to know is that I never wash my hands. Anyway, your baby is so cute. Can I hold him?
He’s so precious! I just want to pinch his chubby little cheeks with my wet, drippy fingers.
Oh, come on, I’m harmless—I took a massive bowel movement in a gas station restroom today—I’m totally harmless!
Why are you covering him up? Is he cold? Here, use this damp towel I found on the floor of the men’s locker room at the Y. Throw that over his poor, exposed face. Or maybe he’d like this second-hand gauze I peeled off an elderly woman’s forehead in the emergency room yesterday. We can wrap him up tightly in that and he’ll be super-cozy, I’m sure. Or, okay, forget the towel and the gauze—I’ll just give him a big hug. He’ll be as warm as that raccoon with whooping cough I was petting the other day at the infected animal sanctuary.
Why are you moving away from me? I am just trying to be friendly—and what is friendlier than a virtual stranger licking his fingers and putting them inside your baby’s mouth?
Look at him: he’s reaching out for me. Clearly he’s attracted to the scent of the dumpster I was diving in this morning. Pulled out quite a loot, too. Found some day-old calamari, a pair of barely-worn underwear, and a flip phone. I bet your baby loves phones, right? They all do! Here, let him chew on it, it’s fine, I don’t mind.
Hey now, there’s no reason to hide your baby under your shirt—oh, wait, is that his itty-bitty foot sticking out? What a perfect, tiny little foot. I just have to touch—AHHH-CHOOOO!!!
Whoosh. Pardon me. No, I’m fine. Doctor said I have the flu, but he’s bonkers. I was like, “Forget my 104-degree fever and focus on my pink eye, Doc.” Anyway, kids need to be exposed to germs or they’ll never develop immunity. Here, put him on my lap. We’ll immune him up something fierce.
No? Well, at least let me wipe off him with this used handkerchief a wheezing man with lice gave me at a strip club last night. His name was Ron. Good people.
Wow. You’re being ridiculously overprotective. I mean, so what if my parents didn’t believe in vaccination? So what if I have this mysterious rash all over my hands? So what if I have no idea why my fingernails are bleeding? So what if my face is covered in oozing, festering sores? It’s not like I have leprosy or something.
[His flip phone rings.]
One second… let me just take this call from my doctor.
. . .
[He hangs up.]
Okay, it turns out I do have leprosy and something else. They’re not sure what disease it is. They’ve never seen anything like it before. Oh well, at least that explains where my ear went. Anyway where were we? Oh, right: your baby and my hands. Let’s do this!