In the pantheon of really bad ideas, motion activated water faucets stand near the top.
Wave your hand beneath them, like a Las Vegas blackjack dealer, and water sprinkles out. A few brief moments without motion and the water shuts off.
What a great way to save water. And the planet. And feel good about ourselves. All at the same time. Good ol’ multitasking.
There will be none of the waste otherwise occurring between when one waves a dry toothbrush and when one wishes to rinse one’s mouth.
Between the hand lathering and the soap rinsing, not a drop of water will find its way to the drain.
But smart though the device may seem, it also seems intentionally designed to yield only cold water.
That’s the water in the pipes between the water heater and the faucet outlet. Which, surprisingly, takes more than a moment to travel from the heat source to the water’s exit point.
That motion sensitive faucets typically produce only cold water, of course, debunks once and for all the awful lie imparted by elementary school teachers all across the nation that only hot water kills germs.
Maybe we don’t like using the word “kills”.
Seems so hostile.
Even though we are, after all, talking about germs.
But, as we today recognize, even enemies can, with patience and nurturing, become friends.
Since the goal of (today’s) relentless hand washing is the eradication of disease-producing germs, shouldn’t the motion activated faucet also be linked to a water heater that ensures temperatures consistent to the murder?
And finally, on a distantly related note, just why is it that all my elementary school teachers invariably had the identical first name: “Mrs.” Must have been confusing in their lunchroom.