As much as we all bemoan the loss of the grittier days of New York City, all New Yorkers, at heart, are totally neurotic. Perhaps living in such close proximity to others (and getting coughed on in the subway) is our subconscious way of facing our fears and avoiding therapy. We don't know.
What we do know, however, is that everything in this too-populated place is covered in germs, and we have no choice but to confront them daily. Sure, we roll our eyes at obvious tourists from the Midwest who refuse to grab onto the subway pole at rush hour, but even we admit to having a split second flash of fear whenever we take a grip. We mean, that little Ebola moment we had a few years ago certainly didn't help.
So while the only way to retain our sanity is to push the thought of disgusting microscopic aliens out of our minds as we go about our day, we're still curious: How germ-covered is that subway pole?
Luckily (or not-so-luckily) the muscular heroes over at Men's Health decided to do some research. On a recent episode of their Facebook series, Gross, the mag's Editor-in-Chief used a handheld germ counter to swab some of the most-touched surfaces in the city. The higher the score, the grosser they are.
The good news? Subway poles really aren't that terrible.
The bad news? All that wellness boasting about riding a Citi Bike to work has come to bite you in your well-toned ass.
Check out the scores and stock up on hand sanitizer:
1. Citi Bike handlebar - 1,512
2. Starbucks door handle - 1,090
3. LinkNYC kiosk - 807
4. Taxi handle - 424
5. Grand Central door knob - 45
6. Subway hold bars - 35
[Photo via @anna_echo]