Gurney's Inn
December 05, 2007

Body Buffing

I thought it would be nice to have a hot shower and do a little exfoliating before Pilates class so I got out my green mitt and opened my jar of English lavender scrub and jumped in the shower. When I was toweling off I felt a bit sticky and looked at the label and noticed it said beeswax. Oh silly me, I thought, this must be a cream honey meant for tea.

But then I noticed some sort of orange sign on the label and a hazard X and then a word in the directions that looked kind of long that began with F. Furniture. Furniture polish? I had just scrubbed my entire body with furniture polish?! It was only after I put on my glasses and read the fine print that I saw the warning sign that this was harmful and that it should not come in contact with skin, let alone every inch of your body.

I freaked out and jumped back in the shower, scrubbing this time with soap and a washcloth to try to remove this growing stinging sensation. By the time I emerged I was bright red and didn't know if it was from the toxins in the polish or the fact that I'd practically rubbed my skin raw. I sat for a moment anxiously awaiting to see if blisters were about to burst out everywhere and anticipating the embarrassing moment in the emergency room when I had to explain what I had done to myself.

The label does say keep out of reach of children, but nothing about keeping out of reach of blind people. Maybe I could get a seeing-eye dog that could at least sniff all my body products before I used them to detect turpentine.

As the absurdity sank in I wondered how I had come to own this product. I use Windex to clean everything so I doubt I found it next to the Pledge at the supermarket. It must have been a gift. But who would give a girl with poor eyesight who loves bath products lavender beeswax furniture polish?

At this point I was simply disgusted with myself that I had procrastinated going to the optometrist to get a new prescription and had thus become a hazard to my own health. Forget the cost. I was going to get contacts, or contacts and glasses, or contacts and glasses and laser surgery. And then right after the optometrist I'd head over to the dermatologist.

I decided to go ahead and go to Pilates, picking up my sister because I thought in the dark she'd have a hard time finding the Wellness Center in the Ross School. I thrust the offending jar at her and said if I broke out in a life threatening rash that this was the culprit and explained the story. We were most of the way to the East Hampton school when she looked at me and said, "This must say a lot that I'm trusting a girl who just rubbed her entire body with furniture polish to get us there in the dark and fog."

Luckily, I didn't notice any burning sensations, and if anything, thought about just getting a nice buffer like they use on floors to give me a shine. Looking on the bright side I realized it could have been worse if I'd used the furniture polish as lavender honey for my tea and ingested it.

When I saw my guy that night he did notice that my skin was particularly smooth. Then he looked at me and asked, "But what's that smell?"

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Gurney's Inn