Sunday, May 05, 2019

The Kitchen in the Bathroom

Something happened that reminded me of this video:

I first saw that video at least three years ago and to this day I don't know if the lady was kidding or not. But I do know that some people are still mystified by "the butters" and other stuff some women can't live without...

One morning, my neighbor popped over bringing donuts to share with me. I had just gotten out of the shower from washing my hair. I told her to go ahead and brew us some coffee and I went on into the bedroom to get dressed. I heard her going in to use the loo at some point and hoped she didn't mind the after-shower mess.

She didn't even greet me when I came out to sit with her. She just asked me what the hell I had going on in my bathroom. I thought she meant I'd left water on the floor or something but she was talking about all the stuff I'd left out on the counter.

It's not a huge secret that some of us women use fridge and pantry items in our skin and hair care routines. It's also not a huge secret that this is kind of an... "ethnic" thing to do. Back in Anchorage, it was just a thing. Almost everybody was into it. A lot of diversity in Anchorage and my sisters of all races were in on the moisture thing. Because Alaska. And winter. Sometimes 8 months of winter.

I now live in a tiny town in Iowa where there are about 15 black people (I'm not kidding about being able to count how many) and 3 of those are my family members. My neighbor is white and has admitted that I am her second black friend. Ever. She is in her mid-60's.

Now, if you ever go into my bathroom right after I've showered or done anything to my hair involving water, you will see some odd things on the counters. There's my coconut oil for my skin and hair; flaxseed gel if I am using it to condition my hair; yogurt and honey if I am doing a face or hair mask; and you might see a tiny jar of coconut oil and sugar that I use as a lip scrub. All that has nothing to do with the sunscreen, glycerin, castor oils and lotion that I mix for moisturizing my skin. And please don't look into the shower where I have regular shampoo, conditioner, and body oil. Oh, and 3 different kinds of soaps - USA, Greece, and Africa are represented. There's barely room for my body to be in there.

I explained all this to my neighbor and she just shook her head. She was probably thinking that this explains why my hair can sometimes smell like a tropical salad. She was most fascinated though with the oils. And I am fascinated with the number of people who don't moisturize. By the way, this reminds me of Bill Burr being hilarious:

The first time I saw that standup show, I laugh-cried all the moisturizer off my face.

Anyway, my neighbor left that day with some of my coconut oil and directions on how to use it to remove makeup or to heat-condition damaged hair. Next time I will mix her up some of my Jamaican Black Castor Oil and Palmer's lotion as a treatment for extra-dry skin.