Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Purging in the bathroom

Moving in together has lots of benefits: on-demand hugs, built-in dinner dates even on weeknights, someone to hold you too close, a sudden acute awareness of how often you fart (which is perhaps more a self-conscious revelation than a benefit) and a whole new world of bathroom products.

When you first pool your bathroom products, it's kind of exciting. How often in your life does your hair have the opportunity to smell like a different tropical fruit every day for a week? Only when you move in together, that's when.

But the choices can overwhelm you faster than stupid at a Huckabee rally. And all those bottles, tubes and dispensers can take over your bathroom pretty quickly. Especially if you're gay men with a compulsion to moisturize. And despite your most valiant bergamot-scented efforts, you won't deplete your inventory to more manageable levels for at least a year. Emphasis on at least.

Since I'm on the topic … and since it's always fun to sneak through people's medicine cabinets … and since I've already taken and uploaded these pictures … I thought I'd take a moment show you our private world o’ cleanliness. Especially now that we've lived together long enough that we can finally close our cabinet doors.

Here's what I face every morning in my fog of shower steam and impending dementia: a bewildering array of self-tanners, wrinkle preventers, band-aids, bulk quantities of antiperspirant and enough sinus medicine to fire up a profitable meth lab. Plus a his ’n’ his set of barely used Nair for Men, which I don't recommend spreading on your skin unless you're looking to play a Law & Order burn victim. The fiancĂ© doesn't seem to have much trouble with it, though. But then again he's immune to my farts, so how could a rub-on chemical burn slow him down? And stop looking for incriminating prescriptions. They're not there. We're kinda boring on the Rx front. Besides, I hid the RU-486 before I took this picture.

Here's the little window ledge in our shower. It sits in front of the frosted window that I still am not completely convinced is preventing everyone in our courtyard from seeing first-hand just how often I wash my butt. Funny story: After I took this picture, I asked the fiancĂ© how often he uses that oppressively florid Dove body wash that's been sitting there since we moved in a year ago. "What oppressively florid Dove body wash?" he asked me. Which should tell you a lot about the scintillating conversations we have when we're not doing fun things like shampooing our thick, luxurious hair. In any case, neither of us knows where the oppressively floral Dove body wash came from, and we can't think of any visitors in the year we've been in our condo who haven't used the shower in the guest bathroom. It's a mystery! Wrapped in an effluvium of flora! Packaged in a tacky blue container! I hate to waste things—even things I don't particularly like—but we were both tired of the faint smell of funeral home that wafted through our shower every time we moved that bottle to get to the stuff behind it. So let's just say the dumpster behind our building now smells refreshingly of jasmine and bougainvillea.

I hated this cheap little apothecary cabinet from the moment we moved in. Then I realized it was the perfect place to display all the little sample bottles of stuff we've acquired but never used because they were hidden in boxes and bags under our sinks and we kept forgetting we had them. Another plus: When I stocked the cabinet I got to revel in my everything-must-face-forward-and-be-grouped-by-brand OCD so all the visitors to our bathroom could see what shameless brand whores we are (key words: H2O+, Bliss, hotel freebies). And it's actually working ("it" being the part about our bergamot-scented efforts to deplete our inventory from paragraph three, not the dubious efforts to impress imaginary bathroom guests from paragraph seven). We are slowly working our way through all those bottles and tubes and dispensers of goo. And we've never looked younger, felt smoother, and smelled more like salad and rainforests in our lives.

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