#199 "A Lonely Man Is More Likely To"
During the first 9 years of my life, my family
didn't have a shower—just a big tub with gnarled feet. It's a safe
bet to assume that the tub contributed to the development of a vivid
imagination, and if we had just a shower, my life would have turned
out differently. Taking baths back then was more about face cloth
blob monsters, Ivory soap boats, and sea battles. I must have come
out of the bath clean, but I have no memories of the hygiene
part...only the play. After moving to a house with a shower, I don't
think I ever took another bath.
Showers are an in-and-out, wash this, then that,
then that, then this, and in the same order every time kind of
experience. My mind still wanders, but in a different way. Instead of
active imagination, my mind runs through things that have to get done
or the latest thing I happen to be worrying about. It's more like
mental work than an imaginary journey. Once in awhile, I'll get a
little insight or solve a problem in the shower, but I wouldn't call
it fun. Often, because I'm so lost in thought, I can't remember if I
completed all the steps in the shower process. Did I wash my hair?
Did I wash my back? For some reason, I never forget having washed the
naughty bits, no matter how lost I was in the minutia of my life.
Is a lonely man more likely to take a shower or a bath? I
think if the isolation goes on long enough, he is less likely to take
either, thus extending the lonely period by months or years. During
one of my lonely decades, I thought I heard at least a few women
whisper behind my back, "he smells lonely." Perhaps, women
can smell desperation, or maybe my hygiene had taken a back seat to
beer and garlic fries. In accordance with my mental habit of changing
and rearranging the past to make myself feel better, I think I was
always squeaky clean and there is actually a pheromone of bereftness
that the opposite sex can smell a kilometer away.
Someday, showers will be an ancient technology and we'll all just
step through a full-body clean-beam, or our skin will have been
genetically modified to either self-clean or just never emit an odor.
Whatever the case, bath battles and busy-minded showers will be a thing
of the past. The only real thinking or imagination left going on in a
bathroom will be when we're sitting on the throne, if they still
exist, and the EvapoPoo® Colon-Implanted Vaporizer hasn't yet been
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Crusted Salt comics by Jimmy Brunelle