Going Out With The Tide

Editor’s note: Ron Nagasawa is on leave. This column was originally published March 22, 2006.

I like to think I’m a pretty neat guy. No, not the “cool” kind of neat, but the kind of neat that is opposite of sloppy.

My problem with neatness is that I somehow seem to be a magnet for stains. I know what you’re thinking, but I’m talking about food stains on my clothing. It doesn’t matter if I’m at home, at a fast food joint or an elegant restaurant, I somehow manage to drip some kind of food substance on my clothes.

It happens so often, it’s become a family joke. In fact, my wife will celebrate if I make it through a meal without so much as a drop on me.

I’d like to think that’s because she does the laundry, but if you think about it, I guess it’s kind of embarrassing to be seen with a 47-year-old man whose shirt looks like it was the bib of a 2-year-old.

Not that I don’t take every precaution known to man.The other day I decided to have an apple for breakfast. Breakfast means that I’ll eat it in my truck on the way to work. I wore a pristine white shirt and a black pair of pants. As I bit into the apple, the juices trickled down my hand and on to the front of my shirt and the lap of my pants.I had already driven past the point of no return home, so I had to figure out what I was going to do.

Remembering a commercial I had just seen on TV, I pulled into the nearest Longs Drugs to purchase one of those “Tide To Go” stain-removing pens. I was in a hurry and couldn’t find the Tide pens, but saw a Clorox pen which I assumed was the same thing. In the truck, I applied copious amounts to my shirt and especially my pants. It kind of seemed to work on my shirt immediately, but the area on my pants needed to dry out.When I got into the office, I was greeted by stares and even some laughter. I looked down at my pants and saw that the bleach had created a huge white stain on my black pants.

Needless to say, I was forced to stay behind my desk the entire day.

Although I ruined a perfectly good pair of pants, I got more work done than I did in all of 2005.

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