These Vexing Moments

As I said before, there’s strange ASMR stuff on the web. Videos of people tapping  rubber ducks, caressing microphones or making strange sounds like they’re about to throw up. Who finds that relaxing? I like the videos with hair brushing and neck massages. Nothing kinky, just calming. Except in certain situations.

Not long ago I was driving to the Chinook Centre in Calgary. I set my GPS, choosing the woman from the Maps app who barks at me when I’m drifting into the wrong lane. I was feeling a bit tense with the heavy traffic and having no idea where I was going. Suddenly and unbeknownst to me, my Youtube ASMR video from the night before cut in. As the  formerly soothing voice murmured in hushed tones, I thought  for a few frantic seconds that someone  was in the car with me. Someone possibly holding a gun to my head and whispering threatening messages. When I realized what it was, I couldnt turn it off because I wanted to hear the bossy GPS voice. My journey continued like this. 

“Stay in the left lane! Far left!’

“Feel your eyes closing as I gently run this long toothed comb along the top of your head.”

“After four hundred metres, turn right.”

“Feel the gentle spray of lavender oil beside your face.”

“Rerouting…rerouting. In 700 metres, take the next right turn.”

“Missed turn…rerouting.”

“Sip this soothing cup of tea while I brush your hair. Are you feeling relaxed?”

No. I was not relaxed. When I arrived at the mall, I made sure to exit the YouTube video for the sake of the return journey home. 

The second vexing thing happened a couple days ago. I’d installed a baby gate at the top of the stairs in my entranceway to keep my daughter’s dog from wandering during a recent visit. To take it down, I needed to tie two parts together, but lacked the necessary tools. I headed to Canadian Tire and walked around the store, unable to remember the name for what I needed. I asked a store clerk. 

“Do you have those things…you know, they’re plastic? The long ones? You can use them to tie people up?”

The young woman stared at me solemnly, one hand reaching for her walkie talkie.

“I mean, like on TV. You know, ‘put your hands behind your back,’ and whammo, they’re incapicated? I need those things.”

A long pause. “You mean, zip ties?” 

I exhaled in relief. “Yes! I keep forgetting the name.” I noticed her strained expression and laughed. “Ha ha! I’ll be asking for rope and a shovel next. Ha ha!” She didn’t smile back at me. 

Just kidding,” I said weakly. “But I really need the ties for my baby gate.”

“Uh huh.” She found them for me. I’m almost certain she didn’t call the police.  

The third thing happened today. I was wearing a new coat…one of those three quarter length extra-light-down numbers suited to the fall and early winter. It was only my third time wearing it, but when I took it off, I noticed something strange. The left armpit of the coat smelled strongly of body odor. I had worn it the previous night over a clean shirt. I went and got the shirt. It smelled fine. I sniffed myself. I smelled fine. I wanted to wear it again on a walk, but not knowing what else to do, I grabbed a can of hairspray and sprayed the smelly spot. Then I dried it with a hair dryer. It worked. I hung the coat in the closet, but when I pulled it out later, the smell was back. Just one armpit. I was wearing a fresh shirt and plenty of deodorant, which left only one explanation. My coat was haunted by a one armed, smelly ghost. Even stranger, the next day, both armpits smelled. I hadn’t worn it again!

I still have the bill, but who would believe me?  Feeling paranoid, I went through all the jackets I’ve been wearing and none of them have this problem.  If anyone has a suggestion, I’m up for it. Now, I realize that this is what we call a first world problem. I’m lucky to have more than one coat. 

So for now, I’ll wash it, try to remember the words, ‘zip ties’ and always exit out of my ASMR videos before driving anywhere. And in case you didn’t believe me about the rubber duck, here it is. 

(120) ASMR ON A RUBBER DUCK 🍓Gentle Tapping & Scratching 🍓Fireplace Sounds 🍓NO TALKING – YouTube

I know, right?

Published by Judith Pettersen

Judith Pettersen is an author living in Canada. She blogs about her life in the north and the ups and downs of being a writer.

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