I recently did a few things that I never thought I would ever do, but I did them with good reason. The important part is not at all the things that I did but the result of the sequence of events of those things.
Thing 1: I now use body wash. Not a ground-breaking event, I know, but stick with me on this. I was against the concept of body wash for years because it seemed like nothing more than a fancy way for soap companies to suck extra money out of your wallet. Bars of soap are far less expensive and can more easily be applied directly to your body, especially your back, assuming there’s nobody around to help with that. Body wash also causes more trash when you compare that bottle to the paper wrappers soap bars. Considering that I’m both cheap – I mean, “frugal” – and I’m big with making less trash, why would I use body wash? Answer: soap scum. In preparing to sell my house, I had to really do some thorough cleaning. In a shower that’s mostly white, that orangey soap scum really stands out. Thus, I was brought to the realization that body wash does not leave nearly as much soap scum as bars of soap because the body wash originates as liquid, so it will wash down the drain quite easily compared to the solid soap that dries up in the shower, thus leaving a solid residue that has to be scrubbed off.
Thing 2: Turning off the water during a shower. When I was about 15-years old, my father came up with a “brilliant” idea. He wanted me to follow these steps when taking a shower: 1. Get wet, 2. Turn off the water, 3. Soap up, 4. Wash myself, 5. Turn water back on to then rinse. He believed that leaving the water on while scrubbing yourself did two wasteful things: it wasted water and it caused you to use more soap than needed because the wasted water was washing off the soap that you had not even used to scrub yourself. It was annoying because it caused me to have to do extra work and also because I felt guilty defying him when I knew he was right. I defied him consistently, right up until I started using the body wash. The problem was that the liquidy soap was getting rinsed off me too quickly, and I wouldn’t get a chance to really scrub myself. It didn’t really bother me when I was using a 29-cent bar of soap, but you can be certain I would think twice about it with a $3 bottle of wash that lasts about as long as two bars of soap.
These two events sequentially brought me to one of the most disgusting sounds I have ever made.
Because I had never stopped the water when showering, there’s no way I could know what it sounded like when I was rubbing soap around the various locations on my body. Think about what George Carlin called “the artificial fart under the arm.” Now think about that while your hands are wet and soapy. Just wait. Think. Yeah. Hear it now? That’s what I thought. So, I’m all soapy and wet, and now I’m sliding soapy hands all over the place. Other than armpits, I’m not sure I even want to try to name any others because none of them are pleasant to discuss, but I think you get the idea. It was like a fartstorm, all while trying to get clean.
Try it. Get wet, turn off the water, soap up, and then rub those hands in every possible personal space. It’ll be like a chorus of gross. And if it isn’t, then you’re probably not doing it right.