I started wearing Old Spice deodorant around the age of twelve. The scent took some getting used to, but I wasn’t wearing it for me — my best friend’s dad had just died and the smell reminded her of him. I thought it was sweet of me.
Flash-forward to the present — I was listening to my routine Saturday morning podcast and heard that there is aluminum in some deodorant. The host went on to say that Old Spice is “allegedly” one of the worst. Apparently, deodorants and antiperspirants with aluminium have links to all sorts of cancerous diseases, autism, and so on.
The next morning, I woke up, went to the bathroom, brushed my teeth, washed my face, and swiped on my toxic blue Old Spice deodorant.
My mom called me recently and told me how air driers in bathrooms spread millions of bathroom based bacteria around, how it’s much better to wipe your hands on your pants than use one of them and, in my moms words, end up with “other peoples genitals all over you.”
I went to the movies the other day, pissed, washed my hands, and used the air dryer.
It’s not that I don’t believe anything. It’s not that I don’t read or do research. It’s not that I don’t care that the vitamins I take are full of crap and the food I eat isn’t 100% what I think it is. I do care and I am worried.
But I also want to live, uninhibited.
So much of the world today just doesn’t make sense. As a literature major turned software engineer, I can’t explain to you the majority of the stories I hear on a regular basis. I can’t explain away the concerns of my parents when they get their bi-weekly conspiracy theory emails, or make them live any less cautiously.
I can admit to myself that I live in a post-truth-fake-news-media-centric world today. I can admit to myself that my Old Spice deodorant might not be the healthiest, that maybe I shouldn’t use so many plastic straws, and maybe I should look at the ingredients in the protein powder I buy.
I can admit these things. I just choose not to. I choose to live in the idealist story I tell myself where the people behind capitalism have my best interests in mind; where what I see on the surface is exactly what I’m getting.
Maybe I’m hurting myself in the long run. But I’m allowing myself the bliss of ignorance: the opportunity to go about my day without second guessing every single decision I make.
I get it. I hear you. I know I should be more careful. I know I’m falling into “the man’s” plan, being lazy in my agency to know what I putting in, on, and around my body.
But is it so bad to say that I don’t care? That this fight just seems a little to… grand?
I’ll take the chemically educed, cancer causing, feces riddled fantasy land.
And I’ll be damned if you try to tell me otherwise.