|The soap that won't die.|
Have you ever completely used up a bar of soap? Just as you finished lathering your hands you noticed that there was nothing left to put back in the soap dish? Has that ever happened to you?
Of course not. A complete soap-dissolving experience has only been reported by two people in unrelated incidents in Latvia. That was back in the spring of ’78. I’m pretty sure they were lying.
I do not believe it possible for a bar of soap to completely dissolve during a washing. I’m in the process of substantiating that theory in the weeks and months ahead. In a green soap dish by the sink in the bathroom over yonder, I’ve placed a thin sliver of honey almond, scented soap that has been with me for… let’s just say a long time.
It started out a giant white bar that Kay picked up at a Dollar Store clone. The large bar started out at the foot of our bed. Kay and I keep soap in bed with us to stave off leg cramps. There is no scientific reason found why soap would stop cramps, but it does. It does for Kay and me. And, for the thousands of others who believe in fairy dust.
The anti-cramping qualities of soap tend to decline after two, three months. Been my experience. After the bar became superfluous to cramps, I moved it to my shower. Used it till it wore down to about quarter inch thickness. At that point my manly hands couldn’t keep control of it, so it started jumping from tmy gripe and hitting the floor. I don’t like to use soap that’s visited my shower floor. Nor will I eat most foods that end up there. Dr. Oz is with me on this one.
Anyway, after several weeks’ use, that thin sliver of soap shows no sign of dissipating. In fact, it appears to be growing. And, I’m sick of it. I so want to get out a fresh bar, but noooo. I had to start this stupid soap experiment. I blame it on those two Latvians.
Truth is, I don’t enjoy using up the last of stuff. I don’t reach for the last cookie in the jar, last eggroll under the sunlamp, or last french fry off a guest’s plate. Nor do I use the last bit of toothpaste in a tube.
A lot of this came from my childhood. Mom wouldn’t let any of her kids throwaway the last of anything. We weren’t wise enough to recognize true emptiness. We’d squeeze on a toothpaste tube till Mom deemed it okay to toss.
And cereal? We couldn’t open a new box till Mom inspected the old one for crumbs. I absolutely hate the dregs of Grape Nut Flakes. I’d beg Mom to make Jill eat ‘em. “No, Mark! You touched the box first!”
As you may have noticed, I’m not a child anymore. I’m now old enough to make wise decisions about emptiness. A peanut butter jar with glumps hiding in places that only a camel’s tongue could salvage -- is empty. I can only say that now, ‘cause Mom is not here to pull my hair… nor is my hair here.
Oh the things I’ve tossed since adulthood. I’ve been known to toss the last pickle from a giant jar, the last quarter-inch of milk in a gallon jug and a quarter-full squirt bottle of ketchup. If you can’t put ketchup on something without the dispenser making crude noises, it’s time to toss the thing. I’ve even asked waitresses for a non-flatulent-sounding dispensers.
And speaking of gift cards. When have you ever completely used up one of those --- to the penny? Without throwing in some of your own cash? Even the two Lats won’t lie about that one.
Kay and I used a gift card at a remote-eating establishment last week. We were not likely to revisit so after the guy handed Kay back the card, he told her that there was still $1.01 remaining, she smiled and handed it to the customer behind her.
I was so proud of her that I nearly wept. Kay knew that storing a card with $1.01 balance on it would cost her hours in purse search-time. Finding any small object in Kay’s purse is like finding a tap-dancing junebug on the dirt floor of a chicken coop. The thing gets ingested upon arrival.
Some things just need to go before their time. Not people or pets, but things. Grape jelly, pencil erasers, car wax… Who has the patience to wait these things out?
Me? I’ll give it three more days and then I’m chunking that stupid soap. I’m not lying, the thing is growing.
You can reach Mark at firstname.lastname@example.org