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  #1  
Old 05 February 2013, 10:43 PM
StrangeOne StrangeOne is offline
 
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Australia Party-spoiling germ police deal a blow to birthday cakes

CHILDREN will be banned from blowing candles out on communal birthday cakes and all toys, doorknobs, floors and cushion covers will have to be cleaned daily under strict proposed hygiene rules for childcare unveiled yesterday.

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news...-1226571188892
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  #2  
Old 06 February 2013, 12:38 AM
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It's not a birthday till one kids licks the cake, and the birthday boy/girl spits on it
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  #3  
Old 06 February 2013, 12:50 AM
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Children will not be banned - the guidelines are guidelines not regulations - the sector is not particularly concerned and this is pretty much a beat up from Australian Murdoch's mouthpiece newspaper (think WSJ with less subtlety of approach).

This is from the actual document:
Quote:
The guidance and procedures in Staying healthy represent best practice. Education and care services are strongly encouraged to adopt these practices. However, some services may choose to develop policies that do not follow all of the advice in Staying healthy. For example, some services may have a philosophy of environmental sustainability, and a consequent greater emphasis on considering the resources they use. They may have policies and procedures in place to minimise waste or the use of chemicals. Education and care services that choose not to use the best-practice advice in this document should ensure that their policies and procedures minimise the spread of infection.
Dropbear
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Old 06 February 2013, 08:36 AM
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Fair enough. Those that complain about these measures would be the same that complain more when their child gets the flu.

And I seem to remember a similar hullabaloo when schools made sun hats compulsory. And why are people taking cakes to childcare centres, anyway? There are rules about taking foods that can cause allergic reactions.
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  #5  
Old 06 February 2013, 06:10 PM
Thera Thera is offline
 
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We have birthday cakes for all of our employees here. There is one co-worker who will not eat a cake which has had the candles blown out by someone. She calls it "spitting on the cake."
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Old 06 February 2013, 06:13 PM
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More cake for the rest of you.
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Old 06 February 2013, 06:51 PM
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Just off the cuff here, I would actually encourage this policy for, if I understand the terminology, what we would call licensed child care facilities in the U.S. Or is it state run child care centers, in which case I would encourage it even more. Personally, I wish that individual birthday parties with cake or other sweets in school would go by the wayside. If you want to have a party for your child, do it at home or hosted elsewhere.

FWIW, I am far from a germaphobe, for myself or my own children.
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Old 06 February 2013, 07:39 PM
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My X-sister in law used to put the whole cake in front of her child and let him paw at it before anyone was given a slice. I'd take blowing out the candle over that any day.

Last edited by Beachlife!; 06 February 2013 at 07:56 PM.
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  #9  
Old 06 February 2013, 07:48 PM
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In my preschool (39 years ago) they had a cute fake cake that held a candle. You blew that out rather than the one attached to the treat.
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  #10  
Old 06 February 2013, 07:48 PM
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Quote:
My X-sister in law used to put the cake whole cake in front of her child and let him paw at it before anyone was given a slice. I'd take blowing out the candle over that any day.
My parents did that for my first birthday, but it was a smaller cake and meant only for me. They actually had to put my hand in the cake to get me to understand what I was supposed to do. I got the hang of it pretty quick.
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Old 06 February 2013, 07:52 PM
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That's what I did for my daughter's first birthday. I also didn't frost the cake I gave her to destroy, which simplified the cleanup.
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Old 06 February 2013, 07:53 PM
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Thanks to this thread, I've been reading up on the hygiene customs of the Romanichal people. That got me thinking about Jared Diamond's Guns, Germs, and Steel, specifically the "germ" parts where he writes about how abysmal hygiene practices facilitated a series of plagues in Europe, which in turn conferred immunity on the survivors, which greatly assisted them in kindasorta taking over the world--pretty much everywhere they went, the natives lived a lot cleaner. And it strikes me that, even though we know so much about germs now, we're still so culturally resistant to taking commonsense precautions against the spread of disease. Anyone who's ever watched a preschooler attempt to blow out birthday candles should recognize the soundness of such a policy, yet we're so hung up on our way of doing things that even suggested best practices get us up in arms.

It's really bizarre.
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  #13  
Old 06 February 2013, 08:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thera View Post
My parents did that for my first birthday, but it was a smaller cake and meant only for me. They actually had to put my hand in the cake to get me to understand what I was supposed to do. I got the hang of it pretty quick.
Given the kid their own smaller cake is a common practice which I did for my kids as well. Giving the kid the whole cake is all together different.
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  #14  
Old 07 February 2013, 12:13 AM
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I think it would make sense to give the birthday kid/coworker a cupcake with a candle in it to blow out, then cut the larger cake for everyone else.
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  #15  
Old 07 February 2013, 12:33 AM
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I hadn't really thought about the custom, but now that I do it's kind of grossing me out. Especially with little kids, who are more likely to have a little less control. I may be implementing the cupcake idea for the upcoming little erwins offspring.
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  #16  
Old 07 February 2013, 12:58 AM
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I don't really ever go to parties with kids (my friends who have kids all have kids who are either young enough or old enough not to be involved with cakes in any real way, save for the 'fake cakes' some of you guys do) but I've never really thought about it with parties for adults and while yes, it's pretty gross if I think about it long enough, but I doubt I'll change.

Then again I seldom eat cake in the first place.

That said having a cupcake or something for the candle seems like a really easy middle-road.
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  #17  
Old 07 February 2013, 01:00 AM
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Except if you want to have 10 candles for a 10-year-old, I guess. Cupcake would get a bit crowded at that point....
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  #18  
Old 07 February 2013, 01:20 AM
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Or you get those candles in the shape of numbers.

General comment:
What gets me is the underlying paranoia that drives the "they're banning x - it's political correctness/nanny state madness/ebil gubmint" brigade. Their first reaction is to panic and fret and elevate whatever it is under discussion to the level of holy writ that must never be sullied by change and forever preserved.

Gah - sorry. Rant over.

Dropbear
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  #19  
Old 07 February 2013, 01:21 AM
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Good excuse to have 10 cupcakes.
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  #20  
Old 07 February 2013, 01:23 AM
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Do you need an excuse for multiple cupcakes?

Also you could write the number 10 on in icing.

Dropbear
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