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Zoethe

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Questions that must be asked [Sep. 3rd, 2006|08:44 am]
Zoethe
[Current Mood |contemplativebabbly]

Why is it that there are seven partly-used tubes of toothpaste in my bathroom drawer?! And how could I have not really noticed? I only did notice by accident: opened the drawer this morning and actually focused, instead of just grabbing.

Seven. Good lord. I have no idea how they all got transported from the linen closet, where unopened tubes await use, to the drawer. Nor why anyone would persist in bringing more and more of them to the drawer. At least only three are tubes of the exact same toothpaste, but good lord - it's not like we have 4 different people in this house who all insist on using a different brand!

And the thing is, left unchecked they would eventually be seven almost empty tubes. The law of averages and random luck dictates that if you reach in the drawer you will not grab the same tube every time, and there is a tendency to reach for the fuller tube, meaning that the amount of toothpaste in each will decrease at relatively the same rate. So, unless I do something about it, it's seven tubes for months and months, and then none as they all run out at pretty much the same time. We had a similar thing going on with mouthwash - two containers of Scope were on the counter, and then one day I noticed that they were both half-empty so poured them both together and discarded one.

But it does not answer the basic question: how could I have gone for weeks not noticing that two containers of Scope were on my bathroom counter? It's not like it's a generous expanse of space - it's only about 2 and a half feet long. For that matter, we only have one small drawer for storing stuff. How did I not notice the toothpaste?

It's amazing, really, how much of our lives we can successfully negotiate on autopilot. I prefer a neat and uncluttered house, but if things are busy the dining room table can get piled up to the point of no available flat space. Then I come out of the crisis mode and focus, and my reactoin is always surprise - how the hell did that happen? Or some object will take up residence on the loveseat and I will walk by it for weeks before it suddenly offends my sensibilities.

We are adaptive. We make the world fit us as much as we have time for, and then we learn to live with the rest of it. Until "the rest of it" slides away from our comfort zone far enough for us to notice.

Me, I'm gonna go sort toothpaste now.
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Comments:
From: clothing5
2006-09-03 01:08 pm (UTC)
As someone with 4 bottles of Visine...
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[User Picture]From: cubes
2006-09-03 01:09 pm (UTC)
Me, I'm gonna go sort toothpaste now.

Wow, you really do have a lot more time on your hands now.
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[User Picture]From: theferrett
2006-09-03 01:34 pm (UTC)
And toothpaste.
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[User Picture]From: shezan
2006-09-03 01:10 pm (UTC)
I noticed that they were both half-empty so poured them both together and discarded one.

One of the great minor satisfactions in life, what?
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2006-09-03 01:36 pm (UTC)
Yes, bizarrely enough.
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[User Picture]From: interactiveleaf
2006-09-03 01:37 pm (UTC)
There's a tube of toothpaste in each bathroom of my house. That in itself is not so surprising. There is also a nearly-full tube of toothpaste on my living room floor. I rather enjoy having it there.

I'm betting you winced slightly at the last sentence.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2006-09-03 01:37 pm (UTC)
A little, but more with perplexity than horror.
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[User Picture]From: throbinson
2006-09-03 01:37 pm (UTC)
Sounds like my mother's house... she specializes in having several half-empty containers of whatever. Her fridge would probably give you nightmares (I know it does me).

I have so little space here that I tend not to do that -- two bottles of mouthwash would overcrowd my bathroom sink vanity. What I tend to accumulate is magazines. I'll bring one into my bedroom to read in bed, then the next night another and before I know it, there are ten half-read magazines piled up.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2006-09-03 01:38 pm (UTC)
I am appallingly bad at keeping a fridge. It is one of my great downfalls. I would never judge based on fridge.

Yeah, the magazine detritis is another matter entirely.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2006-09-03 03:07 pm (UTC)
If they'd been on the counter, the insanity would have stopped long ago. In the drawer, however, they escaped attention.
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[User Picture]From: jfargo
2006-09-03 02:06 pm (UTC)
I have my toothpaste and Maria has hers. Somehow I'm less than halfway done by the time she needs a new tube! That's not to say that I don't brush, because I do, just about as often as she does (I work at home, maybe I miss a morning here or there), but she squeezes from the middle! Gah! I hate that to the point where I have a tube squeezy thing that pushes it all up and makes sure that you use everything.

I guess I'm just saying that I understand where you're coming from, and don't worry, I'd probably be bothered by it even more than you are. :)
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2006-09-03 02:58 pm (UTC)
Using large amounts of toothpaste is unnecessary, and squeezing in the middle is a sin!
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2006-09-03 06:14 pm (UTC)
That is how at least one of them ended up in there.
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[User Picture]From: rintheamazing
2006-09-03 04:02 pm (UTC)
This happens to us with bottles of corn syrup. We don't use it very often, so we'll be planning to make caramel corn or something, and first of all, we can't remember whether we still have any corn syrup left from the last time, and secondly, we can't find any during a quick search of the cupboard. So we buy more, but it never takes a whole bottle.

Then every once in a while, we'll be looking through the back of our cupboard for something, and we'll encounter anywhere between 2 and 5 slightly-less-than-half-full bottles of corn syrup.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2006-09-03 04:39 pm (UTC)
Yeah, we went through a phase where every time we went to the store we bought butter because we thought we were out. 5 pounds of butter later, we finally stopped.

Now we're out of butter.
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[User Picture]From: wiredwizard
2006-09-03 04:10 pm (UTC)
Today on House Elves Gone Wild - the case of the multiple toothpastes... ;)
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2006-09-03 06:13 pm (UTC)
I want a house elf.
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From: bonerici
2006-09-03 07:14 pm (UTC)
clearly u need a toothpaste rack
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2006-09-03 07:30 pm (UTC)
No! No more crap in the house!!!!

;-)
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[User Picture]From: mamaursula
2006-09-03 07:31 pm (UTC)
Toothpaste fairies do exist, toothpaste fairies do exist.
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[User Picture]From: yndy
2006-09-03 08:48 pm (UTC)
It's a tough thing to balance... in the land of toiletries, one either has surplus or deficit... I'd rather have too many tubes than none... and that goes for rolls of toilet paper as well!! ;)
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2006-09-03 09:18 pm (UTC)
Oh, but we have plenty! We buy it at Costco, and always have it on hand.

In the linen closet. Awaiting the tube before it to be finished.

(Same with toilet paper; I am anal about this stuff.)
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