A Whiter Shade of Pale

Trip Start May 30, 2008
Trip End Jun 22, 2008

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Flag of Germany  ,
Tuesday, June 10, 2008

In which we take a brief anthropological look at an unexpectedly fascinating feature of the "culture" of major airlines.

I arrived in Germany on Sunday.  As for my luggage?  Looked liked it was going nowhere, baby.  Or going somewhere, but going nowhere with me.  It did finally catch up with me in the end, sparing you all a retelling of the undoubtedly blog-worthy process that would have been attempting to make my dress look like I wasn't wearing it for the fourth straight day.   

But never mind how my clothes looked.  I'm sure everyone was too distracted by the blinding whiteness of my armpits to notice, anyway.  Yup, my armpits.

See, hearing my tale of woe and lost baggage, the nice German airline representative consoled me with toiletry kit.  The toiletry kit's main purpose, of course, is not to be particularly useful.  Case in point: it included...a  nail file.  Who loses the most immediately necessary of their worldy possessions and thinks "Oh thank God for my toiletry kit!  I couldn't live out the remainder of the day without this nail file?!?"  (And do ponder that question as long and as thorougly as I have, and let me know if you come up with something insightful.  It's been bothering me.)

No, the toiletry kit's main purpose is to momentarily distract the distrungtled or even irate traveler, allowing the airline representative to escape to safety or at least throw on some protective gear.   Like raccoons to shiny objects, one after another we fall victim to its simple charms...

And speaking of shiny objects, back to  my armpits.  Ok, my armpits were only hypothetically shiny and white.  The deodorant offered in my toiletry kit told me that if I used it, they would be so.  But in all honesty, I was simply too scared by this dubious and unexpected claim to try the stuff out (and yes, I did have another, albeit non-whitening, stash on hand, people.  Sheesh).  That's right!  Whitening deodorant!  In one of those cool little European deodorant containers!  Certain to "reduce underarm darkening!"

Do you have underarm darkening?  Does it bother you on a daily basis?  Has your self-confidence suffered?  Has the problem prevented you from forming close social or romantic attachments?   Do you often find yourself making excuses to avoid arm-baring situations? Do you wear long sleeves, even in the heat of the sweltering DC summer?  Do you want others to notice YOU, not your darkened pits?

If so, it may be time to move to Europe so that you can get the help you need and deserve. Or, just borrow my stuff.  If you're willing to use it on one pit but not on the other for a few months in the name of a minor field test/comparison study, I will even offer you a small bribe, to be negotiated.  Anyone?  Anyone?

Auf Wiedersehen,
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