Studies

Has time come for me to take a shower or is my odour still tolerable?

Sallom Halmbet, AlHudood’s filth expert

Has time come for me to take a shower or is my odour still tolerable? image

15, Jul 2021, Tuesday

Dear diary, the last time I showered was three weeks ago. My head has not produced that much grease ever. Am I sick? I don’t think so as I am strict when it comes to personal hygiene. I wash my hands for 20 seconds and my perfumes, deodorant, and air freshener are lying all over the place. As I write this, only ten bugs are buzzing around me but have not dared to come closer. Is it possible that they feel disgusted by me?

22 Jul 2021, Thursday

Dear diary, how can I recognize my own smell? Our nostrils have evolved to adapt to smells and can’t tell when something stinks with time. Should I call my brother Amjad to walk carefully around my room door and scream when his nose catches the odor of my armpits?

Not a good plan. First, he might misuse my need by manipulating me to take a shower just so he would occupy my room. Note: he follows my lifestyle and my smell might be confused with his.

So, should I ask my father? Hell no! He will kick me out at once. My mother? Not even an option; I think she is obsessed with cleanliness. She says that a fine person must shower three times a week. Who does that?

I have to stop arguing in my own head, no one shall decide how I smell and how bad it is but me. There is no way to escape from this reality. I am the one who will go into the bathtub, who will rub and splash his body with water and soap.

I’m no longer a child; mom won’t declare that I’m the dirtiest boy living and drag me to soak me in hot water. Those were the days when we were young and unwillingly clean! And I knew how horrible I smelt back then when my friends insisted on keeping a distance from me, with the excuse that they have the flu and don’t want to infect me. It was a stupid excuse but reminded me to shower. 

Even Kholod, the girl with the glowing clean skin, that I made myself apply perfume just for her every day, is gone, leaving me face to face with my confusion. I bet she is now in her room asking herself the same questions; we have so much in common.

1 Aug 2021, Sunday

Today is the fifth or the sixth day, maybe the seventh since I got out of my room. Time is relative; it’s a mere concept we invented just to handle the limitations of our meaningless lives. We made an imaginary 24-hours around the center of our existence till it controlled us. We, the descendants of the bravest hunters and farmers, now have a schedule for our showers! “You must shower every two days,” a mother would say. Have we not evolved enough,  and have the free will to determine our showers by need? 

I think that the chemical composition of my room has changed utterly by now; it has turned into a museum of human smells and it is so efficient that it kills the flying bugs! In your face, mom.

They have not called me to join them for dinner for ages and put me a plate in front of my room. My mother no longer calls me to take the garbage outside and my father hasn’t entered my room errantly to remind me how much of a burden I am. Though the room services and my peace of mind are excellent, has my stink got out of control? Or is it my jackass brother’s plan to get more pocket money for himself?

Even if my unpleasant smell is behind all that, wasn’t it what I wanted, to take a break from their endless demands? But, what if they forgot that I’m still living here and stopped putting plates in front of the door? Will I die of dirtiness, loneliness, and starvation all together?

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I think that all these hallucinations and irrational fears are coming out of my paranoia and cleaning OCD. I also have not experienced any symptoms except for a mild itching that disappeared when I scratched it with my long nails and have not noticed any difference in my skin color. I never heard of someone dying of dirtiness. Showering is overrated and it’s just an idea a greedy businessman invented to sell shampoos, soaps, bathtubs, and taps to the poor like me.

Showering is a waste of water. It’s a simple equation; the amount of used water to clean the dirt in three weeks = the amount of used water to clean the dirt one day. This equation makes us wonder about the value of frequent showering when you will get dirty in a few hours. And what about my bed? If I showered, I will need a clean space to lay my clean body on it so it won’t stink so fast, meaning I must clean my bed to complete the marathon of cleanliness! No way. I will not shower.

The house is so quiet right now. I also have not found a plate in front of the door for a few days. Are they abandoning me for good? Or does my smell have the magic of a tranquilizer? Or… is it possible they moved out?