Towels and Conversations

In my first year of college, whenever I’d have an evening shower, I usually would end up down the hall afterward.  The social and clearly labeled “extrovert” end of the hall was always booming when the girls were in, and I always would go down to check in when I heard the chatter.  (I had been assigned the introvert end of the hallway, and, somewhat ironically, I was the only one in the hallway who knew everyone else.  I just like to get to know the people around me, and so college was no exception to that.)  This meant that, come evening time on weekdays, I would spend some portion of the time down the hall, socializing, so to speak.

And, as mentioned, this included the time immediately following my evening showers.  And so, I would be hanging out down the hall, hair wrapped in one towel and body in another, both holding tightly, as though sewn into place.  Totally normal for me.

One night, one of the most outgoing girls asked me about how on Earth I can be so comfortable in just a towel… Wasn’t I worried it would fall off?… Or that I was naked underneath???  No, not at all, I told her.  And I explained why I wasn’t.  First, we were all girls, so I saw no issue anyway (though I had no intention of anyone seeing anything under the towel).  Secondly, I grew up with older sisters who had seemed to spend a third of their time at home (when in college) walking around in a towel or two, and so it was very normal for me.  And, from a very young age, I had learned their tricks of how to make the towel stay in place, and, naturally, I had mastered it by college.  So, it never seemed dangerous for me to be hanging out down the hall  – this was after the curfew when boys had already been kicked out, mind you – in a towel.  It was like hanging out in almost any other clothing.

She had trouble believing that the towel was stuck, and so I even did a little shaking around to show how it wouldn’t fall off.  Nevertheless, she still was terrified of ever doing such a thing herself, and I was amazed that this towel tying trick wasn’t common knowledge or part of common use.  I think I even showed them right then and there how I tied the towel (without opening it, of course).  These were the girls who talked about just about everything with one another, quite openly, and yet they were somehow terrified at the thought of showing their bodies to one another.  I still have a certain shyness about my body, but, in certain contexts, it’s very so what to me.  Like in onsen, the Japanese hot baths, it is absolutely no big deal to show my body and to see other women’s bodies.  And in theatre, for costume changes, it happens sometimes… oh, well… it’s no issue.  It just happens.

To this day – last time was Friday evening – I still walk around in my towel and chat comfortably with people after I shower.  My high school ‘big sister’ was known for always saying, in response to a compliment about her clothing, “I’m naked under this.”  The initial shock always wore away when, after a few moments of consideration, the listener realized that we all were naked underneath whatever outfit we were wearing – that’s kind of how it works when you put something on in the first place.  For me, there is little difference between clothing and a towel.  Plenty of people regularly don’t wear underwear, and men don’t wear bras, so we’re just as naked under a towel as we are under most clothing.  (It’s just what in our minds that messes with us and makes us uncomfortable.)  That’s why, even when I’d shower in college, and a guy would be in the hallway when I was heading back to my room in just a towel, I was unconcerned.  I’d even talk with them, if I knew them.  It seems that, if they were concerned about talking with me, they could always excuse themselves and leave.  That’s what my friends and I would do if we had an issue with a guy in only a towel.  (But that really isn’t much of an issue to me, mostly too due to my upbringing with older siblings.)

(I somehow feel harsh or demanding with all of that…, but I didn’t mean to be; not in the least.  People can always do as they prefer – I’m just sharing why I am so comfortable in such a silly situation, and why I see it a totally normal, despite its being totally awkward for plenty of people.  I mean, my ukulele teacher is someone I met when we both were bathing in an onsen, naked, of course.) 😛

Post-a-day 2018

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Better at the same

While showering tonight, I was thinking about – isn’t it great how some of our best thinkings come from shower time? – the idea of doing things better.  I feel that everyone seems to be concerned about doing this or that better than everyone else all the time.  And aren’t those people all just doing the same things?  Aren’t they all trying to do better at the same things that everyone else is doing?  I feel like I’m always looking at what everyone else is doing, and trying to figure out something to do that’s not that.  They’re all going this way, so I’m interested in going that way.  Like if everyone is concerned about picking and discussing their favorite dessert food, I’m over yonder, pondering what it’s like to be a tree, possibly even talking to one, asking it questions.  That might not be the best example, but I think it’s still a valid one – I’m always looking for something different, especially when it feels like everything is so the same.  Sure, I’m still thinking about doing better at what I do and being better at who I am.  But I’m usually looking to do that by doing something different… and isn’t that what innovation – and successful inventions – is all about?

I’m not so sure I’ve communicated what I’d wanted to communicate, but I’m really sleepy right now, so I kind of don’t mind (slash I can’t even really focus on the text to see if I spelled it all correctly, anyway, let alone to verify that it is all stellar-ly expressed).  Here’s to wishing you a happy, holy, healthy life, wherever, whenever, and whoever you may be.  Cheers  🙂

Post-a-day 2018

Snuggles

One of my favorite feelings is what ensues whenever I wrap myself up in towels – one for my hair and a big one for my body – after a warm shower in a cool room, and I collapse sideways onto the bed.

After a while spent snuggling in my towel in the bed, the towel in my hair comes apart, my hair falling, flowing, rolling out of it onto the bed in spurts as I roll onto my back.

And I just rest there for a while, in a place of bliss, nowhere to go and nothing to do but dry slowly from the shower and relax.

And that’s what I do.

Post-a-day 2018

Singing, Showering, and liking you better…

Today, I sent a message to my best friend that read, “For some reason, I regularly think about messaging you when I go to the bathroom”

Her response was prompt and simple.  “Lol,” followed by, “You like me so much better when youre naked”

“Duh,” was my casual response.

You see, the whole thing started back in college.  Freshman year, I was Skype-ing with Christine one day, probably early morning.  I had gone into the common room to chat with her, but, since we were in an all-girls dormitory, and it was too early for visitors to be around, I wasn’t fully dressed (probably just a t-shirt and underwear).  When we started the call, she let me know that a friend of hers was with her, and that it was a guy (because it was already afternoon in Cambridge, England, so it was normal to be hanging out with people already there). So, I had to go put on some more clothing before we turned on the camera.  (At least, I think that was the case… she might have just checked to make sure I was properly clothed, because I regularly would be not fully clothed.  Either way, the next part did happen.)  When I commented about this, the guy friend of hers made a comment about liking someone so much better naked (I forget if it was about Christine liking me, or what, but it was totally silly, and seemed such an odd comment.)  We both were lacking in understanding at first, but he explained that there was an actual song (by Ida Maria), and that that was the line the girl used in it.  (See, it made sense and wasn’t actually weird at all.)

The chorus goes like this:

But I won’t mind
If you take me home
Come on, take me home
I won’t mind
if you take off all your clothes
Come on, take them off
‘Cause I like you so much better when you’re naked
I like me so much better when you’re naked
I like you so much better when you’re naked
I like me so much better when you’re naked

We found it hilarious.  We found the actual song and music video, and fell in a sort of this is silly and utterly ridiculous, but I still love it kind of love with the song.

I shared it with my hallway neighbor, who played guitar, and we tried playing it a bit on the guitar.  I eventually played it for Christine one day on Skype.  My greatest, proudest achievement with the song, however, was the time I snuck into the bathrooms (they were shared, and had loads of stalls and multiple showers) one day, just after Jessie, the neighbor, had gone in to shower.  Once I knew she was actually in the shower, showering, I walked into the showering area (mind you, not into her stall, just in the showering section of the bathroom), and began playing the song on guitar, and singing it to her.  I could hear her snorting, gurgling, guffawing laugher emitting from the shower stall as I sang and played.  It was spectacular for the both of us.  I shared the story with my best friend, too, and she loved it.*

So, the song has always held a special little place in our hearts, minds, and lives, all three of us.  Everyone else probably just thinks we’re crazy, whenever they overhear us mentioning or quoting or singing it.  😛

Here’s a link to the music video.

 

*This reminds me… I sang to a friend of mine in Japan while she showered one night.  We were chatting on the phone, just hanging out one night, after we’d both gotten internet, and so didn’t have to hang up after every five minutes anymore, and she really needed to shower, but we weren’t ready to end our conversation/hanging out.  So, she set the phone to the side on speakerphone, and I sang to her while she showered.  I had been humming and singing quietly already anyway, so what was the difference if I just did it a little louder, right?  It was spectacular, of course.  Then a night or few later, when I mentioned to another friend that this had happened, he complained that I didn’t sing for him and that that certainly wasn’t fair.  And so I sang to him over the phone… and he fell asleep.  😛  Spectacular in a different sort of way, I guess, but still spectacular.  🙂

Post-a-day 2017

 

Shower Surprise

I’m staying at my mom’s house tonight, and so am using my old bathroom and bedroom.  In the shower, she still has two of the bottles (for there were many) of shampoo and conditioner that I had used in high school.  They are from two different sets of shampoo and conditioner, and so they have different scents, but they both take me back.

As I use the shampoo, I remember those 5:20am showers, being barely able to move or see, yet chugging along anyway, so I could get to band on time…, never fully waking up until band practice had been going for at least a little while.  I remember my boyfriend from my senior year… the time we went to see the bats on Waugh Street bridge, and he guessed correctly the brand of my shampoo and conditioner (Herbal Essences)… how he was terrified that I might fall, and grabbed me when I leaned over the edge of the bridge to see the cars below (as if)… how we always did things together with my mom (that occasion included)…

And then I move to the conditioner, which seems to have lost most of its conditioning power in these many years of sitting there.  The same sorts of memories stay in my mind, but then one striking memory produces, and adds itself to the mental exercise.  I recall the morning of my hair surprise.  As I was rubbing the shampoo into my hair, I discovered what felt to be part of a pine needle, or else one of those brown cocoon-looking things that fall from trees and remind me of cattails crossed with pine cones and a thick worm.  “Really?!” I thought.

I had been lying down in and rolling around in the yard the night before, and apparently hadn’t even noticed that I had gottten some of these guys in my hair.  I slept with that in my hair.  How bad is that?

So, I grabbed the twig thing to toss it out the window (which was closed at the time).  As I was starting to pull it from my hair, being careful not to have it fall apart into my hair, I noticed a sort of burning sensation in the joint of my first finger.  As I brought my hand down from my head, twig thing in-hand, I began to panic.  I flung it to the ground in the shower, and began shaking my poor hand that had been holding it.  I might even have shouted, or even begun to cry loudly.  I vaguely remember my mom coming in to check what was wrong as I was crying in the shower… 

“What is it??”

“I just…[sob] got stung…[sob] by a wasp.”

“What???”

“It was in my hair… and I grabbed it… and it stung me.”  The sobbing continued, I believe.

It wasn’t that I was in extreme pain, so much as that I was extremely surprised.  First, I had been surprised at my having left tree stuff in my hair from the night before, rolling in the grass.  And then, I found out that a wasp had somehow gotten in through the closed window, landed on me as I rubbed in my shampoo, and then stung me as I removed what I thought was a stick or pine needle or pod thing.

Perhaps that’s why I left this conditioner here so many years ago.

Post-a-day 2017