Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Why bleach and I are lifelong enemies

Okay, this really happened.

For a while when I was publishing children's stories regularly, I tried to think of a way to work this into one. But then I realized it would never work because people would read it and say, "That's idiotic! No one would be that stupid!"


When I was about eleven or twelve a family at church was having a few church families, including ours, over for a casual dinner party.

We were the first or second family to arrive, and the hostess, Mrs. Obley, told us we could go all go ahead and start the icebreaker.

Now listen carefully to this icebreaker: There were several child-proof capped medicine bottles, each with a numeric label and filled with different unknown substances. We had to take turns opening them, sniffing them, and writing down on a piece of paper what we guessed the unknown substances were.

How's that for brilliant?

There was a liquid in the first one I got (yes, I'm sure you know where this is headed), and when I popped the childproof cap off, a little bit spilled into my lap.

And my denim skirt started magically growing spots all over it before my eyes!

I heard one of the women -- maybe even my mom -- say, "Oh, it's bleach!" I didn't know what bleach was, but it sure seemed like an evil and potent substance!

I remember crying a lot, and feeling embarrassed all evening, and then a few days later Mrs. Obley mailed us an apology and a gift cerficate to Kenny Karden, a children's clothing store. (I remember thinking even then that the amount of money she spent and what we ended up buying was WAAY nicer than the dinky little denim skirt that got ruined.)

What's sad to me is that I remember so vividly why I was so upset that night, and nobody probably would have guessed it, and it had nothing to do with the stupid skirt being ruined:

One of the families who arrived shortly after The Bleach Incident included a couple of my older brother's friends, who I had crushes on, and I was absolutely mortified that they would see me at a party dressed in a skirt that had huge, severe stains and splotches all over it, and think that was just how I dressed myself for that evening.

To the day I get very anxious whenever I use bleach, and I refuse to use it for cleaning, ever, only in laundry.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

these people seemed so intelligent and well educated..what a foolish choice for a party game..expecially for children..idiots come in all sizes and shapes..think of the damage it could have done to your beautiful face, eyes, etc..Thank God for His protection!!! note from your MOM