a showerly basis
(originally posted 3/6/2020)
Standing in the shower, all soaped up, when I hear my cell phone ringing.
Do I answer it? Is it worth it?
Standing there thinking of all the wonderful news that could be waiting on the end of the other line.
Or the horrible news.
There would be hasty drying and inevitable dripping involved. Could I even reach it in time?
Maybe it’s a wrong number… and what exactly do I mean by the word ‘wrong’?
I met my first girlfriend because of a wrong number. She explained that she wasn’t who I was looking for and I said “Not so fast…”
We talked and then we went to a movie and then she became the first girl who allowed me to experience what “third base” was. I might be using quotation marks ‘wrong’, especially right there where I actually meant wrong, but previously, and ironically, I was making a holistic point about the word ‘wrong.’
I used a double quotation mark when talking about “third base” because I was young and inexperienced and it was a big deal at the time. If there was such a thing as a triple quotation mark I would have certainly inserted it.
Is it a coincidence I used the word ‘inserted’? If not, should it have been “inserted?”
I tend to use the word ‘holistic’ whenever I can’t actually make the point I’d set out to make so instead I hope I made the point you needed me to make.
Standing in a shower is the perfect spot to wrestle with these important issues. All the while my phone sings its little song and what little shampoo was left in the bottle continues its tortuous climb down the side of the bottle. It was empty three showers ago but I keep forgetting to buy more so I turn it upside down as soon as I enter the shower and only ten or fifteen minutes later enough has succumbed to the forces of gravity to allow me to proceed with the head-washing festivities.
What would I consider good news? A call telling me that I’ve suddenly come into a large fortune.
And bad news? Perhaps a family member dying.
Or both. Is it ‘wrong’ to imagine that a long-lost relative on the other side of the world died peacefully in his or her sleep and left a massive estate to me?
With this newfound wealth would I still have the shampoo problem I now face on a showerly basis? That question alone could keep me in the shower til my hands get all pruney.
What if it’s the girl from the ‘wrong’ number all those years ago? Would I be flattered or nervous that she tracked me down after all this time? Could it be I’m better at “third base” than I am at fourth and fifth? With so much water under the bridge I wonder if she could even pick me out of a lineup. I find myself hoping she could. It only seems fair that I know what it’s like to get fingered.
What if, against all odds, she actually dialed me by mistake?
“Is Gary there?”
“No. This is Lance.”
“No way” followed by the unmistakable sound of a girl falling over unconscious.
I finally have enough shampoo in my hand so I apply it and wonder to myself if there is, in fact, a sound that could not be mistaken for anything else but a girl passing out. Am I just lazy in my thoughts or does this sound exist? Would I make this very sound if I heard a long-lost relative on the other side of the world died peacefully in his or her sleep and left a massive estate to me?
Why do we shower? To get clean.
Why did I share all this nonsense? To come clean.
And, after all, I never invited you into my shower in the first place.
“Not so fast…” I hear you say, “Fifth base?”