I am a terrible wife. I am a horrible and mean person. I shame myself with my lack of compassion. But Oh. My. God. I must relate to you what will forever be known as, THE NOXEMA INCIDENT.
If you have no clue what I am talking about, you really need to read yesterday's post.
I brought home a large tub of Noxema yesterday, certain that this would succeed, where aloe, benzocaine and lotion had failed. For decades, I have heard how Noxema is the perfect antidote to sunburn, soothing and cooling the burn, while moisturizing the skin. I was flush with anticipated victory.
Never flush with victory anticipated. It tempts the gods.
We did our evening routines. Mr. Clairol had Missy Hoo Haw and Drama Queen in stitches, laying on the carpet and wriggling around, trying to relieve the itching. Yes, I was laughing too. We are horrible, horrible people. We bathed and put the kids to bed. We settled in to bed and turned on Fear Factor. All was in readiness.
I opened the tub and sniffed deeply. I looooove the smell of Noxema. I wish they still made Bonnie Bell Ten-o-Six. The scents of my adolescence. Aaaahhhhhhh. Mr. Clairol was skeptical, remembering my claims of relief with the aloe and benzocaine. I swore this would do the trick and cajoled him. Okay, I called him a big pansy and told him to man up. Same difference, right?
He was already shirtless, so after I got him turned around and facing the TV, I did the countdown that is now a ritual every time I plan on touching my husband's back. 3 - 2 - 1. The Noxema went on and he shuddered violently, saying, "WOW! That is COLD!" The shuddering continued for a moment, then calmed and I thought to myself, damn, I'm good.
Not so much. After a moment or two, he started twitching. Another moment, and he was writhing. "Get it off." he said quietly, "GET IT OFF." He was trying not to yell and wake up Missy Hoo Haw, but the desperation was there. I wiped the cream off as well as I could, while he convulsed and had what I'm thinking was a grand mal siezure. He whimpered...seriously, whimpered. "This shit burns like a MOFO!" he told me.
I was apologizing profusely and warming up the shower for him. I even got in and washed his back for him. Usually this leads to marital fun, but not last night.
Now, for those of you who don't know, Noxema leaves a film behind. It's not unpleasant, like soap scum, just a tingly, soft skin coating type of thing. I can't really describe it. If you've used Noxema, you'll know. If you haven't, don't listen to my husband. You should get some. Really.
So, this film remained on my husbands back and all the soap and water in the world could not erase the phantom tingling on his back. This drove him (and me) crazy last night. Not just irritated. Bats in the bellfry, lonny tunes, apeshit. A-P-E-S-H-I-T. He tossed and turned and muttered and moaned all night long. Every so often, he'd shoot me a death look. It was dark, so I couldn't see it, but I felt it. Oh yes, I felt it. I would murmur an apology that he'd ignore. It was a looooooooooooooong night.
This morning, he was still twitchy, but he hugged me and made my lunch. A lunch I am NOT planning on eating, just in case my usually mild mannered husband has developed a mean streak. One that smells faintly of Noxema.