Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Eau d' Humanity

Kids stink. Not babies. Babies smell great...powdery fresh and brand new. But no one quite prepares you for what happens about eleven years later. All of a sudden, your child emerges from the shower and you find yourself saying, "Uh, did you use soap? Did you use WATER??" It's like they work up a sweat going from the shower stall to the towel rack. And that sweat is SMELLY.

It's not just adolescent boys, either. My daughter was just as bad. And for whatever reason, they don't smell it. She'd get absolutely indignant with me when I would gently suggest that she needed to shower more often or more thoroughly. I was trying to be sensitive, although talking while holding one's breath is NOT easy.

I'll never forget going to see a guidance counselor at her Middle School one day, while he was monitoring detention. I walked into the cafeteria after school hours and was nearly knocked over by the odor. It was intense! I asked him how he managed to sit through it, even for an hour, and he said he had become completely immune. Immune? It was like walking into a room full of tear gas.

Now my little boy, heading to Middle School in the Fall, has joined the ranks of the rank. As for me, I'm preparing well in advance for that first parent-teacher meeting on campus:

If no one gets my Hindenburg reference in the title of this post, I will be very sad. I thought it was brilliant. ;)

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