The Personal Intimacy of a Bubble Bath

I took a bubble bath two weeks ago. After a couple of months of waiting, I finally decided to take the plunge, as it were. The bottle of bubble bath lotion/solution/cream/stuff sat near the kitchen sink for nearly two months, before I realized that it wasn’t, in fact, dish soap. The bottle looks surprisingly similar to blue dish soap. Knowing this, you can imagine how much of the rest of my life is in a bit of a disarray.

Warning: This post does contain language that can be considered abrasive and sexual in nature, with references to nudity and personal intimate moments. If you think that you may be offended, or think that such material is distasteful, please do not read on.

I took a bubble bath. You can see my right knee on the right side of the image. The tiles in my washroom are pink. I brush my teeth in the shower, because I don't like having the foam gather on my lips.
I took a bubble bath. You can see my right knee on the right side of the image. The tiles in my washroom are pink. I brush my teeth in the shower, because I don’t like having the foam gather on my lips.

I had been complaining to my sister that I really wanted to take a bubble bath. I told her that I had gone out and bought the stuff you need for a bubble bath, but I just hadn’t gotten around to it. This was about a week before I actually took the bubble bath.

It was about 8:30 on a Saturday night, when I finally decided that I’m just going to fill the tub and take a bubble bath. So, dutifully, I read the instructions on the bottle of the bubble bath. The directions are simple: “For best results pour generously under fast running water.” It had been years since I’d last taken a bath of any sort, even though I prefer to sit during my showers, so I thought it best to ensure that I reminded myself about how the whole thing works.

Before beginning to fill the tub, I turned on some music, “Mouthful of Cavities” by Blind Melon, and did something of a soundcheck. The light and the fan for the washroom in my apartment are connected, so I can’t turn on the light without the sound of a useless 30-year old fan wheezing. While I stood next to the toilet, which is next to the tub, listening attentively to the song, and judging the comfort level of the volume, I realized that it might be too bright to keep the washroom light on. Instead, I would turn on the hallway light and leave the washroom door open. I tested this as well.

It was a little dark, so I figured I’d just light some candles. I lit two tealight candles, and placed them on the tank of the toilet, thinking that safer than on the edges of a bathtub that would soon be full of water.

Next, I turned on the bathtub faucet, and held my hand under the running water to check the temperature. I decided that it would need to be hotter than I would normally keep it, because the water would cool during my bath. I turned on the hot water faucet first, and when the running water finally became hot, I still hadn’t turned on the cold water. I was in such a state of confusion over what was actually happening, probably from fatigue and sheer amazement at myself for deciding to take a bubble bath, that it took me more than a moment to figure out that I needed to balance this soon to be scalding water with the cold water.

I ended up with my regular shower-temperature water. It was easiest because I now know at what angles the H and C need to be for me to have a comfortable shower.

This is the informative label on the bottle of bubble bath solution.
This is the informative label on the bottle of bubble bath solution.

I plugged the tub, with one of them rubber stoppers, and let it fill a little before I realized that I hadn’t added the magic solution. I unplugged the tub and let it drain for a bit. I then re-plugged the tub, re-read the directions on the bottle of bubble bath solution, for good measure, and then began pouring the solution into the tub, just to the left of the stream of water.

It was unclear to me, in that moment, how generous I needed to be with the solution. As the bubbles started to form, I was quickly running out of time to decide – I wouldn’t be able to see just how much of the stuff I had actually poured in. I poured in about 1/10th of the bottle, hoping that it would be enough. In retrospect, I could have been slightly more generous. After all, a $3.50 bottle of bubble bath isn’t going to carry you very far.

While the tub was filling, I thought I would make a better choice about the music I would be listening to while I was taking my bubble bath. Now that the washroom door would remain open, I could turn it down a bit. I also thought that something more soothing would be nice. I picked David Gray.

I like David Gray. I think his songs are very nice. His piano playing and singing make for a lovely accompaniment to a casual dinner with new friends. I decided that I would take my iPhone into the bathroom with me, which I left on the edge of the bathtub that was filling with water, so I could use the Apple Remote function if I wanted to change the music during my bath.

With the music and lighting set, and the tub filling, I started to undress in the bathroom, like I usually do. Once naked, I looked at myself in the mirror above the sink and rubbed my belly, now rounder than I last remember it being. I looked at my smallish cow-teat like breasts, thinking that I really should do something about my physical appearance before it’s too late to reverse the growth.

Having forgotten about Archimedes’ great discovery, I let the tub overfill.

Anyway, I dipped a toe into the tub, thinking that it was going to be hot and that I would have to ease myself in. The water was at a very comfortable temperature, and I just slid right in, pushing the water and bubbles dangerously close to the top of the edges of the tub. I unplugged the drain for a count of ten.

Within 30 seconds of being in the tub, I decided that David Gray just wasn’t going to cut it. If I was going to be in a bubble bath, with candles lit, I would like to have a woman swooning me. I scrolled through my music and picked London Grammar. It fit well with my mood.

Within three minutes of laying the tub, I was bored. I mean, I was properly bored. I dried my hands on the first piece of cloth that I could reach, and typed “waterproof books” into Google on my iPhone.

A screenshot as proof that I googled "waterproof books".
A screenshot as proof that I googled “waterproof books”.

Thinking about it now, knowing that waterproof books exist was going to be of no use to me then, while I was laying naked in a bubble bath. Anyway, it was kind of interesting to look through the results and see what types of technology are out there. It also made me feel good, knowing that I wasn’t the only one in the world who was thinking about this rather ridiculous idea.

By this time, Riel, my cat, had realized where I was and had made himself comfortable on the toilet lid. He just sat there, curled up, looking at me. I could see that the sound of the popping bubbles was causing him a little duress. I closed my eyes, trying to drown out the distractions, and focus on the operatic voice of Hannah Reid.

I’ve never been one for meditation, and I was distracted by boredom. What the hell are you supposed to do while taking a bubble bath? Seriously, you’re just uncomfortably laying there, while bubbles pop above your body, with your legs awkwardly floating, and your back arched in an unnatural way. Add to this, a cat sitting on a toilet, whose eyes are darting back and forth with the sound of popping bubbles. You’re naked, wet, and trapped.

I wasn’t ready to give up, so I decided to play with the bubbles. I would draw them onto my chest, blow at them, and push them under water. I just hurried the process of them disappearing. Before long, I was sitting in a tub of lukewarm water, covered in patches of bubbles. I used my toes to turn on the hot water faucet, thinking I could, at the very least, warm up the water without having to move too much. I had to sit up to drain the tub a bit.

In movies, I’ve seen people dunk their head under water while in the tub. I tried it. I just felt a rush of dirty water fill my noise, making me cough, and filling me with an irresistible urge to blow my nose. Again, I reached for the nearest cloth to dry my hands, before using some toilet paper to blow my nose. I could still taste filth.

At this point, I just wanted a beer and a cigarette, but I wasn’t willing to get out of the tub and walk to the fridge, past the unshielded window of my living room, and I don’t smoke in my apartment.

Again, I was bored.

Now that the bubbles were dissipating, I could see my penis and the unkept thicket that surrounded it. For a few years now, I’ve been keeping close watch on this relentless growth, but in the bustle of school, I neglected my commitment. In any case, my flaccid penis stood erect. It just floated, like a stalk of kelp. It swayed too, a companion to the waves that I was creating whenever I would press my floating legs down.

I held my penis, and played with it like it were a joystick for about ten seconds.

After I was over my fascination with my floating flaccid penis, I decided to try dunking my head under water again. Same result, but this time I felt more stupid than I did the first time. I should have know what was going to happen. I coughed, dried my hands, and blew my nose.

When I sat up to blow my nose, there was a bit of pain in my lower back and hips. It must be from years of poor sitting posture.

I wiggled around in the tub, looking for a more comfortable, yet stilled covered, position. I shouldn’t have done that. I put myself in strange positions. I crossed my legs tightly enough to be able to fit within the width of the tub, but that just meant that I was sitting on my heels while leaning back. I rolled onto my left side, but that just meant my face was pressed into the back of the tub. I rolled onto my right side, but that just meant that the other side of my face was pressed into the back of the tub. At one point, I tried sitting upright in the tub, with my back against the back of the tub, but then my penis was floating at an awkward angle, and was breaking the surface of the water.

I was giving up.

Before I did, I decided that I would try some self-sex in a bubble bath. I couldn’t make it work. So, I peed a little before unplugging the drain, and standing up to take a shower.

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