Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Sweaty Pits to Brunswick Maine

A couple of years ago, I was setting up for an outdoor show on a very warm morning. Setting up is hard, sweat-inducing work and I realized I’d forgotton to put on deodorant that morning. Sweaty, sticky pits is something that is just intolerable to me, a true misery. I’m not concerned about odor, I’m not particularly stinky, it’s that awful sticky feeling.

That crazy lack of boundaries and I lamented my situation to my neighbor and instead of thinking I was nuts, she said “I can’t stand that, I bring deodorant everywhere I go, do you want to borrow mine?” She thought I might be put off by the non-politically correct hygenic aspect of it, but she was wrong, hygene doesn’t play a role in sweet salvation.

These years later, I sell that person’s work in my shop and count them as a friend. Friendships begin under the oddest, unlikeliest of circumstances.

I was in the shower the other morning and started to shave under my arms for the umpteenth {umpmillionth} time and it occurred to me that if the hair follicles were no longer functioning, maybe the sweat glands would be dormant too and I’d never need deodorant again. I have some experimenting to do.

I had to stop at CVS this afternoon to get a few last minute supplies before the tall one and I hit the road. He was out of deodorant and unlike at that summer show, he won’t use mine. Maybe because it has a flower on the label, maybe because sharing is gross, although he has no problem using my bath towel, even though it’s pink, signifying “girl”, meaning, paws off, use your own damned towel, because you are stinky.

Flash forward and, we are now in Maine, just the two of us having discovered on the ride up that we have much of the same music on our iPods! Newly licensed, I was the passenger for the first time for part of the way, I stayed much calmer than I thought I’d be and I think I was a pretty good “back seat” coach. We’re staying in a beautiful Inn and we'll visit three colleges in three days. Colby, Bowdoin and Bates, with Bowdoin having become his absolute dream school and let the realist in me say... reach school. Over the years, I’ve payed no heed to the coaches singing his talents, suggesting college play, “bullshit” being my most common response, as there are high school athletes at every school in every town, in every city, in this great, big, giant, competitive country, many with fanatic fathers and private coaches, and yet lo and behold,it seems there may be some interest in my boy. I would love to stand corrected! And he is the luckiest person I've ever met.

I’m learning as I go, but it seems that high-end academic schools with Division III {lowest division} sports need athletes that at least come close to their academic standards. Add in the Lucky 4, the four extra inches that make him a 6’4” lefty quarterback and pitcher and that he’s rocking a 3.8 gpa at the moment with four AP classes, we are meeting with the coach at Colby tomorrow and waiting for a call from the one at Bowdoin who our coach tells us is very interested after seeing his film and grades.

We had dinner tonight at the pub at the Inn where we’re staying. We were seated against the wall and near the end of our meal a couple came in and sat at the next table. Turns out it was trivia night and as we got talking to them, we ended up playing the trivia game together, unofficially contributing answers. Turns out octopus’ have three hearts and Chow’s have black tongues. There was a large, really obnoxious table of people in the middle of the room who seemed quite cozy with the folks running the game, so we started bonding through a shared axe to grind, annoyance with this group, so true confessions... we cheated. G had his iPhone and he looked up a couple of answers, turns out though we would have won without his help because we won by a lot and he and I weren’t officially on their team, we were “innocent” bystanders mumbling out answers, of course, that still makes us cheaters, but it was really fun, we totally kicked everyone’s ass including the 2nd place noisy group which didn’t make the game leaders happy, so they pretty much smacked down the small pile of money on our neighbor’s table and that was that. A quiet night in our hotel room turned into a really fun evening with a lovely couple who told us what a fabulous place Brunswick, Maine is and that when Griffin goes to Bowdoin we should come visit them. A pretty and very competitive obstetrician and her cute and sweet physical trainer husband, who we bonded with by cheating at trivia, odd and unlikely circumstances. A perfect day, one of the things I thought about in the chemo chair was not being able, not having the energy or stamina to do things like take college trips with G and here I am, feeling great, happy as can be, the only difference is I'm staying in a nice hotel, not a crappy motel cause if life is short and you only get one... I'm taking the nice hotel route. As a bonus, G, for the very first time, I think, understands why I always talk to strangers. It used to embarrass him, but slowly, I hope he’s learning that some boundaries are for suckers, talking to strangers makes life richer, literally, as they insisted on sharing the pot with us, we're $15 richer.


  1. Hey Kim, I have been keeping up with you here & I know I've been quiet but wanted to pipe up as my husband went to Bowdoin. If you end up with any questions or if G wants someone to talk to or ask about Bowdoin please let us know! I hope the rest of your trip was lovely. xoxo Eling (migration goods)