Wednesday, May 29, 2013

An Arm is Growing From My Head

I'm from Nebraska.

Now, to some, this means prior to moving to LA, I've never seen a skyscraper, we have no electricity, and we obviously don't wear shoes.

In my case, although the latter may be true, I got my real dose of, "You can't do that here," in my office today. I walked into the kitchen during lunch time, walked past the chattering women and blaring TV to the refrigerator. I intended to fill up my cup of water. Yet, a clumsily written note on a paper plate covered the glowing hole in the fridge, stopping me from quenching my thirst.

At that moment, the conversational chatter turned to complaint. "I don't know who broke it!" "It wasn't me!" "I had to get a bottle of water down stairs, and it was expensive." I brushed passed these comments, and very routinely turned to the faucet in the sink, and began filling up my water.

Much to my surprise a loud gasp preceded a silence that settled over the once busy kitchen. I slowly turned to find gaping mouths, pointing fingers, and a woman slumped over from faint in her chair.

Okay, so it wasn't this dramatic, but I did gain some negative reactions from the supposed unthinkable I had just committed. I filled my glass with water from the sink. I was warned in the tone of a witch the dangers of drinking from the faucet. I half-heartedly responded that I had done it before. I'm pretty sure the woman who had come around fainted again.

So, my next step was Google, of course. I jetted back to my desk to research the dangers of LA water. And, what I had come to find out, is that the water had been pretty terrible from the 50s to the 80s. So retract any Leave It To Beaver ideas of early 21st century LA. They were having water delivered to their door, while the rest of America was being American, with glass bottles of milk at their feet. Yet, another questionable move on my part. Not only am I now worried about my health after drinking the monstrosity, but I'm now worried about my hair, my skin, and my dog. We are all submerged in LA water multiple times a day. Was an arm going to grow from my forehead? Was my dog going to start glowing?

After cutting through the red tape of hypochondriacs blogging about dirty water, I found a few articles by seemingly educated people speaking rationally. After adding fluoride to semi-contaminated water, it took a few years, but the water had cleaned up. I hurried back to relay this incredible information to the kitchen dwellers, but met an empty room, which, I'm sure, is haunted by the snickers of the Nebraska girl drinking gross water. I imagine they followed with how fantastic and hilarious I am.

Well, the fluoride combated like Mulan against the Huns and resulted in pretty okay stuff. Pun absolutely intended, it's been made clear, the water is a go. However, as I sit at my desk, sipping my from-the-ground beverage, my confidence begins to slowly diminish. I can't help but taste bugs, and poison, and dirt, and radon. I think I'll suffer from thirst the rest of the day and maybe bring something from home tomorrow.

Yay for clean-ish water, sort of.

Thanks for soundin' down.

..........

A catechism ( /ˈkætəkɪzəm/; Ancient Greek: κατηχισμός from kata = "down" + echein = "to sound", literally "to sound down" (into the ears), is a summary or exposition of doctrine, traditionally used inChristian religious teaching from New Testament times to the present.[1] Catechisms are doctrinal manuals often in the form of questions followed by answers to be memorized, a format that has been used in non-religious or secular contexts as well.