#381 Somehow actually finishing a bar of soap

Scrub those suds, baby.

Work that hard square down to a soft-cornered bar. Work that soft-cornered bar down to smooth oval. Work that smooth oval down to a thin bar with deep creases. Work that thin bar with deep creases down to a jagged soap icicle.

And then make a big decision:

1. Toss the ice. You see the white tape stretched across the finish line but you know the extra effort required to get there will be too painful, so you just end up tossing the soap in the trash or letting it fall down the drain.  Basically, you just collapsed into a dry-heaving pile of sweat on the side of the road.

2. Soap surgery. Here’s where you attempt to extend the soap’s lifespan by melting it onto the back of a new bar. This results in a slippery and awkward bar for a while, but is theoretically possible with patience, care, and understanding houseguests.

3. Pushing through. You make the decision to work that soap icicle till it’s a goner but then face an uphill battle of dangerous soap shards, inevitable middle-splitting, and annoyingly long bouts of hand washing that involve scrubbing tiny dime-sized bits of soap between all your fingers for ten minutes.

But here’s the thing: if you actually make it, if you actually do it, if you actually pull off using that bar of soap all the way to the bitter end… well then you can take pride in focusing on a tough job and finishing it off… and can take pride in making it all the way to the finish line of


Photos from: here, here, here, and here

— Join my monthly book club