Bacteria

bacteria


I lose things all the time. In the office, it’s usually my coffee cup. I bought two identical cups, just so that I could lose one and not disrupt my routine.

 

 

One of them disappeared about two months ago, but, just the other day, I found it.

 

 

O children it was horrible. There’d been a little coffee in the cup, which dried and bred some kind of horrible fungus / bacterial stew. There were odd geometric structures at the bottom of the cup that looked like something out of a science fiction novel.

 

 

When I tried to rinse out the cup, the bacterial remains not only stayed put, but they stayed dry: they repelled water as if they were made of wax. Not even hot water made a difference. Detergent wetted them a little, but not much.

 

 

Finally I filled the cup with rubbing alcohol and put it aside.

 

 

Who knows what happened in that cup? Maybe whole bacterial / fungal civilizations lived and died and fought and loved. Maybe – eep! – they’re still there, wearing microscopic scuba gear and zipping through their new alcohol sea.

 

 

I don’t know.

 

 

Hmm.  Even if I ever get it clean, do you think I’ll ever have the nerve to drink out of that cup again?

 

 

And does anyone out there own an autoclave?


 

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About Loren Williams
Gay, partnered, living in Providence, working at a local university. Loves: books, movies, TV. Comments and recriminations can be sent to futureworld@cox.net.

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