This week my friend, Val, posted a comment on Facebook about an embarrassing moment she had while standing in line at the drug store. Apparently, when she got dressed that morning, she put her sweater on wrong side out and then went bounding all around town like that until a stranger in line behind her at the local Walgreens felt compelled to tap her on the shoulder and point out her fashion faux pas. She blamed it on menopause. At least she has an excuse. I, on the other hand, have been doing these sorts of things my entire life, long before menopause hit. My ‘midlife crisis’ has just turned up the volume on my already rattled brain.
Val’s story reminded me of a time last Christmas season when I was out shopping and kept smelling dog pee. I was perusing the merchandise at that upscale store called Big Lots and every aisle I went down smelled like dog pee. Being someone who is extremely sensitive to smells, especially offensive ones, I quickly became obsessed with uncovering the source of this foul odor so I could avoid it. I finally surmised that it had to be a fellow shopper and it was just my luck to be downwind of them on my travels through this discount wonderland.
When I finally got to the checkout line I thought I had caught up with the culprit and was pretty sure it was the lady in front of me in line. I was feeling a little superior thinking that I would never go out of the house smelling of urine…really! I was quickly humbled however when I caught a glimpse of myself in a nearby mirror. There, splashed across my white Mizzou sweatshirt, was something yellow. It looked like ... dog pee. I touched it. It was damp. I smelled it. It smelled like dog pee. “Oh, my God," I thought. “It’s me! I’m the one who smells like dog tinkle!"
I thought back to that morning and remembered laying my, then pristine, white sweatshirt out on my bed while I went in the bathroom to brush my teeth. At the time we were fostering a dog named Zeus, who had a very bad habit of peeing on things to mark his territory. Apparently Zeus felt it was necessary to whiz on my shirt while it was lying on my bed, and me, being the kind of person who is what polite people would call ‘distracted,’ didn’t notice it. I just slipped the, now repellent, garment over my head and off I went to snag some after Christmas deals. Of course I had been wandering around Big Lots for over an hour like this and now I was standing in close proximity to other humans reeking of dog pee and hanging my head in shame for being so judgmental.
The universe really puts me in my place when I get even a little full of myself.