Thursday, February 12, 2009

Hanky Panky?

What ever happened to the handkerchief? I remember my grandparents always had their hanky. Tissues? Bah, just whip out that old piece of cloth, blow, wipe, and put it back in your pocket. My dad always carried a colored bandana when we would work outside, or when we went camping. I can't tell you how many times that piece of cloth saved me. Sniffles? Blow your nose. Cut or scrape? Wipe off the blood and tie it for a compression bandage.

I was in a meeting at work a few weeks ago and someone was laughing because they saw someone use a plain white hanky. They stopped laughing when I pulled mine out and began cleaning my glasses. I admit it, I carry handkerchiefs and bandanas. Throughout the week and at church, I have a hanky. Working outside or in the basement, camping/hunting/fishing, I carry a bandana. (Bandanas are larger than handkerchiefs and are colored.) Bandanas are better for not showing blood and are just doggon useful. Need to wipe your hands after baiting your hook? There ya go.

When did it become "better" to use a disposable piece of tissue paper to blow your nose and then throw it away? Is it a time thing, an image thing, a money thing, what?

Time? Do people think that it takes too much time to clean and keep track of your hankies. You just toss them in your washing maching with other things. They don't need a special load just for themselves or anything.
Money? You can get a pack of 6 handkerchiefs for 2-3 bucks and you can find bandanas at the dollar store most of the time. What does a box of tissues cost? They were $1.24 a box at wally world the other day, and that was for the generic brand!
Image? Is it uncool to carry a handkerchief? So? I don't really care what other people think of me. Scratch that, reverse it. I really don't care what other people think of me. You want people to think you are cool, so you will use tissues instead of a handkerchief? Heck, how many celebrities, polititians, etc. do you see wear a suit with a pocket square? Those are hankies!!!

Hankies are better for the environment, too? You aren't using trees and creating waste when you use them. They don't take much to wash out. Heck, I use my handkerchiefs throughout the week and then put them in the wash over the weekend. Extra cost? 1-2 cups of water in the washing machine. whoop-di-doo

Ahh, but the big one. It is "unsanitary"! Oh really? Yet our forefathers carried them will no ill effects. People do carry them and I would wager that those people don't get ill any more than anyone else. (I would even put forth the contention that they get sick less since they aren't touching tissue boxes that sick people are touching, but I don't have any proof of that) This idea of things must be perfectly clean and sanitary is ... well, that will be a topic for another day. Let's just say that if you are blowing your nose in your hanky and you put it in your pocket, you aren't going to make yourself get dysentery.

I guess I just don't get it. How about this... "Save the trees, use hankies"? Man, I should be in marketing, no?


Chiot's Run said...

Interesting, I've considered making hankies. I switched to rags instead of paper towels and I'm making small cloths to use instead of cotton balls for cosmetic needs. I may make a hankie and give it a shot.

Phelan said...

We use them here.

HermitJim said...

It just makes perfect sense to me to use a bandana or hanky instead of tissues...but then, what do I know?

I'm just a backwoods, down to earth, frugal, and practical country boy! BTW, so are the folks I hang with!

Good post, FG...

Nancy said...

I started using handkerchiefs again a few years ago. Some I've made (usually embroidered, and sometimes with crocheted edgings), and others I was lucky enough to inherit from my mom and grandma. Besides saving trees and money, they're more genteel.

I save bandannas for hiking, using them for sweatbands, cleaning/drying, first aid, and impromptu bags (berries, anyone?). I try to keep it reasonably clean, so if I need to blow my nose, I'll look for a leaf to do it on, or just use my fingers, then wash them off. I'm not sure that squares with my "genteel" comment above, but whatever.... ;-)


FarmerGeek said...

Everyone, thanks for stopping by!

Glad to know I'm not the only one out there using these "old-fashioned" thing-a-ma-bobs. :-)

I appreciate the comments and the look into how you all do things.

Thank ye much!

Pampered Mom said...

We love hankies! We own a combination of vintage one's I've purchased at flea markets and antique malls for super cheap. I've also made a number of our own from simple squares of flannel with the edges turned and sewn.

Angelena said...

What a great post. I too am a huge hankie/ bandanna fan.

I use the hankies when I am out and about and the bandannas here on the farm. One of my favorite uses is to wet one and tie it around your neck or head while working in the sun. Doesn't make for a very feminine picture, but it sure does cool a person off!

alices said...

Handkerchiefs are so much softer, gentler! When I have a bad cold, with tissues my nose would get raw from all the blowing and wiping. Not with handkerchiefs!