At any one time, you can walk into any bathroom and see a person's life story. When I had my first apartment, my bathroom was BARE - except I had a set of really nice towels that if you touched 'em, I'd hunt you down. I was so proud of my 500 square foot domain with a teeny bathroom of my own. Remember, I had five brothers and sisters and a bath of one's own beat a room of one's own hands down.
If I had the good fortune to actually buy towels (most of mine were family hand-me-downs), I hung them on the towel rack and protected 'em. I do that to this day.
At some point, my towels were all mine, and I moved up in the world. In came a shower curtain and then, the march began. In came the cosmetics, bubble bath, facial masques and other accoutrements of glamor. I was a chick on her way.
When we married, John and I first shared a bathroom and immediately realized that true love stops at the bathroom door. She says: Touch my towels, baby, and you die! He says: Lock me out of the Latrine and YOU die. It was just that simple. So we bought a 3 bedroom 2 1/2 bath split entry in Gresham Oregon, and the waters of our aggravation calmed.
When babies came home, out went the designer towels (ok, they went into the linen closet) and in came the duckies and bunnies. Potty chairs that sang ruled the throne room. Into the tub went the rubber duckies, yellow submarines, snorkels, washies and plastic buckets. And the "towels du jour" - Big Bird hung on my sturdy wooden racks.
At some point, Big Bird was replaced by Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, dinosaurs, Big Wheels and Transformers. You couldn't take a leak without genuflecting first at the Super Hero hanging in the bath. Intimidating, yes. Glamourous, nope.
At some point, we moved to "the big house" and once again, my towel fetish reared its ugly head - with a vengeance. We had 500 count towels - John hates them and thinks that if you don't leave chafe marks you really aren't dry. We had earth tones, jewel tones, and, if the Meier and Frank "Friday Surprise" meant anything, you had luxurious Egyptian Cotton towels.
We lived in towel heaven. The boys had their own bathrooms and decorated them with acne cures and after shave (no razors, however since they didn't shave. . .). John's shower room had 100% sandpaper towels, and my soaking tub . . . well, anything I wanted.
Our linen closet was actually loaded with towels and sheets??? !!! We were a middle-class family livin' the dream.
Our lives went on, and the next thing you know, the boys are packing up our old towels and moving into little shrines of their own.. We moved to "the little house with big pretensions" and in came the designer towels.
Except the linen closet turned into a medicine cabinet - at least in the master bath it did. Open our linen cabinet these days and all you see are ace bandages, ointment, hemorrhoid balm, kidney stone strainers, analgesics, laxatives, fiber pills, cuticle trimmers, toe nail clippers, Vick's Vapor Rub, bath salts, room deodorizers, controlled substances, sharpie containers, sailing magazines and SPF 30 sun block.
We are, if anything, ready for old age.
The bathroom IS clean, it always has been, but that has been the only constant in our lives. The rest has always been up for grabs.
So, Detective Mcgillicuddy and her erstwhile assistant, Commander Smarty-pants, cleaned the bathroom this weekend. Hairs were removed from all surfaces, women in HazMat suits cleaned the "sitting area." The tub twinkles in pristine purity AND we re-grouted the tile!!!
But anyone walking into the bathroom knows that a couple of old geezers live here. Just open the linen closet.