Monday again, another weekend survived, another opportunity to accomplish something and fail, being satisfied with living and imposing one’s own chaos on the larger chaos that is reality and which in the end proves to be all the same.
This morning the podcast was an episode of the CBC’s “Best of Ideas”, this one from March and dealing with the nature of morality. An excellent subject for early in the morning while social reality is still slumbering, or at least not fully awake and active at gym. I have always been intrigued by the admonitions of the establishment – usurious misers that they are – to the members to ‘clean’ the machines after use.
The excuse for this is sanitation and the implied social contract of not sharing illness among the population. The educationalist apparat is especially weak minded about this since their workplaces are a bigger breeding ground of sickness – physical in this instance – than toilets, sewer lines, hospitals, or slaughter houses. So while the fervor of using aerosol spray bottles full of antiseptic (? at least, toxic) solutions (at least when they commence spraying if not at the end,) is a useful signature, which coupled with their inability to have a conversation not inherently too loud and antisocial, for ascertaining, or at least inferring, their identity, the activity is of questionable value.
This does not mean that I belong unflinchingly, joyously in fact, to that cult of Nietzsche that holds that anything that does not kill us makes us stronger and hence we should expose everyone to every possible ill in the search for a broadly resistant gene pool. That theory may have held some substantial weight back before Jenner (and his unsung precursors) but nowadays there is sufficient hope for vaccine to moderate if not disestablish the idea.
Indeed, there are some microbes that cause sickness of such direness that some preventive sanitation is clearly indicated. But this prevention needs be done intelligently, which is a quality that the observant find doubtful in the average educationalist. One of the sad facts of microbiota is that some of the ones most destructive of humans are the least susceptible to the common run of antiseptics. And since any population of bacteria residing on the handlebars of a stationary bicycle or elliptical machine is in competition for survival, spraying with the garden variety antiseptics employed in gyms is often more likely to increase the population of destructive microbes than decrease it. 
So what is the moral thing to do? To spray or not to spray? Since most of the microbes actually live in a layer of biological film – water plus oils and secretions – on the surface (or in the vacancies in foam) of the machines, a better way may be to remove the layer, taking the good with the bad.
But the problem with morals is that they are much more a part of human delusion and programming than any deistic benefice. And as such they can only be morals is all of society agrees to them. Otherwise they are merely a source of disagreement, conflict, and atrocity. Which is what gyms are all too often.
 For those who need the explanation, if you kill off the microbes that are susceptible then that leaves less competition for the microbes that are not susceptible. And since the bad guys are the latter more than the former, you kill off good (not bad) guys and leave a free lunch for the bad guys.