Saturday, July 31, 2010

Brother, can you spare a guitar?

It's open mic night at the Tree House Cafe on Salt Spring Island. Andrea has sailed in from Victoria, BC to perform. But she forgot her guitar. She talks the emcee into borrowing his. "You look hygienic to me," he says. "Looks like you've had a decent upbringing." I wonder if The Hygiene Hunter scripted that.

I'm not sure if hand sani on the frets was involved, but Andrea gives an amazing performance. I don't think she realizes how good her vocals are. Andrea, remember, when you sign that record deal be sure to bring your own pen. Hit.

- The Hygiene Hunter's Husband

Friday, July 30, 2010

Sir, your table in the alley is ready.

The Tree House Cafe is in the village of Ganges on Salt Spring Island. It's so popular, people actually overflow into the alley for dinner every night. Eating dinner in an alley isn't something The Hygiene Hunter normally approves of, so here's the back story.

The Tree House is owned by Mark LeCorre, former soundman for many Canadian music icons like the Tragically Hip, Jan Arden and others. Mark gave up life on the road a few years ago and bought the Tree House Cafe. During the summer, there are 112 consecutive nights of live music featuring amazing local talent and performers from all over Canada. There's no cover charge. They just pass the bucket and everyone chips in for the performers.

Back in the alley, the tables are immaculate. Sprayed with sanitizer after each meal. Cutlery is wrapped in napkins. The Hygiene Hunter would love you Mark. Hit.

- The Hygiene Hunter's Husband

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Hold your engine or your breath.

I really don't have much to add here. Let's just do what the sign says and we can all drive off the boat without passing out from carbon monoxide poisoning.

- The Hygiene Hunter's Husband

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Hand rail to hell.

From the look of this door, I'm guessing the hand rail on the ferry hasn't been cleaned for a while. I remember my Hygiene Hunter training and trust my balance on the stairs instead. Miss.

- The Hygiene Hunter's Husband

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

One tough decision.

Traveling further west, I reach the coast. I'm early for my ferry reservation to Salt Spring Island. So I stop in the town of Tsawwassen, British Columbia for a meal. Problem. Nikko Sushi has one of the cleanest restaurant washrooms I've ever seen. I want to eat in the washroom. I call The Hygiene Hunter. She talks me down. Hit.

- The Hygiene Hunter's Husband

Monday, July 26, 2010

Relax everyone.

Hygiene should never rest. For obvious reasons. Superbugs. H1N1. Spinach salad with E. coli on the side. HOWEVER, The Hygiene Hunter, from time to time, does need a break. Hahaha! No, that is not me inside the tent. Although this is what I would do if it were. I would take my shoes off. Although mine would have heels. Which I am guessing are impractical in the wild. I have sent my husband away on a Hygiene Hunting Mission. He has two weeks to impress me with his observations. Over to him ...

- The Hygiene Hunter

I'm on my way to the west coast of Canada and decided enroute to visit some friends who live on the Shuswap Lake. They took me up the lake to a campground that's only accessible by boat. Even so, the Gau family is remarkably civilized... no shoes are allowed inside their tents. No cooking without a dose of hand sani first. Gwyneth lost her bottle. I gave her some of mine. Chivalry is still alive. Germs not so much.

- The Hygiene Hunter's Husband

Friday, July 23, 2010

A hand that does my bidding.

See. Being The Hygiene Hunter does have its perks. I do not even have to operate my own inflight entertainment system. This gentleman sitting in front of me on the airplane was kind enough to save me the trouble. And the germs. Hit.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

A downward spiral.

Why use a garbage bin when you can use a stairwell? Why use a toilet when you can use the street? Why use a tissue when you can use your finger? To be clear, not all of New York City looks like this.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

A heads up in Central Park.

This advisory extends to The Hygiene Hunter. While I do not have rabies, I do get seriously agitated should you try to shake my hand. You can rest assured though that I will not bite you.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Well fed.

I commend this vendor for creating makeshift garbage bins in New York City's Chinatown. And I commend people for placing their refuse in the appropriate receptacles. Except for Spoon Person. And Flyer Person. And Take Away Drink Container Person. Fresh coconut water appears to be popular here. This scene should compel you to carry a reusable cup.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Mind boggling.

A carpeted urinal? A black carpeted urinal? While esthetically pleasing, 11 Madison Park, you really should not let men off this easily. They need to see the error of their ways. This is the only way they will eventually learn how to hit the target.

Friday, July 16, 2010

The Cold Water Lady.

Hot? Yes. Thirsty? Yes. Desperate? Yes. Would rather die? Yes. I think there is a reason this water is only $1 in New York City.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Speaking of smells.

Jazz in New York City. When it smells like this you know it is authentic. Hit.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


Ah! The Heat Wave in New York City. You have not lived until you have smelt it. Hahaha.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Suicide in Chinatown.

With 100 degree fahrenheit weather in New York City, perhaps this fish was merely trying to cool off. Clearly his mother did not tell him he would fry on the sidewalk. Hopefully who ever ate him had the presence of mind to RINSE HIM OFF FIRST.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Dog Poop Karma.

If you do not believe me, trust in this sign. Yeah New York! Hit.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Protection at its finest.

The staff at The Mercer Hotel in New York are obsessive about not touching straws. And not just mine. EVERYBODY'S. I appreciate the take-away lid they put on my morning room service kale shake. This prevents airborne particles from finding their way into my digestive system. Hit.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

What would the Duck Tour tourists say?

The just-opened Le Bain at The Standard Hotel offers spectacular views of New York City. From the AstroTurfed rooftop, the Hudson River. Down below, in the black-themed bar, clothing-optional-people in the mini pool. Which according to the bartenders, is drained twice a day. I will still pass. Hit.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Nothing to see here.

With 98 degree fahrenheit weather in New York City I chose to stay indoors. Boring? Never. I spent the day examining The Mercer Hotel's travertine floor in the Lobby Library/Lounge. I am delighted to report the only debris I found in the crevices was the piece of popcorn I dropped. I blame this lapse in tidiness on the heat. My apologies. Hit.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

I spy at Pastis.

Ladies, if you have to place your handbag on the ground, this is how it should be done. ALL HALE ROBERTA. From London visiting NYC. And yes, that is a Birkin. Hit.

I am at your front door.

Dear Psychic Shana:

With all due respect, I do not mean to question your abilities, but I am standing outside your building. Have been for a very long time. Waiting for you to let me in. I thought I would drop in unannounced. Me being The Hygiene Hunter, I would prefer not to press your communal buzzer. You being a psychic, I thought you would be on top of that. I have some very important questions to ask of you. Do the chefs at the restaurants I frequent always wash their hands properly? What percentage of women who ride in taxis wear low-rise denim? How many people have had to touch your buzzer to be let in?

Still Waiting,

The Hygiene Hunter

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Let's take a closer look, shall we?

Here is the pubic hair.

Does it belong to Santa?

This being July, the Christmas in July exhibition at the Yvon Lambert Gallery in New York is appropriately timed. This whimsical/thought-provoking group show, curated by Simon Castets, is on view until July 31. Appropriately not messing with the title by ending in August.

Of the 31 pieces, I was drawn to Mandala (my mother loves christmas) 2010 by Christian Holstad. In short, a piece of yellow carpet with numerous precious items embedded in it. Oh, how I love carpet! According to the didactic, Mandala is comprised of yellow carpet, wood, vintage Christmas decorations, vintage bulbs, German tinsel, pubic hair, faux Japanese pine, polyester thread, gardening gloves with pvc dots, lint, dirt, pinecones, paint, candy cane residue, rust. The Hygiene Hunter's very own needle in a haystack.

Dear readers, you will be proud to know it took me less than five minutes to locate the lone curly hair that curiously resembles the coloring of that elusive bearded stranger. In speaking to Christian, he told me Mandala is an homage to his mother who, WAIT FOR THIS ... inspects hotel rooms before she will even have her luggage brought up.

I love Christian's mother. Hit.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Better than a sleeping pill.

New mattress. New pillows. New duvet. Can you overdose on clean? I am beginning to think so because I cannot get out of bed. Someone call 911. Think of the shopping, galleries and cafes waiting for me just outside The Mercer Hotel. Prada, I can see you. On second thought ... all of those people in the streets of SoHo do not know what they are missing. Bedding without a history. Hit.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

New, new and new.

New mattress. New pillows. New duvet. Without even asking. Today I worship at the altar of The Mercer Hotel in New York. Hit.