“you finally brought it!” i said, as joseph pulled out something from his backpack. earlier in the week, he challenged me to a game of mario tennis. he plopped the nintendo switch on my desk and stretched his neck combatively.

two other students walked over to see what was going on.

i reached down and grabbed my backpack. 

“let’s play!” joseph shouted as i handed my console to marcos. 

“can’t,” i said, swiveling my chair back towards my computer screen. the class had just finished an exam, and i had grades to input.

“you guys can play,” i told him. the computer science course’s first project is programming a video game, so it seemed appropriate.

at the least, they weren’t playing fortnite.

after a few matches, the students put the systems back in their cases and walked away. marcos went over to the hand sanitizer dispenser near the door. 

moments later, he screamed.

“what is this?” he shouted. a look of absolute helplessness spread over his face as he stared down at his hands. 

“what are you doing?” i asked, annoyed. his hands were slathered in sanitizer that started dripping to the floor. 

“keep rubbing your hands together,” i told him, “it should eventually go away.” i looked back at my computer scrimming, smirking.

“it’s getting worse!” swish-swish-swish. swish-swish-swish. one-two-three, he would rub his hands and then bring them to his face for inspection. swish-swish-swish.

“it’s not going away!”

a growing cloud of foam covered his hands and wrists as if he had put on boxing gloves made of bubbles.

“someone put soap in the sanitizer machine!”