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I’m going to level with you: We’ve got far too much soap in this house. I try to tell my wife this and she won’t listen. In fact, any house that contains at least one woman will be sure to have a ludicrous surplus of both soap and pillows. We’ll discuss the female obsession with pillows some other time, right now we have to deal with soap. Dear Lord, the soap. It’s everywhere. I mean, we’ve got three different soaps in the kitchen: One for the dishwasher, one for the sink to wash dishes, and one to wash our hands. Of course you’ve got your soaps in the laundry room for washing clothing. I’m not counting the fabric softeners, which are totally necessary because without them your fabric, like, won’t be soft, or something. Then there’s the bathroom. The soap situation in the bathroom is utterly overwhelming. There’s soap by the sink, we’ve got bar soap and then other soap in a soap dispenser that my wife tells me is “cute.” I don’t know how a soap dispenser could be cute, or what “cute” is doing in a room where you go to evacuate your bowels, but fine. Then under the sink there’s a stash of decorative soap, I guess we are saving those for any visits from dignitaries or royalty. The shower is a soap bonanza. You’ve got your just soap soap, then your shampoo soap, your conditioner soap, your body wash soap, your face wash soap. You’ve got your moisturizing, pore rejuvenating, magical luxury soap.

I always laugh at the shower soap that advertises that it’s a “body AND face wash.” Isn’t your face already a part of your body? If it’s for my body can’t I already assume it would work on my face? Even better: The soap that claims to be special because it’s “anti-bacterial.” ISN’T ALL SOAP ANTI-BACTERIAL? Isn’t that the freaking POINT of soap? Is there a pro-bacterial soap out there that I’m not aware of?

Hey, here’s an idea: Do you think we could maybe use ONE type of soap to handle all of these tasks? Can’t there just be a soap that cleans dirty things? Does the chemical formulation of the soap really differ all that drastically depending on what sort of dirty thing it is “specially designed” to clean? Is it really reasonable for your daily routine to require 47 different types of soap? How fundamentally different are these soaps?

I think we’re really losing our minds. We’re all becoming a bunch of pampered consumerist divas. Can you imagine what your great grandfather would think if he walked into your house and saw how many types of soap you have? In his day, they bathed once a month using cold water and baking soda AND THEY LIKED IT, DAMN IT. Seriously, companies can sell the same thing in 12 different packages and we’ll buy all 12. More and more marketing departments are catching onto this, and we fall for it every time. Have you ever noticed how many “different” types of water they sell now? WATER. It’s freaking WATER. You know what the difference is between the special “enhanced” sports water you bring to the gym, and the normal water I drink from the fountain at the gym? I drank mine for free. That’s it. That’s the only difference. Mine isn’t tainted with the taste of wasted money, yours is. I’m just waiting for them to start selling special “anti-dry” water for cleaning. People would buy it, too.

And, yes, I just did four paragraphs on soap and water. I could go on for another 19 pages if you like.