Friday, September 09, 2005

Word of the Day 

Image hosted by Photobucket.comI subscribe to a great word of the day site that recently featured the word fomites. Fomites (rhymes with vomit tease) are inanimate objects which can harbor disease and germs. Some common fomites are toilet seats, cutting boards, coins and BOOKS. The singular is fomes.

Thank God I am so far off the OCD spectrum that working at a filthy place like the library doesn't bother me one bit, even if this particular psychological makeup makes me a deficient housekeeper. If I ruminated too hard on what is crawling all over books and other fomites in the library I would end up in the corner behind a fortress of milk bottles filled with my own urine, rocking myself, my arms clutched around me and my kleenex box shoes. Speaking of OCD, I'm reading the hilarious Devil in the Details, a memoir of the author's youthful battles with scrupulosity and various other OCD disorders. E looked over the cover and commented, "Aw, but those lines aren't straight."

What a great word!
My Nan had a genuine fear of library books for just this reason.....
You might also enjoy the book Just Checking, by Emily Colas. The book is quite funny, but her situation was a tragedy.
I read and loved that too. I enjoy reading these sorts of memoirs since OCD is just so alien and bizarre to me. Also, many OCD writers sure have a great sense of humor about their disease. David Sedaris' essay "A Plague of Tics" was one of the funniest things I've read. He credits smoking with curing his OCD, something about the release of serotonin and/or dopamine nicotine triggers. Certain childhood diseases can bring on OCD, like strep throat.
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