I passionately despised baths as a little kid. It was the worst thing ever. I went as many days as I could without one and considered each day a great personal victory.
Inevitably, it would fall on my brother Michael to get me into the bathtub. He would start the day off by saying, “Today you’re taking a bath whether you like it or not.” I would squawk and howl, wounded at the affront, and tear off running. In the course of the day, he would trick or corner me, and frog march me to the tub kicking and screaming. The brouhaha left me mad as a hornet and him, well scratched up.
Yet magically, within a few minutes of being in the nice warm water, I would inevitably think, “I’ll be a monkey’s uncle, I don’t ever want to get out of this bathtub.”
After a few minutes, Mick would repeatedly come to the door, on the assumption that I was done, and say, “You need to get out now.”
It would take another hour of haranguing to match my monkey business and get me out. “Not yet. I’m almost done,” I would say, lunging back and forth and making high waves in the tub, and then return to some really bad singing at the top of my lungs.
Mick would finally say, “I’m not coming back to get you!”
“I’m almost done,” I’d say, a little panicked.
Of course the water would unavoidably get cold and I would sit there shivering, my teeth clattering against each other but still not wanting to get out of the tub. I was confident it was freezing out there. As though that wasn’t bad enough, he unfailingly left my towel clear across the room, at least five feet away and traversing that span would be sure to cause certain death. What to do? I listened expectantly for his approaching footsteps. Nothing.
Was that him breathing on the other side of the door? “Miiiiiiiiick!” I would holler after I was done with the next song. No answer.
“Maybe I can just sleep in here…” I reasoned looking around resourcefully.
Then I’d start to get grossed out by the ring of dirt around the tub and any accompanying floaties. I’d try flicking them away while ducking from the ones creeping up behind me. I’d swear I’d never let it get this bad again and that not only would I bathe everyday, but from now on I would be in there for no more than ten minutes. I’d also make a mental note not to drench the towel with all the water I splashed out of the tub.
To my consternation, three days later Mick would be saying to me, “You’re taking a bath today whether you like it or not.”