2012: A newfound passion
Let it be known! The big bedroom makeover of 2012 sparked a new passion in me never before witnessed by family or friends: The passion to clean, purge, and organize. To those who have seen me plucking a pair of pants off my bathroom floor, wearing them to dinner, spilling lasagna on my lap and then EATING THE LASAGNA OFF THE DIRTY TOILET FLOOR PANTS- BEHOLD! To those who have wondered about strange smells emanating from my purse-WITNESS! To all of my dinner guests who have had to surreptitiously re-wash entire sets of dishes I set out for them-TESTIFY!
With shame and disgust as my guiding stars, I set out to methodically clean and reorganize my ENTIRE HOUSE, starting first with the bathroom.
For those still in denial over how gross I am, here’s a testimonial about my bathroom, from Adriana:
For as long as I’ve known Arlene I was a little scared to sit on her toilet when using the facilities at her house. I mean, I can always wash my hands with iodine if I touch something unexpected in the salon or kitchen, but how am I supposed to sanitize my chocha & bung if a septic army crawls out from under her turlet seat and invades my bits?!?! An immediate full-on bath isn’t an option. I’ve seen her shower stall and I believe it’s in cahoots with the commode.
The first step in my bathroom adventure was the gutting every single item from my cabinets and shelves, and placing them on my bed to be sorted into individual toss/keep/goodwill piles–yes, motherfuckers: every half- empty vitamin bottle–every rusty bobby pin, every leaking tube of neosporin, every capless stick of lipbalm was layed out next to my dozing cat.
Dollar Store Douche
About four years ago, I was in the dollar store on 7th and Market, and I spied an item on the shelves that enraptures me to this day: A DOUCHE KIT. It was love at first sight. My brain immediately began to hemorrhage with so many questions….First of all, DOES ANYONE ACTUALLY DOUCHE ANYMORE? Haven’t we all learned that vaginas come equipped with their own internal janitorial staff, and to mess with their delicate flora can result in a raging yeast infection? Second of all, WHAT UNSAVORY SEX ACT WOULD YOU HAVE TO DO to warrant a dollar store douche? A corn weevil gangbang? Mudfisting? Dumpsterlingus? Assuming that you spent an evening shotgunning ketamine in a gas station bathroom, and woke up straddling a dead horse, COULDN’T YOU JUST TAKE A HOT SHOWER?
The more I stared at the box, the more I knew I just had to buy it. It needed to be part of my life somehow in ways I didn’t understand. And so, I plopped down my dollar on the counter, and took my new friend home. I placed it on my desk and stared intently at the box. As I stared, more questions began to bloom: Who was the airbrushed model on the cover? Either they’ve been using the same photo from 1973 to sell douche (I mean..aren’t there any retired actresses who can be the new face of the natureplex douche kit-JULIE DELPY I’M LOOKING AT YOU) (holy shit maybe it IS julie delpy) . The alternative is this box of douche WAS ACTUALLY ABOUT 20 YEARS EXPIRED. Also, note the name of the manufacturer: “Natureplex.” Are you kidding me??? I’d LOVE to go to the natureplex! Sounds dreamy. I imagine it as a huge bio-dome full of woodland creatures, mossy glens, endless starry skies, and glittering rainbow rivers of douchewater, tended to by airbrushed nymphs who look like Julie Delpy. Yessss.
“What are you going to do with that douche, anyway?” Asked a friend, noticing it still sitting on my desk after two weeks.
I didn’t know. For awhile, I flirted with the idea of turning on my video camera and doing a live televised douching–in the spirit of Geraldo Rivera getting butt fat injected into his face on his show a million years ago. After all, I’d never douched before! The whole thing would be a joyous disaster from beginning to end-sure to please one and all. “Who is this woman willing to put her vagina on the line for entertainment?” people would say. “Let’s give her lots of money!” Of course, there would be a follow-up show all about my raging yeast infection, and searching in the dollar store for a healing salve.
After the novelty wore off, however, I put the douche kit in the cabinet below my sink with all the other chaos and noise. And then, when I finally cleaned my bathroom, I decided against throwing it away. Instead, I put it in the back of my cabinet for reasons I did not understand.
Then I began to scrub the living shit out of my shower stall. I emptied bucket after bucket of filthy water, feeling like I was cleaning both the bathroom and my soul somehow.
“Still on this cleaning kick?” asked my dickhead roommate, poking his head in the bathroom.
“Kick? I’m never stopping,” I said. “This is my new religion.”
“Yeah, right. We’ll see.”
BEER IN THE SHOWER
Is there anything more deeply refreshing than drinking a cold beer in a hot shower? Think of it like a full cleansing, inside and out. While the suds roll off your body, a sudsy stream of alcohol disinfects and purifies your insides. When you emerge, you are extra super clean!!
Unfortunately, after my extra clean evenings, I’d just leave the empties on the floor of my shower–creating a serious trip hazard. Were there ever to be an earthquake while showering, I’d would likely be found with shards of glass lodged in my body, resembling a craft project done by a tweaker on day one at the recovery center.
“Yeah, I’m guessing she was already dead before the quake” the coroners would say. “Jesus, can anyone drink this much beer in one sitting and survive? Man this bathroom is filthy, let’s take the body and get the fuck out of here. I think I just saw a bug crawling out of an old cheetoh.”
Which brings us to the present: 2015
Even though my dickhead roommate at the time thought my obsession with cleaning was only a phase, I have since proven him wrong over and over again. (And also kicked him out for being a dick) and kept up a regular cleaning schedule. While I am far too distractible by shiny things to be a full-on anal retent like Julie or Adriana, I now make time to keep things from getting out of hand.
Though I’ve dutifully kept the toilet from growing mushrooms, I have always felt like my bathroom was missing something. I spend lots of time in there. I also have guests sometimes. It’s a nice thing to do, to think of other people and the experiences they are having in your bathroom. It’s one thing to poop, it’s another thing to poop and ponder something.
Anyway, remember the dollar store douche? I have kept it all these years–in the back of my cabinet below the sink. Once a year, I purge the sink cabinet, and I am once again confronted with the douche kit, and EACH TIME I PUT IT RIGHT BACK IN THE CABINET. Why do I hold onto it??
So, I decided to make the boldest executive decision of my life: Put the dollar store douche ON DISPLAY in my bathroom as an object of curiosity. This will force each person who enters to wonder about my intimate life. Does she do unsavory things? Make dildos out of dog turds? Perhaps they too will become lost in a reverie about the natureplex.
So here it is, right next to my razors y’all! Front and center!
I also decided to put up a framed picture, above the toilet. Each time I use the toilet now, I look at it, and repeat this phrase:
Another fun fact–In the last year or so, I started learning how to accessorize and wear jewelry. A huge step for someone who should not be allowed anywhere near jewelry or tiny precious things because of the mysterious vortex that surrounds me. Earrings, bracelets, necklaces, newborn babies, all seem to get sucked into it. “I just bought these earrings and already one is gone. WHERE DO THE THINGS GO?”
I thought it would help to have my jewelry–y’know– organized in some way, instead of in a tangled mass of sparkles and chains. So I procured this little number from Walgreens, and doctored it up with some russian criminal tattoo greeting cards I had laying around.
And here are some succulents in my bathroom window that will surely die because I have the black thumb of doom. One of them is a BUTT PLANT. (which will apparently grow a tiny flower out of its crack)
And finally, my collection of cheap eyeglasses–one in every color. Arranged neatly on tiny hooks, instead of flung haphazardly about and getting scratched to hell.
And thus concludes my bathroom makeover! Hey, if you’re ever in Oakland and gotta pee or number two (or douche!) look me up! I’ve officially got the funnest bathroom in Rockridge.