Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Skunk Update

Unemployment: Day 163 in Business Days: Day 224 in Human Days

It's been 7 hours and 224 days...since they took my job away.

Since last night's skunk incident, I have received many personal messages with various home remedies, the most common one being a bath of tomato sauce. Thank you to all who wrote in to help fix my funk.

I would love nothing more than to take a bath of tomato sauce in 95 degree weather. Seriously. I can think of nothing better right now than simmering like a spicy Italian sausage in a vat of tomato juices until I'm good enough to eat. Or at least deodorized enough to sit on the BXM9 without making every passenger vomit like a scene out of "Monty Python's The Meaning of Life" or "Stand By Me."

But here's one of the great downfalls of grandma's house: There is no bathtub. It was removed a few years back so that the old folks here could get in and out of the shower more easily. So I have no way to take a bath, in tomato sauce or otherwise. But from the smell a me, I clearly had to do something. And the overwhelming responses all seemed to call for tomato sauce. And so...earlier this afternoon...with G-ma in the next room watching TCM...I opened 10 cans of tomato sauce...carefully carried them two by two to the bathroom...peeled off my stinky tank top and shorts...stepped into the shower...said ah what the hell...and proceeded to baste myself like a pork chop. I layered tomato sauce on my shoulders and my arms. I dripped it down my back. I rubbed it into my belly and thighs and watched it stream down my calves. I slapped a handful onto my ass, laughing, wondering if a scene like this exists in some porno out there. It must. "EveryWAY Italian" with Giada de Whore-entis.

I took a deep breath, closed my eyes, and worked that tomato sauce into my hair. Somewhere in Soho, my hair stylist, Rick, was just overcome by an unexplained feeling of dread. Sorry, Rick. I worked it into my scalp good as the acidic liquids leaked into my ears. I gently massaged it onto my face and neck. Even with my lips tightly pursed, I could taste the tomatoes sneaking in through the cracks. I imagined my pores opening wider and wider, allowing the raw sauce to seep into my skin, into my insides, into the depths of my very soul.

I was entirely immersed. 30 seconds passed. A minute. Three minutes. How long am I supposed to stay like this?

I realized that nowhere, in any of the many recommendations, did anyone mention how long it takes for tomato sauce to work its magic on stinky skin. In the heat of the tiny bathroom, the sauce slowly hardened to a paste. I could feel myself sweating underneath it, becoming faint. How long had it been now? Only minutes?? Or hours??? What if when I try to move my body, I can't? What if I become encased in tomato sauce, destined to be stuck under its red shell for the rest of my life? Like a Greek myth, what if I've been banished by this Medusa Skunk to an eternity of standing in my grandma's shower in da Bronx, a marinara stone where once my body stood?! My soul still alive inside?!! In a hundred years they'll sprinkle parmesan on me and not even remember why!!! I can't let this happen! I must reclaim my own fate! I found my tongue in my mouth and licked my tomato-y lips. My right hand received the message from my brain and broke free, sending crusty pieces of tomato to the shower floor in its wake. I summoned the powers of Hera, Athena, Artemis, Starbuck and Giada, and pushed that hand toward the faucet. I turned on the water and used its rushing stream to release the broth drying on me. To release my soul.

And hopefully...to release the skunk.

Since my marinara encasing, I seem to be smelling sweeter. So stick a fork in me -- I think I'm done. But does anyone have any recommendations on how to get skunk smell off of an Italian leather bag?

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