Ask Mar­i­lyn

Albuquerque Journal - Parade - - PERSONALITY PARADE - By Mar­i­lyn vos Sa­vant

Can you get a cold if you're not around other peo­ple or any­thing a sick per­son may have touched? My friends say you can. Are they cor­rect?

—G. Avila, Seat­tle, Wash.

Nope. Al­though cold viruses can sur­vive for a while af­ter a sneeze or a cough, they do not live in­de­pen­dently in the air, ei­ther in­doors or out­doors. So you can take a long, soli­tary hike in a freez­ing rain, then re­turn home to al­ter­nately heat and chill your­self by jump­ing in and out of your back­yard hot tub while the rain turns to snow, and you can still be sure that you will not catch a cold.

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