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Thursday, August 4, 2011

My Single-Worst-Vacation Failing...(thus far)

Dental disease might be better than this toothpaste!
Our lake vacation thus far has been perfect. The weather, activities, fellowship, kids, fun - one of the best ever - except for one thing.

The toothpaste.

My wife single-handedly completed the herculean task of buying and packing foodstuffs to keep our family feed for seven days.  My task as trusted sidekick was toiletries.  The day we were leaving for the trip I thought I had nailed my sidekick responsibilities, getting everything we needed.

However, during the drive here, The Wife innocently began listing the sundries I was supposed to secure for the health and well being of our family. She’d ask – I’d counter in the affirmative. It was exhilarating, like dueling banjoes or something. That is until the topic of toothpaste came up.

I had no recollection of purchasing, packaging or pilfering any kind of tooth cleansing paste.

However, ever the optimist, I assured her we’d be fine. I was confident that there would be some kind of complimentary trial tube on each of our pillows, freshly aglitter with pixie dust from the Tooth Fairy herself.

Needless to say upon arrival, we found that neither the Tooth Fairy nor actual house owners had anticipated my failure to buy toothpaste. Apparently, when you pay a boatload of clams to rent someone’s beautiful lakefront home – the toothpaste is not included.

So once the car was unpacked I headed back out to the closest grocery store in this bucolic resort-town. To my horror, the only toothpaste this particular establishment carries is the brand pictured in the photo insert, which cost more than seven dollars.

Now, I completely understand the idea of a “resort-town markup” but that amount made me consider the possible virtues of trench mouth if we collectively agreed as a family to a week of non-brushing. But I knew my wife wouldn’t go for that so I bought it.

I’m sure that Arm & Hammer products are wonderful, they’ve been around for more than 100 plus years - so they’re doing something right, but this particular toothpaste has three fatal flaws:

1. The over-the-top, gritty texture of the paste is akin to brushing your teeth with the rock-encrusted boot of a longshoreman.

2. The baking soda’s bitter base has a “touch of mint” – which makes you think that the aforementioned shoreman’s boot also had affixed to it an ant-covered glob of “ABC” spearmint gum.

3. Lastly, the tube does not have a flip-top cap, it has an old school screw-off cap. Apparently the product design department at Arm & Hammer is run by Archimedes.

My apologies for this belabored post on such a "non issue," but it’s the only thing I could do to forestall having to brush my teeth this morning. I simply can’t wait to re-experience that non-fresh, gravelly mouth sensation all over again.

Question: What’s the most memorable thing you’ve forgotten while packing for any day-trip or longer stretch of travel?

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