Updated: Mar 12, 2020
Coronavirus. Many experts say it’s going to get much worse here in the U.S. soon. Personally, I can’t say for certain either way, but I do know this: Whatever happens, it’s a good idea to practice good hygiene, and protect yourself from ailments in any reasonable way, especially when you’re at the casino, like I am so often. Whether you’re protected against coronavirus, the flu, or the common cold, don’t all of those protections benefit you regardless? Ultimately, whatever the case may be, there are really three steps to this protection process… The first step happens before you’re ever in contact with germs; next, you need to know how to protect yourself while you’re in contact with germs; and finally, it’s important to know what you should do afterwards.
So, let’s start with the first step I mentioned: Before you’re ever even in contact with casino germs, you need to recognize that if you go into a casino – any casino – you will be in contact with casino germs. This seems so obvious when you think about it, but I’ll bet most of you haven’t done that thinking until I mentioned it just now. SLOT MACHINES HAVE GERMS. Hell, people frequently rub slot machines for good luck! And additionally, many slot machine bonuses require that you (and everyone else before you) must touch the screen to make bonus selections! You really think those hands don’t have germs? Spoiler alert: THEY DO. Recognize it. Accept it. Remember it.
And then what? Well, you probably know about some of these things already, but here’s a fairly comprehensive list, anyway: First, DON’T SHAKE PEOPLES’ HANDS! Now I’m not saying don’t be cordial, and I’m not saying you need to be a hardcore germaphobe like Howie Mandel (who is a Big Jackpot fan, by the way!). But you can bump fists, elbows, or kneecaps if you want; just don’t stick your hand out and grab germs from someone else’s. Second, casino elevators – press those buttons with your knuckles; I know it’s weird, but nobody will even notice. Third, casino bathrooms – use a closed fist to open the door; easy stuff. Fourth, for any part of a slot machine that you plan to touch, wipe it down with a disinfectant wipe. And finally, use soap when you wash your hands, and be sure to do so for at least 20 seconds every time; hand sanitizer can be helpful too, but make sure you use one that has an alcohol content of 60% or higher, to be safe. By the way, interesting factoid: Did you know that a study in a scientific journal conclusively proved that washing your hands five times per day reduces the incidence of respiratory infections by 45%? Coronavirus or not, WASH YOUR FREAKIN’ HANDS!
Alright, so you always wash your hands, you use Purell, and you’ve even been through an exorcism after leaving the casino for the day. You’re safe now, right? Wrong! Even then, germs will still cling to you, but if your immune system is strong, they won’t be able to do as much damage. So, all the traditional wisdom is still in effect here. Especially if you’ve traveled by plane to get to a casino, there’s a good chance you’re already run-down from recycled airplane air (or maybe you’re even jetlagged), so eat healthy! It’s hard when you travel, but please make the effort. Vitamins help too! And this might be the most difficult piece to follow, especially if you’re in Vegas and a sucker for nightlife, but…Get plenty of rest! More than almost anything, sleephelps to keep your immune system strong.
Now, to be fair, do I do every single one of these things? Hellllllllllllllllllllllllll no; I’m human, and imperfect. But I definitely try do as many as I can, and I’ll certainly continue to ramp up those efforts as more news comes in. So, for now, although it pains me to say it, and it is, admittedly, a touch hypocritical… Do as I say, and not as I do. You’ll thank my later when you come out okay!