Inside Doug's Head

I am not a number, I am… What's that stuff they make glue out of? I'm that. Forever swirling, forwards and upwards, but always sticky. Sometimes, a little sad.

Several months ago, I read an unreferenced and uncredited article about how walk-in bathtubs were predicted to become extremely popular in the next few years; if I had any business savvy, I would find a way to profit from that prognostication. However, I must admit that I am rather confused by the anticipated popularity of these newfangled “water closets” (maybe that isn’t the correct term for them, but I figured it is probably derived from the same Latin root as walk-in closet, so I went with it). I realize that the lack of a high edge makes a walk-in easier to step into, I was the first one to point out that lifting your legs is a sucker’s game, but I tried taking a bath in a water closet once and I was not all that impressed by the experience.

Firstly, it took a long time to fill up with water. Secondly, after carefully getting it to the right temperature and bubbliness, as soon as I opened the door to get in, whoosh, all the water came rushing out, like some magnificent South African waterfall. As heartening as it was seeing my rubber ducky making a break for freedom, I could not even get a toe in the opening before the tub was completely emptied of all its warm bubbles and their lost cleaning potential.

There was a lot of tepid water on the floor, which I tried rolling around in, thinking it was how these things were supposed to work… but it was not, something that became evident to me almost immediately as I lay there supine, cold and damp, and wondering why so many people were looking down at me, faces painted in a mix of horror and bewilderment. Also, a word of advice, don’t try embarking on water adventures in a plumbing store showroom. The staff at those places tends to get annoyed easily by old nude people rolling around on their wet floor, and the ultimate results can be surprisingly unpleasant for both participant and spectators, alike. It’s a sad day when you don’t learn something new.

Not one to be easily discouraged, I repeated the process over and over again, with the same result. All that I could manage to accomplish was very clean wet feet. Now, back in my day, splashing around in a puddle of water was the way a poor kid got clean, but I have progressed since then, and a puddle in the bathroom doesn’t make for a very satisfying bathing experience. Eventually, I concluded that the specific unit I was testing must be aberrantly defective. In retrospect, this deduction was an obvious one, and I feel somewhat embarrassed that it took so many fruitless attempts before finally sussing it out.

Undaunted, I repeated the exercise in its entirety at three different stores and on six different models. Unbelievably, the exact same thing happened with each one of them. Upon a great deal of reflection and introspection, I now believe that the entire walk-in bathtub phenomenon is an elaborate marketing scam. You see, with further research, I learned that there is such a substance called hard water, and I suspect that if you do not use hard water in your walk-in bathtub, the water will always fall out when you open the door to get in. It is no coincidence, of course, that Big Water is willing to sell you all the hard water supplies you need… for a price. Which, come to think of it, is how all trade and commerce works, and unless you define a coincidence as a seemingly planned sequence of accidentally occurring events, you will likely agree with my very logical conclusion.

Nope. I am not going to be duped by the walk-in bathtub rip off ruse. Unless it is a bathtub made by, or from pieces of, Christopher Walken, I will continue to lift my legs to get into the tub, like the proud sucker that I am.


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