Is qwerty tummy real?

It’s called “qwerty tummy,” the idea that office workers or people like me who do everything around the notebook keyboard are spilling food crumbs that attract mice that then leave their droppings and disease and make people barf.

Qwerty being the first six letters on a keyboard. Get it?

A N.Y. Times word blogger wrote it up today, based on a story that appeared May 12, 2010 in the Daily Mail.

The Royal Society of Chemistry says mice are leaving droppings in computer keyboards as they search for food crumbs in empty offices at night. Their claims come amid a rise in anecdotal evidence suggesting mice are becoming an increasing problem.

One London cleaning firm told them: ‘A woman worker wondered why ‘seeds’ were coming out of her computer keyboard when she typed. She was mystified because she did not eat food at her desk. An investigation showed them to be mice droppings.’

I get asked about these pop safety surveys all the time – someone wants to sample keyboards (left, photo from Daily Mail), or door handles, or money, or lemon wedges or iced tea dispensers and yes, there are bacteria present, but where are the bodies? Where are the sick people from these practices?

I should have taken a picture this morning of the nightly offering held forth by our cats – a dead mouse on the front porch. The cats need to do a much better job scaring off the rabbits from our lettuce patch.