Jewish Journal

Conserve Water?  Who Cares?

by Mihal Levy

January 20, 2010 | 2:00 pm

It’s been raining in L.A. for the past few days and I’m glad because I can feel less guilty when I say I don’t believe in conserving water.  Don’t get me wrong - I do believe in conserving water as a whole, but I don’t think that I should necessarily be a part of it.

Let me explain.  I can’t cut down my showers.  I mean, isn’t forty-five minutes to half a day in the shower conserving enough?  It could be worse - I could take day-long showers.  Get my point?  No?

The one place I can run away to and call my own is the shower.  No dishes, no laundry to fold, no cleaning (minus the times I clean the shower while I’m in there, might as well).  It is the one place I can milk “me” time because I have to indeed shower every day, unless I move to Italy - I loved it when I was there - the lack of showers not so much, however.  But Italian moms have midday siestas, Tiramisu and Limoncello for escape.  In America - we have showers and sad excuses for coffee like Coffee Bean - which Italians laugh at, by the way.  Good thing I don’t do coffee anyway - if I would, it would be in Italy.  But I’m getting off-topic here.

Showers.  I’ve started taking two a day, morning and night: 1) to help me wake up; and 2) to help me go to sleep.  Sometimes I even need a third one to help me make it through the afternoon (that’s my siesta).

I love the shower, but not baths - I’ve thought about it - something about soaking in a tub makes me feel like a chicken in chicken soup.  Plus, the water gets cool in no time too.  Who has time for that anyway?  Besides, I can’t sit still long enough, and the thought of soaking in dirty bath water doesn’t do it for me (hence my avoidance of public jacuzzis, which equal bubbly warm public baths with strangers, foot fungus and God knows what other fine germs are lurking in there.  Add a little chlorine, and voilà!  It should be fine for some - not me).  So you see, showers are my only answer.  And if I’m lucky, I get to shower with the bathroom door closed and not have to call after my son to make sure he’s okay in the other room.

The shower is where creativity often strikes - there’s something about warm water and over-perfumed Israeli liquid soaps that slough off the top layer of skin or turn it into sandpaper (much like Israeli blue toilet paper - if you’ve ever tried it, you know what I’m talking about, and if you haven’t, I’ll spare you the details).

Most of my writing ideas come to me in the shower (a fine place for that since I haven’t found a way to waterproof my laptop).  I did discover bath markers - they work well as shower markers.  My son was ecstatic when he thought I bought them for him, but soon after realized they were mommy’s (okay, but I do share, though).  When I shower, it looks like a bunch of illiterate graffiti artists have attacked my bathroom with dripping signs in bright red, blue, orange and green.  When my shower is over, I rush to jot my ideas on paper.  By the time I return with a pen and notepad in hand, the idea ridden walls turn into a blob.  Most of the ideas have disintegrated or run so much that I can hardly read them anyway.  So if my blogs often don’t make sense, blame it on my markers, not me.

Not only do I spend my time writing, thinking and washing of course (I’ll spare you those details), I also spend my time relaxing in the shower.  Yes, relaxing and stealing just five more minutes of alone time before I jump back into the rat race.  You see?  Why would I ever want to shorten my showers?  How could I?  I just try to make up for it in other ways.  Not drinking water, for one.

So I hope you will forgive me for not doing my part, but trust that I have no other choice.  And if that is one of the few places creativity strikes, how can I avoid it?  Too bad it doesn’t strike when I’m doing the dishes or laundry, because then I’d spend more time doing those things rather than showering…but you never know.  I’ll keep you posted.

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Mihal Levy used to collect degrees as a hobby.  After receiving her B.S. and M.S. degrees, she worked as a psychotherapist and research scientist before continuing her hobby of...

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