Please Limit Touching

The Bookmark has this delightfully-lettered sign on the end of a shelf in their pen and pencil section:

"Please Limit Touching" hand-lettered sign in The Bookmark, with a cartoon-like drawing of a reaching hand beside,

It’s hard to write this without appearing, well, pervy, but the world of human contact in my life has receded to that offered by haircuts and plasma donations and, frankly, I’ll take what I can get.

This has nothing to do with the sexual realm–I’ve no interest in sex with my phlebotomist–but rather with simple human contact, a need I heretofore never saw as something distinct unto itself, and certainly never felt comfortable writing about.

I started the year off right, when I hugged hundreds of people at Catherine’s Celebration of Life, and the memory of that has buoyed me ever since.

I’m not shopping around for hugs, especially during these times when hugs can kill, just stating something out loud so that I can admit its absence to myself. And, perhaps, to suggest, as my friend Frances is fond of writing, “hold those you love close,” cause you won’t know what you got ‘til it’s gone.