Wednesday, May 12, 2004

Smells Like Teen Spirit

The Scene: Grocery Store
The Time: Saturday Morning
The Pervading Attitude: Get out of my way NOW.

With me is my general list of this-and-that. I have made the unilateral decision that it is time. Taking a big breath TinyTuna and I scout the HBA section (because they delight in moving things around on a weekly basis) until I come across...

I look at TinyTuna and I say, "Well, I thought it was time that you picked out some of your very own deodorant."

Her eyes grow wide as saucers, her jaw drops with an audible gasp, and she looks at me as if I have just informed her that she can have Spaghetti-Os, chocolate pudding and Doritos in her lunch from now until forever.

Big smile. HUGE smile. CAPS LOCK-HUGE SMILE.

"Really???" She asks.

Half grin. Lord-save-me-now-from-the-DRAMA-I-just-know-is-coming half grin.

"Really," I nod and tell her.

And then. Which to choose? We scout around a bit, and find some Teen Sticks. Just having the word TEEN in the title nearly sends her over the edge. But we can't just grab one and go. Oh no. That would shorten the DRAMA of the selection. We have to whiff each and every whiff, and then discuss and then debate and then not be able to choose and then be threatened to hurry up and just pick one or we won't buy any.

That drama.

Whiff number one was "Berry Blossom". TinyTuna smells it and says "Oooo, that's nice." I take one whiff, feel woozy and wonder why I can suddenly see three of everything. "Woah! That's a bit strong, don't you think?" Honestly, in a battle of whiffs, I think I'd pick Au Naturale over this stuff. One swipe of "Berry Blossom" and her pits would be an open invitation to every bee on the continent.

We put it back.

Whiff number two was "Caribbean Cool." Yet another obtuse scent-title, meaning nothing. Blossoms whiff. Berries whiff. Caribbean? I've not been there, so I can't speak to it's whiffitude. As for cool, the closest thing I can think of for cool isn't so much whiff as anti-whiff. "Hot" would whiff -- and in the pit world, not so hot. Ditto for warm, muggy, humid or partly cloudy with a 90% chance of rain.

But we must proceed. So we whiff Caribbean Cool. I'd describe it, but I can't. The best I can say is that it is not offensive, which, if you ask me, is good enough. I'm ready to grab and go. But not TinyTuna. This is science! This is Teen Spirit Stick Deodorant! This is important dramatic type stuff.

We whiff a "powder fresh" and an "unscented" (yes we whiffed Unscented, because I guess it's important to be thorough in these matters). Both are rejected. Powder fresh is too baby-ish and unscented (for very obvious reasons) just isn't whiffy enough.

So, it's a whiff-off between Berry Blossom and Caribbean Cool. Whiff one, whiff the other. Back and forth, back and forth. I'm getting irritated. Back and forth, back and forth. As a surprise to absolutely nobody, she can't decide. Back and forth, back and forth.

"Pick one, or we're leaving!" I bark.

Caribbean Cool it is. We have now selected the whiff. And now the fun begins.

"GRAM!" She shouts halfway across the store. "GUESS WHAT I HAVE!" She grabs it out of the cart and goes racing down the aisle. My eyes roll out of my head.

Home we go. After surviving the severe angst of not finding it in the grocery bags, we found it and gave it a special home in the bathroom. Drama over? Not even.

Sunday after church. Sitting at brunch. With two adult friends of the male persuasion.

"Guess what!" She says happily.

"What?" They ask.

She shoots me a look and starts talking out one side of her mouth, as if nobody will hear her. With teeth clenched in that I-can't-say-this-out-loud kind of way she asks me "Can I tell them what I got at the store yesterday?"

Oh brother. "I suppose," I answer. If you really want to, go ahead." Who am I to rain on her whiff?

"I got something at the store yesterday," she says in a super-secret eyebrowish kind of way.

"What did you get?"

Does she tell them? No. She DOES CHARADES. And not charades of the application. Charades of the pit check itself.

In horror, I stop her, mid-sniff. "No!" I say, wishing for Abraham and his angels to take me away. "If you have something to say, then just SAY it. You don't need to do a demonstration."

Not at all deterred, she continues. "I got deodorant," she says proudly.

Everybody looks at me. I just smile, shake my head and say, "Yep, she sure did," and keep eating my lunch. If I'm going to suffer, I figured everybody else should come along for the ride.

Was that the end? You're kidding, right?

We told Dad on Monday.
We told the Fourth-Grade Teacher on Monday.
We probably told the Dance Teacher on Tuesday.

That leaves three choir teachers, one art teacher, one gym teacher, the principal, every friend in the world and most importantly -- her cousin. And that's the one that matters. The eight year old cousin. The one that wants deodorant more than ANYTHING ELSE IN THE WORLD. And now TinyTuna can Lord over her with her sceptre of Teen Stick.

It's good to have a whiff. Even if it's Caribbean Cool.


Anonymous said...

Awww, the memories. I recall when Kourtney got her first VERY OWN ONLY FOR HER deoderant. Good times, indeed. My son has some too- because mercy does that boy reek when he's been outside- but the best for HIM was when he came across cheater's cologne set that got left out of the stuff.....ever smelt an 11 year old with Lucky You deoderant AND cologne? Gracious.

Hammie said...

Tiny Tuna never fails to make me laugh.

Wait until you let her get a bra...

lifeonhold said...

Wait until she gets her first Kotex!

Anonymous said...

That was the funniest! Both my girls went through the first deodorant thing, but not at that magnitude. They would be totally embarrassed to be seen whiffing deodorant. Instead it was a quick smell, throw it in the cart. Maybe no one will notice kind of thing. I guess I got off easy. :)


Anonymous said...

Hahaha! Imagine how Tiny would feel reading this when she's, say, 16. Heeeee.

babyfishfel said...

And yet, probably this all came not a moment too soon. Seriously, I've nearly passed out from the reek coming from under the arms of the two girls who hang out at the library all afternoon every afternoon. I never said anything, figuring general hygiene (sp?) was out of the realm of librarianship. Which is too bad, really.

nlk said...


Makes me think about how I am not so very far away from it all...but I have to do it all for a boy!

Anonymous said...

One of the funniest stories I've read in a while...thanks for sharing, Tuna !!

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