“Brainwashed in Suburbia”

11-13-2012  Repost from 7-11-2012

A number of years ago before I had a personal computer, or cable television, I was held hostage to network television programming for five long days.  By choice ~ no ~ my electric wheelchair A.K.A. my convertible was in the shop for major repairs.  So, the “happy wanderer” found herself flat on her back in bed ~ horrors of all horrors at the time.

After the first day, the devil himself sat along side me with some grand arguments about selling my soul for a bit of outdoor freedom.  Yep, he twirled the pen in his fingers knowing I would sign on the dotted line for a day at the beach.   Remember, I had nothing but television ~ no Nook.  For a while I played with the clever demon, but my angels on my shoulder sent him packing with a couple of harp melodies, and a sprinkle of heavy duty “holy water.”  I kept my soul, but lost my sanity to mindless television reruns and obnoxious commercials.

As each day passed I showed signs of irreversible craziness.  It was spring, and all of nature’s finest called out to frolic, but no chair ~ no play.  I finally accepted my fate, and bonded with the tiny talking box.  Before long the commercials themselves befriended me, and I needed to make a list of all the “wonder merchandise” that lured my weakened brain.  But, one in particular kept catching my eye.  It began with a gorgeous brunette dressed in a white linen dress walking on a balcony overlooking the ocean.  The sky was brilliantly blue, and the breeze made her long hair as well as her dress flow as it brushed against her.  Such a peaceful scene and I envisioned myself as the lovely lady.

Caught up in the tropical atmosphere, I ALMOST ignored the product.  But, as the ocean waves loaned themselves as a tranquil background,  the angel of the tropics introduces the wonder cream.  With ease she applies the silky potion to her legs to remove “unwanted hairs,” and of course, prepare yourself, “unsightly STUBBLE!”  God forbid her legs had a hint of those nasty “body weeds!”  With ease she applies this magical cream to her already sun kissed flawless legs, and in moments with one sweep of a damp face cloth, she removes her hair effortlessly.  The commercial ended with…

“Why shave, and chance those dreadful nicks and cuts,  when you can use Flair. “  (Protecting the real product name.)

At this point, I abandoned all the other “have to have” products: Beano, Extra Fiber Shredded Wheat, and Super Toenail Fungus Remover, I succumbed to the brainwash of Flair.  Sure, I felt a bit stupid, that at the age of forty four, I did not have a clue that Shredded Wheat breakfast cereal would meet ALL my fiber daily requirements.  AND ~ silly me ~ how did I ever get along without Beano for those embarrassing times, when flatulence could ruin a dinner party.  I crumbed my metal list of merchandise and set my sights on Flair.  It was spring, and by Goddess, I was going to have silky smooth nick free legs.

My first stop after the return of my chair was the drug store.  With my partner in crime desperately trying to deprogram me, my dial was set on Zombie, and I made an unstoppable beeline to the Flair.  After a couple of childish pleeezzzzzzzzzzzz help me, she agreed to apply the “MAGIC CREAM.”  I swore on my Ruby Slippers; it was going to be as easy as making JELLO.

That evening Sarah put me in bed, and placed towels under my legs to begin the quick and mindless application.  I had visions of the brunette, the breezes and the ease.  That thought vanished, when Sarah opened the jar, and jumped back.

“Peeeeuuuuuuu…are you sure you want this toxic waste on your legs?”

I clung to the dream ~ to the nick free silky legs.  My brainwashed mind communicated to my lips.

“YES ~ YES!!!  I want my legs to be free of stubble and gloriously smooth!”

Gagging as she put the lethal smelling cream on my legs, she managed a few kind words.

“You are flippin’ nuts!”

Once it was on my legs she left the room, and I began to detect a scent, which gone stronger with each breath.  As I inhale the pungent fumes,  my bubble popped; it smelt horrible!  My eyes began to tear and reddened, and I begged for an ocean breeze ~ one breath of fresh air.  At the same time my legs started to spasm, since I had no feeling in them, it signaled pain.  They wiggled like a live fish caught in a net.  I yelled out.

“HELP HELP ~ I am being eaten alive by Flair!”

Sarah rushed in to help.  I told her to get a damp washcloth, and it will come right off with all the “unsightly  hair.”  She worked at wiping it off, and announced.

“Dang, it is clinging like clue.  Easy???  Geezzzzzzz, your hair is coming off in small patches, but most of it is refusing displacement”

As my legs jumped and Sarah went to retrieve the fifth “damp bath towel,” slowly the tropical goddess in the linen dress became a she devil.  My legs were as red as ground chuck and looked like it too.  To make it worse, huge patches of hair stared back at us ~ almost snickering and defying the professed “ease.”  Not to mention that we were gagging from the fumes, and we were now using our seventh towel working feverishly to get this “carnival cream” OFF!

After an hour and a half, we had all the Flair off my legs.  Eleven towels were victims in the laundry room saturated with the odor of Flair, and the rest of the air in the house held the vapors.  As for my legs, they looked like a war zone, beet red patches indicated victory was not mine.  Our eyes watered, and we coughed, as we opened up to the laughter that waited patiently to express itself hysterically.

Until this day, I rarely pay attention to commercials.  When I drive through suburbia I wonder how many have been brainwashed?  How many shelves are dedicated to the once used “easy fix” or “weight be gone” merchandise.   As for my legs, yes, they are nicked, but I am grateful I did not go for my bikini line that day that my hair battled and beat the Flair.


About anitaskocz

ANITA JOYCE SKOCZ is a storyteller who resides in Central Florida. She credits her passion to her father, who dazzled her imagination as a child with his gift to weaver a tale. After a diving accident in 1978, Anita left the travel industry to journey the inner roads of her soul. The riches found on those adventures inward come to life in her children’s books. Anita’s books, “Crystal Star Angel” and “Kite Tale,” were inspired by the loving relationships her father had with his grandsons. From Where I Sit is a blog where Anita shares her life’s stories, or comments on current events from her soul’s perspective. Her insights can evoke laughter as well as take one on a reflective journey. In any case she hopes you join her each Wednesday for a new adventure.
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