OCD or Omniscient Concept of Design or CDO (in alphabetical order, like it SHOULD be!) is a paranormal ability whereby an individual possesses total knowledge of the intrinsic principles, processes, and design of the order of the known universe. Fear and misunderstanding of this special power has led to it being mislabeled in public society as obsessive-compulsive disorder.
Because it has been largely dismissed as everything from an odd quirk of personality to an impairing mental illness, little is known about the source of this amazing gift. What is known is that the prevalence of Omniscient Concept of Design in the United States is estimated to be between 2 and 3%, although in Japan it is curiously high (70%). Family studies have discovered a 10% prevalence of OCD in first degree relatives, with an additional 8% having a significant but less complete understanding of the "wheels of creation". Additionally, studies of twins have established a 60% concordance rate, leading some to speculate that OCD is a trait likely to occur within people closely related to those within which it has already occurred. Wow. Investigative science hard at work.
A significant number of behavioral scientists have pointed to the continuing presence of obsessive compulsive disorder in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) as proof positive that OCD is an illness, not a talent. But critics of those critics have pointed to the continuing presence of said behavioral scientists in their parents' basements, because they're too cowardly, disorganized, emotionally inept, and devoid of the basic life skills required to survive outside of the nest. So there.
Examples of order
Given the magnitude of creation, it would be difficult to list the rules and order for each facet of the known universe. But, given enough time and server space, this is in fact what this article intends to do. Even if it means sitting at this keyboard and typing 18 hour days through calloused fingers, carpal tunnel syndrome, unwanted bowel movements, and untimely evictions due to unpaid rent due to unemployment, for each second of each minute of each hour of each day of each year for as many years as we all shall live—until this project is completed.
In the home
- In the pantry or cupboard, product labels should always face forward. No exceptions. Products with missing labels should be discarded immediately or donated to the Salvation Army. Identical items should be kept in the same rows and stacks. And be certain that each label is identical. The one offering a chance at a million dollars if you mail in the form on the back of the label is not the same as the one that doesn't mention a contest on it. And for God's sake, don't remove the label and send in the form. Mailboxes have cooties. Fine. OK. IF you absolutely must enter the contest, be certain to discard the can immediately, or donate it to the Salvation Army. And never intermix fruits and vegetables in the same rows. Or make alternating rows. Put one type on one side, and one type on the other. And don't think we forgot about the mailbox, because we didn't. Wash your hands. Start with the left hand, using copious amounts of antibacterial soap, and being absolutely careful to wash both sides, top and bottom, well past the wrist, and get soap between every finger. Then do the right hand. Then rewash the left hand because it touched the right while it was still dirty. Actually, do each hand three times each just to be sure. Maybe five times. Seven if it's keeping you awake at night. Don't forget to use a sterile paper towel to turn off contaminated water knobs or you will recontaminate yourself and need to rewash. Never use hand towels; they carry 432 varieties of bacteria.
- It goes without saying that the proper way to install a new roll of toilet paper is with the flap hanging overhand. This facilitates easy grasping and accurate delivery of the exact number of individual sheets desired. Only idiots install a roll underhand, so the flap is touching the wall. Not only does it impede measured sheet access, it essentially forces you to touch an unsanitary surface—the wall. Walls are basically vertical petri dishes. If you carried an electron microscope everywhere you went (and you should), the things you'd see would make your pubes uncurl. Honest. In any event, it is considered charitable behaviour to check each of the washrooms in each of your friends' houses regularly to ensure that this rule is being observed. If a roll is installed incorrectly, by all means switch it around. But don't touch anything else in the bathroom. You don't know when the last time it was cleaned. Just change the roll and leave immediately. Even if you really have to go. You should have gone at home. That'll teach you. Take a few minutes to do the "Pee Pee Dance" behind closed doors until the urge to urinate subsides. Maybe if you'd remembered to wear your trenchcoat you could have smuggled in some bleach cleanser and a new, still plastic-wrapped toilet brush.
- But for the love of God, never, ever, under any circumstances should you ever enter a public washroom. Even if you really just want to check on the toilet paper rolls. There isn't enough antibacterial soap in the world to purge you of the microbial germs that live in the air of those cesspits. If, God forbid, you should find yourself at a Wal-Mart, in receipt of an urgent call from Number Two and public toilet use is your only option for avoiding a self-initiated raw sewage leak, abide by the example of the Eddie Kaye Thomas character "Paul Finch", and know that this is your penance for shopping at Wal-Mart in the first place. Place 12-18 layers of bathroom tissue in overlapping lengths over all sections where buttock-to-seat proximity is imminent. Germs are able to penetrate one layer of single-ply tissue per second, so prepare to drop your payload and then take off again immediately. Always flush public toilets with your foot and use a baseball-sized wad of tissue to open the stall door. Also, use your foot to press the soap dispenser handle that you know has been touched by thousands of contaminated hands and never cleaned since the date of installation. Catch the soap mid-air on the way down. And never, under any circumstances should you touch the restroom door handle on the way out. Use your foot, use another huge wad of paper, or charge out of the open door when the next sap comes stumbling in. Avoid body collision, because this produces additional contamination.
- Hand washing: Exactly 78.9% of soap bars contain unhealthy levels of bacteria and other organisms, specifically multiple strains of Fecal E. Coli, Steptococcus, Botulism, Slime Molds, Yeast Molds, and a variety of other organisms documented in almost adequate detail in the 2005 edition of "Exhaustive culture analysis of soap bars report no. 9, Edition 114 NIH." (which is outdated as it is 2006, but your new copy of this almost complete 500 page report is currently on order on Amazon.com and on Barnes and Noble, just in case Amazon folds.) To properly wash your hands, you must start out with a clean bar of soap. Take this bar of soap and wash the faucet knobs to properly clean them, and then spray them with alcohol after they have been carefully rinsed exactly three times with water. Now the knobs are clean but the soap is dirty. Turn on the faucets before they become befouled by ambient bacteria. Throw out the soap, but only after switching it between your hands exactly twenty-three times. Using a pair of pliers that have been properly autoclaved, open the plastic wrap and box of a new antibacterial soap. Double check that the faucet is still running. Good. Now with this bar of clean soap, wash your hands, then wash the pliers again... you will need another bar of soap to wash the bar of soap that you just used. After 30 seconds the bar of soap you were using on your hands is now soiled, but it can be washed off. After washing bar number one, place bar number two on an autoclaved dish so it can be used again. Continue washing hands. Now the bar of soap number one is soiled. You must dispose of it, but first you must switch it between your hands exactly twenty three times — or else horrible things will happen. You don't know how, but they will happen. Better to switch the soap back and forth exactly twenty three times than risk the horrible things. Now your hands have been soiled by the soap. Luckily, you can wash your hands with soap bar number two, but soap bar number two must be washed by soap bar number three. I would finish this entry but my hands are dirty after touching this keyboard, I must go wash or terrible things will happen...
- Did you ever see that commercial where that guy is about to jump into bed, but then freezes in mid-air when he realizes that his sheets are dirty, and that sleeping in dirty sheets is like jumping into a pile of your own filth? I did. I must've watched that commercial about 47,797 times. I even videotaped it so I could still watch it after the company quit running those spots on the air. But even before then, I'd sometimes watch the tape. Usually it was in the middle of the night when I really needed to see it, and it was probably being broadcast on some channel somewhere, but I couldn't find it and really couldn't wait any longer, and they were mostly showing those great infomercials. Anyway, it made me sick to my stomach each time I watched it, but I had to watch it, you know? I even started to worry that I might be wearing out my videotape, so I made two dozen copies of it and wrapped them in archival paper and sealed them in a plastic water-tight container and locked them in a safety deposit box at my bank. I check it every Tuesday to make sure it's still there. Or sometimes every day. Anyway, back to the guy and those dirty sheets. Unless you were upside-down at the baby assembly line in heaven, or your mom's intestines were connected to your cranial cavity when you were in the womb—whatever it is that you believe, this isn't a debate about creationism vs. evolution—anyway... Augh! I can't believe I said that. What a putrid and disgusting image. I can't believe I said that! Now I'll be distracted for hours because I can't get that picture out of my mind. I'm so stupid. I'll start again.
- Unless you've got crap for brains, you should absolutely be changing your bed linens each day. No exceptions. Some people think it's okay to have a separate set of linens for each day of the week, but then that means that you've got dirty sheets sitting around on the floor, or worse, in the hamper, festering and reeking and polluting the air with bacteria that's probably only marginally less dangerous than what you'd breathe in at the dump. Though why anyone would want to go there, even just to check the air, I'll never know. If you want to see bears, turn on the TV and watch The Discovery Channel. Just wipe the TV buttons before you touch them. Or get your own personal remote control that no one else is allowed to touch. But you should still wipe it clean even if it's really only you that touches it. Both before and after. Then go wash your hands. And if you want to get sick, forget about breathing in airborne toxins, just cut to the chase and gargle with toilet water. God that's disgusting. I can't believe I just said that. Now I'll be distracted for hours because I can't get that picture out of my mind. I'm so stupid. Why do I always do this? I feel vaguely unclean all over. I need a shower. Yes, again.
In the workplace
- No wall hangings. Especially not those amusingly-apropos "Dilbert" cartoons; the exposed newsprint just attracts floating organisms. Or, if there must be wall hangings, they must be framed, and the frames must match the color of the fabric. Preferably white, so that you can detect particulates before they grow out of control. Germs will float in over the cubicle walls from other cubicles; this must be prevented. Use an "Ionic Breeze" machine - better yet, two, no three Ionic Breeze machines to purify the air. (Don't bother with the traditional filter-based air purifiers; they don't work.) Even then, there could be a power failure; be sure to have a Uninterruptable Power Source (UPS) unit on standby, and keep plenty of filter masks handy. The filter masks should use, at most, 0.01-micron fibers, so forget about those NIOSH-Approved "N95 Disposable Particulate Respirator masks" that people use to avoid SARS. Only chumps buy those. Did you know that they only have a 95% filtration efficiency when subjected to a 03µm MMAD Sodium Chloride particle challenge? No? Question: How many hours a day do you spend reading labels? Answer: Not nearly enough.
- Have at least two mini-vacs on hand, with plenty of spare batteries, to remove settled particulates from the keyboard, the mouse, and anything else that has moving parts. Replace the mousepad at least twice a week; more often if there are visitors. Never use a mechanical mouse. The grime on the insides of those things is absolutely disgusting. Only use an optical mouse or trackball, and even then, clean it with disinfectant as often as possible. Every 15 minutes is probably sufficient. Maybe every 10 minutes. Do not leave soiled coffee cups in the cubicle. Plastic disposable coffee cups with separate holders are safe, but above all, never use a ceramic coffee mug. Styrofoam cups are acceptable in an emergency. And above all, always brew your own coffee, with your own bottled water, in your own pot, which you bring home, every day, to wash in your dishwasher. At least twice.
- Don't even think about it. Bring your own bottled water in from home. Don't store bottles in the communal refrigerator; you don't have any idea what people could be putting in those things. Just keep the bottles in a nice, sterile plastic bag until you need one. And if you run out, just deal with it. Stay away from the water cooler. People like to get into conversations around those things, and the spittle gets all over everything. Things grow in spittle; it's a breeding ground for bio-hazardous organisms. Steer clear. In fact, stay away from people who have just been over there getting water - there could be contact transference. And don't place your cubicle's trash receptacle in such a way that people walking by could throw used paper water cups in it. Keep it hidden. And empty it every few minutes, just in case. But not anywhere near the water cooler.
- This is the worst-case scenario. Try to avoid being invited to meetings if you can, but if you can't get out of it, at least wear one of those handy battery-operated miniature air purification units around your neck to catch some of the microbes emanating off of the disgusting carcasses of your sweaty drooling co-workers with their hordes of little children who bring all sorts of disease back from their schools and day care centers and bring it right into the conference room for you to absorb as if you didn't already have enough problems to deal with just being in the same building with them. Better yet, two battery-powered miniature air purification units plus the filter mask. Don't take chances. Try to sit in the corner, as close to the air-duct register as possible. Make sure you can do this by arriving for the meeting at least 15 minutes early. Use the advance time to arrange the chairs so that no one will be sitting within six feet of you. Try to remain calm as you prepare for the arrival of foreigners into your airspace, but do not breathe deeply. Button your shirt sleeves and tighten your tie to stop invasive airborne microbes, don't touch anything or pick anything up unless it's absolutely necessary, and even then, use a paper towel. And above all, don't even look at the doughnut tray! You might as well pop a cyanide pill. Better yet, two cyanide pills. Three, just to be sure, and wash your hands first. Make sure the pills are from a new bottle as well. Who knows what could get in once the seal is broken.
Leaving the House
- Make sure all lights are off. Check each room twice, no, three times, to make sure you didn’t miss any.
- Lock the doors. Test the doorknobs to see if they turn when locked. They’re jiggling a little, aren’t they? AREN’T THEY?! Unlock the doors. Lock them again. Test them again. Repeat four times.
- Clean the doorknobs. Test how clean they are. Clean them again. Repeat four times. Maybe five, just to be sure.
- Make sure all appliances such as toasters and ovens are turned off and unplugged, to prevent a fire from breaking out while you’re away. Even if the dials are seemingly pointing to Off, turn them in that direction more, past Off if possible. When unplugging it, do not pull on the cord because you can get shocked, and do not touch the wall, it's a vertical petri dish, remember? Carefully wrap the cord in loops of approximatly 4" diameter. Get out those twisty ties and tie up the cords. Make sure you are using a new twisty tie, since older ones look bad and they are less sanitary. Put the tied up cord into a plastic baggie, to help keep the cord sterile. Then wash your hands.
- After stepping out of the house and testing the door to see if it’s locked behind you, walk five or six circuits around the house to ensure no lights are on when viewed from the outside, and that doors and windows are properly closed. Now try prying them open to make certain. Continue prying until they snap open (use a brick if all else fails), then go back inside the house and shut them close again. Repeat as necessary.
In The Car
- When driving, if you pass over a bump, check your mirrors to make sure you didn’t run over anything, even if it looked like a bump. In fact, mirrors have blind spots, so you’d better turn around and check the road and roadside for anyone who’s been run over. When satisfied there is no one around, turn around and head back the way you were going. Wait! What was that bump?...
- When parking, if you are not parallel with, and equidistant to, the lines on each side of the spot, back up and pull in again. Don’t bother using the side mirrors, they actually have disclaimers on them about how unreliable they are! Open your door and look at the line as you drive in and out of the spot. In and out. In and out. When your positioning seems adequate, put the car in Park, get out, and walk around the car, appraising both the car’s position with respect to the lines, but also the distance from the curb to the front wheels. Get back in and correct the car’s position until it’s just right.
- When getting out of the car, put The Club on your steering wheel, The Boot on your back-left tire, and lock the doors. Look in through the windows to make sure the locks on the opposing doors are down. Check from the other side to look at the driver’s side doors. Test the doors. Locked? Good.
On a Train or a Plane or a Bus
- Obviously public transport is to be avoided whenever possible. Unfortunately, the demands of life may eventually require that you ride on a train, plane, or (shudder) the bus. Let's consider a likely scenario and your options in responding to it.
- When it comes to picking a seat, you are essentially in a damned-if-you-do, damned-if-you-don’t situation. Should you pick the window seat, and risk being pinned between the window with various greasy fingerprints and nose-smears and dried sneeze-spray droplets on it, and some overweight, sweaty guy in the aisle seat who looks at you when he talks to you, and he’s only 1 foot away from your face for God’s sake, and you can already imagine the spittle flying from HIS FAT MOUTH WHEN HIS LIPS FLAP OH GOD NO. Or, should you take the aisle seat, and risk having that fat slob squeeze past you in his balloon pants every time he needs to get in and out of his seat and WHAT IS WRONG WITH HIS BLADDER WHY IS HE DOING THIS TO ME.
- If you are on a train or plane, pray to whatever deity you worship that you don't need to use the bathroom. So cramped you can feel the germs reaching out from the walls to touch you. The toilet simply a seat with a hole leading to… where?, and it’s still warm from the last person’s ass. There are fewer places more retch-inducingly disgusting than a toilet in a public transport vehicle. And how many times has that fat guy sat on it? You may be able to piss from a distance (if you're a girl, you're SOL at this point), and flush the toilet with the bottom of your shoe. The sink is decent enough, and there’s a little soap left in the soap dispenser that has a dried, bluish soap-sicle hanging from it -- but where is the paper towel? There’s no paper towel! Should you dry your hands on your pants, thus negating the point of washing them? The fat guy was just brushing against those pants! Or leave them wet so that every single germ that your hands encounter gloms on like flies on stink? You opt to blow on your hands for five minutes until they are dry. You then spend a couple light-headed minutes trying not to pass out so you don't lean on the wall. Then you realize that you can’t touch that slidelock on the door with your bare, newly-washed, virgin hands. Lacking your customary paper-towel to use as a hand-condom, you are forced to use your personal handkerchief, thus requiring that when you are finished using it to open the door, you must stash it in your plastic baggie and wash it thoroughly when you get home. Better yet, burn it. Good thing you brought six of them.
OCD stricken famous people
House M.D. has random urges to do things and used his drug addiction as an excuse. "Bros before Hoes". Oh wait, my bad, I'm sorry, that is offensive.
Monk, definitely. Yeah, he's an excellent cop. He may not be autistic or on drugs, but hey now, he's a neat freak and wears gloves or masks, and gets easily distracted by very tiny details. How's that for a clever police detective? GO AFTER THAT DIRTBAG, but don't carry your antibacterial soap dispenser, god please!
Howard Stern is an actual human being who blurts out his trials with OCD, just to have something to talk about on his radio show. Stern is also a follower of Transcendental Meditation, a religious practice that ironically requires one to recite, vocally or mentally, thousands upon thousands of mantras in repetitive fashion, over and over, like a 24/7 lifetime OCD episode.
Roberto Carlos Braga has OCD. He is in fact, very superstitious, to the point where he can't even say the word 'hell' because he thinks something bad might happen. Also, he is obsessed with sex, religion, his dead wife, and did I mention sex?