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Bread and Shaving Water

No cloud but has its silver lining. My parents have hard water. It’s not so bad as the private well water they had when they lived on the farm just outside Rockford, but it’s still palpably hard water. That makes it somewhat unpleasant to drink, and I’m still on my 48-unwanted-ounces-of-water-a-day diet to prevent kidney stones, but I notice it even more when showering.

Hard water doesn’t rinse off properly. It leaves a film behind. While still wet, before drying entirely and depositing a mineral crust, it feels faintly oily, like the film left behind by a soft soap. (Also, my parents favor soft soap…) When showering, I end up rinsing for several extra minutes in a futile effort to rinse off the water itself, mistaking it for soap film.

This morning, I discovered the brighter side of this situation: lacking shaving cream thanks to airport security, I found that one can shave quite effectively without, if using hard water.

I’m sure shaving cream salesmen would squawk at the claim, spinning some elaborate explanation of how ingredients in shaving cream or lotion not only slicken the skin but close up pores, thus raising whiskers for closer cropping, with the same fervor that razor manufacturers want you to think that using twin razor blades means you’re shaving twice a day. There may be some microscopic difference between whiskers shaved with hard water and whiskers shaved with shaving cream, but I can’t confirm it with my fingertips.

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